The Faces Behind the Success

By: Together Abroad 26-10-2016

Categories:** HR Company interviews,
The success of Together Abroad – The Nr. 1 Job Board for Internationals lies with its founders Linda van Orsouw and Irina Esbach. They are the driving force working incessantly behind the scenes and in the limelight. As a part-time colleague, I have the privilege of getting to know them and their vision. And I have a first-hand look at the impressive work they do and the many people and organisations they help.

The platform is a wealth of accessible knowledge for expats living in the Netherlands, or planning to do so. It is not only an online job board, but also a launch pad for recruitment services and training. And to add to that, it also has up-to-date News about the Dutch economy, recruitment trends, HR analysis, and Tips for Candidates that includes CV writing, job searching, personal branding, and much more. It truly is a unique platform in that it is comprehensive in all that has to do with work from either the candidate’s side, or the recruiter’s side, but it does not attempt to be more than that. You will not find information about outings, museums, hotels and what not, because there is a tight focus on the goal — if you want an expat’s job in the Netherlands, this is the site to be on.

It all come about back in 2009, they were working together in another recruitment organisation in the internationals department, when they realised they could setup something special together that met the needs of expats and provided them with all the typical (and ever changing) information regarding working in the Netherlands. They then founded Together Abroad, which in hindsight was a risky challenge because this was the peak of the financial crises in the EU that had begun about 2 years earlier. Yet their determination and believe in the importance of what they had to offer outweighed any economical obstacles. So while other businesses were declaring bankruptcy and many start-ups were shutting their doors as fast as they had opened them, They ploughed through the hard times and took the challenge full on. And here we are, 15 years later with an ever-growing platform.

One key for their early success was using their HR experience in understanding market trends and seeing one step ahead in recruitment necessities. With the hard times they had started in, it became apparent to them that there needed to be an affordable platform for recruiters, both local and international, to post their expat job availabilities, and that candidates did not have to pay to access the site or to apply for jobs. This was a recipe for success.

Another key element is the coaching services and workshops offered by Together Abroad. From the more basic CV checking to the more complicated coaching for job interviews, their services for candidates coming to work in the Netherlands was much in demand. Even seasoned professional sometimes need a stir in the right direction because different countries have different work ethics, expectations and demands. Fortunately, they are available to offer the necessary services required.

If this is not enough, a few years after their platform launched and grew, they had the vision to recruit writers to offer articles for candidates’ tips on many aspects of recruitment and how to stand out in the job market. Topics like personal branding, job searching tips, CV writing and so on can all be found at Together Abroad, and they are constantly updated. But this was not enough for the ambitious duo. They then recruited more seasoned professionals to write for the other audience—recruiters and businesses. Suddenly there was a whole section devoted to topics like management, M&A, business ethics, marketing and so forth. Their platform is now a database of wealthy information on anything job related in the Netherlands, and is useful to both candidates and employers.

If all this sounds like Linda is just behind their computers and taking care of business behind closed doors, I can assure you it is not the case. One thing she loves about their job is interacting with people. They give workshops on how to land a job in the Netherlands, they are at the job fairs, they give lectures at universities to guide young career seeking professionals, they offer personal coaching for CV writing or interviewing techniques, and they regularly recruit and guide interns. Their years of experience in HR prior to Together Abroad, and the success of their platform and the realisation of their vision is a testament to their skills and capabilities.

If you find yourself looking for a job in the Netherlands, or planning to come and work in the Netherlands, then take your time and explore the Together Abroad site, you will find all kinds of useful information from how to acquire a work visa to the latest job postings, and access to all the professional services offered. You might just find exactly what you are looking for, so do not hesitate to make contact.

Samir Rawas Sarayji