Schiphol workforce grows by 400, but many vacancies remain
Schiphol’s desperate search for new employees to fill staff shortages at the airport bears some fruit. The airport and the companies that operate there managed to attract about 400 more employees in the past weeks. But there are still several thousand vacancies, Schiphol spokesperson Jeanette Hamster said to RTL Nieuws.
Staff shortages, mainly in baggage handling and security, have regularly caused massively long queues at Schiphol since the start of the May vacation. Staff shortages affect almost all sectors in the Netherlands, making searching for new workers extra tricky.
At the beginning of June, Schiphol held a job fair. Approximately 900 interested parties showed up, and about 200 have already been hired for a job as a cleaner, ground staff, security guard, shop assistant, or baggage handler, Hamster said. Companies also managed to hire, on balance, 200 more employees through other avenues.
The new recruits result in about 200 extra security workers at Schiphol. Some are still in training, but the airport expects them all to be working from August 1.
Despite these new additions to the Schiphol workforce, there are still many open vacancies at the airport. Hamster could not say precisely how many because the vacancies are spread over the ten companies that work at the airport. “If you look at the total number of employees at Schiphol before the coronavirus and now, you are still talking about a difference of several thousand,” said Hamster. “Per profession, it’s 100 here, 100 there.”
Due to the staff shortages and resulting chaos, Schiphol cut its capacity by around 13,500 passengers per day for the entire month of July. The airport also cut capacity a bit in the first week of August but expects the situation to level out after that.
According to trade union FNV, employees at the airport are increasingly concerned about their workload and even the safety of staff and passengers. The union expects that Schiphol will have to cancel even more flights if things don’t change soon.