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Y L R E T R A U Q

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CONTENTS

FEATURES 12 APPRENTICES RACE TO THE FINISH

Finalists in the Great Apprentice Race speed around the track in their custom go-karts.

16 BUILDING BIG WITH MILITARY PRECISION

Auckland building company Nuline succeeds at high-efficiency volume building.

21 PRACTITIONERS SCHEME – 10 YEARS ON

Industry experts weigh in on the LBP Scheme’s effectiveness.

26 MORE PEOPLE PER HOUSEHOLD: WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR CONSTRUCTION TRENDS?

Infometrics looks at the effect of changes to household occupancy.

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12

REGULARS

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8 WE’RE FROM HERE

A flyover of Mitre 10 Trade news from around the country.

11 MITRE 10 TRADE HUB: EASIER, FASTER, BETTER

Making your online experience even more efficient.

19 NEW BATHROOM FOR MIRO

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Mitre 10 and NMIT work together to give a Nelson boy and his family a more accessible home.

30 TALKING ABOUT FRAME AND TRUSS

Insider tips for nailing the frame and truss process.

33 KEEP THE LIFEBLOOD OF YOUR BUSINESS PUMPING

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The Trades Coach shares strategies to help keep your business cashflow positive.

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QUARTER UPFRONT

Derek Heard General Manager Trade

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S P R I N G 2 017

THIS YEAR HAS raced by, and we’re already heading into spring. Our customers will certainly be welcoming an improvement in the weather after battling through some pretty harsh and wet winter conditions. Around the country, construction is still running at full speed. Our Trade teams have reported no let up in orders, and we’ve had a noticeable increase in the orders coming through our Trade Hub portal – making the process faster and easier for our customers on the go. We love seeing young building companies grow, and this issue features a regular customer who is leading the way in efficient volume building. Check out page 16 to see how Nick Allan and his team at Nuline are tackling big building challenges with speed and precision. On page 21 MBIE, New Zealand Certified Builders, and Registered Master Builders have all pitched in to talk to us about the Licensed Building Practitioners Scheme, which was introduced to the industry in 2007. It’s a good insight into where the Scheme is currently at and where it could be headed. Rounding out this issue are some great articles about managing your business cashflow (page 33), staying safe around silica dust (page 29), nailing your frame and truss orders (page 30), and how increasing household occupancy rates could affect construction trends around the country (page 26). As always, we love hearing your feedback. So we’ve taken the opportunity to answer some of the questions you’ve been asking through the Trade Hub portal on page 11. We hope they help – keep them coming!

Y QUARTERL

LBP SCHEME A DECADE ON TECH GUIDE FRAME AND TRUSS

GO BIG OR GO HOME

NULINE’S VOLUME BUILDS

mitre10.co.nz/trade

facebook.com/Mitre10Trade

Planning and scheduling are behind Nuline’s fast and efficient builds. Read more on page 16.

Mitre 10 Trade Quarterly is published four times a year in association with Mitre 10. Managing Editor Adele Thurlow Art Director Marc Backwell Sub-Editor Katherine Granich Contributors Andy Burrows BCITO BSM Infometrics MBIE NZCB RMBA Worksafe Print and distribution PMP Limited

PLUS $45,000 in other awesome prizes to be won! See page 35

Editorial enquiries Chocolate Fish Media adele@chocolatefishmedia.co.nz Advertising enquiries marketingsupport@mitre10.co.nz

In between issues of Trade Quarterly, catch up on the latest Mitre 10 Trade and industry info by visiting the Mitre 10 Trade Blog – go to mitre10.co.nz/trade and click on the “News” tab to access the blog. THIS PUBLICATION IS RECOGNISED BY THE BUILDING AND HOUSING GROUP AS CONTRIBUTING TOWARDS THE SKILLS MAINTENANCE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE LICENSED BUILDING PRACTITIONER SCHEME. If you are a licensed building practitioner, cut out and safely retain this panel with your skills maintenance literature for future reference and audit confirmation. Ref. Trade Quarterly Spring 2017

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Private Bag 102-925 North Shore City, Auckland 0745 mitre10.co.nz/trade Mitre 10 Trade Quarterly is subject to copyright in its entirety. The contents may not be reproduced in any form, either in whole or in part, without written permission of the publisher. All rights reserved in material accepted for publication unless initially specified otherwise. Opinions expressed in Mitre 10 Trade Quarterly are not necessarily those of Mitre 10. No responsibility is accepted for the suggestions of the contributors or the conclusions that may be drawn from them. Although Mitre 10 has made reasonable efforts to ensure accuracy, the reader remains responsible for the correct use and selection of any tools, materials, and systems followed, as well as compliance with all applicable legislation. Mitre 10 Trade Quarterly does not constitute legal advice and readers should consider seeking their own professional advice. M I T R E 10

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FROM THE REGIONS

WE’RE FROM HERE Check out what’s been happening across the country

BCITO Big Construction Tour

New Plymouth/Hastings/Palmerston North/Rotorua As part of the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation’s (BCITO) annual Big Construction Tour, students got the chance to visit design and manufacturing sites and retail stores. Staff at several Mitre 10 stores gave guided tours and talked with students about how their store operates and the role they play in the industry. See page 34 for more.

Trade Hub iPad winners

Nelson’s helping hands

South Island builders Nathan Cumming and Ken Cathro were the lucky winners of iPad Pros in our Trade Hub competition that ran in May. Pictured is Nathan Cumming from Christchurch with Kevin Rae, Mitre 10’s Regional Trade Development Manager South Island.

Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson’s Helping Hands project teamed up with Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology to build a new, safer bathroom in Teal Valley for Miro Romanowski, who has cerebral palsy and ataxia. See page 19 for more.

Playhouse Challenge Timaru build a loo Locals in St Andrews are frustrated at throughtown travellers using their environment as a toilet, so decided to build their own public toilet for the shortstop visitors. Mitre 10 MEGA Timaru pledged $6000 worth of products to Masonic Hotel owner Jan Marris to help him build the public toilet.

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Mitre 10 Ferrymead joined Fusion Homes to participate in Canterbury’s first ever Playhouse Challenge. The playhouse was showcased at the 2017 Star Home and Leisure Show, where it took out Best Design and sold for $5000. Proceeds were shared between Tenants Protection Association and Birthright Canterbury to support their ongoing work in the community.


