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Stakeholder dialogue diagram

The table below presents an overview of the wide range of dialogues between NS and its stakeholders in the Netherlands. The numbers refer to the themes from the material relevance matrix.


Nature of dialogue

Content of dialogue


Effects of the dialogue on NS policy

EU institutions, CER, UIC, ERA

Informational, creation and to determine standpoints  

2, 5, 6, 9
Promoting sustainable mobility in Europe, stimulating international rail traffic (for distances of up to 700 km), investment and co-investment, stimulating innovation, facilitating passenger first-to-last-mile

Strengthening position of (international) passengers


Optimising cooperation between European railway companies and institutions


Sustainable investments in the railway sector that contribute to climate objectives by encouraging the modal shift from air to rail


NS’s reputation as a sustainable partner  

National (NL)

Nature of dialogue

Content of dialogue


Effects of the dialogue on NS policy

Customers (consumers and businesses)
N.B. Some customer groups are represented by interest groups. See also LOCOV

Informational, creation, monitoring

2, 3, 7, 11


Improved services, including:


Timetable, public transport card (OV-chipkaart), customer satisfaction, handling complaints and inquiries, consumer portfolio, corporate portfolio, collaboration with bus, tram and metro companies, accessibility

Introduction of Treinwijzer: by registering their journey, travellers gain insight into train congestion


NS Flex goes live: Over 455,000 customers have discovered the benefits of our 'travel now, pay later' option. To be purchased online or at NS counters. As of 1 September, the Traject Vrij season ticket is also available in an NS Flex variant.


Following consultation with Eye Association Netherlands (Oogvereniging), passengers with a visual handicap can now also report nuisance in the train via an app or SMS text messaging This service was extended to the stations this year.


As part of the upgrade of the ticket machines, a first step was taken in cooperation with the Eye Association Netherlands to introduce audio feedback.   


Development of the NS Platform Indicator app in collaboration with Eye Association Netherlands enabling travellers who cannot read the signs above the platforms or have difficulty reading this, can access this information with the app.


Spread of rush hours by adjusting lecture times in various regions


Improve communication between people with hearing impairments and NS Customer Service. A questionnaire has been distributed to the target group that was prepared together with the interest groups representing people with hearing impairments and the the association for the elderly. Measures will be taken in 2021 based on the results.


Improve customer communication for and by people with disabilities. Together with a wide range of interest groups representing people with disabilities, the accessibility pages on have been updated and videos have been made explaining the possibilities of travelling with a disability during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Increase in the number of stations where assistance is offered (+25 stations)


Scooter, bicycle, train and car in NS Lab app: The addition of the new means of transport to the NS Lab app (the NS experimental app) involves a trial that will last until the middle of next year. With this trial, NS aims to make it easier for travellers to get from door to door with the transport of their choice.


The Youth 1-day pass will be available as of 1 September.


Gates closed at several stations, including The Hague Centraal and Goes.

Ministry of Finance

Intensive involvement

1, 12, 14, 16


Performance of NS, remuneration, strategy, appointments, major investments, benchmark return from State participations, financial situation, CSR

Determining financial policy, appointment of new CEO and Executive Board remuneration


Setting benchmark return 2020


Transparent reporting as per GRI


Progress of GRC measures and savings through efficiency measures


New 2020-2025 strategy and consultation in the adoption of new strategy by Supervisory Board


Assess risk profile of foreign operations, partly in the context of COVID-19


Impact of COVID-19 on NS financial performance/decision regarding 2019 dividend payment in the context of Availability Payment


Preparation of monitoring CSR targets

Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management

Intensive involvement

1, 2, 4, 6, 11, 14



Performance of NS, (management) main rail network franchise, reliability, transport capacity, cooperation, annual cycle, door-to-door journey, HSL South train services, cross-border transport, personal safety and railway safety, public transport card (OV-chipkaart), accessibility, timetable, transparency, sustainability

Transportation Plan 2021, 2020 semi-annual and annual report

Timetable 2021, 2022, and new product steps (including ICNG)

Agreements on second half of franchise period 2020-2025

International train services: introduction of direct Eurostar and night train to Vienna

Outline of vision of the future of public transport

Steps towards new payment methods (also in NOVB context)

COVID-19 and KPIs/compliance with franchise obligations, availability payment/public transport protocol

Establish supporting accessibility measures 2021-2022 following consultation with interest groups representing people with disabilities.

Waste reduction and separation at stations.

NS is taking ongoing initiatives towards the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management and VNO-NCW (Confederation of Netherlands Industry and Employers) to shape follow-up agreements on energy efficiency (successor to the long-term energy efficiency agreement 3: MJA3).

National political bodies

Informational, intensive involvement

1, 4, 5, 6, 8 11, 13, 15




COVID-19, NS strategy, operational performance, sustainability, circular economy, new rolling stock, ERTMS, accessibility, main rail network franchise including HSL, international train connections, public transport card (OV-chipkaart)/access gates, diversity policy, personal/railway safety, timetable, coping with winter and seasonal conditions, service at stations, suicide prevention

Spread agreements with educational institutions


Connections to and from regions, including faster journeys between the northern part of the Netherlands and the Randstad conurbation


Investigation into speeding up and extending international, cross-border connections


Accessible travel by train


Waste reduction and separation at stations.


Package of measures for personal safety

Supervisory authorities – ACM, IL&T, Dutch Data Protection Authority

Involvement, consultation (‘guidance’) and information

4, 7, 10, 11, 14.

Improved implementation and service

Responding to regular and ad hoc requests for information.
Discussing topical subjects such as achieving a more professional safety culture, market issues, acceptance of rolling stock, safety incidents, incident investigations, clarification of new regulatory requirements, and providing input for market studies and consultations.

