Don’t pass on passing on knowledge!


Over the past couple of months I have been travelling around the country presenting awards to the winners of the regional Apprentice of the Year competition.

I was thrilled to see that many of the apprentices were working for builders who had also participated in the competition. This goes to show that our new generation of builders appreciate the importance of handing down those same skills that they themselves learned as apprentices.

This is crucial as the upturn in the building industry, particularly in Christchurch and Auckland, means there will be a shortage of apprentices.

According to BCITO chief executive Ruma Karaitiana there will be a shortfall of 3000 apprentices required to meet the demand of 12,000 extra qualified builders in three years’ time.

I would therefore encourage builders to take advantage of the incentive grant from the Government, which gives $2000 each to employer and apprentice, and which expires at the end of this year.

I firmly believe that each of us who has gone through a building apprenticeship should pass on that knowledge — both the technical skills and work ethics — to secure the next generation of builders.

Registered Master Builders now offers a range of memberships designed to support builders and other building professionals throughout their career.

We want our members to be a part of our organisation from apprenticeship/studentship, potentially into business and to retirement, and we have the membership categories to cater for this.

In the early stages of a career, these categories are:

The RMBA has also created the Trades Business Academy (TBA), offering a tailor­-made National Certificate in Business (Small Business) through the Open Polytechnic.

Each of the three modules is made up of four courses. They are:

Getting Better Work

Getting Work Done Better

Getting to the Next Level 

TBA is recognised by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority and is Level 4. There is a significant discount for RMB members, with the full programme costing $1800 (normally it would cost around $5000).

For more information about the Trades Business Academy, contact the RMBA on 0800 762 328, or email

I will be back on the road in the next month and look forward to meeting many more of our members and potential members.

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