What to Do If You’ve Just Been Laid off in the Netherlands

By August 19, 2020 No Comments

A man sitting at a table holding his head in his hand. Coronavirus layoffs have left many feel a bit desperate.

It’s such a shame when you work hard on a job you really love (or need) and then a pandemic comes along and wipes it away. 

It’s what’s been happening all over the Netherlands and the rest of the world lately. Have you been made redundant too?

If you need a bit of help getting back on your feet after a layoff and put a fresh start to your job search, this article is for you. 


Lost Your Job? What Now?

While it all may seem grim right now, our main goal isn’t to depress you.

Quite the opposite, really.

We urge you to see this situation as an opportunity, not a threat. Your talent and knowledge just need refocusing. Many other industries will be on the rise because of COVID-19. Your armour of transferable skills will help you find new employment in a different setting. So, instead of falling into despair, pick yourself up and…

It sucks coming to terms with the loss of a job in such critical times. It’s a tough time for businesses and employees alike. So, you are not alone in this ordeal. As a result of the pandemic:

Booking.com announced its global workforce will shrink by 25%

And that came after they took advantage of the Dutch government support scheme NOW, meant to help businesses pay salaries during the pandemic. But what NOW did was simply postpone something inevitable. The demand for tourism continues to drop. More than 5,000 people work for the company with its headquarters in Amsterdam.

Airbnb laid off nearly 2,000 employees

On May 5th, 2020, another global player in the tourism and hospitality industry, announced it was letting people go. In a note to all employees, co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky shared that Airbnb is reducing its workforce by 25%. It was sad news for the tourism giant’s employees but they received support from the company. Airbnb offered Alumni support for the ones leaving and the right to keep their Apple laptop. In addition, they had four months of free career transition services.

Damen Shipyard Group will be reducing its staff size by 1,000 employees

The crisis didn’t just hit tourism. The marine and shipbuilding industries took a hit as well. Earlier this year, MAN Energy Solutions and Damen both announced they were to reorganise their manpower in response to the pandemic. 

KLM decided to cut up to 5,000 jobs by the end of 2021

The Dutch government lent a helping hand to the airline in the form of a bailout package. The company received 3.4 billion euros in loans. Yet, flying continues to be on the line for the foreseeable future, KLM group set out to reduce costs and staff.

Job losses in the event industry expected to reach 48,000

Recent Statista research revealed that COVID-19 is likely to wipe out about 48,000 events jobs across different subsectors (conferences, company events, etc.) It is forecasted to be one of the strongest hit industries in the Netherlands. Under the pressure of the pandemic, many sectors began crumbling. Tourism, air travel and hospitality might be the obvious and more immediate ones but it’s likely others will follow. New statistics show that coronavirus took out more than 300,000 jobs in the Netherlands and will shrink the Dutch economy by 8,5%. 


#2 Start applying today

Even with the drop in jobs in the Netherlands, businesses are still hiring. But what if you haven’t had to look for a job in years?

Perhaps it’s been a while since you last had a good look at your CV. Maybe the last time you had to write a cover letter was 10 years ago. In addition, you’ll also need to dust off your interviewing skills and learn some new techniques.

Where do you start? The right answer is, anywhere. The point is that you start. Make a move. Here’s how:

Register at Blue Lynx

We are a team of international recruiters who care. We know what it’s like to be out of a job and we have a full arsenal of resources to help you find a new one. Most of all, we work with business clients looking for experienced professionals, just like you. You can apply for them on our website in a few short and easy steps. Start browsing current opportunities on our Jobs page.


Create a LinkedIn profile or polish it up if you already have one. Share with your connections that you are open for new opportunities. There’s no shame in that. If you are interested in further optimising your profile, follow Blue Lynx on LinkedIn. We post a LinkedIn tip of the week every Thursday. 


#3 Know your rights

Besides the emotional stress of losing a job and having to find another one, money surely is the other thing on your mind. In the case of dismissal, it’s worth checking these resources:

Transition allowance

In most cases, when your employer terminates your contract for a reason outside of incompetency on your side, they owe you a transition allowance. It is a sum of money calculated based on the number of days/years worked and your monthly salary.

Unemployment benefits

Given that losing your job in the Netherlands was not by your fault, you can also apply for unemployment benefits. In order to get them, you need to register as a job seeker with the UWV. 

End-of-contract agreement

You have a right to negotiate the way you part ways with your employer. Even if you are being terminated, you still have a say about the terms and conditions of it. What’s most important is to have a settlement agreement in writing.

If you are a Highly Skilled (Knowledge) Migrant or you are a European Blue Card holder, losing your job may affect your right to continue living in the Netherlands. In many cases, having a job here is directly linked to your right of residence. When you are made redundant or your contract ends for another reason, learn more about the next steps you need to take as a highly-skilled migrant.

Blue Lynx Is Here to Help

As a recruitment agency with plenty of experience, we are here to do more than just sympathise with you. We know it seems tough to be out of a job. To get back on your feet and find another employment as quickly as possible, browse our current vacancies. You can also follow Blue Lynx social media channels and be among the firsts to find out about the latest positions.