Although online searching facilitates the process of finding a job abroad, it may also expose us to hundreds of recruitment scams. Today, I will give you some tips to help you know when an employment agency is legit or it is trying to scam you. At the end of the article, I will also tell you what to do when you have come to The Netherlands under a non-legit recruitment agency and you feel the work conditions are legally or morally incorrect.
When planning to work abroad, you may have encountered with many different recruiters telling you about thousands of interesting job offers. According to Sprout Social (2021), 73% of Gen Z and Millennial employees have found their last job through social media. That is why is not a surprise that the number of online fake recruiters or low-transparency recruitment agencies are raising every year. Fake agencies will ask for your personal information or for money, and they will disappear right after. In contrast, low-transparency agencies will give you a job, but they will lie about the salary, the conditions, the location, or even about the employer. Unfortunately, the second one is a very common practice in The Netherlands when recruiting foreign employees. And, that´s why we want to help you recognize them.
How can I recognize a fake recruiter?
Check the company´s online information
When getting approached by a recruiter, the first thing you need to do is to prove that you are dealing with a real company. Check the email address and make sure that it includes the name of the company on the email domain. For example: firstname.lastname@example.org. Then, go to the company´s website and check that the contact details matches the ones you´ve received the offer from. Check the phone number online and, if you still have doubts, call to check if it is a legit agency.
Don´t trust the offer if it is too good to be true
Sometimes, recruiters want to sell the job so hardly, that they lie candidates about the offer. Often, they make candidates believe that the offer is too good to be rejected, by offering a very high salary, a wonderful location or a very easy-to-do job.
Therefore, if you see a salary that´s higher than the average, or the conditions seem way better from what you are used to see in your industry, you should start doubting about the job offer. Am I saying that you need to reject it immediately? No! Just be a bit more skeptical about the recruiter and research the company deeper before accepting it.
On the other hand, when the recruiter is too pushy or is offering a wide variety of jobs at the same time, you better distrust. If they seem desperate about giving you a job, it is because it is not a good agency! Otherwise, they will have a lot of other candidates interested.
Try to gather as much information of the recruiter as possible.
Ask to have a personal interview with the recruiter before accepting the job. If you can, it is always better to meet in real life. I know sometimes this is not possible when you want to work abroad. However, you can ask the recruiter to have a video interview.
In addition, it is always a good idea to ask for their full name, their contact details and even their LinkedIn profile. Then, you can google that person and see if you are dealing with a fake recruiter or not.
When checking their LinkedIn profiles, check what company they work for and go check their website. Read as much as you can about the company and check that contact details are correct.
Ask the recruiter what the agency will do for you
I have heard many cases of recruiters that send candidates to work in another country and then just forget about them. When employees arrive, they see themselves in totally different work conditions than they were told before by the recruiter. They try to reach them, but they get no response or something like: ´sorry, this is not my job anymore´. Therefore, it is very important to ask the recruiter to describe the hiring process from the beginning to the end. You can ask questions like: ´Will you give me support in the after-hiring experience?` or ´If my employer is treating me wrong, how will you help me?´
Don´t hesitate to ask if these terms will be included in your contract. And talking about contracts, if you are going to work abroad, don´t leave your home until you have a contract signed with the employer!
Check online reviews
And now the most important tip! Before trusting a recruiter or a recruitment agency, look at what other people are saying!
Companies and recruiters can sometimes lie very well, but other previous or current employees will probably tell you a more genuine story. Check the company´s online reviews. In the case you can´t find, try to find people who has worked with the company before or who are currently working under the agency. Talk to them and ask them about their experience. This is actually the best way to know if an agency is legit or not, so take your time as you do so!
But, what do I do if I come to The Netherlands to work and I find out the recruiter has lied about the conditions?
Although it is always better to identify bad recruitment agencies before going to work abroad, sometimes it is not that easy. Some recruiters are very used to lie and they know how to do it well.
It is true that the Dutch government is totally against these bad practices of recruitment agencies. However, there are still plenty of companies in The Netherlands who want to increase their profit, by lying and exploiting their employees. That´s why, the Dutch government has introduced hard measurements against this type of agencies.
If you find yourself in a situation of exploitation, or working under rough conditions, you can get in touch with the Dutch Labour Authority, and they will help you deal with it.
Now you have the tricks to recognize non-legit employment agencies, I hope you never see yourself in a bad working situation.
If you want to work abroad and are looking for a legit agency, check our vacancies! We help you before, during and after your stay to feel as comfortable as possible!