Imagine you’ve just received an excellent job offer. Successful company, exciting role, perfect location. The only thing left to agree upon is the salary. How can you answer the question about your salary indication when you are unfamiliar with the Dutch job market and the appropriate salary for a position in the Netherlands?
There are many factors to consider when deciding what salary you should expect, including your age, education, relevant experience, specific skills, exact position and responsibilities, as well as the company’s size and industry sector. We have compiled some of the most important information you need when entering into salary negotiations with a prospective employer.
Please note that salaries in the Netherlands are usually quoted in terms of monthly recompense as opposed to an annual salary. If you are provided with an annual amount it is always worth asking whether the amount includes 8% holiday pay or a 13th or 14th month pay as salaries are often quoted without these extra amounts and these additions can increase your annual pay considerably.
Average salary range by years of experience and professions
We’ve created a list of the average salaries in the Netherlands you can expect for a wide range of occupations, and presented them based on years of relevant experience.
These numbers were provided by our recruiters who have extensive experience with salary expectations over a wide range of fields and levels of experience, as well as using the publicly available information.
Skills and languages
Investing in the development of certain skills can have financial rewards in the Netherlands. Engineers and IT professionals are in high demand. Of course, the development of soft skills such as creativity, persuasion and collaboration will give you an advantage since these are currently considered to be desirable skills by many employers. Moreover, many international companies are based in the Netherlands so there is a high demand for native speakers who can conduct business with partners abroad. If you are an expat looking for a job in the Netherlands, English is a must. However, the most in-demand languages are German and French since the Dutch trade is mostly focused on neighbouring countries.
The Netherlands ranks 4th in 2021 for the highest minimum wage in Europe. In 2021 the minimum salary for employees aged between 22 and 65 is €1.684,80 gross. The required minimum salary is lower for younger workers. The average salary is €36.500 gross yearly or €2.816 gross per month, although, this differs per industry, years of experience, specific skills, and certificates, etc.
Although salaries are relatively high in the Netherlands, income tax levels are correspondingly high. Estimating roughly – an employee who earns €2.500 gross should take home around €2.000 net. Salaries are usually quoted ‘gross’ (before tax subtraction) when negotiations are underway but, of course, what you are really interested in is the net income (i.e. what will go into your bank account at the end of the month). You can easily calculate your net salary with this tax calculator.
We hope this helps to give you a broad overview of what you can expect to earn in the Netherlands and how much is reasonable to ask for if you are coming from another country. Remember to ensure that when you are quoted a salary you are absolutely clear what is included and always try to calculate what your net income is likely to be.