INDUSTRY DEVELOPMENTS

BUILDING A FUTURE IN THE TRADES TARANAKI FUTURES CHARITABLE Trust and the Western Institute of Technology Taranaki (WITT) are helping young locals find a path into the trades. The “Build a Bach” project has been up and running since 2014, and helps participating students to gain NCEA Level 2 qualifications in a practical environment. Mitre 10 MEGA New Plymouth provides building materials and supplies for the project, and encourages the students to drop by the store to check out the different trade supplies they might need. This year the students are constructing a two-bedroom,

107m2 bach. Once complete, the bach will be sold, with all proceeds going back towards further projects for the group. Mitre 10 MEGA New Plymouth General Manager Phillip Rose says it’s important to build relationships with jobseekers and help guide those who show an interest in the construction industry but aren’t quite sure how to get there.

“As part of this project, we can offer young people the connections for potential employment either in the retail and supplier side of the industry, or through our strong trade customer relationships.” For more information, visit taranakifutures.org.nz

NEW TRADE BUILDING FOR FERRYMEAD MITRE 10 MEGA Ferrymead’s new trade offering means local tradies can now get more supplies from one location in less time. Store Manager Tony Franc says the new facility is 50% bigger undercover compared to the previous trade offering, and also offers more outdoor space. “The internal drive-thru is 3200m2 and the outdoor timber yard and landscape centre is another 7000m2. This allows us to have a greater range of trade supplies on display and ready to go, making it easier for tradies to get what they need and get on with their day.” The internal space features wide aisles with an extensive range of framing 9

and finishing timbers, along with all the common wallboards and fixings to suit. The external yard has a large range of outdoor landscaping supplies as well as 19 bulk bins for bark, compost, and aggregates. Located right beside Mitre 10 MEGA Ferrymead, the standalone trade offering gives the trade team a timely boost in capacity. Trade Manager John Barltrop says the new space makes it easier for the trade team to process orders efficiently during busy periods, while continuing to provide a high level of service to the growing base of trade customers. The new trade offering is now open 7am to 7pm weekdays and 8am to 6pm on weekends. M I T R E 10

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THE NEW MITRE 10 TRADE HUB. IT’S THE BUSINESS.

No one wants to get bogged down in paperwork when they could be out on the job. That’s why we’ve created the Mitre 10 Trade Hub – so it’s easier to run your business on the go. • Faster estimates • Better product searches • Instant access to pricing • Easy to use on all devices • Custom-built for NZ tradies • Free to all Mitre 10 Trade account holders Whether you’re in the office or on location, the Mitre 10 Trade Hub is available 24/7. Contact your Mitre 10 Trade Account Manager to find out how the Mitre 10 Trade Hub can save you time and money.

Visit mitre10.co.nz/trade


TRADE HUB

Q

Are the prices on the Trade Hub the same as instore? Yes, it’s all linked directly to the account you have with A your local Mitre 10 store. Note: prices on Mitre 10 Trade Hub are GST exclusive. How do I put my company logo and details onto Trade Hub? Customise a quote by clicking on the top left-hand corner A and completing the relevant sections. (See image below next question.)

Q

Q

Where can I get the latest updates about the industry? You’ll find regular updates as soon as you log in (see image A of landing page below), including our monthly trade promotions, and the latest issue of Trade Quarterly magazine.

MITRE 10 TRADE HUB: EASIER, FASTER, BETTER

Five commonly asked questions to help you make the most of the Mitre 10 Trade Hub.

Q

How do I share my feedback on Trade Hub? Click on the help icon at the top right-hand corner of the A page (see below). All feedback and questions go directly to your local store and the team at the Mitre 10 Support Centre.

Q

How can I save time when looking for products? Keep it simple, use keywords and the drop-down menu to A refine by department. Further hone your options with the filter along the left hand side of the page. To save products for later, click on the star on the right side of the page to add to your favourites. (See image below.)

To start using Mitre 10 Trade Hub, or to find out more, contact your Mitre 10 Trade Account Manager. 11

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On your marks, get set, go! Competitors navigate the go-kart course at this year’s Great Apprentice Race.

APPRENTICES RACE TO THE FINISH

In an impressive display of skill, innovation, and speed, finalists in the annual Great Apprentice Race competed for the national title in May. M I T R E 10

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IF THE STANDARD of the go-karts designed and built at the Mitre 10 Great Apprentice Race is anything to go by, there are some top-quality builders coming through the ranks. Competing in the final round, held at this year’s NZ Certified Builders Conference, the 15 apprentices were given just four hours to design and build a fully functional go-kart. The apprentices had to make use of the materials provided by Mitre 10 and were equipped for the job with


APPRENTICE CHALLENGE

The apprentices each walked away with a tool pack from the team at DeWalt. The pack, valued at more than $1500, included: ■■

■■

■■

The DeWalt Hammer Drill 18 Volt for drilling into stone and brick The DeWalt 18v XR Jigsaw Bare Unit 2.4kg Yellow – designed for efficiency and making applications faster The DeWalt FlexVolt Circular Saw 54V 2X Battery 184mm – a cordless tool with the power and depth of a corded circular saw

GREAT APPRENTICE RACE WINNER, DAMIAN THOMPSON a stack of quality tools from DeWalt – all of which, to their surprise, they got to keep following the competition. They powered through the challenge quickly, making the most of the DeWalt Flexvolt drill, circular saw and jigsaw. Once completed, conference attendees were invited to view the karts and vote for their favourite design. Mark Templeton of Central Otago won Best Design with his cleverly crafted handsaw-shaped sides that wowed the delegates.

After the pressure of the design and build process came the road test. The apprentices were required to race their go-karts with a brave Mitre 10 team member in the driver’s seat, completing building tasks along the way, before racing to the podium to be crowned the winner. Congratulations to Northland’s Damian Thompson, who took out the title, along with Alexander Cholewa from Wellington in second place, and Mark Templeton from Central Otago coming in a close third. 13

Race winner Damian Thompson from Northland said it was great to have some fun with the guys and unleash his creativity during the Great Apprentice Race. “Using innovation through different projects is one of the main reasons I started out in a carpentry apprenticeship in the first place,” he says. “My advice to those starting out in a carpentry apprenticeship is to invest more time and money into developing your tool set – you’ll rely on it when working onsite.”

