FINDING A JOB Expats seeking a new career challenge in the Netherlands will find ample opportunities. The Dutch employment market is sophisticated and boasts an impressive array of local and international companies spread across the country. It also has a vast network of specialist and generalist recruitment firms. Many newcomers take the recruitment agency route for speed and convenience, but there are many job hunting streams that foreigners can tap into. JOB HUNTING • Recruitment agencies are big in the Netherlands, and several specialise in recruiting nonDutch nationals. Explore engines like www.intermediair.nl, www.toplanguagejobs.nl, www.undutchables.nl or www.monsterboard.nl, or even sector-specific sites (architecture, biotechnology, finance etc.). • The UWV WERKbedrijf portal (www.werk.nl) also has a useful list, as does EURES, the European job mobility portal (www.eures.info). • Expat community sites, such as Expatica, have extensive employment listings for foreigners (www.expatica.com/nl/jobs). • Vacancy (vacature) advertisements are often placed on social media via LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and are often placed in English. • The list of companies that are eligible for applying for highly skilled migrants is a useful source and can be found on the IND site (www.ind.nl).
CULTURAL COMPETENCY • Many international companies have headquarters in the Netherlands. • Cross-cultural competency’ tests may be part of the selection procedure for international assignments. • There are standard personality analysis programmes, such as the Meyers Briggs Type Indicators that analyse personality traits that could affect performance in a new cultural environment. • Top firms are looking for executives who are open-minded, flexible, mature, and show respect for, and interest in different cultures. WORKING WITH AGENCIES Agencies openly advertise their services on websites geared to expats, and they are frequent advertisers on job boards and leading publications. But how do you find an agency that is both tuned into the local market and to your personal needs?
• Maintain an up-to-date curriculum vitae (CV) in English that fully reflects your skills, education, work experience and personal profile, and try to keep it as short as possible. If you really want to stand out, have a version translated into Dutch, which some companies will appreciate. • Always support any application with a clear overview or motivation letter setting out your primary work requirements, personal qualities and career objectives. • Follow up any application if you hear nothing back within five days. SKILLS IN DEMAND • Always try to meet your agent in person, and make • Expats with French, German, Flemish, and Scandinavian sure that your CV does not get sent anywhere without language skills are always in demand, according to expat your permission. job agency Undutchables. • Be clear about your work preferences and present yourself • The job market is also strong for experienced professionals in a positive and personable light. in IT, engineers, healthcare professionals, transport, • Stay flexible and be ready to attend interviews as building, logistics. opportunities emerge, but remain patient while your agent scours the market for the right opportunity. CULTURALLY CORRECT CVS • Keep your agent informed of any personal developments • Concise, direct and professional communication is the that might affect the work they are doing on your behalf. style for job applications in the Netherlands. One or two THE INTERVIEW PROCESS pages maximum in this order: - Personal details (address etc., sometimes a photo); • Once you’ve set yourself up with your preferred agencies - Education (courses, not results); and the enquiries begin, prepare yourself for interviews. - Work experience (the most recent first). Include • Avoid using jargon or colloquial expressions. Be welljob responsibilities. presented, enthusiastic and well-informed. - In your cover letter, include more about your motivation • Research the company in advance. Self-preparation is for the job, but keep the tone professional. equally important. SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR INTERNATIONALS 2021 • THE NETHERLANDS • WWW.EXPATFAIR.NL