TalentIT Twente stops

Enschede, December 2023


TalentIT Twente stops


TalentIT Twente was founded to improve the availability of IT personnel in Twente. Many students (WO and HBO) left Twente after graduating, partly because they were unaware of the great opportunities and companies in Twente.


Since 2018, TalentIT has been committed to introducing students to companies in Twente as future employees during their studies. More than 55 companies were involved and more than 165 matches were made. Initially, mainly Dutch speaking student were involved in TalentIT. This has increasingly shifted and currently mainly foreign students participate in TalentIT.

The participating companies indicate that: 

  • Larger companies experience fewer problems finding IT personnel.
  • There is also a great need for medior and senior IT personnel, in addition to junior employees.
  • Smaller companies benefit greatly from TalentIT. They don’t have the time and/or staff available to look for suitable employees or students.


TalentIT has been partly funded by grants from the province of Overijssel and Twente Board (formerly Region Twente). In addition to an annual fee, companies paid a limited amount per match. Per mid-2023, the grants have ended. We are proud and grateful for the contribution we have made in the IT landscape of Twente, by helping students find internships or jobs. However, in the past year we have seen that our organization is too small to properly tackle today’s problems. The income is too limited and above all, too unpredictable. This means that the activities we have offered so far, will unfortunately have to stop.


At the same time, we, the board of TalentIT Twente, conclude that there’s more needed to structurally improve the shortage of IT personnel in Twente, than matchmaking. Besides that: a greater scale of coordinated activities is needed to continue in a financially responsible manner. 


In order to continue the goals of TalentIT Twente, we have focused on merging together with Talent Center Twente (TCT). TCT is a new initiative in which all the Talent organisations of Twente are addressed more broadly. This way, the knowledge and experience of TalentIT is retained and we help facilitate a quick start of TCT. We underline the need for an initiative like TCT: an organization that carries out the tactical/ operational coordination of several, if not all, talent-related themes in this region. Many initiatives in Twente are often carried out in isolation, and as result we miss opportunities for synergy between those initiatives. 


It is still unclear when Talent Center Twente will start and in what form the activities of TalentIT Twente (connecting students and companies) will be resumed under this new label. 


Given the needs of companies and the increasing number of vacancies (177% itn the 2nd quarter of 2023, compared to the 1st quarter of 2020( source: Twentse Arbeidsmarktmonitor)), we consider it very disadvantageous that we have to stop our activities, even if temporarily. In the coming years, the number of IT-related vacancies will continue to increase, while IT will play an increasingly more important role in businesses. SME’s, an important part of the economy in our region, will miss opportunities if we cannot fill these vacancies. At the same time, SMEs must also tackle this themselves: train juniors to become meteors and set up the organization to utilize international talents. 


We strive to ensure that TCT can provide SMEs in Twente with the right and sustainable support.



Digital Workplace Twente

Digital Workplace Twente is a place where entrepreneurs, students, teachers and experts help each other with digitisation. Entrepreneurs will benefit from practical support and specific advice. Young professionals provide them with advice on, for example: online sales & marketing, data and (office) automation. By means of a personal interview, we bring the digitisation issue into focus, so that a clear starting point is created for the students.

What questions can Digital Workplace Twente (DWT) help you with? Basically, we offer support in three areas: online sales & marketing, data and (office) automation. We help small to medium enterprises with issues such as: online findability, the translation of an online marketing strategy, marketing automation, Internet of Things and Big Data. DWT provides companies with new opportunities and researches the need for digitisation.

What steps do we take? We have a personal meeting, which enables us to determine the current state of digitisation. This is foundation for the issue. After the interview, DWT will link one or more students to your organisation, who will work under the supervision of lecturers and the experts in the DWT team. Together, they provide specific advice for the company. The project is supervised by lecturers and students from the ROC, Saxion and University of Twente.



NDIX vs. Jarno Witjes: Taking in Students is not a difficult choice.

Retaining IT talent in Twente is a subject that is regularly discussed. People and companies often speak about taking in students, but it turns out to be more difficult during the quarantine period. Now the question remains as how to best to deal with this. In this article, we look at NDIX, a business to business connectivity service provider, works with a project team of students.

“We started off in the region of the North-East Netherlands, but these days we provide companies with connectivity internationally. With a country-wide network in both the Netherlands as well as Germany, we serve 3500+ customers in the field of connectivity. We do this from our “headquarters” in Enschede with a team of 30 people by now. This growth lead to us having to reevaluate how we serve our customers and partners continually. We noticed that we could provide our customers with information much more easily during the order process, because we currently do this primarily via email and personal contact.” says Operations Manager, Harry Loof. NDIX is building a portal for customers and partners with the help of a team of students, of which Jarno is a part.

“Choosing to hire students and have them work on the portal was not a difficult choice to make.”

“With this team of students we are building a portal in which our existing customers & partners can find all their information. In this system they can, for example: view their bandwidth usage, collect financial data, or order a new Internet service.” says Harry. Choosing to hire students and have them work on the portal was not a difficult choice to make for NDIX. “The team of students has been working for just over a month now and they really shine. They are flexible, work well together and are on the same level.”

“Within software development, we work with the agile methodology. With each step, we develop something new in the code that we learn from, which makes the next step easier. This way we build faster during the entire process. When the students stay with the company for longer and have more background information, they will be able to quickly make the link to our existing applications. In this way, they learn to adapt quickly and understand the process better.

“We hope that, aside from stimulation by the students and innovations, we get to retain dedicated programmers who will ultimately be responsible for the portal and its design. They will be surrounded by a team of flexible students who will work together on the code to build the application. It is a conscious choice that we made, so that we can also scale up as soon as there are new projects.” Harry says.

“The work I do is challenging and interesting.”

We also asked Jarno about his part-time job at NDIX: “I started at NDIX since the spring and I work (from home) as part of a team that is building the NDIX portal, for at partners and customers. We have a meeting every Friday morning via Teams. During these meetings we discuss what happened last week, what we will do next week and the questions/problems we have.”

“The work I do is challenging and interesting, just like the internship I did at NDIX. The difference now compared to my internship is that I work in a team. That’s a fun experience and an addition to work. However, I personally don’t like working from home. I spend all day at my computer, I have little contact with other colleagues and I miss the coffee talk. I also miss hearing from my colleagues at the NOC. They are working around the clock to keep the NDIX network up and running. I learn a lot about the company itself, but also about internet technology. I regularly have questions about that. Also, I can not quickly receive feedback or advice, despite the fact that I am now in a team with other programmers. It is of course possible with Teams, but I prefer to walk to their desk. That is faster than sending a chat.”

“It is not all negative. What I really like about working from home is that you can decide where you work. When the weather is nice, I will work outside in the backyard which is very nice. I can also use my own equipment, which is an advantage anyway. I am eager to work in office again and see my colleagues. If the option is available, even if it’s for a day or two, I’d love to go!”

– Jarno Witjes, Software Engineer

Do you want to help retain IT talent? Click here or contact us through e-mail: info@talentittwente.nl.