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WORLD’S 1ST CORDLESS 305mm COMPOUND SLIDE MITRE SAW • BRUSHLESS MOTOR • 2 X 54 VOLT CORDLESS POWER • SUPPLIED WITH: 2 X 6.0Ah 18V / 54V XR FLEXVOLT BATTERY PACKS, MAINS ADAPTER & CHARGER

OPERATES AT 54V ON XR FLEXVOLT TOOLS, AND AUTOMATICALLY CONVERTS TO OPERATE AT 18V ON THE 18V XR TOOL RANGE.

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WE’VE CHANGED THE GAME WITH THE NEW DEWALT XR BATTERY Our innovative voltage-changing battery powers both 18V and our NEW groundbreaking 54V XR tools, paving the way to the jobsite of the future.


ALSO AVAILABLE IN THE DEWALT XR FLEXVOLT â„¢ RANGE

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BARE TOOLS ALSO AVAILABLE IN KIT FORMAT WITH BATTERIES AND CHARGER

294861


BUILDING BIG WITH MILITARY PRECISION

A small yet mighty company punches above its weight with high-efficiency volume building. YOUNG BUILDING COMPANY Nuline has no problem tackling big challenges. Started in 2014 by former tradesman Nick Allan and business partner Mark Davidson, Nuline has is focused on highefficiency volume building – meaning you’ll never find them working on fewer than three sites at a time. “We’re a small yet strong team of LBP builders and site managers, and we pride ourselves on creating quality houses that are built quickly,” says Nick. Nick is a self-proclaimed “jack of all trades”, as he has worked in property management and renovation, and is a plumber, drain layer, and gasfitter by trade. “I was in the army for 10 years and got my trade qualifications there. I’ve served in places like East Timor and Afghanistan, and I was based out of Linton Camp.” Nick says his time in the military has played a large role in shaping his onsite “taskmaster” work ethic. “Personally, I’m a ‘now’ person. I like things done fast, which is why I built my own home in three months flat,” he says. The house is an $800K, high-spec home and was one of Nuline’s most successful quick builds. “It’s a 330m2 house that was built largely by a team of five: One site manager, one builder, and three apprentices, with a few subbies on the side,” says Nick. M I T R E 10

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Top-quality materials highlighted with touches of black and wood make Nuline’s waterview Mangere Bridge house modern yet relaxing. Facing page: Nuline team members Rob Harford, Nick Allan, Phil Watson, and Thiago Flessak are critical to the company’s speed and efficiency.

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CUSTOMER FEATURE

“PLANNING AND SCHEDULING ARE ESSENTIAL. OUR TEAM ARE ALWAYS TWO TO THREE WEEKS AHEAD OF ANY JOB WE ARE DOING.” “The house overlooks Mangere Bridge and the water, so I really wanted a relaxed vibe to run through it. One of my favourite features is the post-less corner door in the kitchen and living area, which opens out on a 90-degree angle flowing into the outdoor space. “The entrance is an impressive 1.6m wide x 2.2m long black pivoting door. Black is definitely a key colour you will see throughout the house. You’ll notice black trimmings, from the window and door edges to the bathroom tapware and kitchen shelves. 17

“The rimu vanities in the bathroom are also a favourite, too.” Since 2014, Nuline has built more than 40 houses, which is a mighty feat considering they’re a team of only 12. Nick says the key to their success with volume building is an effective work programme. “Planning and scheduling are essential. Our team is always two to three weeks ahead of any job we are doing.” “To manage multiple jobs, we’ve also been using a couple of smartphone apps that let the team share photos, M I T R E 10

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CUSTOMER FEATURE

questions, or any site information instantly, to make sure everyone’s on the same page.” These strong management practices not only improve efficiency on existing jobs, but also help Nuline to secure new work. “As a smaller company, we like to highlight our good track record with high-quality jobs and speedy

“TO BE SUCCESSFUL, IT’S ESSENTIAL TO HAVE A TALENTED CREW WHO ALL BELIEVE IN WHAT YOU’RE TRYING TO DO AS A COMPANY, AND WE’RE REALLY LUCKY TO HAVE THAT.” completion times. which helps us to win contracts with companies like Creating Communities,” explains Nick. “We also provide in-depth breakdowns and clean turnkey projects for the developers.” Nick believes that speed and efficiency on a build also help each client feel like a priority, which is a quality Nuline looks for in its suppliers. “Mitre 10 MEGA New Lynn always makes us a priority, and we really

appreciate having our own dedicated trade rep, Paul Cox, who is always there to help us out. The Mitre 10 Trade team are all really supportive, and work hard to make us feel like part of the family.” Nick says that Nuline and Mitre 10 have a true partnership. “As well as allocating trucks to us when we need them to complete our orders on time, they support us with co-branding, put on special events like site barbecues,

MITRE 10 MEGA NEW LYNN GROUP TRADE SALES Manager Patrick McNeely has worked with Nick Allen for almost three years and, along with Mitre 10 MEGA New

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and make sure everyone onsite is involved. It’s a great way to make sure the whole team feel valued for their contribution.” As Nuline continues to grow, both Nick and Mark put much of their success down to the hard work and dedication of their team. “To be successful, it’s essential to have a talented crew who all believe in what you’re trying to do as a company, and we’re really lucky to have that,” says Nick. “I’m proud of how far Nuline has come in the past three years. I’m keen to keep working hard and growing Nuline as a company, and I’m excited to see what the future has in store for us.”

“Nick’s a friendly guy and he has a great team. They’re a lot of fun to work with.” Patrick and Paul schedule regular meetings with Nick to review Nuline’s current and future workload and discuss areas of improvement and assistance. “Nick always comes to our meetings well-organised. He knows what he wants and when he wants it – that must come from his military background. “Likewise, our team is organised and loves to be challenged by a customer. We match Nick’s demanding and busy workload by working hard to provide him with the right materials on time – across multiple sites.” Patrick believes that working alongside the

Lynn owner Cam Caithness and trade account manager Paul Cox, has built up a strong working relationship with the Nuline team.

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customer is crucial and forms the basis of the trusted relationships that have helped Mitre 10 MEGA New Lynn grow its customer base. This growth has been supported by the acquisition of a frame and truss plant. Patrick says this increases the size of their service offer to customers. “We have a dedicated trade team that is experienced in the industry and equipped with the knowledge and experience needed to deliver fast, efficient service for our customers,” says Patrick. “The addition of the frame and truss plant is just another example of how Cam is always looking to improve the value of the service we provide to local tradies.”


