Good employment practice

Stedin aims to be an attractive employer that treats its employees responsibly and with respect, encourages their development and offers equal opportunities for all. Key aspects are: having sufficient technical and other staff, capacity for change, education, training and development of staff and a vital, inclusive organisation.

Sufficient technical staff

The energy transition is accompanied by a significant increase in investment and hence work. This has an impact on how we should shape our workforce. We employ various instruments to meet this challenge: strategic staff planning, our In-house training school, proactive training programmes, learning paths to facilitate the influx of new colleagues as well as internal advancement, a labour market campaign and, together with the sector, a campaign to encourage young people to choose a technical profession. To retain our current employees, we keep them inspired and committed by continuously supporting them in their development and providing an inclusive work environment.

In 2021, we saw the average number of vacancies more than double. This ascending line is set to continue further in the coming year. In parallel, we undertook internal process improvements to ensure vacancies can be filled sooner if candidates are available.

Strategic staff planning

Data were employed to show how much technical and operational work will be needed in the coming years and what staff shortages are likely to arise over time as a result. We use this information to deploy effective tools and resources for maintaining our workforce at the right level.

Planning estimates show that, without additional measures, we will face a shortage of 450 FTEs from 2025 (in particular electrical fitters and work supervisors). With an expected influx from the In-house training school of 130 FTEs, we will therefore face a shortage of 320 FTEs.

There are steps that Stedin can take to reduce the shortage further. For example, by ensuring influx remains high. This is facilitated, among other things, by our labour market campaign ‘Plenty to do’. We also examine possibilities for outsourcing work (with the option of taking on external staff) and scaling up the capacity of the In-house training school. At the same time, we apply greater focus internally and use other types of labour innovation to enable us to do more work using our present technical workforce. The potential is great here and includes taking advantage of the opportunities presented by digitalisation, long-term employability, alternative and accelerated training approaches, as well as adopting even more efficient working methods such as those that we will implement in the chain organisation in the year ahead.

Organisation's capacity for change

The world around us and in the energy landscape is changing at an ever-accelerating pace, and the precise direction often remains uncertain. That brings with it a need for agility. We include our people within our development ambitions in defining which new skills and competencies they need, can deploy right now or need to develop to do so in the future. Clarity as to where we currently stand in terms of our leadership behaviour and where there is scope for development is crucial. Insights from our leadership scans show that, across Stedin as a whole, we score highly in terms of behaviour linked to ‘Committed’ and ‘Inspired’. We have scope for development in particular in relation to the cultural value ‘Forward’ – providing frameworks and achieving results. We have room for improvement as regards more clearly defining results, giving each other feedback on those results and celebrating successes. Supervision in training and development supports these efforts, as do instruments such as improved performance management.

Training, learning and development

We seek to foster a culture that prioritises continuous learning. That is important to ensure sustained performance. Our actions are underpinned by our vision for learning: ‘working is learning, learning is working.’ Naturally, this takes place in a socially and physically safe work environment. We use various tools to support the continuous training and development of our employees. An example is good dialogue between employees and their managers, occasionally supplemented with 360o feedback from co-workers and customers, among others.

Training programmes in 2021

Number of training programmes followed, not including the In-house training school

2,024 programmes

Number of paid working hours spent on training

300,000 hours

General training costs

€4.5 million

Average training costs per participant


Student supervision

117 students supervised. Senior secondary vocational education (MBO): 14 / Higher professional education (HBO): 77 / University (WO): 26

In-house training school

Our In-house training school plays a crucial role in ensuring the right technical people in the right place. By training people ourselves, we ensure that we maintain a substantial influx and internal advancement of colleagues. Many of them have been able to acquire a stable position in society in recent years thanks to the In-house training school. We also specifically invest in people with a distance to the labour market through special classes for newcomers and participation candidates, among other things.

In 2021, 1,340 safety programmes were provided for DNWG at the In-house training school. From January 2022, all training programmes for Zeeland are also provided through the In-house training school.

The In-house training school recorded 49,801 applications in 2021 for technical training, safety training such as BEI and VIAG, e-training and in-house safety training. In 2021, 208 pupils were trained as fitters and obtained their senior secondary vocational education (MBO) diplomas.

In-house training school






Number of training programmes leading to certification followed






Number of non-mandatory training programmes leading to certification followed






Number of training programmes followed through the In-house training school






Number of MBO diplomas awarded






People coming from other professions trained as smart meter fitters






Technology & Safety training budget (in million)






Total In-house training school training costs (in million)


The 208 pupils who were trained as fitters by the In-house training school in 2021 are awarded their senior secondary vocational education (MBO) diplomas during a drive-in ceremony.