Promoting compliance


Position statements


Increasing safety on the track, both for NS and throughout the sector


Intensive involvement

1, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11




Long-Term Rail Agenda, timetable development, performance of the rail system, availability of infrastructure, safety, accessibility, station development, ERTMS, sustainability

Cooperation on seasonal measures


Cooperation on safety and safety policy


Cooperation on sustainable business practice and accessibility


Cooperation with regard to stations (management, maintenance, development and new construction)


Better alignment between infrastructure and the timetable [via the MLT Steering Group]


Cooperation with regard to sustainable development and placing it on the political agenda

LOCOV (National Public Transport Users' Forum)

Intensive involvement

1, 2, 3, 5, 11.




NS timetable, fares, travel information, OV-chipkaart, service delivered to passengers, Transport Plan, customer satisfaction, punctuality, new rolling stock, withdrawals from service, accessibility, international connections, HSL services, NS strategy.

Better train product by incorporating suggestions from consumer organisations (such as timetable suggestions, new rolling stock, pricing policy, accessibility, communication, etc.).


Adoption of various recommendations related to season ticket update (decision in 2019, implementation in 2020)


Adoption of various recommendations related to the conditions for refunds in the event of delays (decision in 2019, implementation in 2020)


No increase in minimum rate as of 1-1-2020 and no phasing out of RAILPLUS in 2020 as a result of advice from consumer organisations.


No differences between NS Flex and Pre-Paid Travel in first-class fares, following advice by consumer organisations (decision of October 2018, implemented in 2019).

Interest groups, NGOs, Anders Reizen (employers’ coalition)  

Involvement, consulting and information

4, 5, 6, 9, 11, 13



Promote sustainable mobility (via Anders Reizen), Social policy, Promote accessible train travel for people with disabilities

NS challenged its updated sustainable enterprise strategy (NS onderneemt duurzaam) in a stakeholder dialogue with directors of key NGOs resulting in actionable feedback, appreciation for the sustainable direction of NS and strengthening of the relationship between key green stakeholders and NS.

NS makes its own mobility policy more sustainable. In 2020, the NS internal flight policy has been amended: business trips under 700 kilometres are now always made by train.

NS contributes to the realisation of the measures regarding sustainable passenger mobility from the Climate Agreement.


In various invitations to tender, NS has included SROI obligations for suppliers to engage people who are at a distance the labour market.


During the COVID-19 pandemic, the CEO of NS engages with everyone and the Minister of Disability Affairs and states that NS will maintain the inclusive agenda even in difficult times. Interest groups for people with disabilities regard NS as a reliable and inclusive partner.

Trade unions

Intensive involvement

4, 7, 13

Implementation of the 2017-2020 collective labour agreements and resulting HR policy


Collective labour agreement, personal safety, COVID-19, perspectives for action, employment (pact), pension plan, social plan, personal and social consequences of organisational changes, signs suggesting satisfaction or dissatisfaction among staff, employees’ interests, long-term NS strategy

Preparation of new collective labour agreement


Implementation of the Social Plan


Implementation of the pension plan


Implementation and evaluation of a package of measures for personal safety and the implementation decree

Suppliers, subcontractors

Consulting and making acquaintance, negotiating conditions, making contractual agreements, intensifying collaboration, innovation and development

6, 9, 12, 14, 15, 16

Focus on cost reduction for NS due to its financial situation


Sustainable business practice, Innovation, Financial performance, Integrity and Compliance, Responsible procurement, Risk management

Focus on continuity risk of suppliers due to COVID 19 impact


Focus on reliability and availability of products and services for business-critical processes


Encouraging cooperation and innovation with partners (supplier management)


Achievement of CSR objectives (by making entire supply chain more sustainable)


Introduction of new products and services


Informational, intensive involvement

All NS-related subjects

Position statements  


Improving NS image in line with operational performance

Regional authorities and official representatives of the provinces, metropolitan regions and municipalities, other carriers and consumer organisations

Informational, negotiations, contractual agreements, crisis management, collaboration, exploring and investigating

1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 11, 17

New, more modern stations and redevelopment of station surroundings

Quality of train services, crowded trains, punctuality, network development, redevelopment of existing stations, public transport and railway discussion platforms, advisory body on the Multi-annual Programme for Infrastructure Space and Transport for the northwest Netherlands (BO MIRT NWNL), vision of the future of public transport and the public transport development agenda, national environmental strategy, timetable, cross-border transport, personal/railway safety, transport sector-wide agreements, regional franchises, noise nuisance near the railways, hub development

Tailored regional solutions for replacement bus service when train services are interrupted

Regional customisation for timetable contracts, e.g. Hilversum Utrecht-Amsterdam night train

Joint public transport development agendas for attractive stations and better accessibility from door to door

Customisation in the main rail network timetable and improved connections to regional public transport

Various bicycle storage facilities free of charge for the first 24 hours, extension of P+R sites

Collaborating on regional tasks and ambitions for the future of public transport

Door-to-door journey (incl. MaaS projects)

Optimising the Noord-Holland North timetable

Public transport bicycle (OV Fiets) pop-up during major interruption of service at Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA in cooperation with Amsterdam Bereikbaar

ZWASH – Metro package for west side of Amsterdam to make room on the rail network for the growth and urbanisation challenge there

Joint – Regional carriers, municipality and Police – safety campaign at Arnhem Centraal station;

Design new timetable – together with partners in the region – to extend the Leeuwarden-Meppel Sprinter train to Zwolle in 2021;

Quick scan ProRail-NS for acceleration measures in the northern Netherlands – Randstad in the medium term, results discussed with the OV- en Spoortafel Noord-Nederland group

Accelerate and improve the Zeeland timetable

IC Randstad-Aachen

Internal: central and local works councils, vocational training


See Attractive and inclusive employer

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