Link2Europe recruits operators for SanoRice

Chances are very good that your delicious rice, corn or multigrain waffle comes from Zottegem. Because that's where SanoRice, the largest private label producer in the world, is located. Every day about 300 colleagues are busy making the best puffed waffles. Partner Link2Europe lends a hand with sustainable international recruitment.

HR Manager Monika De Coninck already had some experience with international recruiting when she started looking for a new partner at the end of 2018. Because there are not enough skilled production and packaging operators on the Belgian labor market, the company needed a solid partner, in addition to its own recruitment, to fill these bottleneck vacancies. On the wish list: a sufficient and qualitative influx of operators and end-to-end support. Link2Europe emerged as the preferred partner.

"Today we are two years along and we have achieved these goals.", says Monika. "Link2Europe provides about 20 new colleagues on an annual basis, who come in gradually."

Total approach

"They search, screen and recruit quality operators abroad, in our case Poland, Romania, Croatia and Ukraine. Link2Europe also takes to heart the administrative support of the selected candidates. Specifically, this involves housing, mobility solutions, arranging permits and registration with the municipality and health insurance companies, for example. In addition, attention is also paid to the social aspect. They organize activities to make people feel really welcome. When a new colleague starts work, Link2Europe also provides a tour of the company, often in their own language.

Even when the employee moves to a permanent contract, Link2Europe guides them to their own housing. That total package is essential for us because we cannot organize that ourselves.


Our packing and production operators are hard to find in the Belgian labor market.
Because "making waffles" is done with natural raw materials such as rice, corn, chickpeas, quinoa or buckwheat, and that base sometimes varies. You therefore need employees with experience in the food industry who master the production process and are not afraid to work with high-tech machines. In addition to technical understanding, "fingerspitzengefühl" is needed.

During recruitment, we maintain a basic standard of English so that instructions and safety measures are understood. During the interim period, we provide Dutch classes. We pay for those and an external partner teaches them. During corona we went online, and look, that works too. The knowledge of Dutch is important for communication with colleagues and, on the other hand, for integration in our country.

We track our new employees well. There are regular performance reviews and we give a lot of feedback. We think this is important, because after all, these colleagues are leaving their country for a new adventure here. Often they come alone and have no safety net. That's why we also pay attention to their well-being. If the interim period goes well and they achieve the required level of Dutch, they get a permanent contract. Sometimes it also happens that they work here for a while and then return. They made a nice contribution to the company and we are very grateful for that.

Great rapport with recruiting partner

Meanwhile, we built an excellent rapport with our recruiting partner. They know our profiles. The agreement is also that they spontaneously propose suitable candidates. We always find a place for a good candidate. And Link2Europe knows us more than enough to know which personalities fit our company. We have a smooth relationship with our contact person, she keeps us perfectly informed about who is in the pipeline.

International recruitment was a deliberate choice for SanoRice. But logical too, Europe has open borders. You have to dare opt for the solution, make your company organizationally ready for it and select a strong recruitment partner," Monika concludes.

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