COMMUNITY FOCUS

Five-year-old Miro, who has cerebral palsy, has a front-row seat while volunteers from Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson and NMIT build his family a new accessible bathroom, as well as raised garden beds and a woodshed. Bottom: Murray Leaning and the Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson Helping Hands team.

NEW BATHROOM FOR MIRO

With help from Mitre 10 and NMIT, a young Nelson boy and his family can now manage daily physical challenges more easily. FOR FIVE-YEAR-OLD MIRO, completing a task we take for granted, such as taking a shower, is a daily challenge. Miro has cerebral palsy and ataxia, a disorder which affects movement and posture. Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson’s Helping Hands project jumped onboard and teamed up with tutors, students, and apprentices from Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT) to build a new, safer bathroom for Miro and his family, who live in Teal Valley. The original bathroom was ten metres away from the house and up six steep steps, making it inaccessible for Miro and his wheelchair. It was a cramped space that was increasingly becoming a safety hazard for Miro, who is prone to getting muscle spasms as he gets older and grows bigger. Murray Leaning, Marketing Coordinator at Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson, said Miro’s story stood out. “Miro is a lovely kid. It’s great to be part of such an amazing project to help out a family in our community. “We’ve had so much help and so many local people pitching in.

It’s been absolutely incredible.” The new bathroom is connected via the verandah and has a ramp for wheelchair access. It features a 4x2m wet-floor shower, as well as a lower hand basin and light switches, and a new compostable toilet. In the final stages of the project, NMIT pre-trade and carpentry students also built a woodshed and raised the garden beds for the family. Mitre 10 MEGA

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Nelson staff also helped with the clean-up by clearing out drainage trenches, trimming hedges, filling up skip bins, and gravelling the driveway. “It’s all about Miro’s parents being able to spend more time with their kids, and any way we can help, the better,” says Murray. The project was completed and handed over publicly to the family at Hira School in June.

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Dust Extraction Solutions for New Zealand workplace Health & Safety Compliance

WORKSITE HEALTH & SAFETY GUIDELINES RELATING TO DUST CONTROL HAVE CHANGED Suitable, certified dust extractors should be used for dust extraction on construction sites, along with suitable Local Exhaust Ventilation (LEV) fittings on your power tools. Hazardous dust is classified according to the international system of Low Risk (L) , Medium Risk (M) , or High/Hazardous Risk (H), and Mitre 10 can supply you with the corresponding Low, Medium or High Class Nilfisk Dust Extractor to enable your site to be fully dust compliant. Look for the icons on machines to ensure you have the correct machine for the job.

Nilfisk Dust Extractors are available to order from your local Mitre 10 store


VIEWPOINTS

LICENSED BUILDING PRACTITIONERS SCHEME – 10 YEARS ON

We asked LBP Scheme Registrar, Paul Hobbs, to share his views on the first decade of the LBP Scheme, its impact on the industry, and what the future could hold. industry. It introduced industry-wide standards for practitioner skill level and accountability to a group that had never been registered before. Under any new scheme, it’s the first generation that will always feel the most change.

LBP SCHEME REGISTRAR PAUL HOBBS

WHEN THE LICENSED Building Practitioners (LBP) Scheme was introduced in 2007 it was a generational change for New Zealand’s construction

THE LBP SCHEME The Scheme was designed to create a level playing field and accountability for all practitioners in this industry. It holds the unlicensed to account if they’re doing restricted building work, and gives greater assurances to the public that those doing specialised building work have appropriate supervision, knowledge, and skills. In doing this, the Scheme also offers greater protection for responsible licensed practitioners by ensuring 21

there is an effective complaint mechanism to report unlicensed, unsupervised, and sub-standard work. Consumers gain added confidence from better industry compliance and standards, and stronger traceability and accountability from the Licensed Building Practitioners they employ. IMPACT OF THE SCHEME LBP numbers have grown rapidly since the Scheme became compulsory in 2012 for those undertaking or supervising restricted building work. In just 10 years, it has become the largest occupational membership body in the construction sector, with close to 26,000 LBPs and over 30,000 licenses issued (see Graph A on page 22). M I T R E 10

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The Scheme has also generated HOW THE SCHEME HAS DEVELOPED more consumer awareness – reflected in The Scheme is evidence-based, a spike in complaints between 2014-2017. responsive to the realities of the industry, In the early days of the scheme, it was and designed to inform practitioners. only building consent authorities that To date, campaigns for the LBP scheme registered complaints, but now we are have been about raising awareness seeing members of the public use the to lift compliance rates, rather than complaint mechanism simply holding to hold practitioners to people to account. LICENSING BUSINESSES account for unlicensed, Moving towards The premise of the LBP Scheme unsupervised, or a milestone of 26,000 is individual accountability – focusing on practitioners sub-standard work, LBPs and the active and not businesses. The Scheme or for failing to keep use of the complaints works hard to identify the the necessary records. function indicates problems in the industry, and Authorities have awareness is growing then takes an evidence-based also gained an and that the Scheme approach to resolve them. Past issues, such as leaky buildings, advantage in keeping is doing well for highlight the problem of sub-standard something that was individual accountability and practitioners out created 10 years ago. the need to focus on individuals of the industry It is continuing to to raise standards while thanks to the Scheme develop and grow, locating and holding negligent – because Licensed and we will see even practitioners to account. Building Practitioner more acceptance as it numbers are assigned for life, enabling becomes the norm for future generations builders to be traced in the event of coming into the industry. evasive behaviour or where they pop up In 2015, some changes were made repeatedly as part of multiple companies. to the skills maintenance programme

SCHEME STANDARDS The reality is, some practitioners in the industry that are enrolled in the Scheme will already be at the high end in terms of skill level, and the LBP Scheme will simply support them to keep meeting these high standards. In saying that, there needs to be a standard that applies to all and can create certainty about standards of skill and competency. A population of nearly 26,000 LBPs ensures a minimum level of competence over a large sector of the industry. The current standard of competency for entry into the LBP Scheme means that around 7-8% of applicants are not granted a licence each year. If the Scheme was to move to a qualificationbased licensing requirement, then you’d have to consider the timing carefully, communicating such a change to existing LBPs, and also how the accepted qualifications will be kept up to date. The key would be to find the mechanism best suited to reach the LBP population – one that fits with their business needs and learning preferences.

