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Work & Business

Employment | Starting up

With unemployment levels amongst the lowest in the EU, the odds of advancing your career in the Netherlands are certainly in your favour.
Thanks to its many years of prominence as the media capital of the Netherlands, Hilversum is well equipped to meet the demands of businesses in the industry, offering countless opportunities. For example, the IT infrastructure; the open fibre optic network and the LORA data network are available to everyone in Media City Hilversum.

Companies of all sizes are located in Hilversum, making the local business community an innovative and inspiring mix. Besides the creative and media industries, there is also a number of international companies that decided to base their European headquarters in Hilversum, such as Nike, Spil Games and International Flavor & Fragrances. This business climate creates a great number of varied employment opportunities. English vacancies in the Hilversum region can be found online.

Finding work

There are several ways to find work in the Netherlands. You should aim to use as many resources as possible as the job market is a competitive place and there is no point just sitting and waiting for a job to come to you. You could start by looking at the job sites of Eures and the Public Employment Service (www.werk.nl). There are also jobs advertised in the national and regional newspapers. Many jobs in the Netherlands are found by networking with future colleagues, or by specifically targeting a firm you feel your skills are particularly suited to. The Dutch labour market offers plenty of opportunities. Additionally, there are many part time opportunities, but these may not provide enough income to live off. Temporary jobs are also quite common, as is seasonal work in agriculture and horticulture.

Personal contacts

Finding a job through personal contacts is quite typical. Word-of-mouth recommendations and references are considered very helpful and are of great important in application and selection procedures. Making contacts can be done in an informal way but asking people directly for a job in their company is not considered the correct way to go about things. It's better if you just ask them for information and if there are any job opportunities. People are usually willing to give advice and additional information about their employer. Do not hesitate to inquire or introduce yourself by telephone. A telephone enquiry is direct, brief and efficient and that is appreciated by Dutch companies.

Temporary employment agencies (uitzendbureau)

Private sector temporary employment agencies are widespread. Working on a temporary basis is often used to gain work experience, which is considered particularly important in the Netherlands. Almost all occupations are covered by temporary employment agencies here. Previously, the emphasis was mostly on jobs at secretarial level; however, the tendency nowadays is for high skilled workers, such as engineers or computer experts to also work through temporary employment agencies. The other types of employment they normally handle include administrative, accountancy and technical personnel. Some temporary agencies also specialise in certain occupational sectors, such as health care. There is even a special temporary employment agency who work with students. Many temporary employment agencies can be found on the internet and they often list vacancies there.

Internet

The Internet is a commonly used and excellent tool for job hunting and there are many exceptional Dutch sites. On several sites you can register your CV in a job database. Employers often check these when searching for new employees. Examples you can use:

  • Eures
  • Nationale Vacaturebank
  • Monsterboard
  • Intermediair

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is also an important tool in finding the latest vacancies.
More often the established recruitment agencies, newspapers and magazines advertise and offer their job search services on the internet. It is also worth checking the internet for company information. Many employers present themselves and display any job vacancies on their homepage. In fact, according to the latest surveys 44% of all Dutch companies and organisations offer their vacancies in this way.

Unsolicited resume

Unsolicited applications are very common and can be very successful in the Netherlands. Even if the company has no current vacancies, they will still keep any suitable applications on file. Information about and directories of companies are provided by organisations like the Chamber of Commerce or the embassy/consulate of your country. Before sending in your application, be sure to phone in advance. This is common for, not only speculative, but also for normal applications. This call should be directed to the human resources manager. The objective being to briefly make yourself known, and to demonstrate your initiative and proactivity. Make sure you have specific points or questions to raise during this phone call. You could, for example, telephone to find out more about the structure of the company or to whom you should address your application letter.

Starting a business

The City is more than happy to help its entrepreneurs. Are you thinking about setting up a business in Hilversum? That is a good idea for a number of reasons. And we would like to help you. We’ve listed some of the Hilversum plus points:

  • •Good accessibility right in the heart of the Metropolitan Region of Amsterdam and close to Utrecht.
  • •Excellent IT infrastructure with optical fiber and high-quality data networks.
  • •Hilversum is the media city of the Netherlands: Lots of creative activity in media, IT and entertainment, supplemented by plenty of SMEs.
  • •Flourishing economy with over 7,500 businesses. Examples are the national broadcasters and radio stations, as well as companies such as Nike European Headquarters, Hunkemöller, Independer, Warner Music, MediaMonks and NCOI.
  • •The diversity of business offers plenty of scope for B2B.
  • •Many opportunities and places to meet.
  • •Fantastic, customised locations with options for every type of business.

A place for every business

In various locations, such as the Media Park and Arena Park, businesses are located close together. The short distances make it easy to work collectively. Self-employed entrepreneurs and small businesses are located at incubator sites such as Werf35 and the Old School Project. But small and medium-sized enterprises are also welcome in the various industrial estates of Hilversum. The city centre and Gijsbrecht van Amstelstraat offer ample room to retailers and the hospitality and catering sector.
Working from home is not a problem either, thanks to the optical fiber internet available across almost the entire municipality.

Financing and support

As a start-up you may also be looking for the finance to help start your business. In principle the municipality is not an investor or capital provider. But there is financing available which is only intended for new businesses. There are various ways to organise your financing based on a sound business plan.

  • •Perhaps the local investment fund ‘Lokaal investeringsfonds’ or the city fund ‘Stadsfonds’ could do something for you.
  • •Crowd funding is another option.
  • •GO!-NH Accelerators is an organisation set up to stimulate SME-companies and startups. They provide a 3 month program to develop innovative ideas into a business plan ready to conquer the market with new and creative solutions. Training, business tools and professional expertise are provided to help your company develop in a protected environment.
  • •Growth Matters; GrowthMatters is a platform that connects full-grown startups and scale-ups to each other and to other partners to enable further growth.
Contact information

For everything you need to know about setting up a business in Hilversum, policy, rules, permits, licenses, subsidies, and more you can contact our Account Managers. Are you a Creative or Media company and would you like to know more about relocating to Hilversum? Then contact our Senior Account Manager for the Creative Sector, Anita Boerkamp ( a.boerkamp@hilversum.nl, (035)62 92 686 or 06 40 23 23 97 )

Are you an SME or a retailer and would like to know more about relocating to Hilversum? Then contact our Senior Account Manager for the Retail Sector, Els Kruijt, e.kruijt@hilversum.nl (035)62 92 421 or 06 10 03 97 55.