Employment contract

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO | Statistics Netherlands, CBS

An employment contract (arbeidscontract) is an agreement between an employee and an employer, containing working arrangements. It contains the rights and duties of the employer and employee.

There are two types of employment contract:

  • fixed term contract (a temporary contract)
  • contract for an indefinite period (a permanent contract)

Contracts can be agreed in writing or verbally. In the employment contract, you indicate whether a Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) applies.

When should an employee receive a permanent contract?

You cannot continually extend temporary contracts. An employee must receive a permanent contract after 3 consecutive temporary contracts, or after temporary contracts over a period of 3 years. This applies unless other arrangements have been made in the CAO. Find out what consecutive contracts are (in Dutch) and what conditions apply.

Written statement of employment details

As an employer, you must give your employees a contract that contains the details of their employment. The information must include at least:

Equal treatment and pay

You have to treat and pay your employees equally. Working conditions must be the same for all your employees. Discrimination based on religion, beliefs, political opinions, race, gender, age, disabilities or any other grounds is unlawful.

Please note: payroll employees have at least the same legal position and working conditions as other employees in your company. If you hire employees from a temping agency or payroll company, you have to inform them about your working conditions.

Find out more about the Balance Employment Market Act.

Statistics: employment contract

Number of jobs by employment contract.

Questions relating to this article?

Please contact the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO
Statistics Netherlands, CBS