- Staff members
In 2018 the number of staff members at KWR increased from 165 to 178: 31 new people joined us, either to occupy new positions or to replace departing or retiring members. ‘In the current labour market, it is already quite an accomplishment to have filled all our vacancies,’ says Nienke van der Beek, Senior Human Resources Advisor. ‘KWR is a scientific institute, which means that our people are our capital. To attract good people, we place carefully-targeted advertisements, but we mostly draw on our extensive network. Our staff are closely connected with the water sector and also with the scientific community. As a result, many new people apply to join us upon the advice of KWR colleagues. Quality attracts quality.’
Fast and flexible application procedure
More than thirty application procedures in 2018: that was a considerable challenge for the team leaders and the HR team. ‘It required more than one hundred job interviews,’ says Van der Beek. ‘HR’s focus was on a fast and flexible flow. You want to be able to make an appropriate offer to the right candidate as quickly as possible: that calls for thorough preparation and a flexible attitude. For example, you have to be able to anticipate the needs and questions of international candidates.’
At present, 27 of KWR’s 178 staff members come from abroad. ‘The practice of science is an international activity par excellence, and KWR aspires to achieving a solid position in the global market,’ emphasises Van der Beek. ‘We therefore also want to have the best people from all over the world. This makes our work at KWR both varied and exciting. Moreover we have many young people in-house: we are not a university, but we are a training institute. Last year, besides a number of doctoral candidates, we had 34 trainees, both Dutch and international.’
Next year KWR wants to grow further: by attracting new people and by helping current staff members to further develop their competences. ‘We have many enthusiastic people here and KWR likes to offer ample room for own initiatives,’ says Van der Beek. ‘For instance, last year several young staff members even formed an Early Career team. They organised meetings for staff members at the start of their careers, to share knowledge and experiences. We like that at KWR: proactive people who take the initiative themselves, both in their work for KWR and in developing their career paths.’
See our organizational structure and the details of our staff.