New collective labour agreement: Extra 4.7 percent despite ‘financially uncertain times’

The umbrella organisation Universities of the Netherlands (UNL) and the unions have agreed on a new collective labour agreement: a salary increase of 4.7 percent in two steps and agreements on social safety and workload.

The salary increase is more than the initial 4.3 percent requested by the unions and will be implemented in two steps: 3.7 percent from September 1 and an additional 1 percent at the start of the new year.

Everyone will also receive a one-time payment of 300 euros gross (for full-time employment) on September 1.


‘Due to the announced budget cuts by the new government, universities are facing financially uncertain times’, says UNL delegation leader Margot van der Starre. Nonetheless, UNL calls the salary increase ‘responsible’.

Besides the salary increase, agreements have been made regarding social safety and workload. For instance, it has been agreed that each university will establish at least one central reporting point for undesirable behaviour.

‘The cultural problem at universities is persistent; we won’t solve it overnight. But these agreements are helpful, although we would have preferred one national central reporting point’, says Natasja Heuwer of the CNV union.


To reduce workload, more attention will be paid to scheduling breaks. Agreements have also been made about the workload of lecturers. Additionally, there will be efforts to address the large number of unused leave hours, for example through leave savings.


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