The Netherlands is known for its progressive policies. The country is the first to make working from home a legal right. A leader in IT and telecommunications, the Netherlands stands out as one of the most dynamic economies in the European Union. With the 17th largest economy in the world, the country is home to over 17 million people.
As with other countries, recruiting and hiring in the Netherlands is pretty straightforward. Employers post descriptions and positions on job boards, screen applicants, interview candidates, make official job offers, and eventually onboard the new employee.
Here is a look at what employers and job seekers need to know about hiring and recruiting in the Netherlands.
As an employee, the first thing to know is that job boards are your best friend when it comes to getting hired in the Netherlands. Most employers use job boards as their primary source of recruitment and hiring in the Netherlands. Plan to regularly search Dutch job boards and have an updated resume/CV.
Aside from creating job postings, Dutch businesses also use social media as a means of marketing job opportunities. If there is a business you’re interested in working for, keep tabs on their website, LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social media accounts for job openings.
With job boards being the most popular means of hiring in the Netherlands, it’s good to be aware of the top sites used: LinkedIn, De Nationale Vacaturebank, and Monsterboard. Employers can post detailed job ads on these sites, and applicants can either apply through these sites or be directed to the application on the business’ website.
As a foreigner, finding a job in the Netherlands is a relatively simple process.
Similar to working as a foreigner in other countries, those wishing to work in the Netherlands must follow the requirements pertaining to Netherlands work visas, Netherlands work permits, and residence permits. Or, if you call any of the following home--European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA), which includes the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway, or Switzerland--then you can live and work in the Netherlands without possessing a work permit or a residence permit. Obtaining these forms of documentation takes time, so be sure to contact the appropriate office well in advance to prevent any delays.
Recently, the Netherlands just recently passed a law making remote work a legal right.
There are several types of Netherlands Work Visas. The one you require depends on your nationality and the work you will be doing. The requirements for a standard Netherlands work visa are as follows:
Possess an employment contract with a Dutch employer
Earn at least the minimum wage for employees over the age of 23
The employer must demonstrate that the position could not be filled by a Dutch or EU/EEA national
To qualify for a residence permit, you must, at minimum, meet the following conditions:
Have a valid passport or identity document
Possess sufficient financial means and documentation
Have health insurance that will cover you for the time spent in the Netherlands
Do not pose a risk to public order, national peace, or national security
Can provide the purpose of your stay in the Netherlands (ex., an employment contract)
Pass a tuberculosis test, if required
Some employers may use an employment agency for hiring in the Netherlands but most rely on job boards to source new candidates. Vetting a candidate or reviewing an applicant’s CV, qualifications, and references is just part of the process–employers also need to determine whether the individual has the correct documents to accept a job in the Netherlands. Depending on where they hail from will dictate what paperwork they must obtain.
Most foreign workers need a Dutch work visa, Dutch work permit, and a residence permit. However, such visas and permits are not required if they are a member of the EU, EEA, or a citizen of Switzerland. A great resource for employers is the Dutch government’s website.
With English being the main working language in the Netherlands, it is not vital for an employee to speak Dutch. However, an employer will want to make sure that the individual is either a native English speaker or that they are fluent in the language. Therefore, it would be wise for an employer to post a job advertisement in Dutch or at least offer a Dutch translation, even though English is commonly used.
Employers need to keep in mind their specific qualifications for new employees and thoroughly assess applicants according to the Netherlands’ requirements. Background checks are permissible, and verifying the identities of potential employees is necessary.
Conducting background checks can be as simple as contacting a potential employee’s references and previous places of employment. Another option is to engage a Professional Employment Organization (PEO), an Employer of Record (EOR), or a private investigation agency, which are common in the Netherlands.
When hiring in the Netherlands, it is vital to maintain compliance with the extensive labor laws, rules, and regulations, and all employers should know the requirements.
Knowing which employees must have a Dutch work visa, Dutch work permit, or residence permit is the first step toward maintaining compliance. In addition, an employer’s HR department must maintain accurate and up-to-date records of all employees–foreign or natural citizens. An EOR may also handle such record-keeping and compliance if an employer wishes to engage their services.
A simple rule of thumb for employers is to note the potential employee’s nationality–this will point them in the right direction regarding visas and permits.
Many companies want to hire employees in the Netherlands, but are unsure of how to navigate the complex social security and payroll requirements. Via makes hiring Dutch talent and building your global team seamless. Our easy-to-use platform helps you manage the local HR processes for benefits, payroll, background checks, and more. We have a local team of lawyers and on-the ground experts that understand compliance as you expand abroad.
As your employer-of-record/entity in the Netherlands, Via assumes responsibility for employment liability, so that you can focus on what matters: recruiting and managing your team.
With Via’s transparent pricing, you can pay full-time employees or contractors in the Netherlands with no hidden set-up fees, no foreign exchange or transaction fees, and no minimums–start with 1 employee and scale up at your own pace.