GRAPH A: LBP Membership and complaints over time 35,000

250

30,000 200

20,000

150

15,000

100

10,000 50 5000

0

0 2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

2017 YTD

2017 EOY forecast

Year

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Number of complaints

Number of complaints

Number of LBPs and licences

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VIEWPOINTS

to incorporate a mix of compulsory and elective activities (see chart below). These prompt LBPs to proactively keep their skills and knowledge up to date in such a fast-moving industry. Skills maintenance is a balancing act of raising building standards without overloading industry practitioners. We regularly monitor the programme to achieve that key balance. LOOKING AHEAD The Scheme has seen a lot of pressure on the system from the prolonged industry boom, and poor site supervision can be an issue in times of high workloads. This is often due to stretched builders having too much work and struggling to get skilled labour – leading to a thinner spread of competency that creates more opportunity for non-compliant work. However, build quality across the

RISK-BASED CONSENTING The Building Act refers to a future state that includes “risk-based consenting” – but that switch is not turned on yet. Risk-based targeting is a wellestablished practice in the electrical and gas fitting sectors through “selfcertification”, but for LBPs it will take time to build

up the evidence base required for regulators to feel confident in implementing a riskbased consenting approach or a partial self-certification model. The debate over selfcertification is often about speeding up processes by removing a third-party inspection requirement;

industry has stayed relatively high – helped by building consent authorities making sure work is code-compliant – and, overall, there is a relatively low percentage of licensed persons facing a complaint. Other licensing schemes in the sector have shown that the regulators’ messages

ROLE OF TRADE ASSOCIATIONS Overall, the LBP Scheme has a good relationship with industry trade associations. They coexist well with the Scheme, are strong advocates for improving industry standards and accountability,

and do a good job for their members. Roughly a quarter of the builder population is both affiliated with membership associations and also licensed within the Scheme. This indicates that the

associations have an important role to play, but also that the LBP Scheme and database is still the most effective way to reach, monitor, and educate the largest possible section of the builder population.

however, any move in this direction cannot be at the expense of compliance or quality. If the switch is turned on, then it must be at the right time and with enough data/evidence support the move. The current inspection failure rate suggests there is still a need for independent third party inspection.

do take time to cut through, so more time is needed for the LBP Scheme to embed. When everyone is on the same page, then holding practitioners to account is the next step. The Scheme has come a long way over the last decade, and is in a strong position to continue raising practitioner standards and create greater consumer and consenting authority confidence in the industry. For more information on the LBP Scheme, go to lbp.govt.nz/lbp

UNDER THE SKILLS MAINTENANCE SCHEME, LBPS NEED TO COMPLETE BOTH COMPULSORY AND ELECTIVE ACTIVITIES. COMPULSORY ACTIVITIES CODEWORDS/LBP KNOWLEDGE LBPs are required to read Codewords/LBP Knowledge Link articles and complete a short quiz.The articles cover changes to the law and technology that LBPs need to be aware of.

ON-THE-JOB LEARNING

ELECTIVE ACTIVITIES ACTIVITIES YOU CHOOSE LBPs need to do relevant elective, self-directed, learning activities – where 1 hour = 1 LBP point. The minimum number of points required is: NO. OF POINTS

LICENCE CLASS C

BB

LBPs need to provide a minimum of twoexamples of on-the-job learning. An example can b  e a project which shows an LBP’s continued learningand practice within their licence class.

23

EP

F

R

Bricklaying and Blocklaying, Carpentry, External Plastering, Foundations, and Roofing

12

D

S

Design or Site area of practice 1

15

D

S

Design or Site area of practice 2 and 3

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BUILDER LICENSING – HOW EFFECTIVE HAS IT BEEN? Grant Florence of New Zealand Certified Builders and David Kelly of Registered Master Builders weigh in on the LBP Scheme and its effectiveness to date.

NZCB CHIEF EXECUTIVE GRANT FLORENCE M I T R E 10

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ADMINISTERED BY MBIE, the LBP Scheme has had minimal development since its inception in 2007. The current Scheme basically involves tradespeople filling out a form and outlining their experience and/or training, as well as paying a fee. Unfortunately, many in the industry view this purely as a hidden tax and box-ticking exercise. And for consumers, it’s not much comfort to know a tradesperson can become licensed by simply filling out a form and paying a fee. For builders and other tradespeople, more robust minimum standards of training and skill, and more stringent requirements for ongoing professional 24

development would play a role in ensuring they can meet their compliance obligations under the new Building Act. As it stands, the proverbial ambulance is at the bottom of the cliff – with tough penalties for non-compliance with the new regulations, and without a sufficiently robust licensing scheme to ensure tradespeople are best equipped to meet expected standards. The LBP scheme has had some minor changes in the area of Skills Maintenance – with new requirements for builders to read LBP News (part of MBIE’s Codewords newsletter), and identify two examples of on-the-job learning over the two-year licensing cycle.


VIEWPOINTS

But we believe these proposed modifications do not go far enough, and that this is a missed opportunity. As well as raising the requirements for minimum skill levels, the licensing framework could also be strengthened by a Government-led initiative to create a standardised training pathway – linked to the licensing regime – for builders to grow their business acumen and skills beyond that provided by apprentice training and some subsequent industry technical postgraduate regimes. Trade associations could play a key role in delivering this. Alongside this, it would also be important to strengthen the consequences of non-compliance. In addition, rather than these compliance-related activities being

“IT’S TIMELY TO ADDRESS THE LICENSING FRAMEWORK, ALONGSIDE THE COMPLIANCE FRAMEWORK, TO ENSURE CONSUMERS CAN CONTINUE TO HAVE TRUST AND CONFIDENCE IN THE INDUSTRY NOW AND IN THE FUTURE.” GRANT FLORENCE

managed by the regulator on a central basis, trade associations could be mandated to play a more active role to ensure more comprehensive and informed oversight. The historical “boom and bust” nature of the building industry has created legacy issues and continues to present risk today, with huge demand driven by the Auckland housing shortage and general consumer confidence. It’s timely to address the licensing framework, alongside the compliance framework, to ensure consumers can continue to have trust and confidence in the industry now and in the future.