Learning paths as an instrument for influx and internal advancement

In 2021, the In-house training school developed a series of learning paths, which set out the development options available to fitters. They show which training courses and programmes are needed, and when, for advancement. By providing insight into the possibilities, we can motivate and encourage current employees to take their next career step. By doing so, we utilise the experience of these co-workers while also creating space for the influx of new employees. The learning paths help to shape training that is targeted at meeting the needs of individual employees, as well as within the organisation.

Attractiveness of technical professions

Recruitment and the In-house training school are working together under various initiatives to promote technical professions. In 2021, we and other grid managers launched a recruitment campaign entitled ‘Power Up the Planet’. Stedin has also signed up to various Work-Study Agreements. Under these agreements, we combine with regional education centres to organise guest lectures and provide work placements.

Making maximum use of training capacity

We also looked at how to optimise the training capacity of the In-house training school, by changing our training approach and through increased cooperation with the operational departments. What should take place at the In-house training school, and which elements can we provide in a practical setting? Cooperation with the operational units was intensified, and a national attack plan was made, supported by the Training & Development Fund for grid operators (T&D fund). Within the T&D fund, the larger grid operators have committed to working in multidisciplinary teams with a focus on efficient training, recruitment and safe working. For each topic, a plan of action has been defined, and employees from the three major grid operators are working together on elaborating the details of the various actions. These actions will be implemented further in 2022.

Various projects were carried out in the In-house training school in 2021, which we are proud to highlight:

  • Pilot aimed at recruiting fitters ourselves. We want to ensure that our work-study programme is visible as a vacancy to a large target group. To do this, we focus on announcing the vacancy amongst and through Stedin employees. The In-house training school is responsible for the entire vacancy process: the services of a secondment agency are not needed. In September, 35 new fitters started work, 15 of whom were recruited by Stedin itself. The remaining 20 fitters were provided through the Werk en Vakmanschap secondment agency to the In-house training school.
  • Integration of training programmes in Zeeland, involving custom arrangements for our colleagues in the province. We identified all the training programmes in Zeeland and considered which programmes we would continue offering in Zeeland, which would be dropped and which programmes we would provide in Rotterdam.
  • Further development of the online platform, allowing us to support ‘learning by doing’ at all times. We do this with the aid of online clips, which fitters can view at any place and at any time. The platform is now used by 462 employees.


In support of our strategy, we conducted an in-depth review of our leadership profile. We provide our managers with a clear picture of what we require in terms of leadership behaviour.

In the leadership profile, we formulate aspects of helpful and unhelpful leadership behaviour based on our cultural values. In 2021, we completed the leadership profile and translated it into a 360o feedback questionnaire. Using this questionnaire, 96% of managers (Stedin as well as DNWG) reflected on the extent to which their behaviour conforms to the leadership profile. Their immediate work environment (manager, closest colleagues and employees) also gave feedback on the leadership behaviour of our managers using the questionnaire. The outcomes were the basis for dialogue between us, which we will continue in the year ahead. The overall outcomes also prompted us to set up the first development interventions, also leading us to offer broader support in relation to translating objectives, formulating those objectives in a SMART way and giving constructive feedback.

In addition, we provide the following resources for leadership development:

  • Three kick-forward days for all our managers, about strategic developments and translating them to their own teams. These days were held online in 2021;
  • 'Toekomstmakers' (Makers of the Future) traineeship, a two-year traineeship programme for talented new employees. The aim is to train them to become ‘leaders of the future’. The fourth class of seven new 'Makers of the Future' started in 2021. The second class has already successfully taken up permanent positions within Stedin;
  • Process Improvement (PI) programme, a two-year programme during which participants are trained as Lean Six Sigma Black Belts for improving processes. Following completion, participants progress to a position as team leader, for example;
  • Basic Cohesive Leadership, an eight-month programme for new managers. They learn what their unique leadership style is and what is expected from them as a manager. The fourth class started in 2021;
  • Horizon: a ten-month executive programme. The aim of this programme is to support the development of our strategic executives and to achieve our mission. In 2020/2021, 11 strategic executives completed the programme.

Vibrant organisation

In 2021, Stedin was awarded the title ‘Most vibrant specialist company 2021’. The award is presented by WENB (Employers’ association for companies in the energy, telecom, recycling and environment sectors) in recognition of efforts to maintain employees’ physical and mental fitness. We are proud to receive this award. There was praise in particular for the attention we paid to the mental fitness of our employees, including the assistance that was made available during the pandemic. The sustainable employability budget of €500, which was taken up by 1,515 employees in 2021, was also highlighted.

