The Brainport Eindhoven Region allows you to make the most of your potential. Employees have the opportunity to map out their career path and employers are willing to provide resources for their further professional growth. Dutch company structures have traditionally been amongst the flattest in Europe, thereby giving employees lots of autonomy and empowerment at work. Employees are encouraged to give their opinion and to take initiative. This, along with a good work-life balance, has resulted in high levels of job satisfaction in the Region.
The Dutch have their own distinctive work culture and practices. They are known for being rather direct in their approach and communication. This may take some getting used to, but has the positive effect of leading to more transparent communication practices. A brief, firm handshake with good eye contact is the normal business greeting. High importance is placed on the efficient use of time, and punctuality is key to meetings.
Although the official language for doing business is Dutch, most people speak reasonably proficient English and companies that have international employees tend to use English as their official language
The average working week in the Netherlands is 40 hours. In many companies lunch breaks are not part of your official working hours (and therefore not paid for). So if you work 8 hours a day, you are expected to be present for between 8.5 to 9 hours, depending on your breaks. Business hours are usually from 9 am to 5 pm, but employers are getting increasingly flexible and telecommuting is often allowed.
Salaries and employee benefits
Salaries in the
Netherlands are in line with most other Western European countries. They tend
to be higher than most Southern European countries, and equal to neighboring
countries. The average annual income is around €35,500, with variations between
Salary levels are determined by a number of factors including years of experience, skills, degree, age, industry, employer etc. The website ‘Pay Scale’ allows you to calculate what your average salary in the Netherlands would be given your professional circumstances. Please keep in mind that it is considered normal to negotiate salaries.
Annual leave is calculated at four times the number of working days per week – that’s the legal minimum. So if you have a full time job of 40 hours per week, you will have at least 20 vacation days a year. In some instances agreements between a specific sector or employer and a labor union make it possible to receive more days. Dutch Civil Servants, for example, have on average 33 vacation days a year. Furthermore, employees have a legal right to: a yearly payment of 8% of their yearly gross wages for a ‘vacation payment’; to sick leave pay of at least 70% (usually this is 100%) and a pension scheme at almost every company, partly paid by the employer.
All employment conditions such as sick leave, leave of absence and retirement schemes are usually well taken care of. Employee rights and primary and secondary working conditions are laid down in your employment contract and have to meet certain minimum requirements at the very least (Nuffic, 2015).
Full-time and part-time jobs
A relatively high percentage of Dutch people work part-time. More than half the working women and 15% of men have a part-time job of 32 hours or less a week (Nuffic, 2015). This is often a deliberate choice, allowing employees to combine work with caring for their family.
Life long learning
Dutch employers, as well as government, value life-long learning and offer you the opportunity to keep on learning and improving your skills alongside your work. Due to the rapid changes in society caused by exponential technological growth and innovation, positions are quickly changing and some might even become obsolete in the future. Employees therefore benefit from continued learning to enable them to be more flexible and adaptable to change.
Interested in getting to know some of the employers of the Brainport region and what they can offer you? Visit our dedicated job seeker's site, the Brainport talentBOX!