Netherlands – New employer obligation to document recruitment and selection practices

On 26 March 2024, “The Equal Opportunity in Employment Bill” was subsequently rejected by the Senate upon further discussion. Therefore, employers are no longer required to take action in response to the Bill.

What’s new?

On 5 March 2024, the Dutch Senate passed the “The Equal Opportunity in Employment Bill” with the aim of tackling discrimination seen within hiring practices.

What are the key provisions?

The bill imposes a mandatory obligation on employers to have a practice that ensures equal opportunity in the recruitment and selection of employees. Employers with at least 25 employees will be required to document this practice in writing within nine months of the law being published in the Dutch Government Gazette.

In addition, employers will have the duty to verify that any third party it uses for the recruitment and selection employees, also has a practice aimed at preventing labour market discrimination. This could be achieved for example, by building this question in as standard to the vendor selection and onboarding process.

What are the consequences of non-compliance?

If an employer fails to comply with the legislation, they could be subject to fines of 4,500 EUR issued by the Labor Inspectorate and risk significant reputational damage, given this sanction can be made public.

So, what should employers do now?

Employers should review their hiring practices and prepare to document their recruitment and selection practice in writing where applicable. Employers should also request confirmation from any third-party vendors used in the selection and recruitment of its employees, that it also has such a practice in place. If you need any support with this, or would like any further information, please get in touch with a member of the MDR ONE team.

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