International students from the University of Amsterdam (UvA), VU University Amsterdam, InHolland University of Applied Sciences and the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences (HvA) met potential employers during the event which featured an employment market and a range of workshops. Opening what was a popular event, Mayor of Amsterdam Eberhard van der Laan emphasised the importance of international talent for the business community and prosperity in the region.

In excess of 550 students were successfully matched with employers during ITEA2014. Companies are keen to recruit international talents as they frequently introduce creative innovations, increase productivity and can offer solutions for companies operating overseas. Such talents also made a conscious choice to study in the Netherlands and often prove to be highly-motivated employees. In addition, international talents are the ideal solution for sectors currently afflicted by major shortages of personnel with specialist training, such as ICT.

Research has indicated that international companies in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area are on the lookout for talents with strong language abilities and who are familiar with international markets and cultures. For companies such as Nike, Booking.com, Tall Grass and Sanoma, the ITEA is the definitive means of coming into contact with international talents located in the region. 46 workshops and matchmaking sessions provided them with the opportunity to meet 1,400 participating talents. A dedicated digital app was also developed to help connect companies with talents during ITEA2014, as well as to maintain relations after the event. Midway through ITEA2014, more than 13,500 posts had already been placed via the app.

The Amsterdam Metropolitan Area aspires to become one of the top-5 business cities in Europe, and the availability of talent for the 2,500 international companies already located here plays a significant role in realising this ambition. In particular, international talents are pivotal – also when it comes to attracting new international investors to the region. It was with this in mind that the UvA, VU, InHolland, HvA, City of Amsterdam and the Amsterdam Economic Board united to organise ITEA2014. The event is the first major step within ‘Amsterdam Works’, a collaborative programme headed by the Amsterdam Economic Board that allows the business community, knowledge institutions and universities to join forces to attract international students and knowledge migrants to the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area and help ensure they stay.