The Netherlands market has long been an area of interest for Harnham.
We have been operating in the country for over six years and now serve over 60 different clients. This region has always been an exciting place to be, even more so in recent years, as huge volumes of investment are being pumped into the burgeoning Data & Analytics sector in the country.
In recent years, many larger companies have been going through a continued data transformation process, which hasn’t shown any signs of slowing even during market downturn. Numerous major retailers have been establishing global offices in the country, all whilst smaller companies, consultancies, and tech start-ups are popping up left, right, and centre.
This is unsurprisingly fuelling the current explosion in demand for talent, which has in turn propelled our own expansion in the area, enabling us to grow our Netherlands team and reach a point where in 2023 we are able to open an office in the capital.
Why opening a local office matters
So why open an office now? Well at Harnham we’ve never been satisfied with the notion of being just another ‘UK company operating abroad’. Instead, we want to be working on the ground alongside our clients and candidates and embed ourselves in the country and community in which we are operating.
Having a comprehensive understanding of the hiring needs of our clients and candidates, and considering not only wider industry trends but also the local jobs environment, is pivotal to what we do. Being there to speak to people face to face, hold local events and live and breathe Dutch culture, is only going to help us to further establish our connections within the country.
Our proximity to candidates and clients, combined with our aim to be an 80 per cent Dutch-speaking office, will assist us in reaching more local talent, including native Dutch speakers – a talent stream highly sought after amongst Dutch businesses. This rising demand for local candidates is driving up salaries in Data & Analytics roles and motivating organisations to pull out all the stops to appeal to the best talent. Thus, providing an ideal opportunity for Dutch data professionals to take advantage of an abundance of attractive career prospects.
Tapping into the freelance culture
The Netherlands is known for its healthy freelance culture and is second only to the UK in the contract market space. This interim climate has several key drivers including the high earning potential and certain tax benefits of being a freelancer.
But on top of this, the lifestyle seems to particularly lend itself to technical contact workers—in our experience, technical professionals are often comfortable with moving from company to company and project to project frequently, in order to expand their skillsets, test out their abilities in varied environments, and pursue career progression.
Where the contract team sees a major opportunity is in the combined impact of the two secular, upward trends of flexible working and the increasing number of companies embracing Data-based decision-making. Both trends lend themselves to an explosion in demand for data professionals able to offer value on an ad hoc basis and reveal a gap where Harnham, being one of the only agencies focusing on the Data & Analytics contract market, will be at the forefront of delivering into.
It was therefore only logical that a significant part of our Netherlands offering would be dedicated to setting up a contract-specific recruitment division to tap into this burgeoning market.
The sky is the limit
Harnham is already the global leader in Data & Analytics recruitment, but we aren’t resting on our laurels. Our ambition is to become the biggest and best in specific markets, such as the Netherlands, and we know that our experts are more than up for the challenge. Our team’s specialist expertise is what sets us apart in our field, our consultants know their markets inside out and they have a comprehensive understanding of what makes a capable data professional, and which skills and technological know-how are the most in demand. This allows them to make decisions about which candidates will best fit client needs, that are grounded in knowledge, rather than guesswork.
Our narrow niche also means that we can funnel all our resources into learning everything there is to know about Data & Analytics, giving us the scope to become real-time market commentators. We recognise the broader issues facing Dutch tech firms, for example how tax legislation shifts might impact employee trends. On top of this, our extra value-add capabilities, such as the release of yearly research via Salary Guides and Diversity Reports, demonstrates an understanding of our field that goes beyond Harnham’s borders.
Our consultants have a bird’s eye view of the data landscape and this, combined with more localised insights, will provide us with a strong foundation for our future in the Netherlands…exciting times ahead!
If you are interested in pursuing a data career in the Netherlands or are planning to expand your team, this is an ideal time to explore your options. The Harnham Netherlands office is officially opening on 11th April and the team will be on the ground for face-to-face consultations. Get in touch with Ross Henderson or Dave Curtis to book a meeting.