Employee motivation

Each year, we carry out an employee motivation survey to provide insight into the degree of commitment and engagement among our Stedin colleagues. The survey yields detailed information on employees' perceptions of us at the team level. In the active follow-up after the survey, we initiate good dialogue, mutually and in teams, based on the insights and data. In 2021, 72.6% of employees took part in the survey (2020: 65%).

Stedin applies two KPIs in this context: commitment and engagement. In 2021, Stedin once again scored higher on both KPIs than the target, recording a 7.6 for commitment and a 7.8 for engagement. We are proud of the results that were achieved. Our score for the theme ‘Forward’ was 7.5. This is an incentive to pay greater attention to shared objectives and everyone’s contribution to them.






Target for 2021
















Sickness absence

Recorded sickness absence averaged 4.3% in 2021. This is lower than at comparable companies in the Industry and Energy sector. The focus on absenteeism and employability in the past two years has borne fruit.

Sickness absence






Average sickness absence in the industry and energy sector (third quarter of 2021)






Sickness absence within Stedin Group (in per cent)






Reporting frequency






Work-life balance

The results of the Employee Motivation survey show a high degree of employee satisfaction with the flexibility in working hours. Stedin Group offers the following arrangements:

  • The Collective Labour Agreement for Grid Operators (CAO NWb), which applies to Stedin, includes normal working hours from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday to Friday. Employees who do not work according to a schedule or who do not have fixed working hours can arrange their own working hours in consultation with their manager (even varying them daily). At Stedin, employees may, in consultation with the manager and provided that a position is suitable, work on a flexible basis – for instance, choosing to work at home, at the office or at another location. This is detailed in our work concept Stedin@Work (see box). In 2021, a homeworking allowance of €2 per home working day was introduced in line with the work concept.
  • In accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Grid Companies, employees can opt to purchase additional hours of leave, on top of their statutory minimum entitlement, using their monthly Personal Budget. We also offer accumulated leave arrangements, under which employees accumulate up to 36 hours of leave on an annual basis per calendar year. The accumulated leave can be saved for up to 10 years and used for taking leave over an extended period. In 2021, 59% of the accumulated leave was carried forward to the next year.
  • Stedin has a Vitality Scheme, which allows employees aged 62 and above to reduce their weekly working hours. This creates more room for rest and leisure, which is beneficial to vitality and allows employees to continue working on a healthy basis until retirement. Within Stedin, 111 employees (28% of the target group) are taking advantage of the scheme.
  • The Flexible Working Act (Wet flexibel werken) allows employees to increase or reduce their contractual working hours and to adjust their working hours and workplace. This Act naturally applies to Stedin's employees as well.

Stedin@Work: our new work concept

In November 2021, we introduced a new work concept: Stedin@Work. Employees consciously choose how, when, where and with whom they work. From home, at the office, out on site or at a different workplace. The location differs from one person to the next, just as each job differs from the next. Personal preferences also play a role. The starting point is that we do our work wherever and in whichever way is best for the job and job performance.

We offer considerable flexibility in the choice of whether to work from home or at the office. We stay focused when working from home, just as we conduct meetings online wherever possible. Provided that the situation related to COVID-19 allows, we go to the office to work with colleagues, to meet each other and to stay in touch with the organisation. This contributes to a better work-life balance and helps decrease traffic and congestion.

Care leave and special leave

Pursuant to the law, the Collective Labour Agreement and our HR Company Regulations, employees may take care leave and special leave.

  • Employees who use childcare receive a payment from the central government and choose their own childcare provider. Stedin does not provide on-site or other childcare.
  • Moreover, employees are legally entitled to special leave (parental leave) for children aged up to 8, for 26 times their number of weekly working hours. Stedin pays employees 70% of their statutory minimum wage during these parental leave hours.
  • If someone dear to an employee becomes sick or in the event of an unforeseen, urgent situation requiring immediate action (e.g. picking up a sick child from school), employees may be granted paid special leave (emergency leave or short-term leave of absence).
  • Employees can take long-term care leave, if needed, during which time they receive 70% of their salary.
  • In a number of cases, employees are entitled to special leave on full pay in addition to the statutory arrangements. That is provided for in the Collective Labour Agreement. This leave is available for the employee’s wedding day or that of a child or following the death of the employee’s partner, children, foster children or stepchildren, or to enable the employee to perform duties if elected or appointed to public-law bodies, for example.
  • Employees may take regular and additional childbirth leave. An employee may take one week’s leave on full pay within four weeks after the birth of a child. This may be followed by additional childbirth leave, to be taken within six months following the birth of the child. This additional childbirth leave may be taken for up to five weeks, during which time the employee receives benefit at 70% of the (maximum) daily wage from the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV).

