Getting the job done
The labour market for technicians and IT professionals has hardly changed. The number of vacancies is stable and the supply of candidates is either the same or has decreased slightly. In order to get the job done, we are not only focusing on recruiting new technicians, we are also acting to make the internal organisation more efficient and more agile, partly by making changes to the organisation, but also by introducing improvements in the area of culture and leadership. The approach focuses on operating as a performing and learning organisation that prioritises teamwork in order to do the work a little more effectively every day. Regular short-cycle adjustments, explicit performance targets and monitoring, and learning from each other are now being embedded in our daily work. This includes clearly defining the strategy and giving the teams what they need to contribute to achieving this strategy.
Alliander’s own technical college
In 2020, Alliander’s own technical college (‘Alliander Technische Bedrijfsschool’) continued to roll out the reorganisation initiated in 2019. We have further increased the effectiveness of the technical college by streamlining and professionalising the basic structure and anchoring the learning activities more strongly at a regional level (in Duiven, Haarlem and Leeuwarden). These improvements include the appointment of training advisers. In 2020, we provided more than 1,600 training courses through the Alliander technical college.
Last year, we started a programme to raise interest among secondary school leavers and encourage them to specialise in Liander’s technology. The COVID-19 pandemic restricted initiatives on location, such as guest lectures at the secondary schools, and our attendance at events such as WorldSkills. In 2021, we will run a pilot scheme that involves offering school leavers aged under 18 employment in combination with extensive training as technicians. This scheme will be offered in the west of the Netherlands initially, but can be extended to other parts of our service area at a later stage.
The medium-voltage and high-voltage training curriculum was redesigned in close collaboration with Qirion. A new dimension has been added by converting the now disused Anklaar substation into a training facility.
Together with the hydrogen innovation team, the technical college is developing a specific training course to prepare technicians for working in hydrogen pilots.
The technical college is involved in the plans of ‘Sterk Technisch Onderwijs’ (Strong Technical Education) and the O&O funding programme to further improve technical education together with educational institutions and companies in the sector. One example is the development of virtual reality for use in engineering training and education.