Getting the job done
The energy transition requires tens of thousands of additional technical specialists in the Netherlands. A growing economy means a rapidly tightening labour market. There is a serious shortage of technicians and IT specialists. Filling the vacancies is and will remain a major challenge for the construction industry, installation sector and network operators. We welcomed 469 new technicians last year. In order to get the job done, we are not only focusing on recruiting new technicians and IT specialists, we are also acting to make the internal organisation more effective and more agile, partly by making changes to the organisation, but also by introducing improvements to training, culture and leadership.
Alliander’s own technical college
In 2021, we provided 528 training courses through the Alliander technical college. This is where we train new technicians using safe live voltage in ways that mirror real-life situations. In 2021, we started converting the Anklaar electrical substation into a practical location for trainee technicians who will work in the high-voltage sector. Furthermore, we focus on innovative learning methods, such as the HoloLens where a person working on an installation is shown holograms with instructions projected onto the installation.
We started with our youth programme for the first time in September 2021. Our aim is to train 12 young people between the ages of 16 and 18 who join us straight from pre-vocational secondary school to become mechanics in two years.
Partnership with HAN
We continued working with HAN University of Applied Sciences in 2021 on a programme in which students combine work and studying for two years, and are prepared for a technical position at graduate level. The programme offers a combination of a practical technical training programme, an Associate Degree from HAN and work experience: students can start working immediately in Alliander’s business units.
Alliander’s technical college is involved in the plans of ‘Sterk Technisch Onderwijs’ (Strong Technical Education) and the Education and Development funding programme to further improve technical education in conjunction with educational institutions and companies in the sector. The partnership with other network operators and the Education and Development funding programme was strengthened further in 2021 with collaborative teams working on innovative learning solutions, labour market & education, technical training programmes and safety training programmes. The partnership aims to intensify collaboration, to combine forces while technical specialists are in short supply and, where possible, accelerate developments in the labour market and education.
Labour market for technical talent
We view it as our job to increase the supply of technicians in the coming years. We offer training opportunities to newcomers to our sector, young people, and people with poor employment prospects. In a joint programme called ‘Power up the planet’, we joined forces in 2021 with the other network operators and the Education & Development funding programme to inspire young people to train as technical specialists. Alliander was the national partner for Girlsday 2021 last year. By providing a broad range of activities we were able to inspire schoolgirls, female colleagues and the daughters of colleagues to consider working in technology.
Alliander is Hiring!
For several years, we have been conducting an intensive recruitment campaign internally and externally to publicise vacancies for technicians. In 2021 we held webinars and company visits to introduce technicians and IT specialists to the technology. Employees were once again invited to introduce new technicians and IT specialists to Alliander in 2021, through the internal referral programme ‘Alliander is Hiring!’. The programme attracted 140 potential candidates in 2021, 23 of whom were offered a contract.
Refugees with residence permits
For the third year running, we offered a special training programme for refugees with residence permits in 2021. These new colleagues spend three years training to attain the certificates they need. They are then ready to start working independently in a technical job and are offered a job at Liander.
To achieve the ambitions set out in the Dutch Climate Agreement, there will be a need for more and more technical specialists. In conjunction with Netbeheer Nederland, Energie Nederland and the employers’ association WENB, we are building a bridge to other sectors to attract as many technical employees as possible to the energy sector. The ‘Branchebruggen’ programme (‘Building bridges to the sector’) offers the opportunity to work on the energy transition and join one of the companies in the group. For more information, go to http://www.brugnaardeenergietechniek.nl