Forms of employment

The university has various forms of employment. Below, you can read about how they affect you as an employee and about aspects such as maximum contract terms, function-based contracts and what is set to change after 1 July 2016.

Employment contracts and appointments

Public universities offer appointments, whereas special universities offer employment contracts. This should be stated on the letter you received upon entering into service. An appointment is a unilateral decision made by the university to take a person into service. Public universities are government bodies and are governed by the Central and Local Government Personnel Act (Ambtenarenwet). An employment contract is a contract between an employer and an employee governing the employment relationship and falls under the Dutch Civil Code. The CAO applies to employees with either a contract or an appointment. Some sections contain provisions specific to either public or private universities.

Function-based contract

Function-based contracts are based on performance rather than time, allowing employees to organise their time and work more easily. You are responsible for managing your own working hours, break times and holidays. The most important rule is that your performance must satisfy the agreements made with your supervisor. For the duration of the current CAO, the university may conclude function-based contracts with academic staff and with support and management staff below salary scale 11. More details can be found in Article 4.4a of the CAO.

No obligation
You are not obliged to conclude a function-based contract with the university – both parties have to agree in order to do so. If you conclude a function-based contract when starting employment, you may cancel it within three months without stating a reason.

Contract term: temporary employment

The maximum term for consecutive temporary employment contracts depends on the position. Until July 1, 2016, the university may agree on a longer term for temporary contracts for academic staff. Temporary contracts may not be extended more than twice. Your time spent working as a doctoral student or student assistant does not count towards the number or duration of temporary contracts.

The maximum term for temporary contracts is as follows:

  • Six years for academic staff;
  • Three years for support staff and four years if the contract is paid for by temporary external funding;
  • Doctoral contracts are always temporary as they are linked to a programme of study.

After July 1, 2016

  • Depending on your job category, the following duration/extension regulations will apply to temporary contracts as from July 1, 2016:
  • Academic staff: the total duration (including any successive contracts) may not exceed two years. Situations as described in Appendix L of the CAO may permit a total maximum duration of four years. Temporary employment contracts may not be extended with a new temporary contract more than twice.
  • Support and management staff: the total duration (including any successive contracts) may not exceed two years. Situations as described in Appendix L of the CAO may permit a total maximum duration of three or four years. Temporary employment contracts may not be extended with a new temporary contract more than twice.
  • Doctoral students: contracts are always temporary, for the anticipated length of the degree programme. When commencing employment, an initial 18-month temporary contract may be concluded in order to evaluate your suitability for the position. For doctoral students, no maximum applies to either the number of successive temporary contracts or the duration of any contract.
  • For student assistants, no maximum applies to either the number of successive temporary contracts or the duration of any contract.