there’s nothing I’ve seen that suggests Building Consent Authorities have any more trust in a builder just because they are licensed. This is not to point the finger at those who manage the LBP Scheme and do an admirable job. But what has been lost sight of is that the Scheme was meant to be introduced as part of a package of reforms that, when taken together, would have had the overall effect of lifting skills and quality in the sector. Risk-based consenting was a key part of this. While this would not be possible for all work, it would have gone some way to streamlining the RMBA CHIEF EXECUTIVE building process and alleviating DAVID KELLY the pressure on consenting authorities, particularly for low-risk WHEN I AM asked the question building work. It would have also of how effective the licensing of incentivised builders to keep their builders has been, it is important level of skills up so that they could to go back to take advantage first principles. of streamlined “THERE HASN’T The licensing of approval processes. BEEN A SURGE builders, namely So whether the IN CONSUMER through the licensing of builders CONFIDENCE IN Licensed Building has delivered the LICENSED BUILDERS. Practitioners (LBP) value expected Scheme, was never is questionable. IF ANYTHING, meant to be an end I have said THERE IS STILL in itself but, rather, in the past that SOME CONFUSION a means to raise the possibility of ABOUT WHAT BEING standards in the licensing businesses LICENSED REALLY building industry. as an avenue for MEANS IN TERMS A key measure of consumers to seek OF THE LICENSEE’S this was to be redress should SKILL LEVEL.” a boost in be considered. D A V I D K E L L Y consumers’ It dovetails well and consenting with the quality authorities’ assurance that confidence; is available if however, to date that company there has been very little evidence is also part of a membership to suggest that licensing builders association. This has done either. added quality There hasn’t been a surge in assurance is consumer confidence in licensed simply not builders. If anything, there is still possible through some confusion about what being licensing licensed really means in terms of individual the licensee’s skill level. Similarly, builders.

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MORE PEOPLE PER HOUSEHOLD:

WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR CONSTRUCTION TRENDS? Infometrics takes a look at the effect of changes to household occupancy nationwide. THE NUMBER OF people per New Zealand household has generally increased since 2008, despite the GARETH KIERNAN aging population CHIEF FORECASTER and shrinking family sizes suggesting it should be falling. But the rising occupancy rate might not be that remarkable when we consider economic and property market conditions. IMPACT OF HOUSING AFFORDABILITY The Global Financial Crisis dented people’s wealth and incomes as asset prices fell sharply and unemployment rose. Even with the New Zealand economy performing well over the last four years, soaring property prices have meant that housing costs have outpaced income growth. Resulting affordability problems have

meant that young people are staying with their parents for longer, people are taking on boarders or flatmates to help pay the mortgage, or people are living in multi-family households. Surprisingly, if we look at the data on a regional basis, there is no consistent correlation between worsening housing affordability and upward pressure on occupancy rates. In the high-profile Auckland region, the theory stacks up, but other areas, such as Thames-Coromandel and Taupō, have experienced rising occupancy rates alongside improving affordability. Perhaps other factors, such as socio-cultural preferences, also play a role. REGIONAL VIEW We won’t get a good understanding of changes in the composition of New Zealand households until data from the next census is published in late 2018 or 2019. But in Auckland, where high land

and housing costs are having a definite effect on people’s decision-making, the ramifications of the possible changes are particularly interesting (see graph A). Graph B shows that the average size of new dwellings in Auckland over the last year is the smallest since 2006. The size of new standalone houses in the region has been fairly steady since 2007. But as intensification takes place, the increasing share of attached dwellings has driven down the overall figure. DENSER HOUSING VERSUS LARGER HOUSEHOLDS The consent trends in Auckland highlight a dichotomy in the way we can react to reduced housing affordability. One response is to build denser types of housing (ie townhouses, flats, and apartments) that require less land per dwelling. This response is logical given that, in Auckland, land can be the most expensive component of the building process. Graph B shows

GRAPH A: AUCKLAND DRAGS UP THE NATIONWIDE OCCUPANCY RATE Number of people per occupied dwelling 3.3 3.2 3.1 3.0 2.9 2.8 2.7 2.6 2.5 1992

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2001

2004

NEW ZEALAND

2007

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N E W ZE AL AN D E X-AU CK L AN D 26


BY THE NUMBERS

that these attached dwellings are typically significantly smaller than standalone houses. The second possible response, for which Auckland and Queenstown are prime candidates, is to build larger dwellings to cater to bigger household sizes. Mitigating high housing costs by having space for boarders or extended family means that the extra rooms and floor area of large, new houses could be more fully utilised than if the household was made up of only the standard nuclear family.

MINORITY POPULATION GROWTH Projections from Statistics NZ show that Pasifika and Asian ethnicities are expected to be the fastest growing groupings within New Zealand’s population, and that this growth will be most heavily concentrated in Auckland (see Graph C). People from these cultural backgrounds are more likely to live in extended family arrangements than your average Pākeha family.

transition. Densification in the city is taking front and centre stage, but keep an eye on the potential growth in demand for new houses that can cater to multi-family or extended family living arrangements. Across the rest of the country, where housing affordability is generally not as critical as in Auckland, we might see shrinking section sizes and very gradual increases in townhouses and apartment buildings in the largest urban centres. But we don’t expect to see the major changes in residential construction trends we see in Auckland.

