Working in the Netherlands as an IT Expat 

Are you looking into new career opportunities as an IT professional in the Netherlands and are you doing some research to find out what it is like to work and live here? Based on the experiences of our Expats here at LINKIT, we set up a complete overview with all the benefits and challenges you might face when working in the Netherlands as an IT expat.

Dutch culture and ethic

The Dutch culture can be seen as friendly, progressive, and direct. When working in the Netherlands you will notice that the communication style is usually more function over form. Dutch people are very pragmatic in a sense, which some expats love. In the Dutch culture hierarchy in a company is not valued as much as in other cultures. It is also normal to have a more informal attitude towards your manager, when addressing him or her it is on a first-name basis. Overall, communication at work, but also between friends or even people they are only vaguely acquainted with, is very direct and participative. 

Work-life balance

The Dutch value a good work-life balance. They work hard but are efficient. Having a decent quality of life is the most important successor for the Dutch. Time outside of work is valued more in comparison to some other countries. When working in the Netherlands it is more important to like what you do than to have a certain status that comes with a job that you do not like doing at all. The Dutch are also known to spend a lot of time outside of work doing fun activities. They place a higher degree of importance on leisure time, act as they please and spend money as they wish.  

A lot of Dutch people are English speakers. Which makes it easy to integrate and communicate with the locals and become acquainted with the people and the culture. However, in their private life, the Dutch may appear to be quite reserved, especially compared to southern countries.

Interacting with the Dutch

The Dutch are not conversation-starters. However, they will respond immediately and eagerly when addressed. Furthermore, always consult their agenda since they do not appreciate “surprise” visits. Taking initiative will be rewarded and you will notice that the Dutch will “defrost” be more open to you, when you reach out to them. Additionally, there are also lots of expat hubs to meet people who have the same culture or background.

The Dutch culture summarized:

✔️ Pragmatic, efficient and direct 

✔️ Non-hierarchical

✔️ Good work-life balance 

✔️ English speaking 

Long term perspective & Living standards  

The Netherlands has a strong economy and a stable job market. This makes the Netherlands a safe choice when pursuing a career as an IT professional. There is a high demand for English-speaking IT experts and there are lots of innovative tech companies. There is minor risk of a so-called ‘’career lock-in’’. The average salary for IT-professionals in the Netherlands is a bit higher than for other job types. Additionally, there also is a 30% tax ruling for highly skilled migrants when moving to the Netherlands and working in IT. This reimbursement is intended as compensation for the extra costs that international employees can incur when moving to a new country for their work. 

Healthcare and education

Another benefit of working in the Netherlands is a strong and accessible public healthcare- and education. Basic health insurance is mandatory and will cover most healthcare costs, and in terms of education, the Netherlands facilitates access to good (international) schools for all ages in many ways. After primary school and middle school, the Netherlands also have highly regarded universities all throughout the country. Higher education in the Netherlands is not free, however, it is subsidized by the Dutch government, making it affordable for Dutch students and accessible for international students. 


Finally, The Netherlands has a good infrastructure. All parts of the country are reachable by car and most parts are also reachable by public transport. You can go anywhere by train and bus and in the bigger cities you can also use the tram and metro. 

Living in the Netherlands summarized:

✔️ Strong economy 

✔️ Stable IT- job market for Expats

✔️ Accessible public healthcare system 

✔️ Accessible education system

✔️ Good infrastructure  

What not to be scared about

You might have some doubts about certain things when you decide to start working in the Netherlands. This is completely reasonable, starting a new life in a different country can be challenging and of course there are some obstacles when doing this.


Dutch can be a difficult language to learn, it might sound weird when you hear people speaking Dutch and it is completely normal to not understand anything in the beginning. Luckily, most of the Dutch people can also speak English very well. Not only your colleagues will speak English, but also the people at the supermarkets, restaurants, public transport etc.


As mentioned earlier, the Dutch culture probably differs a lot from your culture. The Dutch have different habits, different social interests, and activities. First you will notice that they are quite reserved in comparison to southern countries. Which makes it harder to fit in, socially speaking. But after a while you will notice that the Dutch will “defrost” a bit and be more open to you.

Cost of living

The only downside of moving to the Netherlands could be the relatively high taxes and costs of living compared to most other countries. However, your salary will also be based on these higher costs, so you will be able to pay for everything without having to change your living standards. Also as mentioned earlier, there is the 30% ruling that will decrease the amount of taxes you pay.

Working at LINKIT as an Expat

Having more than 20 nationalities within the company means LINKIT celebrates having an international workforce and we are aware of what a big step moving to another country is. We have made our onboarding process in such a way that you will feel at home right away at our office. Thanks to this, our expats describe our culture as very expat-friendly and welcoming. Because of this diversity, we believe this results in meaningful innovation.

Language, company culture and wellbeing 

A huge benefit is that English is the default company language, which makes it easy to communicate with all your colleagues. Your colleagues will be patient and supportive and will always be happy to answer any questions you have regarding your work but also outside of work and the leadership at LINKIT is supportive and non-hierarchical. And in case you want to improve your language skills, we can provide you with English and Dutch courses.  

Furthermore, you will have a lot of expat colleagues from all over the world, we currently have over 20 nationalities working in multiple countries. We organize many expat-friendly wellbeing- and fun events which will allow you to make friends and get familiar with Dutch culture quickly. If there is any other support you might need, we will always provide you with help in the best way we can.   

