Corona absenteeism is sand in the engine of companies: ‘It is muddling on’

The infection rates are currently sky-high. The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment registered 201,536 positive tests last week. That is 77 percent more than last week, when there were 113,554.

Not all work can be done from home

Companies are starting to notice the dropout as a result, such as the Utrecht Collewijn Group. The salvage company employs about 60 people.

“Our planning department, the engine of the company, is almost completely at home”, director Sjaak Collewijn told RTL Z. “There should not be one more failure, because then we have a problem. The planning controls our drivers and not all that. work can be done from home.”

And it is not only the infected employees themselves that cause staff loss, as newly announced Health Minister Ernst Kuipers recently explained in the Beau talk show.

“Everyone has one or two roommates. As a result, about 750,000 people are now in quarantine.” Some of these isolated people cannot work because their profession requires them to be present on the shop floor.

muddling in

In combination with the tightened quarantine rules, this Collewijn’s company does not help. “The work pressure is high and the difficult thing is: even those who have tested positive but feel great are not allowed to work in the office. It is a matter of muddling through.”

For two years now, Collewijn and his colleagues have been trying to keep corona out of the company with all kinds of measures “and now we have not succeeded”. The situation is exhausting, he sighs. “Every time you ask more of the staff who can work. And the understanding among customers is also less.”

Installers and plumbers also increasingly have to postpone appointments because employees are in quarantine or are themselves infected with the corona virus, industry association Techniek Nederland reported earlier.

‘The pressure on the planning is increasing’

The installation sector has been struggling with a shortage of suitable workers for some time and in many cases there is also a delay in the delivery of materials. In some cases, customers have to wait months for an appointment. Due to the omikron variant, the pressure on the planning is even greater and agreements sometimes have to be postponed, says a spokesperson for Techniek Nederland.

Supermarket umbrella organization CBL has announced that the sector has certainly noticed an increase in absenteeism due to illness. “It creates challenges in getting the schedules completed, especially in view of the tightened quarantine rules.”

No acute shortage

At the same time, there are also companies and sectors in which the increasing number of positive corona tests does not (yet) cause problems. Employment agencies Young Capital and Randstad recognize the national picture that absenteeism is increasing, but they do not have an acute shortage of temporary workers as yet.

“We have gained quite a bit of experience with the virus over the past two years,” said Young Capital spokesman Marko van Tol. “We are now prepared to quickly relocate people if there is less work in one sector and more demand in another. We are no longer surprised by that.”

Ambulance care ‘is under pressure’, says spokesperson Nadiene Toby of Ambulancezorg Nederland. “But thanks to the enormous commitment and flexibility of our control room operators and ambulance professionals, we are still able to fill the rosters.”

The availability of ambulance personnel is a major point of attention throughout the corona crisis, she says. “Again with a view to the highly contagious omikron variant.”

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