Financial support

Assistance is available for employees with debt problems or at risk of debt problems. Stedin offers:

  • Staff welfare services: aimed at supporting employees with financial problems in regaining a grip on their financial situation. Employees can contact Stedin’s staff welfare officer directly;
  • Advance: where an employee needs funds at short notice, the manager can request an advance for them. This may help the employee get a short-term grip on financial problems. An advance can be provided at an amount of up to one month’s gross salary;
  • Preventive budget coaching: this takes the form of Stedin partially covering the costs of the intake/consultation.


The recurrent and sustained measures taken by the government demanded that constant attention be paid to caring for employees’ well-being. Employees were subject to restrictions on meeting one another and missed the social contacts. Considerable attention was paid to colleagues working from home in the form of webinars. These covered a variety of topics, including how to look after health and mental fitness when working from home. The homeworking budget was also introduced. Employees were able to spend up to €750 on home working resources, to enable them to fit out their home workplace efficiently and sustainably. Steps were taken to ensure that field staff could continue to carry out their work safely.

The impact of COVID-19 affects us all. It is particularly tragic that two of our colleagues died due to COVID-19 in the past year. Stedin was deeply saddened by this news.

Inclusive society

Contributing to an inclusive society is an element of our One Planet strategy. Stedin Group is committed to working for equal opportunities and long-term employability for all. We want our workforce to reflect today's society, feel welcome and be treated equally, regardless of personal characteristics such as age, sex, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, social background, family status, level of education or disability. Stedin prohibits and does not tolerate discrimination. To this end, Stedin enforces its code of conduct and behavioural guidelines, which lay down the standards and values that we have agreed with one another.

The code of conduct and behavioural guidelines (including non-discrimination) are also the starting point for HR processes, such as recruitment, selection, promotion, remuneration and training. These guidelines are generally accessible and can be viewed by all Stedin employees on our Intranet. If an employee is uncertain about the application of any policy, they can obtain further information from an HR professional. If an employee disagrees with a decision, they can lodge an objection. Objections can also be filed with the Security & Integrity reporting centre; for further information, see the section on Integrity.

With respect to an 'inclusive society', we focus on three areas: a diverse workforce, working together to ensure everyone's continued participation and corporate social responsibility.

Diverse and inclusive workforce

In the past year, we worked on furthering our diversity and inclusiveness policy at Stedin based on two spearheads:

  • Baseline measurement: we performed a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the degree of diversity and inclusiveness of our organisation. The outcomes of the baseline measurement show that we perform well on a number of fronts. Our employee satisfaction survey, for example, shows that employees give inclusiveness within our culture a rating of 8.1. Employees are accepted as they are in their work environment, are not afraid to be themselves and think that everyone is treated equally and with respect, regardless of their background or personal characteristics. Nevertheless, there is still room for improvement, for example, regarding the representation of various target groups within all business units and at all levels of the organisation. Based on the insights from the baseline measurement, we will frame our diversity and inclusiveness policy in 2022 and determine appropriate and ambitious targets for various aspects, such as male-female ratio, age groups, people with an occupational disability and cultural diversity. We will also set targets for the perception of inclusiveness within our culture;
  • Awareness of diversity and inclusion: making Stedin more diverse and inclusive requires behavioural change. For that reason, the focus in 2021 was on awareness within the entire organisation. We organised inspiration sessions in all MTs. In these sessions, attention was focused on new ways of looking at recruitment and selection, for example, as well as conscious and unconscious bias. A diversity week was organised in collaboration with network groups within Stedin, including the Jong Stedin young professionals network, F-EMPOWER and the ‘Rainbow Drinks Receptions’. Over six days, inspiring speakers addressed the audience on a diversity or inclusion-related topic. We also ran an internal communication campaign that each month focused attention on sustainable and inclusive employability.

Danny Benima signed the Diversity at Work Charter on behalf of Stedin Group. Diversity at Work is a project of the Social and Economic Council (SER) aimed at stimulating diversity and inclusion in the workplace. This is done by drawing lessons from the experiences of what works and what does not of all the signatories to the Charter.

