There are several ways to find a job in the Netherlands:
- Via the internet
- Via job agencies that are specialised in jobs for non-Dutch speakers
- Via an open application
- Via networking
- Via Career and Job hunting support
In the Netherlands most companies and organisations include their vacancies on the internet. You can look at the websites of the companies and organisations where you would like to work and see if they have any vacancies.
Job agencies for non-Dutch speakers also use their website to publish vacancies.
Newspapers have their own websites, where you can browse through the advertised jobs at your convenience.
There are also websites that collect vacancies in one or more branches. Applications should be submitted directly to the employer. Examples of this kind of websites are www.englishlanguagejobs.com and www.searchhiddenjobs.com.
If working from home is an option for you, have a look at www.odesk.com.
Job agencies are a good way of finding work, as a lot of companies use them to filter potential candidates. They act as the middleman between the employer and the candidates. A good agency will build up strong connections with companies and be their first point of contact whenever the company has a new vacancy. The agency would search their database for suitable candidates and also advertise on their website, to reach a wider audience and increase their chances of securing the vacancy for their client, thereby earning themselves a commission.
You can either forward your CV to the job agency or apply for one of the vacancies. Both can be done via their website. If your CV matches the required criteria, the job agency will contact you to make an appointment, where they will register you and have a chat about the job and what you are looking for. It is a good way for the consultant to put a face to a name, as they receive lots of job applications everyday.
You will need to check the website frequently for any new job vacancies and apply for the same.
Some job agencies for non-Dutch speakers are:
Offices throughout the Netherlands
Adams Multilingual Recruitment Agency
Offices located in Amsterdam and Rotterdam
Offices, in Amsterdam, The Hague & Rotterdam
Based in The Hague
Offices throughout the Netherlands
Online job portal
Based in The Hague
- a job board for internationals and career counselling services.
As most of the jobs will be "hidden" - i.e. the job is not advertised externally- it is worthwhile to apply directly to the companies that you would like to work for.
Be direct with what position you are looking for, so that they know where in the company you would like to be placed. Explain why you would like to work for the company, so they know that you have researched them and that you are not churning out your applications to every company.
In the Netherlands, establishing a network of contacts is invaluable. You can register with the professional body in the sector that you work for.
There are also a lot of expat organisations that you can join, such as:
- Connecting Women, www.connectingwomen.nl
- Women's Business Initiative, www.womensbusinessinitiative.net
- European Professional Women's Network, www.europeanpwn.net
- The Network Club, www.thenetworkclub.com
- LinkedIn, www.linkedin.com, is a networking tool on the internet that is often used in the Netherlands
You can make your professional profile, get in touch with (former) colleagues and business partners and build a professional network.
If you are actively looking for a job, thinking about the next step in your career, want to go back to work or want to do something different you may need support.
There are several professionals and companies offering career counseling or coaching for job hunting for expats. Some of them are:
Caroline van den Bogaard
She offers personal career coaching and career workshops for international professionals/expatriate partners who:
- Have recently arrived in the Netherlands and are looking for a job
- Are working in a Dutch environment and would like to improve their performance or cultural understanding
- Would like to reflect on their career and/or a potential career switch
- Need support to create a portable career (for accompanying partners)
Marie is a Life and Career Coach whose focus is on cross-cultural adaptation, communication skills, and career development/transition. She works with you to discover what is holding you back from achieving fulfillment; what your hidden talents are and how these can be identified and released to unlock YOUR potential.
She offers job hunting support workshops and individual consultations. Career counseling is available to:
- Professionals who are in a job but you want to do something different
- Those returning to work after a career break
- Those who just graduated and would really like some guidance to help decide their future career
- Professionals due to be made redundant and not sure what to do next
Please see Teresa's Top 10 career coaching tips here.
In the ACCESS guide "Working & unemployment in the Netherlands", you will find more information about the Dutch Employment Law (such as work permit, contracts, etc), CV, Cover letter and Interview, Dutch Business culture and useful references and weblinks.