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What are the dos and don'ts of finding a job in Belgium?

Hello everyone,

Where is the best place to start when looking for a job in Belgium? Is it better to job-hunt by directly contacting the company of your interest, or should job-seekers rely on a recruitment agency, for example?

Are there any unique aspects that job-seekers should consider when preparing their CV/résumé and cover letter? Should a photo be included?

Do you have any tips on interview conduct in Belgium? Are there any particulars, such as greetings or behavioural customs?

In you opinion, is knowledge of the local language or a regional language necessary to successfully apply for a job? What level of the language should job-seekers have mastered?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

From my own perspective and after two years of living here as a refugee it is difficult to find a job either via employment agencies (Interim Kantoor) or contacting directly the company of course mastering one of local language (Dutch French) is a must since English is NOT CONSIDERED IN WORK FIELD except few vacancies I used to work as Flight Attendant in Kuwait and it is not easy here due to the three languages that I must speak it perfectly so unfortunately I have been trying to find any suitable job for me which is a struggle.

just want to share my experience with you guys

Thank you in Advance

Dear reader,

Good day. I hope to shed some light upon Belgian employment possibilities from non EU citizen perspective

To begin with, the job opportunities and the possibility to click into one depends vastly on the sector and the function you apply for. Why? It is very easy for a programmer or Software developer, PhD, specialists to enter in the Belgian companies without language or work permit complication than administrative or general management job seeker or for that matter medical practitioners.

For specialist roles, like what I did at Nike as Transportation and Project analyst it is relatively easier to get through with English and demanded skill set. During the job search, my method was continuous pursuit with the companies directly, calling the designated HR or team manager to check upon the status and some promising job agencies touch yielded average results. I am not saying this is the ideal method to go for, but in my opinion without the Dutch/French knowledge (dpending on the territory) and non EU citizen candidates must show more than desired interest and passion that will override or alter the employer norms in hiring.

I hope this helps, feel free to post your feedback and ofc your 'ways' in Belgium

Cheers,
Ashik

Getting into the Belgian workforce is a tough cookie if you are a newbie. I came to Belgium when I was already 30 with a baggage of at least 7 years of work experience in my field and with a determination to find a job that was more or less in the same line. But to do that, I had to school myself first: languages and back then, the burgeoning computer graphics industry. Sacrificing at least 2 years of your life to absorb as much of the language and culture (which maybe to a lot of people is not an option) will yield results. Writing application letters DID NOT WORK AT ALL. Getting in touch with the company itself by telephone and eventually by showing up did. And swallowing the pride helps as there is a big chance you'll have to start from the bottom and work your way up.

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