How long can I work with a job agency in The Netherlands?

People checking there cv's while awaiting a job interview

EU-People is a temporary employment agency. If you work via us, you receive a flexible employment contract. There’s often a possibility to get a direct contract with an employer after some time. We often get the question – how long can I keep working for you? In this blog, we’ll answer that in detail.

Recent changes in NBBU Fasensysteem

Regulations about temporary employment in The Netherlands are arranged by the NBBU and ABU. In their Phase System (NBBU Fasensysteem) the NBBU describes 3 phases (fasen), each with their own maximum contract length. In this blog, you find the actual conditions (2023). Be aware that many online resources still mention the old (incorrect) numbers.

Phase 1-2: Flexible employment contract

You first contract at a job agency in The Netherlands is a flexible employment contract. Both you and the job agency are free to stop the contract at any time. This provides a lot of flexibility, but is allowed for up to 52 weeks only. During these first 52 weeks, you pass Fase 1 & 2 of the NBBU Fasensysteem. All worked weeks and paid holiday weeks are counted – even if you change position, change workplace, or work less hours. If you stop working for 26 weeks or more, the week counter will ‘reset’ and you’ll start counting again at week 1. 

Phase 3: Fixed-term contract

After working for 52 weeks with a flexible employment contract, you’ll often be offered a fixed-term contract. A fixed-term contract specifies the number of months or years for which you are entitled to a salary. Such a contract is allowed for up to a maximum of 3 years or until you have signed a maximum of 6 contracts – whichever happens first. These 3 years are known as Fase 3 in the NBBU Fasensysteem.

Phase 4: Open-ended contract

After Fase 3, you’ll need an open-ended contract to continue working. Such a contract has no end date. The company you work for may offer you a direct contract at this time. Many of our clients offer direct contracts – often even before finishing Fase 3.

Summary: How long can I work with EU-People?

At EU-People, you can work at least for the full extent of Fase 1-2 and 3 of the NBBU Fasensysteem. That’s 4 years or more! If you’re a good fit for one of our clients, they may offer you a direct contract well before this time. You’re free to work with us for less time too – even just a few months. Whether you’re looking for a quick job abroad, or a long-term position – we have you covered either way!

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