Freedom of association

Stedin actively supports the right of employees to freedom of association. Our Collective Labour Agreement provides that employees may join a trade union. Employees may use their Personal Budget to pay their trade union dues. Stedin has an elected Works Council. Elections for the Works Council will be held in May 2022. Every employee with a permanent contract may stand for election.

This right may also be exercised by the following groups within Stedin:

Young people: 22% of our workforce consists of young people and adults aged below 35. We encourage the influx of people from this group by providing basic vocational learning pathway (BBL) traineeships and a programme for 16-year-olds at our In-house training school, by offering work placement posts as well as campus recruitment (fourth class of ‘Makers of the Future'). In addition, many young, inspired employees are members of 'Jong Stedin' (700 members), our young professionals network that focuses on mutual connection and building a successful organisation.

Number of work placement posts












Target: > 1% of workforce






  1. * Excl. DNWG

Male/female ratio: Only 18% of our employees are women, due to the technical nature of the work we perform. The percentage of women in each job level is as follows:

  • Strategic executives: 35.5%;
  • Tactical executives and senior professionals: 19.3%;
  • Other job categories: approx. 16%.

We are actively seeking to attract more women to technology and engineering, and to technical training programmes in particular. An all-female team comprising seven women joined the Service Team Operations in January 2021. Events are organised within Stedin Group by F-EMPOWER, a network that actively focuses on encouraging female employees. We actively seek to recruit talented female employees.

LGBTI: a group of employees has organised so-called 'rainbow drinks receptions' since 2020. These gatherings are aimed at helping to make employees feel more at ease about discussing their personal situation at work, even if it differs from that of their colleagues. This initiative will grow into a formal LGBTI network from 2022.

Limited access to the labour market

We make an extra effort to assist people who need a helping hand, so that they can find and hold on to work. Our focus on programmes for people with an occupational disability enabled us to create more sustainable jobs for this group once again in 2021. In 2021, Stedin achieved the target under the Participation Act for the number of employees with an occupational disability. The target for 2024 is to create 122 jobs under the Participation Act (that is 3% of our workforce) since it came into force in 2015. We are on course to achieve this target.

In the Service Team Operations, we train young people with an occupational disability (and a jobs agreement indication issued by the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) or the municipality) as assistant fitters. In order to work as an assistant fitter, they first need to obtain several safety certificates. We adapted the training material to present a practical focus for this group, and we gave the work supervisors a role in passing the knowledge on to them. The results are extremely encouraging, with a high success rate (77%) and a low drop-out rate. At the end of 2019, 17 people with an occupational disability worked for the Service Team Operations; by the end of 2021, this figure had grown to 52 trainees (the target was 49 trainees). By now, 12 trainees have joined a regular operational team within Stedin.

How Stedin Group implements the Participation Act*

Business unit



Number of

in 2021











Stedin Group total





  1. * Excluding the Board of Management and NetVerder

Employment and employment practice

As the environment in which we operate changes, our focus remains on retaining jobs. By using data to continuously improve our ability to look ahead, we are able to choose proactively whether we can fill a vacancy with a colleague or whether we should take on an external worker on a temporary or permanent basis.

Commitment to providing work-to-work guidance

We are providing for timely development of our organisation and people to be prepared for the future, thereby ensuring employment. We are taking steps to develop competencies that will be needed in the future. We have also further equipped the mobility office to support employees. This is useful when someone is ready to make their next career step, or may be necessary because a department is undergoing such extensive change that employees need to look for a suitable job within Stedin. As part of the four restructuring programmes that were undertaken in 2021 (Business Support Services, Market, Stronger Together and Fleet Management), the employees concerned received close support and assistance from the moment the change was announced until possible redundancy due to the downsizing of positions or a job mismatch. Throughout this entire period, we were committed to providing work-to-work guidance, inside as well as outside Stedin. To facilitate this, we developed a working method that combines carefulness and transparency. If our focus on training and internal mobility does not produce the required results, we employ the safety net under our sectoral collective labour agreement to provide colleagues with work-to-work guidance outside Stedin.

Flexible working practices

We limit the flexible use of temporary agency workers as far as possible, depending on the type of work. A conscious decision is made to use the temporary workforce in order to fulfil a need for temporary, irregular work. This situation may apply to temporary projects, to temporary support (e.g. maternity leave replacement), when specific expertise is momentarily required and to competencies that are very scarce (e.g. specialised IT staff). When using temporary contracts, we ensure that we comply with the applicable rules on their number and duration. We check our temporary workforce

for length of use, quality and costs at regular intervals. That way, we avoid unnecessary costs and loss of knowledge. This also allows us to promote the possibility of internal advancement by colleagues.