Knowledge and career growth opportunities  

At LINKIT we find it especially important to keep on learning and sharing knowledge. That is why all our squads have strong and supportive seniors, who are experts in their field. From them, you can learn a lot and ask them anything you want to know about your activities at LINKIT. We want you to be the best IT-professional possible, which is why we also dedicate time for self-development. We give you the opportunity to develop new skills, obtain certificates and learn about the newest developments in your expert area. You can do this during our Clubdays, which are every two weeks on Friday. You can do this alone or together with your colleagues. 

Coming to the Netherlands

When coming to the Netherlands as an IT expat, you will be seen as a knowledge migrant. A knowledge migrant is a highly educated immigrant. For example, a (guest) lecturer, a (scientific) researcher or a doctor in training and in our case an IT specialist. A non-European highly skilled migrant can come to the Netherlands to work under certain conditions. For example, he or she must be highly educated.

The employer must be a recognized sponsor at the Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND). The IND will then process the application to bring a highly skilled migrant to the Netherlands more quickly. LINKIT is a recognized sponsor. There is free access to the Netherlands for highly skilled migrants from Europe. You do not need a visa, residence permit or work permit when you are from the European Union (EU), Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland, or Switzerland. The highly skilled migrant does need a valid passport or proof of identity.


As said, if you are a non-European knowledge migrant you will need a visa. The process for a MVV visa approval nowadays takes at least 3 months. A visa for someone with the English nationality it takes less time as well as a renewal of an existing visa. These are the criteria for a visa in the Netherlands:

  • Provisional residence permit (mvv), this is a visa that is valid for 90 days
  • A residence permit
  • The employer (via Relocation Company) applies for the mvv and residence permit from the IND. This can be done by applying for access and residence
  • If the Highly Skilled Migrant is already in the Netherlands via a previous employer, LINKIT is obliged to report this to the IND
  • When a LINKIT Highly Skilled Migrant “resigns” from LINKIT, we are obliged to report this to the IND

You will need to provide the following data to get the mvv visa:

The employee

  • Signed contract
  • Copy diplomas
  • Copy of valid passport
  • Signed Antecedent statement (= a statement where the employee signs no criminal background) (For sales we also ask for a certificate of VOG/state no criminal record from the country of birth).

For family

  • Signed authorization and sponsorship statement
  • Valid copy of passport of all family members
  • Recent marriage certificate legalized with apostille stamp (not older than 6 months)
  • Recent birth certificates with apostille stamp (not older than 6 months).

When coming to the Netherlands you will require some documents to work and live there. You will need the following to register at the municipality:

  • BSN (citizen service number)
  • Work permit
  • Dutch address

You will also need a Dutch bank account, we recommend these Dutch banks, ABN Amro, ING, Rabobank. In the Netherlands there are various insurances, check out the table to see all of them and what they are called in Dutch.

Health insurance  (general practitioner)Ziektekostenverzekering
Disability insuranceArbeidsongeschiktheidsverzekering
Travel and cancellation insuranceReis- en annuleringsverzekering
Liability insuranceWA-aansprakelijkheidsverzekering
Accident insuranceOngevallen/ Inzittende verzekering
Life insuranceLevensverzekering
Home and contents insuranceHuis en inboedelverzekering
Legal CounselRechtsbijstandverzekering

At LINKIT we have a group health insurance at ONZV health insurance where you can participate. You can go to ONVZ website here. By choosing the employee collectivity you can decide which insurance you want to have. The basic insurance is mandatory. In addition, you can opt in for other additional health insurance. Children under the age of 18 are insured free of charge. If you participate through the collective health insurance, you receive a monthly compensation from LINKIT.

At LINKIT we know moving to a new country is a scary step that raises many challenges. To ease the relocation process, we offer you a relocation package, which includes;

  • help with finding housing 
  • financial aid to cover the rent for the first month 
  • provide a car or NS card (card for public transport)
  • application for VISA 
  • application for the 30% ruling 
  • BSN and other needed documents

It is important to mention that specific conditions and regulations apply, which may vary depending on your specific situation. Our Recruiter will inform you of these specifics during our recruitment- and onboarding process.


Short stay

LINKIT reimburses a maximum of € 1,500.00. Nowadays this is often the 1st month’s rent. This must therefore be rent where an invoice or contract applies, otherwise it cannot be declared. Employees declare this in Harbor. This goes through the Relocation Company and we try to ensure that the employee can immediately start his “long stay”.

Long stay

LINKIT reimburses a maximum of € 1,500.00 for rental supervision. The employee is only entitled to this €1,500 if he/she uses it and therefore not if the employee finds something himself.

Due to the current market, the Relocation Company can only help with homes from € 1,300 per month.

30% ruling

We can apply for the 30% ruling if the following conditions are met:

  • The employee was recruited outside the Netherlands
  • If the employee is employed (at LINKIT)
  • Does the employee have a taxable wage of more than € 39,467 or/ Is the employee younger than 30 years of age, has he obtained a Dutch master’s degree in university education or an equivalent foreign title, and does he have a taxable wage of more than € 30,001 (2022 salary criteria change every year)
  • The high standard must be maintained from the month after reaching the age of 30
  • If the specific expertise is almost impossible to find on the Dutch labor market
  • If the employee of the 2 years before the 1st working day in the Netherlands, has lived outside the Netherlands for more than 16 months and at least 150 km from the Dutch border
  • If there is already a valid decision for the 30% ruling. (Already through the previous employer).

A decision is valid for 5 years!