Terms of employment: examples and important laws in drafting

by Danique Geskus | Apr 5, 2024

Terms of employment are at the heart of the relationship between employers and employees. They include a wide range of benefits, rights and obligations set forth in labor contracts and collective bargaining agreements (CBAs). In this article, we dive deeper into the meaning, examples and importance of terms of employment, as well as the process of conducting an employment interview.


Employment meaning

Terms of employment refer to the agreements and arrangements between employers and employees regarding the employment relationship. They include such things as salary, working hours, vacations, pensions, sick leave, leave arrangements, flexible work arrangements and other fringe benefits.

These terms may vary depending on the industry, company and individual agreements between employer and employee. Compliance with working conditions is essential to maintaining a fair and mutually beneficial working relationship.


Employment examples

Some common examples of conditions of employment include:

1. Salary and bonuses:

The basic income an employee receives for work performed, including any bonuses or performance-related rewards.


2. Working hours and flexibility:

The established working hours, overtime arrangements, flexible working hours, home working opportunities and other arrangements related to working hours.


3. Vacation days and leave:

The number of vacation days, paid leave, parental leave, sick leave and other types of leave to which employees are entitled.


4. Pensions and insurance:

Pension plans, health insurance, disability insurance and other insurance benefits offered by the employer.


5. Development opportunities:

Training, education, career development programs and other opportunities for professional growth and development.


6. Work environment and facilities:

The working environment, office facilities, ergonomic facilities and other aspects that affect working conditions.


Legislation regarding conditions of employment

In addition to negotiations between employers and employees, the establishment of terms and conditions of employment is also influenced by legal regulations and requirements. These regulations are designed to protect workers’ rights and ensure fair working conditions.

Adherence to labor laws not only obliges, but it also contributes to employee well-being and satisfaction, which in turn can lead to a more productive and healthier work environment. Some laws to consider when drafting terms of employment are:


1. Minimum Wage and Minimum Holiday Allowance Act (WML):

This law sets the minimum wage that employers are required to pay their employees. The minimum wage is adjusted annually and depends on the employee’s age.


2. Working Hours Act:

This law contains rules regarding maximum working hours, rest periods and breaks for employees. The goal is to ensure that workers get adequate rest and to ensure health and safety in the workplace.


3. Labor and Care Act (WAZO):

This law regulates various forms of leave, such as maternity leave, childbirth leave, parental leave and adoption leave. Employees are entitled to these forms of leave under certain conditions.


4. Working Conditions Act (Arbowet): This law sets requirements for health and safety in the workplace. Employers are required to implement a health and safety policy and take measures to prevent or reduce work-related health risks.


5. Equal Treatment Act (WGB): This law prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender, race, age, disability or sexual orientation, among others, in employment. Employers should promote equal treatment and equal opportunity within their organizations.

Compliance with these laws is essential for employers to avoid legal problems and to ensure a fair and safe working environment for all employees in the Netherlands.


Employment Interview

The employment interview is a crucial step in the hiring process where employers and employees negotiate the specific terms of the employment contract. During this interview, both employers and employees can discuss their expectations, needs and desires regarding salary, benefits and other aspects of the job. It is important that both parties communicate openly and strive to reach a balanced and satisfactory agreement that meets the interests of both the employer and the employee.

Working conditions are an essential part of the working relationship and play a major role in attracting, retaining and motivating talent. By reaching clear and fair agreements on working conditions, employers and employees can lay a solid foundation for successful and productive cooperation.



1. How can employees ensure that their conditions of employment are in compliance with applicable laws in the Netherlands

Employees can ensure that their conditions of employment are in accordance with applicable laws in the Netherlands by being aware of their rights and consulting the relevant laws. They can also seek legal advice or contact unions for support in securing their terms of employment.


2. What role do collective bargaining agreements (CLAs) play in establishing conditions of employment, and do they apply to all employees in the Netherlands?

Collective bargaining agreements (CLAs) play an important role in establishing terms and conditions of employment in various sectors in the Netherlands. These agreements are negotiated between employer organizations and unions and include agreements on salaries, working hours, leave arrangements and other terms and conditions of employment. Collective bargaining agreements generally apply to all employees within a specific industry or sector.


3. How can employers and employees best handle employment talks to achieve a balanced and satisfactory agreement that meets the interests of both parties?

Best addressing benefits discussions requires open communication and a constructive attitude from both employers and employees. Employees can clearly express their expectations and needs and be prepared to negotiate. Employers, in turn, can offer transparency about the terms of employment available and show flexibility to reach a satisfactory agreement. It is important that both parties strive for a balanced and fair arrangement that represents the interests of both the employer and the employee.

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