Google Zurich brings Googlers together from 75 countries to work on some of the most challenging engineering problems around, making products used by millions of people.
We’re Google’s largest engineering office in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
We’re also home to a sales team serving Swiss clients.
Number of Zurich Googlers (a.k.a. Zooglers): Not as many as the number of megawatts it takes to go back in time
Some of our conference rooms are named: Eichhof, SBB, Luke Skywalker
Number of nationalities among Zooglers: 75
Phone: +41 44-668-1800
Inside Google Zurich
Here in Zurich, we like to think of ourselves as “the real Mountain View.” Not because we’re the company’s engineering headquarters for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), but because of the views out our top-floor Sky Lounge’s windows. Trust us, the Alps may look impressive in Google Earth, but in person, they’re spectacular.
Our office has a different design theme on each floor, massage stations and restaurant-quality food. Our latest feature for foodies: A cafeteria called fork(), which may serve the best Asian food in Zurich. Our engineers (a third of whom have a Ph.D.) do important work across our technology groups, and our launches have included Maps for EMEA, Search refresh, key Gmail features like the priority inbox and account abuse protection, and content ID and monetization products for YouTube.
With Googlers from across EMEA, Zooglers are an especially diverse bunch. Take a two-minute walk to the cafeteria, and you’ll probably hear more languages than you can count on both hands.
Our diversity lets us approach topics from a lot of different perspectives. That’s important when you’re building products for global markets.- Robin Williamson, Engineering Director
Google Zurich: Frequently Asked Questions
What kinds of engineering work do Zooglers do?
We empower our engineers to bring their own ideas to life and contribute to the development of Google’s products, making an impact both locally and globally. We have done a lot of work with Google Maps, with launches including things like directions and public transit information in Maps for EMEA markets. We’ve had a strong Search and Ads team working on making the web better for users and Google partners, and an impressive Search infrastructure team. We’ve done a lot of work on Calendar and Gmail as part of Google Apps; we’ve launched Gmail features like priority inbox and account abuse protection. And our YouTube engineers have focused on innovations benefiting users, content creators and advertisers.
Is Zurich home to any sales Googlers, as well?
Yes, we have a team that works with Swiss advertisers.
Zooglers are pretty proud of their office. What makes it particularly Googley?
Well, for starters, we’re just generally happy to be in Zurich. It is an amazing city with a tremendous quality of life, from the top notch Swiss education system to the great options for public transportation.
But as for the office? We have a Jungle Lounge filled with more than 100 plants. We have a Water Lounge with massage chairs and aquariums built into the walls. We have slides and firepoles and delicious food. We have pinball and foosball, Pac-Man and ping pong. We even have antique gondola ski lifts where Zooglers can go for some private time.
What do Zooglers do for fun?
There’s a big group of Zooglers interested in sports involved in everything from badminton to ultimate Frisbee to football ("soccer," for you Americans). And it turns out that many of our engineers are musically talented – we have a couple of different Google bands that practice after work. We have TGIFs with themes based on different EMEA countries. Our teams go on cool off-sites, like skiing (we’re less than an hour from some of the best slopes in the world) or building igloos or going dragon boating. And we’ve had everybody from Eric Schmidt and Larry Page to Vint Cerf, Donald Knuth and U.S. Ambassador to Switzerland Don Beyer to our office.
Any other visitors you’d care to mention?
Alice Cooper! We have a couple of conference rooms named after Alice Cooper, and when he came, a bunch of Zooglers dressed up like his stage persona. Some of us even formed a band and played some of his songs for him. He said we weren’t bad, but we decided to keep our day jobs.
Are there any thought leaders or prominent Googlers in Zurich?
Bram Moolenaar is pretty well known in the open source software community. He wrote Vim, a popular text editor. Thomas Hoffman has published quite a bit of research, with papers on topics like data clustering and machine learning. Plus, Urs Hölzle, Google Fellow and senior vice president of operations, is from Switzerland, and frequently comes back to visit the Zurich office.
How do Zooglers give back to their community?
In too many ways to mention. For example, at Christmas, we put up a big tree in our reception area; Zooglers put gifts under the tree, and we give the gifts to patients at a local children’s hospital. We run for charity. We volunteer to work at a pet shelter. And we match charitable donations made by Zooglers.
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