How to find a job as a student
Why Dutch is so important and tips for finding a part time job
If you are a student in the Netherlands, you have most likely been struck by the prices of goods and services, rent, etc. At some point, you do not feel comfortable anymore to ask money from your parents for yet another night out, so instead you have to switch from Albert Heijn to Lidl. Long story short, you realize you need to get a JOB.
Let’s face the facts. Finding a job in the Netherlands is difficult, especially if you are a foreigner, let alone you are Bulgarian/Romanian/other Eastern European. However, there are some neat tricks and with a bit of luck, everything is possible. If you want to find a job here, you need to be aware of several things.
Follow a Dutch course
Currently, EU citizens are not required to apply for a work permit in order to start working. But the language is definitely a barrier. Recently, many employers in student cities (The Hague, Maastricht, Leiden, Groningen, etc.) hire students mostly due to the low labor costs (see the statutory minimum wages here). If you want to increase your chances much more, you need to follow a Dutch course. Knowing directions, understanding questions, numbers, names of basic items will give you a big advantage.
These are the so called uitzendbureaus. If you live in the Randstad area (Rotterdam, Den Haag, Amsterdam), you most likely have an uitzendbureau somewhere in your neighborhood (e.g. Manpower). These are agencies which find jobs for applicants depending on their profiles, focusing mostly on migrant workers for seasonal jobs in agriculture but also for hotels and restaurants. You can always give it a shot and make an appointment with them (Google your area, followed by ‘uitzendbureaus’).
Where to find a job
For girls, the most common student jobs are as waitresses in restaurants/bars, kitchen, hotels or retail if you are lucky; for boys, warehouses, restaurants, logistics (e.g. DHL), food delivery services, among others. The best approach is go to to the place on spot and ask (or beg) for a job, of course, in your fluent Dutch ☺. There are also various student job websites, such as studentjob.nl, but if your CV is not Dutch and your language skills are limited to dankjewel and alsjeblieft, do not even bother applying.
All in all, sign up for a Dutch course (Mondriaan or your local Gemeente), search for uitzenbureaus, get your umbrella and start knocking on employers’ doors!