Office
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Google's office in Switzerland


In this article I will try to describe more social work peculiarities in Google, Switzerland, but I cannot hide from you the interior of the office, because it is gorgeous :)

I have received this information from the company employees, so something may not be accurate or correspond to the facts.

So, the head office of Google is located in Zurich, Europe.
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1,500 employees work in this office, 60 of them speak Russian language. Most of Russian-speaking people are moved from the Moscow office of Google.

In Zurich the local people speak the Swiss language (which is very similar to German), but in Google all employees communicate in English.

When the employee is moved from one office to another Google covers these expenses :
1. Apartment rental for a month; you do not have to worry about the rent when you come to a new place. If you do not like this apartment you could find yourself something more interesting. After receiving the first salary you pay yourself for your apartment.
2. Car rental for 2 weeks; it is very convenient when you need to buy all the necessary household items and furniture, as well as look around.
3. Courses in foreign languages such as Swiss, German and English (optional).
4. Fitness and various sports activities.
5. Internet in a new apartment that you could work at home.

If I understood correctly, Google does not pay for 1 and 2 items when moving an employee from one office to another.

Salaries, it is confidential information, and I was asked do not disclose that. However, if I compare with the Moscow office of Google, the salary is higher in 1.5-1.8 times in Zurich.
Living cost in Zurich is higher in 1.5-2 times than in Moscow. For example, renting a 1 bedroom studio that is not located in the historical center will cost about 1.5-2 thousand dollars.
Food in the supermarkets is a little more expensive than in Moscow, the restaurants in 2 times.
Cost of public transportation is more expensive, but it is perfectly organized.

The concept of Google’s offices is focused on the comfort and the autonomy as in all countries. The employees do not need to go to cafes / restaurants, because there are a lot of excellent dining and coffee zones. Of course, all the meals and drinks are free of charge.

A typical day of employee in Zurich looks like this: waking-up at 7am, getting dressed, and a short walk to the office (Zurich itself is a small town, so everything is located within walking distance. Also, you can use a bicycle). The breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served at the office.
Now, I will talk about the interior.

Dining room:

There is a great machine that makes the fresh orange juice:
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At your choice is the European food (steak, fried potatoes), or Japanese and so on.
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For a dessert you may order different cakes or croissants...
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Each floor has 2-3 kitchens, where you can drink tea or coffee, eat cookies and Snickers or talk with colleagues about work.
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There is a conference room for presentations. In the evenings it is used as a movie theatre.
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There are local meeting rooms, which are designed to meet with a small number of people, or to make telephone calls.
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If the employee suddenly got tired – he/she can always lie down and sleep in a recreation area.

If the employee suddenly got bored - he/she can always go to the game room and play with the coworkers. In addition to the games, there is an equipped stage where bands perform different music.
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Nobody can take pictures of the workstations, it is not recommended, because on the screens may be pieces of a service code, that will subjugate the world in the future.
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But in general, there is nothing special to photograph, all workstations are quite common. They are spacious; each of them has 1-2 large screens that are connected to the system units, or MacBook Air.

If the employee suddenly got tired of sitting in his/her place, and he/she wants to change the environment – there is always possibility to go to the special room, and work separately from a team on his/her project.
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Also, the office has a library, decorated in classic style. It is very pleasant to sit in such environment and discuss the startups.
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The building looks like the clubhouse. Some employees come with their children and dogs. They drink a lot of tea and talk about their lives in the kitchen ... You don’t feel any work process.

Perhaps, it is very staff-oriented office that I have ever seen in my life.
Pirat 4 march 2012, 13:50
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