Zoekjaar for Highly-Educated Graduates

Zoekjaar  – translated literally it means “search year” – refers to a status for graduates with advanced education who would like to work in the Netherlands after graduation.


Think of a zoekjaar as an orientation year for graduates from universities and schools in the Netherlands or abroad. The government is aware of your skills and the great value of your knowledge and expertise to the Netherlands, so it invites you to stay for one year to experience working here by providing you with a special status for that one year. Consider it a get-acquainted year. The rules give you  three years in which to apply.


It is easy to apply: You must have a diploma or a declaration from your university stating that you have fulfilled all the requirements for your degree. Your diploma and a valid passport are the only things the Dutch immigration services (IND) requires for you to apply for the orientation year status.


If you get a job offer from a company that does not have permission to hire you (a citizen from abroad), Payingit International can step in; your employer during the orientation year does not need to have the recognized IND sponsorship to hire you. PayingIt is a recognized sponsor, which means that they can take care of all of that for your employer. This creates tons of job opportunities for you for any job, including internships.



2019 Spring

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