Getting the job done with our employees

The Dutch labour market has always had shortages, especially for technical and IT positions. About 60,000 additional technicians will be structurally required in the Netherlands until 2030. The shortage of technicians limits Alliander’s implementation agenda.

In 2023, Alliander played an active role in the public debate regarding the labour market and education. This debate focused on three messages, which we believe are important to be able to implement the required changes to the system. The first one is making it easier for people to choose a technical education, for example, by making these courses financially attractive. Secondly, it must be possible for foreign workers from outside Europe to work in certain sectors in the Netherlands, such as healthcare and technology. In addition to this, investments should be made to create a labour market infrastructure for working in technology, construction and energy. This can be done, for example, by creating a Golden Gate for each sector, which includes a job guarantee. Make switching more appealing to lateral entrants by providing subsidies that cover a possible drop in salary during the training.

Alliander is collaborating on these topics in partnerships such as the Industry Coalition and with the major technical sectors through the Labour Market Shortage Action Plan for Technology, Construction and Energy. The National Implementation Agenda explicitly states the need for political choices on the labour market as well. 

Labour market, training and retention team

In 2023, our multidisciplinary labour market, training and retention team worked on implementing our vision for the labour market and education. These efforts had various results in 2023, including: 

Inflow, advancement, outflow 

In 2023, we welcomed 2,196 new employees and agency workers. We recruited a total of 1,153 employees from outside of Alliander, including 165 IT specialists and 429 technicians. In addition, 471 internal employees moved to new jobs within Alliander (25% of vacancies). Unfortunately we also saw a number of colleagues leave. A total of 669 employees left the organisation, including 96 who retired and 84 who were forced to leave the organisation. Labour market shortages remain a challenge for Alliander as well. We have set up additional recruitment campaigns for new talent, including IT specialists and technicians. We have launched an onboarding programme for new employees to give them a successful start in their careers. A total of 823 colleagues participated in these in 2023.


In 2023, we decided to focus on internationalisation due to the labour market shortages. We can do this by having people from abroad work in the Netherlands, but also by taking work packages abroad through nearshoring. Various programmes are currently underway, strengthened by the preparations for the deployment of foreign electricians and preparations for using a bilingual system.

Focus on retention

Following surveys of the reasons why people leave and work enjoyment in 2022, we worked on the key retention factors in 2023: having a good manager, doing interesting work, having a good salary and development opportunities.

  • With regard to managers, we have drawn up and introduced a competency profile for managers, added an extra group who started the leadership programme, invested in our managers through leadership days and launched an initiative to support the effectiveness of team leaders.

  • A multidisciplinary installation capacity team was set up for the aspect of doing interesting work. This team is looking at optimum employability and opportunities to reduce downtime.

  • In early 2023, we decided to give a number of technical target groups a temporary financial boost while awaiting the outcome of the collective labour agreement negotiations, the new job classification system and the new remuneration policy. Staff turnover is too high within these critical groups and the training efforts are considerable. The financial boost increases the chances of retaining the target group for a longer period of time. In addition, an agreement was reached for a new collective labour agreement for network companies in December 2023. It entered into force in January 2024. The most important aspect of this is a structural raise of at least 10% within 18 months, largely to compensate for the earlier period of inflation. In response to the agreement, negotiations have started on the Alliander collective labour agreement. The aim is to include the changes to the job classification system, performance management and the remuneration policy, which were prepared in 2023.

  • In terms of development opportunities, we announced a new appraisal system, which centres on having a good conversation, on our intranet and at the leadership day in December 2023. The system went live on 1 February 2024. We also launched a tender procedure for a service provider that will allow us to launch academies in 2024 and provide unlimited learning.

Labour matching platform 

In order to help more people from other sectors find work in the technical sector, we will be matching the skills of candidates rather than their level of education. Seven companies operating in the energy transition have joined forces for this in the Arbeidsmatchplatform (Labour matching platform). This is a social start-up by the initiator Alliander, other network operators and contractors, who want to promote skills-based recruitment among other companies in the energy transition. AI is used to match the skills of unemployed people with the skills required for the available vacancies.

Regional ecosystems 

Our ambition is to build regional ‘ecosystems’ to entice more people into the technical sector together with regional partners, such as contractors, municipal and provincial authorities, the education sector and the Dutch Employee Insurance Agency UWV. The first concrete ecosystem was launched in 2023: Infra Groot Amsterdam. It combines the forces of Alliander, Heijmans, Dmissi Electro, PWN, Visser & Smit Hanab, Stichting Waternet and Van Gelder Groep BV. Programme lines were developed and project teams were launched based on the strategic pillars of Choosing, Learning and Working in the technical sector. In addition to supply chain collaboration, partnerships with educational institutions such as the Regional Training Centres and authorities such as the municipality of Amsterdam and the province of Noord-Holland are sought for each programme line. Infra Groot Amsterdam is also part of the MRA Green Tech Campus and the network therefore receives a subsidy to ensure optimum collaboration with other related initiatives in the region. Collaborating more smartly allows more technicians to be recruited, trained and retained for the energy, water and underground infrastructure sectors.

Separate training teams set up

Considering the rapidly increasing demand for new technicians and the challenges of on-the-job training, we started setting up separate teams in 2023 that focus fully on training in practice.

Strategic workforce planning

The combination of labour market shortages and considerations regarding the upscaling of work strengthens the need for strategic workforce planning. In 2023, we obtained a better picture of the groups of employees who are on a critical pathway to achieving our ambitions. We now have a clear picture of the desired inflow channels and the required development of skills for 47% of our total labour capacity, which represents 65% of our total need for recruitment. These insights enable the organisation to provide better direction in the development of the total workforce.

Revamped recruitment campaigns 

Our growing recruitment challenge in the tight labour market requires a greater focus on our reputation as an employer and awareness of our brand. This is why in 2023 we invested in the major ‘Zonder jou’ (Without you) campaign to boost awareness of our brand and Alliander’s reputation as an employer, and to strengthen internal pride. We also intensified our online target group campaigns for the recruitment of technicians and IT specialists. 

Alliander’s own technical college

The number of courses taken by new and experienced colleagues at Alliander’s technical college (‘Alliander Technische Bedrijfsschool’) amounted to 3,063 in total. These courses corresponded as much as possible to real-life situations and were arranged at various training locations. We also continue to innovate the way we learn, for example, by building several modules in the HoloLens, a virtual-reality headset that allows students to ‘really’ practise their skills in a safe setting. We collaborate closely with several educational institutions. Alliander and its technical college are involved as partners in labour market platforms such as and TechGelderland.