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FYI: ITO now covers H2O

Just add water. Connexis expands its industry coverage… Infrastructure industry training organisation (ITO) Connexis is broadening its industry coverage to include infrastructure-related water industry training. The move will see water treatment, wastewater treatment and water reticulation trades included in Connexis qualifications and service coverage, and has been widely welcomed within the industry.

The change will result in a number of benefits for customers and infrastructure asset owners including local government. Customers can expect an enhanced level of service with increased support from the nationwide Connexis field team. In addition, customers working in the wider infrastructure space will now be able to have most, if not all, of their training needs met by one organisation, rather than dealing with multiple ITOs.

The Connexis field team has undertaken preparation for its new role including attending a familiarisation day hosted by Opus and New Zealand Water and Environment Training Academy (NZWETA) at the Opus Environmental Training Centre premises in Petone, where national water qualifications have been provided continuously for more than 60 years.

The team will be supported by water training consultants Martyn Simpson and Nigel Hesford, who have over 50 years of industry experience between them.

Connexis chief executive Helmut Modlik says customers will continue to receive everything they have had in the past – top quality training and expert support. “However, they will now also have the opportunity for their staff to be coordinated and supported in their learning by a much larger field team, who can provide a greater level of personal contact and support.”

Helmut adds that the addition of water represents the first step since the creation of Connexis to fulfil its vision to become the ITO to service the wider infrastructure industry. “Most other ITOs serve disparate industry groups, which presents a range of challenges for them and their customers. When Connexis was established, directors made the conscious decision to focus solely on the infrastructure domain, the horizontal built environment.

“This means Connexis knows the infrastructure space and is very clear and focused on the issues facing our customers and asset owners. Our aspiration is to be the ITO of choice for employers in infrastructure, and the addition of the 3-Water industries is an important step in that direction.”

Annie Yeates, water industry training manager, says the merger comes at an exciting time in the water industry. “Water reticulation in particular is a huge growth area at present, and now that infrastructure sits within one ITO we can plan an integrated approach to developing training in areas such as the management of stormwater.

“Now that the future of water industry training has been decided, we’ll be in a position to develop new training programmes,” she says.

Yeates adds, “Integrating water into the Connexis portfolio will enable us to build a bigger vocational pathway for the infrastructure industry. There will be enhanced career prospects for water professionals, with opportunities for progression linked to qualifications such as the National Diploma in Infrastructure Asset Management and New Zealand Diploma in Engineering Practice.”

More information on www.connexis.org.nz or call 0800 486 626.

This article was first published in the May 2015 issue of NZ Local Government Magazine.

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