7 steps to be taken before finding a job in Belgium

January 14, 2019

To find a job in Belgium as a foreigner might be challenging. That is why we decided to create for you a small guide with the most important information in this topic. Let us begin!

You have to register your residence

In Belgium there is an obligation for foreigner, who wants to stay longer than 90 days, to register his residence. It has to be done within approximately 8 days from the day of arrival. A declaration is made at the commune office.

If you missed our first post 6 info you should know before coming to Antwerp, click here to catch it up.

You need the right to work in Belgium

As long as you are a citizen of a country, which is the member of the European Union, you get the right to work because of the European Union’s freedom of movement provisions.

If you are a non-EU citizen, you do not have automatic right to work.

In this case your employer must apply for the approval of the local labour (or employment) office in order to hire you.

You have to obtain recognition of your diplomas and qualifications

Belgium observes the European Union’s general system of recognition of diplomas and qualifications. If your profession is regulated in Belgium, you have to formally recognize your diplomas and qualifications. Normally any university degree or academic diploma should get the acceptance.

Besides this, there is also a possibility that you will need to show your fluentness in one or more of the local languages.

You need sound CV and cover letter

If you are looking for a job among international companies, agencies or organisations, which are located in Belgium, you may write the CV similar to the one you would take in your country, just in English.

If you are looking among Belgian employers, you should keep the CV according to local standards. Below I list some advices: Pay attention to a presentation of your skills and experience.

Belgians are modest nation and could understand your avowals for leading achievements in previous jobs as arrogance.

These information should be included in the CV:

  • exact dates of employments;
  • dates of birth of your children;
  • listed results for examinations;
  • a mention of how many people you supervised in each position;
  • a remark of auxiliary activities, club affiliations;
  •  a summary of your professional goals.

There is no need to attach copies of diplomas or certificates mentioned in the CV, but you ought to take them with you to an interview.

The cover letter should be written in the same language as the job advertisement you are responding to or adequately to requirements perched in the announcement.

You can turn to employment agencies…

In European Union exists the European Employment Service (EURES) network.

In Belgium there are also governmental employment services, that are available by region and by language:

  • VDAB is responsible for Flanders, official language is Dutch;
  • ACTIRIS is responsible for the Brussels Region, official languages are Dutch and French;
  • LeFOREM is responsible for the Walloon Region, official language is French;
  • ADG is responsible for the German Community, official language is German.

The other option are international private recruitment agencies located in Belgium, such as Manpower and Michael Page.

 … or look in newspapers & Internet

Newspapers (especially Saturday editions) post job announcements.

The main titles are:

  • Le Soir,
  • De Standaard,
  • He laatste Nieuws,
  • De Gazet van Antwerpen.

Moving to the Internet matter, there are plenty of international recruitment websites you can visit. Some of them are:

You need an accommodation

In this case there is only one choice, that is the Perfect Flat.

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