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Mobilizing Front-Line Personnel for Vaccination Sites

USG People the Netherlands, a staffing agency operated by Recruit Group in the Netherlands, provided staffing for the COVID-19 vaccination sites operated by the Dutch Public Health Service (GGD). In the midst of the ongoing spread of the disease, USG People the Netherlands was able to rapidly dispatch more than 4,000 staffers to support PCR testing, contact tracing, and vaccine administration. Here is the story of the project including comments from Jantine Pater, who is in charge of medical and nursing services at USG People the Netherlands, and Cindy Sonnemans, who is in charge of government-related services.

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How USG People the Netherlands staffed COVID-19 vaccination sites nationwide

Like all staffing agencies, USG People's mission is to help employers hire qualified candidates and help motivated job seekers find employment that fits their skills. When the COVID-19 pandemic began to take a toll on the economy, staffing agencies from all over the Netherlands partnered with local GGD offices to dispatch personnel to PCR test sites and contact tracing services.

The GGDs' needs quickly grew from 500 people to 1,800, and when the Dutch government began distributing vaccinations in January 2021, the national GGD and its clients sent out additional requests for support. USG People quickly scaled operations and began to dispatch personnel nationwide to staff vaccination sites, as well. 

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Dirve through PCR test site in the Netherlands

Vaccinations can only be administered by certified medical professionals, so USG People needed to find qualified candidates and efficiently dispatch them. However, because there are various types of COVID-19 vaccinations, USG People also needed to train the vaccine administrators on the different preparations and arrangements each kind requires.

"In this project, we deal with all the challenges concerning recruitment, planning, and administration, ensuring the GGD can focus fully on its main task. If necessary, we provide the right training for employees through our dedicated training centre," said Jantine.

In addition to training those with medical experience, USG People needed to recruit and dispatch supervisors to manage each vaccination site. To meet the needs of vaccination sites across the country, USG People set up an internal database with information on the number of outsourced medical practitioners per site, how many staff are qualified or require additional training, who is ready to be dispatched, and where they are needed. "This database allows us to quickly meet and manage our client's needs," said Jantine.

"USG People was originally designed for quick decision making at the field level, but it was a big challenge to set up a number program and system to help with vaccination in such a short amount of time. The unprecedented scale also posed a new challenge for us - the situation could change within an hour or two," said Cindy.

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USG People's team for GGD project

Working as one to overcome social challenges

"The project receives many applications from job seekers every day. Some of them are people from the restaurant and travel industries who have lost their jobs due to the spread of COVID-19. We will do our best to support those who are willing to use their expertise, get retrained, and help society in the fight against the virus," said Jantine.

Today, a total of 4,000 staff members work through USG People at about half of the 26 GGD sites nationwide. The scale of the dispatches continues to grow, but USG People remains committed to providing detailed support to staff in the field. USG People is preparing for increased demand by training 1,000 people each week to staff PCR test sites and administer vaccines.

"We started the project with the sole purpose of helping the Netherlands. It was an adrenaline-pumping experience to work on something so meaningful for our country and for the Dutch people, and I will never forget it" said Cindy.

Links an external site

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Jantine Pater

Worked at USG People since 2002. In May 2020, she became the Director of Start People's Medi Interim, a subsidiary of USG People the Netherlands specializing in staffing for the health and care sector

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Cindy Sonnemans

In her 23rd year with USG People, she is the Director of Government Services at Unique, a subsidiary of USG People, responsible for government sector services such as City Hall, the Workers' Insurance Corporation, and the national health department (GGD).

Feb 24, 2021

This article is based on information available at the time of publication.