FUTURE OUTLOOK Auckland is entering a period of significant

GRAPH B: AUCKLAND’S AVERAGE NEW DWELLING SIZE IS SHRINKING 12-month rolling average of floor area (m2) of new dwelling consents 220

170

120

70 1992

1995

1998

2001

S TA N DA LO N E D W E L L I N G S

2004

2007

2010

ALL DWELLINGS

2013

2016

AT TAC H E D D W E L L I N G S

GRAPH C: NEW ZEALAND’S CHANGING ETHNIC MAKEUP

Infometrics help you make sense of economic problems. They provide industry, regional, and general economic analysis and forecasts that assist organisations in making planning, policy, and strategic decisions. To find out more, visit infometrics.co.nz

ASIAN

% of population by ethnicity, Statistics NZ projections

NZ

PASIFIKA

AUCKLAND

NZ

AUCKLAND

0%

5%

2 013

10%

15%

20%

25%

30%

35%

2028 27

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FREE SEMINARS

3 HOURS OF LBP POINTS Construction

PHOTO: weltec.ac.nz/construction

The Health And Safety Essential Tool-kit & Guide

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04 September – 28 November 2017: 5:30pm-7:30pm. Hear about the latest technical information on masonry and veneer products alongside quality assurance processes for the industry

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ONSITE SAFEY

THE DOS AND DON’TS OF DUST Protect your own and your team’s health by being well informed about managing silica dust exposure. SILICA DUST IS pretty common on the job site. It’s created when materials such as concrete, bricks, rocks, stone, sand and clay are cut, ground, drilled, or otherwise knocked around. Getting exposed to silica dust is a serious worksite hazard, especially if it’s inhaled deep into your lungs. It can cause long-term health problems and, because you can’t always see silica dust, it’s not easy to tell when you’re most at risk. WHAT ARE THE RISKS? Exposure to silica dust can lead to silicosis – a condition where the lung tissue scars, causing breathlessness and a decrease in lung function. The effects are permanent and can worsen later in life. Silica dust exposure can also cause breathing difficulties such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and even lung cancer, if you’re exposed to high amounts for a long time. STAYING SAFE AROUND SILICA DUST Both employers and employees have a responsibility to manage exposure to silica dust at work. The methods in the table at right can help to isolate or minimise exposure to silica dust. For more details on staying safe around silica dust and to find out what your responsibilities are, check out Worksafe’s fact sheet on silica dust in construction at worksafe.govt.nz

WORKING SAFELY WITH SILICA DUST

Silica dust can negatively impact your health and the health of your team. Here are some guidelines for working safely with silica dust.

DO

DON’T Dust control methods

Do use water and wet working methods to keep silica dust out of the air (where possible), and/or use equipment with dust control features.

Don’t sweep when you’re working in dusty work areas – this can stir up the dust, making it easier to inhale.

Respiratory protection Do use certified respirators and ensure the correct respirator is used for the job. Complete facial fit testing and training before you or anyone on your team use it.

Don’t assume disposable or half-face respirators are suitable for every job. When work tasks involve abrasive blasting, airline respirators should be used.

Air monitoring Do monitor the air quality regularly to ensure your dust control methods are doing the job.

Don’t assume that just because dust is no longer visible that the area is safe.

Protective clothing Do wear disposable or washable clothing if you are working in a dusty area.

Don’t leave the worksite wearing clothing that was exposed to silica dust. Change into clean clothes and wash dirty clothing to ensure areas like your vehicle and home are not contaminated.

Warning signs Do post warning signs to mark the boundaries of work areas where there is silica dust, and let workers and site visitors know if any specific protective equipment should be used.

Don’t ignore warning signs – they are put in place to help reduce silica exposure to protect your health.

Health monitoring and training Do monitor your health and the health of your staff, including lung function testing and respiratory questionnaires.

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Don’t forget to conduct or request regular training about the effects of silica dust exposure, what you can do to reduce exposure, and how to use and care for protective equipment. This should be provided by employers and completed by employees. M I T R E 10

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TALKING ABOUT FRAME AND TRUSS

The experienced team at Waihi provide valuable tips on getting your frame and truss orders bang on.

IF YOU ASK the guys at Waihi Mitre 10 Frame and Truss, they’ll tell you that getting frame and truss orders right is all about communication: talking directly to detailers and giving as much information as possible, so they understand exactly what you need and nothing will be left to chance. The Waihi Mitre 10 Frame and Truss plant is only a year old, but has plenty of experienced hands on deck and is the model of efficiency. We asked the Waihi team about the key to nailing frame and truss orders, and how to make sure there are no unwelcome surprises when your order turns up on site.

What matters most when submitting same design simply based on the a frame and truss order? materials they like to use, and it’s up There are lots of things that can go to our detailers to work alongside wrong when a builder gets their frame the designers to make sure there are and truss order processed, so our team no loading issues, and that all of the pays extra attention to the amount and measurements and details adhere type of information they provide, which to the building code. is key to minimising those risks. What information IT’S UP TO OUR If we have the right do detailers need? DETAILERS TO WORK information, then the Before anything else, ALONGSIDE THE entire process will we need a permitted DESIGNERS TO MAKE be clearer and more plan and details of the SURE THERE ARE NO efficient. Every project window schedules. Our LOADING ISSUES, AND THAT ALL OF THE team can tweak things that goes through the MEASUREMENTS AND prior to production if Waihi plant is different DETAILS ADHERE TO from the last and, necessary but, generally THE BUILDING CODE. to build framing and speaking, there needs trusses exactly right, to be certainty that the we need to balance three very distinct design isn’t going to change. viewpoints: That of the architect, the The difference between accurate builder, and the frame and truss detailer. framing and one that’s slightly off can Each of our local builders can be the difference of measuring your have a different interpretation of the string-line from the left or the right side M I T R E 10

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of the nail, and that’s where the “talking relationship” between the builder and the detailer is so important. At Waihi, we have three detailers onsite, with over 60 years of experience between them, so there’s always someone ready to talk directly with a tradie and get the exact specifications for the framing and trusses they need. Basic elements of the plan to confirm with your frame and truss designer can include: ■■ Truss type and number: What type of truss do you want on the building (eg mono truss, parallel chord truss, etc) and how many are needed (based on type of building and truss spacing)? Note that there is added complexity with T- or L-shaped houses that can require two different lots of trusses, and scissors trusses may be required for high-vaulted ceilings. ■■ Span: The distance between outside walls or bearing points where the


TECH GUIDE

■■

■■

■■

■■

■■

■■

trusses will be placed. Pitch: What will the pitch of the roof be – 6/12, 8/12, etc. Height above plate: The desired heel height above the wall plates at the outside edge of the building; for example, when the design might include a raised heel truss to

■■

accommodate more insulation. Load: What are the live and dead load requirements in the build area? Live loads are non-permanent loads such as snow, wind, rain, seismic forces, weight of temporary construction materials, and occupant floor loads. Dead loads are the weight

of the materials in the structure and any items permanently placed on the structure, which can include roof and ceiling type. Rafter/bearing width: How wide are the bearing walls or beams where the roof trusses are to sit? Ceiling type: This must be specified, including timber or metal battens, and direct fixed or clips. Door dimensions: Includes the dimensions of door jambs. Length of overhang and location and size of ceiling joists: Ensure the fascia type is specified (eg metal, wood), and say if it is structural or non-structural.

