You can find out what a job coach does here, the benefits of a placement or internship, what you need to be able to get a basic vocational education (apprenticeship), and much more.

How does the linguistic and vocational integration support programme work?

The Integration Office applies a differentiated, coordinated support programme and continuous case management for linguistic and vocational integration of recognised refugees and temporarily admitted foreign nationals.

The support programme includes the following services:

  • Invitation to an initial information event
  • Language skills assessment
  • Referral to a language or education course, taking into consideration individual requirements > minimum target for everyone: A2 speaking, otherwise A2/B1 or B1/B2 for individuals with an educated background
  • Transfer to professional integration measures
  • “Professional integration” information event
  • Individual support and monitoring from job coaches
  • Participants who have A1/A2 language skills are generally referred for a three-week practical assessment (PAF). What happens next is decided in conjunction with the job coach based on the practical assessment (taster sessions, placement/internship, part payment model, etc.)
  • Participants with B1 language skills receive individual support depending on their requirements (qualification, education and training, etc.)

The aim is for recognised refugees and provisionally accepted persons to find a long-term position in the world of work.

How does the Integration Office support young people (over 16) and young adults?

  • Support with language skills and education as part of education and language courses (B1/B2) and additional support with mathematics
  • Active provision of information and support when referring the person to cantonal bridging courses, with the aim of finding follow-on solutions
  • Monitoring and advice when attending the bridging course
  • Support when looking for an apprenticeship and finding solutions for participants who have been unable to find an apprenticeship after attending the bridging course
  • Monitoring and advice during the apprenticeship
  • Allocation of need-appropriate support during the apprenticeship (learning support from volunteers, etc.)

What is job coaching?

The role of the Job Coach

  • To organise, coordinate, support and check the initial measures for occupational integration.
  • Sourcing employers to implement occupational integration of temporary residents and refugees. This requires and promotes active cooperation between employers and temporary residents and refugees.
  • Advise and support temporary residents and refugees in all aspects connected to occupational integration.


  • Sustainable social and occupational integration for recognised refugees and temporary residents.
  • The participants gain an insight into the working environment, review their occupational interests and options and plan or implement the start of their career.

The Job Coach

  • Defines and reviews clear objectives with them
  • Carries out reviews and evaluations with them
  • Offers individual supporting measures
  • Stretches and encourages them
  • Encourages important drive and ambition

The job seeker

  • Has clear occupational objectives and knows what is needed to achieve them
  • Constantly looks for possible roles in the course of the integration process
  • Makes every possible effort and always gives their best

What is a practical assessment?


  • Acquiring basic knowledge of ‘working in Switzerland’
  • Knowing one’s own options for individual occupational integration
  • Developing your skills profile and job application documents
  • Defining and planning the next steps and actions together with the Job Coach from the specialist integration team

Course duration

  • 1st week; Theoretical lessons
  • 2nd and 3rd week; Practical work > From example in the cooking, service or cleaning businesses or in industrial, metalwork or woodworking workshops

Specific results and opportunities

  • Learning about different roles and professions
  • Assessing strengths and weaknesses
  • Recognising one’s own occupational skills
  • Leaning about work processes and the pace of work

Action plan

  • The Job Coach from the specialist integration team receives your skills profile, your job application documents and an action plan.
  • In a personal conversation with the Job Coach, using feedback and the assessment results, an action plan is discussed.

What is a placement/internship?


  • Complete a work placement of several months in a company.
  • Practical application of occupational and language skills.
  • Check the quality and quantity of job performance in real day-to-day professional life.
  • In a best-case scenario and if required, an employer may offer a training placement, part-time or permanent role at the end of the internship if skills and potential have been visibly demonstrated.

Internship conditions

  • The general conditions are agreed, set out in a contract and signed by all parties before the start of an internship. The duration of the internship is agreed on an individual basis.

Specific results and opportunities

  • You demonstrate your abilities and skills.
  • You have the opportunity to compare yourself and your performance with other workers in real work-related situations and improve your ability to assess yourself and your skills.
  • You endeavour to perform your work to as high a standard as possible and present a positive overall impression.
  • You make new relationships and acquaintances in the working world.
  • Your German skills will improve considerably.
  • At the end of the internship, you receive a reference from the employer. A good reference will assist you in finding a job and planning your next steps.

Other possibilities

  • Another internship
  • Attending additional specialist integration courses
  • Job-specific training courses
  • A standard apprenticeship
  • A part-time or permanent position

Partial wage phased model


  • 6 month orientation internship (maximum)

Start of partial wage:

  • 6 months with wage during first apprenticeship year
  • 6 months with wage during second apprenticeship year
  • 6 months with wage of at least CHF 2,500

Options over the course of the phased model:

  • Access to apprenticeship
  • Job at the wage customary for the industry
  • Drop out


  • Attending part-time courses (language courses / general education / industry-specific courses) are compulsory during the partial wage phase


  • Long-term occupational integration in a specific field, with education and training opportunities
  • Good professional qualification and work experience
  • Improvement in German skills up to B1


  • German language skills at least A1+
  • Clear ideas with regards to future work/profession
  • Prepared to engage in motivated and active cooperation
  • Commitment to commonly agreed objectives

Concrete results:

  • Employment contract with company
  • Real opportunities to start a professional apprenticeship/training
  • Real opportunities for a role in the same field of work or in connected industries
  • Basic wage customary for the industry
  • Basis on which to develop oneself professionally and financially

Further action/connected options:

  • Job search supported by the Job Coach

How do I find out what job would suit me?

Your job coach will show you the different ways to decide on what kind of job you would like. These include the following, for example:

What are the requirements for completing a basic vocational education?

The most important requirements are:

  • German at level B1, B2 depending on the career (pass in oral and written Telc exams)
  • Good knowledge of mathematics
  • Independent learning and learning strategies
  • Desire to commit fully to education and training
  • Willingness to develop personal and language skills and personally
  • 100% availability (part-time not possible)
  • Willingness to make a commitment for 2–4 years and to live on welfare payments during this time (apprentice’s pay does not cover living expenses)

It is only possible to take a Federal Vocational Education and Training Certificate or Diploma (EBA or EFZ) if you have a good level of academic and language skills, are very dedicated and are accepted as an apprentice by a company.