Services for NGOs

The CAGI assists international non-governmental organizations (NGOs) already established or seeking to do so in the Geneva region.

Work permit and visa

NGOs domiciled in the canton of Geneva wishing to recruit a foreign national must contact the Cantonal Office for Population and Migration (OCPM) in order to obtain a work permit for this person. An online form allows you to access the relevant information.

The application process to obtain a work permit differs depending on whether the applicant is a national of a European Union and European Free Trade Association (EU/EFTA) country or not.

Consult the work permit procedure for nationals of an EU/EFTA country on the website of the Republic and canton of Geneva. Procedures vary depending on the duration of the employment contract.


All applications must be sent to the Cantonal Office for Population and Migration (OCPM) :

Depending on the goals they pursue, the languages required or particular specializations, NGOs may have to employ non-European nationals with specific skills. CAGI may be called upon to certify the veracity of the arguments put forward.


Applications for work permits for nationals who are not from EU or EFTA countries are subject to specific conditions:

  • The employer must demonstrate that it is impossible to find, in the local labour market, anyone with the required skills.  . This means thatthe Swiss and European employment markets must be explored beforehand, in particular by means of advertisements (newspapers, private placement agencies, etc.),
  • The position will also have to be advertised online on the Job-Room website for 21 days before submitting an application for a work permit for a non-European national.

A request for a third-country national can only be submitted when the Swiss and European markets have been canvassed without success.

Consult the work permit procedure for third-country nationals on the website of the Republic and canton of Geneva.


Any salary paid by an NGO must correspond to Swiss standards for equivalent functions. It cannot be modeled on the salary scales of foreign countries, even if the funds come from countries whose standards are lower. This condition is non-negotiable, especially in the work permit application procedure.

  • As a reminder, there is a minimum wage in Geneva of CHF 23,27- per hour, as of 1 January 2022.
  • For benchmarking purposes, consult the National Salary Calculator to calculate a gross monthly salary as well as the spread of wages for a specific individual profile.


Any request must be sent by the employer to the Cantonal Population and Migration Office (OCPM) by attaching the M form, fully completed, dated and signed as well as the required documentation as indicated in the form

Depending on your nationality, a visa and other documents may be required to enter Switzerland.

Foreign nationals who need a visa to enter Switzerland should contact the Swiss representation responsible for their place of residence in order to obtain further information.


Entry formalities in Switzerland

Do you need a visa? What documents to provide?

Useful documents

Other useful information
to recruit and employ staff

CAGI Recruitment Platform
Hiring assistance
Social insurances
Swiss labour law
Tax regime for employees

CAGI services
for NGOs and Permanent Missions


By appointment only: Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. / 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

La Pastorale: Route de Ferney 106, 1202 Genève
Access by public transports (TPG): Line 5: stop Intercontinental; lines 8, 20, 22, 60: arrêt Appia. No parking on site.

Founded by the Swiss Confederation and the Republic and Canton of Geneva, the International Geneva Welcome Centre is the single entry point for the support and integration of employees of International Geneva and their families, NGOs and visiting delegates.