There are approximately 2.2 million jobs within a one-hour drive from Maastricht – even more than in the Randstad area of the Netherlands containing Amsterdam and Rotterdam.
In Euregio Meuse-Rhine opportunities for jobs multiply when looking across the border. In addition to language differences, other differences apply and which allow for new opportunities. The part-time job-market in the Netherlands is very strong, Region Aachen receives enormous funds for economic restructuring, and unemployment is currently lowest in Belgian Limburg.
Euregional job search
In the Euregio Meuse-Rhine, you can choose between regional and national job portals, as well as job portals with a special focus on multilingual applicants. There is also dedicated services for finding work across the borders with Service Grensoverschijdende Arbeidsbemiddeling – SGA in Maastricht, Kerkrade and Kelmis (website in Dutch, French and German).
Following video in Dutch only:
Preconditions for third-state-nationals
Before you can start looking for a job (and especially a job across the border), you need to ask yourself two questions:
- Do I have a valid residence permit and work permit for my destination country? If you come from an EU country, the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you have nothing to worry about. If this is not the case, please take a look at our visa and work permits section.
- Are my professional qualifications also valid in my destination country? You can find the answer and help in our recognition of diploma section.
Job portals in the Euregio Meuse-Rhine
In the clickable map and below, find all information on regional and the respective national level, on finding a job with public or private support and digital networks.
It is also always worth taking a look at internationally known (commercial) job portals such as StepStone, Monster and Indeed. Here you will find suitable offers for all sub-regions and can also look explicitly for jobs where English is the official company language.
The European Union’s EURES job portal is the contact-point to consultations with the public employment institutions Bundesagentur für Arbeit (DE), VDAB (VL), Le Forem (WA) and UWV (NL).
How to apply for jobs in the Euregio Meuse-Rhine
The question of how to properly apply for a job is certainly always a hotly debated topic. Depending on the country and industry, CVs can vary greatly, there are also some (small) differences among the aspects that you find prioritised in Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands.
The cover letter
The cover letter is attached to the email and the CV is sent as an attachment. You can usually also submit applications via an online portal.
The cover letter should not be longer than one page. In your letter, briefly and concisely address the following points:
- where you found the job;
- why you are applying for the job;
- what your motivation is for the job;
- why you are the right person for the job.
In an application letter, the emphasis is not only on your professional skills, but also on you as a person. Work experience and skills are not necessarily tied to specific industries, they can be applied across industries.
In principle, apply in the language of the job advertisement. If you do not yet speak the language or speak it insufficiently, you can also apply in English. Of course, you should mention that you want to learn the language as soon as possible.
You can also keep your CV short – two pages is enough. In addition to your personal data, mention the following:
- educational path after secondary school;
- work experience including skills and project involvement;
- secondary occupations and social commitments (if relevant to the job)
- skills and competencies;
- listing interests and hobbies is not essential, but gives a fuller picture of you as a person.
The job interview
When a large number of applications are received, many recruiters conduct a preliminary interview by phone. This saves time and sometimes a long journey. If the interview is positive, an invitation for an in-person interview usually follows.
Find out about the company beforehand, e.g. via its website. Write down the questions you want to ask about the job and the company. This shows good preparation and interest. Make sure you can answer some frequently asked questions:
- Tell something about yourself.
- Why do you want to work for us?
- Why are you the ideal person for this job?
- How do you function in a team?
- What are your strengths or weaknesses?
- Why do you want to change jobs?
Take copies of your educational qualifications, diplomas, job references and other relevant documents with you so that you can show them on request.
The atmosphere at a job interview differs in each country, industry and even company. Interpersonal chemistry always is considered very important. The interview is usually attended by the future manager (often the managing director in smaller companies), the HR manager and sometimes a future colleague.
Part of the interview, especially at the beginning, is often some small talk. This is a relaxed way to get to know each other a little better. It also helps to reduce nervousness a little. After the round of introductions, they will ask questions to get the best possible picture of you. They also want to know whether you fit into the team as a person – this is valued just as highly as professional qualities. In between, ask questions yourself at the appropriate time. This shows you are interested and creates a real exchange.
The application procedure usually lasts two rounds of interviews. In a second interview – possibly with other interview partners – you go into more depth. You may also be invited to an assessment or asked to give a presentation. Usually, the employer makes the decision afterwards.
Exploration and direct contact with potential employers – job fairs have a unique character for networking and providing information. You find both, sector-specific and general job fairs and employers increasingly look for talents on all sides of the border.
"Talentum Ostbelgien" (Eupen) and "Talentum Liège"
At Talentum, East Belgian companies will be in the spotlight for two days – regardless of whether they are internationally or (eu-)regionally active. University graduates, trainees or experienced professionals from all over (German-Speaking) East Belgium and the neighbouring regions are equally addressed. Visitors to the fair have the opportunity to talk directly to the companies and find out about new job or training opportunities.
"Limburg Leads" (Maastricht)
Circularity & sustainability, digitalisation, talent and mobility – these four topics are the focus of the Limburg Leads fair, addressing both Limburgs in Belgium and the Netherlands, and increasingly the other parts of the Euregio Meuse-Rhine. tOriginally a B2B event, in 2021 it is accompanied by a “Euregional Jobfair”.
"Nacht der Unternehmen" (Aachen)
A peculiar job fair is held annually at the Aachen Technology Centre: the Nacht der Unternehmen (“Night of the Companies”). Around 50 exhibitors present themselves live on site or can be visited at their location via free shuttle buses until late in the evening. Whether student, graduate or already experienced professional – everyone can get in close contact with leading companies from the wider region, including exhibitors from across the border.
At the meet@fh-aachen company contact fair, leading companies from the region present themselves on the campus of Aachen University of Applied Sciences to exchange information with young academics about internships, final theses, part-time jobs and even permanent employment. Students and graduates from other universities are of course also welcome to attend the event.
"bonding" at RWTH Aachen University
The fairs by students for students – but graduates also get their money’s worth here. Exhibitors from the engineering, business and natural sciences present themselves at the bonding company contact fair on the campus of one of the most renowned universities in Europe – RWTH Aachen University. In addition, there are also numerous specialist lectures that provide an insight into the world of work, or contact formats such as job speed dating.