Site Safe Works to Help Reduce Skills Shortage


11 Feb 2019

An innovative training programme is making sure workers are safety-ready when they arrive in New Zealand.

Site Safe is doing its bit to help improve New Zealand’s shortage of skilled tradies.

 As part of its partnership with international tradespeople exchange provider Global Trade eXchange, or GTeXpro, Site Safe is working to ensure tradies entering New Zealand are equipped with entry-level health and safety training before they arrive, meaning they hit the ground running and are ready to work safely.

 So far the programme has started being rolled out to electricians in Canada as this is an in-demand trade which appears on New Zealand’s Long Term Skills Shortage List.

 Site Safe Chief Executive Brett Murray says the partnership is part of ensuring that highly sought after and skilled workers, such as electricians, were work-ready on their arrival.

 “By delivering Site Safe training in advance, we are working to provide a smooth transition for these workers and making sure there are no delays from our end,” Mr Murray says.

 “This is great news for those employers taking part in the programme, who benefit from taking on staff who have a solid understanding of Kiwi health and safety expectations.”

 The initiative is part of the Commonwealth eXchange program, which was developed to provide pathways for skilled tradespeople to expand their knowledge by working between  different countries. This in turn should support the long-term sustainability of skills in the sector by providing increased work mobility through times of peaks and troughs in different countries.

 GTeXpro international electrical assessor Leon Zaffiris says providing quality training and knowledge in advance helps the new arrivals to be successful when working in Kiwi workplaces.

  “Providing health and safety training, in conjunction with the necessary New Zealand trade required learning to these highly-skilled individuals in their home country, helps protect the individual and provides a sound base of knowledge about the industry they are about to work in, adding real value for their employers in New Zealand.”

 The first group of Canadian electricians is due to start work in New Zealand this month. 

Canadian trainees  

The first batch of Canadian electricians to be upskilled for New Zealand under the direction of international tradespeople exchange provider Global Trade eXchang. The training was done at the Electrical Joint Training Committees head office in Vancouver.