The Netherlands is predicted to suffer a shortage of 60,000 skilled workers by 2014. Less and less Dutch youngsters opt for technical courses, and many skilled workers retire in the coming years. Linda Groener from Together Abroad, a job portal for skilled internationals, explains how technical industries in Holland can attract skilled workers from abroad.
How can recruiters attract foreign workers?
You can start by communicating the advantages of working in the Netherlands. Most Dutch people speak English which makes is a lot easier to integrate, you don’t need to speak Dutch right away. In fact, 80% of jobs on our site don’t require a command of the Dutch language.
What are some of the obstacles of hiring people from abroad?
One of the main problems is that most recruiters want you to already have an address in the Netherlands. With the potential shortage of technically skilled workers recruiters need to expand their search area to outside the Netherlands.
How feasible is it to hire people from outside the EU?
Due to the work permit laws, people with EU passports are of course much easier to hire. Though industries such as gaming, IT and other high-tech areas are willing to do the paperwork for people from China, Indonesia and other Asian countries.
How can recruiters help people find their ads?
The key is SEO. Their advertisements need to contain spot-on key words to ensure that they can be found by job seekers. If you place your ads in English, this obviously means that you need to know what foreigners are looking for.
What recruitment trends do you see for the future?
I believe more and more technically skilled workers will be recruited directly from abroad. We don’t have enough Dutch workers with these specialist skills. And although our high quality universities attract foreign students, many don’t want stay and work here. For students from outside the EU/EEA there is a scheme for them to stay in Holland for one year after graduating to look for work, but they must support themselves and cannot receive state benefits. This proves too difficult for many. So bottom line: I don’t see any alternatives to a further internationalisation of our job market.
Together Abroad offers year-round assistance for foreigner job-seekers and companies in the Netherlands. The website includes a job-board focusing on international companies, and multilingual, international candidates and over 7,000 online CVs. Posting and searching for jobs in the Netherlands is quick and efficient. Together Abroad was a finalist at the Expat Service Provider Awards 2011.