What to watch out for in a frame and truss quote Quotes are manufacturer-specific, but it pays to confirm certain details are specified exactly as required, such as timber treatment. If you want H3.2 for the bottom plates and the quote/design has only allowed for H1.2, then you’re going to have a problem – but one that’s easily sorted if you pick it up early. Also, make sure the quote factors all of the components you specified into the final price – especially if you’re doing a comparison. Check that things like connections and steel work are included, so you’re always comparing “apples with apples”. For more information on Mitre 10’s frame and truss offering, talk to your local Trade Account Manager.

FRAME AND TRUSS TIMING AND DELIVERY Lead time: Allow plenty of lead time. While the production timeline is fairly quick and predictable, the delivery needs to be precisely timed so the frames arrive onsite when you need them. That means lead times need to account for factors like weather conditions, soil conditions, builder workloads, scheduling, ■■

Installation: Our pre-cut, pre-nailed frame and truss orders are prepared so that they arrive when our customers are ready for them and so they can stand up by themselves onsite. The finished order includes a frame plan, support beams, numbered frames, wall junctions marked on bottom

and council hold-ups – so it’s vital our customers keep the lines of communication open. ■■ Delivery inspection: Ordering inaccurate frame and trusses due to incomplete information and neglecting to inspect the trusses upon arrival at the building site are two of the most common issues.

■■

31

plates, and plastic wrapping on the framing. Trusses can be heavy and awkward to handle, so observe health and safety requirements and minimise the risk to yourself and your employees where possible. In some situations, you may consider using an all-terrain forkhoist or small crane to set them.

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TRADES COACH

KEEP THE LIFEBLOOD OF YOUR BUSINESS PUMPING Check out these strategies for keeping your business cashflow positive. WE’VE ALL HEARD the expression “cash is king”, and it’s definitely true when it comes to running your business. Even if you’re reporting profits, a key reason your business might not succeed is due to lack of cash. A company consistently operating at a loss might fail; however, a company consistently operating with negative cashflow will fail. Cashflow is the lifeblood of any business, and it needs to be properly managed – ensuring that more cash is coming into the business than is going out on a monthly basis. This can be tricky to manage at times, so here are some strategies that’ll help keep your cashflow in a healthy state. PROJECT FUTURE CASHFLOW You can get a general idea about expected cashflow by mapping out payments from clients and payments to suppliers. Carrying out accurate planning will help to prevent future payroll and payment issues. PROCESS VARIATIONS QUICKLY Variations are common in building and are often the result of a project requiring

MONITOR YOUR DEBTOR NUMBERS A common area for cash to be locked up in a business is with your debtors. Calculate this number each month and aim to reduce it “A COMPANY by sending immediate CONSISTENTLY invoices, offering OPERATING AT payment incentives, A LOSS MIGHT FAIL, HOWEVER A COMPANY writing clear terms, checking credit reports CONSISTENTLY prior to signing any OPERATING WITH NEGATIVE CASHFLOW deals, and proactively following up. WILL FAIL.”

more time, money, and/or resources than originally thought. Receiving this money quickly will have a positive impact on your cashflow. SEND INVOICES IMMEDIATELY All invoices should be automated and sent as soon as possible. Faster invoicing usually results in faster collections.

ACCEPT ELECTRONIC PAYMENTS Money will be received faster by accepting electronic payments, including credit cards. This will increase cashflow and allow for more capital to be used for day-to-day operations.

Managing cashflow for building often requires a project-by-project approach, as no two projects are the same. For more advice on managing cashflow in your business, contact Andy at andy@tradescoach.co.nz  or visit tradescoach.co.nz

AVOID BIG OVER-BILLINGS AND UNDER-BILLINGS The best approach is to bill according to how much of the project has actually been completed, as opposed to overbilling or under-billing. Over-billing will reduce cashflow in the long-term, and under-billing will reduce your cashflow in the short term. 33

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FUTURE BUILDERS

FOLLOWING ON FROM MIRO’S build in Teal Valley (see page 19), the partnership between Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson and Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT) has  gone from strength to strength. Earlier this year, Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson welcomed NMIT pre-trade carpentry students to undertake a large work experience project as part of the store’s trade expansion. NMIT students and tutors spent three days onsite building a major housing display which demonstrated different materials and construction methods. Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson Marketing Coordinator Murray Leaning says the project also gave students the chance to interact with customers who were

IMAGE: NEL SON MAIL

FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH

keen to learn more about the construction activity. “The attitude and skills shown by the budding builders was so impressive that some students have been offered weekend employment at the Nelson store,” says Murray.

“It’s been a really great initiative and has helped the students practise their skills in a real-world environment.” Both Mitre 10 MEGA Nelson and NMIT will continue to assist each other with future projects onsite and in the community.

CONSTRUCTING A FUTURE IN THE TRADES SECONDARY STUDENTS FROM across the country have had a close-up look at their future careers in construction thanks to BCITO’s Big Construction Tour. More than 950 students from 13 regions around New Zealand grabbed the opportunity to visit some of the country’s biggest construction sites, developments, and businesses in the industry. Several Mitre 10 stores jumped on board, with staff giving guided tours and talking with students about how their store operates and the role they play in the industry. Mitre 10 GM Trade Derek Heard says that activities like the Big Construction Tour help take the mystery out of the trades. “We know our trade customers can often struggle to find enough good apprentices coming through, and there M I T R E 10

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is nothing like a ‘look and see’ to help break down any barriers. “Young people can see for themselves there’s a tonne of different things you can do within the trades, and a lot of different ways to make a good living. Getting behind this initiative allows the store teams to better connect with students, and it gives the students a chance to ask questions and see the full range of opportunities on offer.” The one-day tour is BCITO’s largest 34

national promotion. It informs and encourages students about heaps of career possibilities in the trades. The tour, which captures the full width of the building and construction industry, is a key part of BCITO’s drive to attract more young people into an industry they may not have thought about. BCITO thanks all 82 businesses and their staff who opened their premises and work sites to the tour.


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Greg Bold Mitre 10 MEGA Tauranga

Lynette Stanley Mitre 10 Matamata

Mitre 10 Trade Quarterly - Spring 2017