The percentage of external compared to internal employees in 2021 was 15.7% (2020: 14.2%; 2019: 15.6%). This ratio was affected by the impact of the coronavirus crisis on the workload. Click here for a full listing of ratios and key figures relating to Stedin Group’s workforce.

Collective Labour Agreement

A new Collective Labour Agreement was concluded in 2021. The short period of validity of 20 months (1 May 2021 to 31 December 2022, inclusive) makes it possible to take additional steps in the shorter term in relation to long-term employability. A sectoral analysis was carried out in the context of the Customised Arrangement for Long-term Employability & Early Retirement (Maatwerkregeling Duurzame Inzetbaarheid & Eerder Uittreden, MDIEU). Partly on this basis, the grid managers and the trade unions worked together to develop a joint vision for long-term employability. This enables the parties to the collective agreement, at the sectoral as well as company level, to take appropriate measures to further improve long-term employability. Special attention is paid in this context to the workload and workload capacity of on-call and emergency repair workers.

Works Council

In accordance with the Works Councils Act (Wet op de ondernemingsraden, WOR), Stedin Group has a Works Council. Consultation between the executive committee of the Works Council and the CEO of Stedin Group takes place on a fortnightly basis. Consultation with all the members of the Works Council takes place roughly six times a year. The Works Council, the Board of Management and the Supervisory Board additionally conduct tripartite consultations, and the chair of the Works Council takes part in the Strategic Coalition. As the Works Council comprises several different committees, it is well informed of the issues and developments in the organisation. Co-creation is promoted as far as possible, resulting in the Works Council’s involvement in various programmes and initiatives from an early stage.

Interview with Alco de Lange – chair of Stedin Group Works Council

‘Trust is increasingly important as the basis of our organising endeavours!’

How do we treat our employees, and what do changes mean for them? From digitalisation to a new performance review system: that is the key issue that continues to exercise the Works Council.

What were the key topics for the Works Council in 2021?

All the important matters within Stedin Group, from chain-based working to financial issues, are discussed by the Works Council. The issue of long-term financing was one of our main concerns in 2021. The integration with DNWG was also discussed at length during the year. Not to forget the energy transition and the evolving measures to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, of course. We also discussed the outsourcing of work. What is the best way forward? And if we outsource more and increasingly become work inspectors, how can we ensure the timely engagement of the workers concerned in that move? Digitalisation is another key topic. While we have the means to monitor many things remotely, from laptops to company cars, is that what we want? Finally, we strongly promoted structural improvement in on-call and emergency repair work provisions. Instead of an increasingly heavier workload for an ever decreasing group of colleagues, we would like to ensure a larger pool is created to spread the workload more evenly.

What do you consider highlights last year?

One of the highlights was the launch of the pilot on the role of HR mediators. Where can you turn if you encounter issues at work, such as teasing or a poor relationship with your manager, for example? The HR mediator can actively bring these issues into the open, often also helping to resolve them in that way. The Works Council set up this pilot in cooperation with HR and the confidential advisers. In November, social safety was once again the focus of attention with the award of the Golden Social Safety Shoe. This award was originally initiated by the Works Council.

Three members of DNWG’s Works Council already take part in Stedin Group’s Works Council, of whom one sits in our Executive Committee. As such, we formed an integrated Works Council well before 1 January 2022. This has brought us many benefits.

We are also pleased with the growing role played by our Networking Works Council members. They are not Works Council members, instead forming an important advisory group that provides input to the Works Council. An ‘NWC consultation’ is held every six weeks, during which we update them on recent developments and they can share questions and concerns with us. Last year, we also made good progress in terms of internal cooperation. Our Works Council Dashboard, in which useful information is recorded, is a great help in this regard.

Any low points?

The coronavirus crisis. It continued to pose severe challenges in 2021. We were naturally deeply saddened at the death of colleagues who had contracted a COVID-19 infection. Fortnightly consultations with the director of Safety provided an effective platform for responding to many tensions and concerns. In our role as Works Council, we voice the feelings in the workplace, so that they can be immediately addressed.


Backed by the Board of Management and the workforce, we previously extended our term of office by one year in the light of the integration with DNWG. Our five-year term is therefore set to expire in May 2022. We will organise a campaign highlighting the positives of Works Council engagement, leading to the creation of a new Works Council, made up of motivated colleagues, which reflects our organisation!