Education & Employment

Education & Employment

The data center industry is a relatively new employer on the labor market, that grows rapidly. To illustrate: the Dutch data center hub has seen an annual growth of 18.5% over the last 8 years Due to this growth, the industry is in need for technical and digital talent. To facilitate further growth of the digital industry, and to safeguard our position as Digital Gateway to Europe, we must take action right now. 

As of now, the Dutch education system does not provide sufficient digitally and technically savvy candidates to meet the demands of the data center industry as there are no suitable curricula on any level. UWV reported an enormous amount of unfilled vacancies in Q4 of 2017. Estimations come down to 13.300 for IT-related jobs and 60.800 for technical jobs, and this shortage is increasing every day. 

Choosing for a career in the data center industry means a career with great prospects and plenty of learning and development opportunities. To enable further grow of the data center industry and therefore the digital economy of the Netherlands, DDA actively collaborates with industry, educational organisations and governments to enthuse, inform, educate and retrain technical and digital talent.

Our positions

There is an increasing shortage of software developers, cloud engineers, electrical engineers and cooling engineers. To facilitate further growth of our digital economy, more attention must be paid to digital and technical subjects and skills in education. Both in primary, secondary education and tertiary education, in particular MBO and HBO. By doing so, not only do we bridge the gap in the labor market, we also prepare young people for the new professions of tomorrow. Indeed, programming and configuring will be necessary skills in the future, also for those who do not have a technical profession. Therefore, DDA urges that these skills are given a prominent place in the curriculum of all educational levels. This is the only way to meet the demands of the rapidly changing the labor market. Hereby, a flexible approach is crucial; educational institutions must be able to adjust existing curricula more easily to respond to changing needs

There is an enormous gap when it comes to the supply and demand of IT trained people. Education does not provide sufficient qualified staff. Industry, governments and educational institutions must work together to promote the flow of talent to the digital sector. The gap can be bridged by organizing guest lectures and data center tours and by providing information. Furthermore, we can make progress by starting work-to-learn trajectories, offering internships, promoting technical professions within the data center industry and by developing specialist programs.

Working in the data center industry offers an outlook on a golden future . The internet is indispensable and will only gain more importance in the future. As data centers are the walls of the internet, future growth of the sector is guaranteed. We must actively enthuse digital and technical talent for a profession in the data center industry, and special attention must be paid to female talent as the proportion of women in the technical professions is extremely low. A missed opportunity, according to DDA. Indeed, diversity in the workplace leads to innovation, creativity and productivity. That is why we need to disarm stereotypes and change the status quo. By introducing young girls in an early stage to technical subjects, by inspiring them through role models, and by educating young women on the career opportunities in the digital industry.

There is a huge labor shortage in the digital and technical professions. We must take immediate action. Many companies resolve the problem by hiring well-trained staff from abroad. To support them in this, it is necessary to ensure that free movement within the European Union remains as freely as possible. For example, by liberating the rules on the free movement of skilled workers as much as possible. In addition, we must continue to position ourselves as “Digital Gateway to Europe”, so that it becomes attractive for digital and technical talent to get started in the Netherlands.


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