NS expects passenger numbers to return to the level of last year only after 2024 and will therefore adjust the size of the company to the new situation. Some 2,300 jobs are expected to be lost in the coming years, according to the railway company, forced layoffs are not an issue.
NS announced this on Monday. The railway company previously announced that revenues will be 4.7 billion euros lower in the next five years as a result of the corona crisis. Until 2025, costs will have to decrease by 1.4 billion euros.
“This is necessary to keep the train ticket affordable in the future and to continue to make necessary investments for the traveler,” the company said. NS has had “exploratory talks” with the unions and the works council about how the package of measures is being implemented.
Staff have also been informed of the plans. NS assumes that fewer people will take the train in the near future. “Due to different travel behavior and economic contraction.” Measures are inevitable in order to set up the company accordingly and to restore its financial health.
Changing function is an option
“NS will become a smaller company in the coming years,” says NS. The aim is that all people with a permanent contract keep their jobs. That is why flexible employability, such as changing positions, is being considered. “But also, for example, on terms of employment and pension.”
Around 2,500 NS employees will retire in the period up to 2025. That is a higher number than the number of jobs that will be cut. “We cannot exchange these functions one-on-one, because there are differences between the functions that will be released and the functions will be reduced.”
Board also hands in salary
The top of the company is also contributing to the cutbacks by surrendering 10 percent of the fixed salary until the end of next year. From Wednesday, people are allowed to travel by train again, even if this is not necessary.
As a result, NS expects more travelers again. “At the same time, the past three months have had a huge impact and it is expected that it will take years before we have the passenger numbers of the top year 2019 again.”