“We already manage more than 66,000 existing properties valued at more than $10 billion, and with growing demand for affordable housing there will always be work for builders,” according to asset services general manager Greg Orchard. He says there is a variety of work, from property improvement to developments of less than 10 units to the larger projects involving 10 or more units.
“We publicly advertise opportunities and consider a range of criteria, not only price. Although certain contracts are limited to selected suppliers for certain periods of time there are ongoing opportunities for builders over time.
” For property improvement and larger development contracts the Corporation uses NZS 3910:2003 Conditions of Contract for Building and Civil Engineering Construction — “an industry standard comprehensive contract document outlining contract conditions”, Mr Orchard says. For smaller projects the Corporation has a specifi c contract. “It is much simpler. It still offers all the same protection, transparency and fairness, but the contract is more tailored to these types of projects,” he says.
Contracts for property improvement — such as modernisation, energy effi ciency and the Corporation’s healthy housing programme — involve calls for registration of interest, followed by a request for proposals from suitably qualifi ed contractors.
Tenderers are required to submit details such as their organisation’s capability, experience and resources, and proposed method to deliver the contract. Those meeting the requirements are short-listed and invited to put forward price proposals for specifi c projects.
For developments of 10 units or more the process is slightly different. Following the registration of interest and evaluation of capability, experiences and resources, organisations that meet the criteria become part of a “preferred suppliers list” for three years. “As projects are ready to begin, construction contractors are selected from the list and invited to tender for specific projects.”
Quality and cost not the only determining factors
Mr Orchard says with all contracts quality and cost are important factors, but they are not the only determinants when selecting contractors.
“An organisation’s capability, experience, resources and proposed method of delivery are just as important. Mr Orchard says as a government housing agency working towards the New Zealand Housing Strategy, the Corporation also has a responsibility to help create capacity in the housing sector. “So we may not necessarily select the largest and most financially powerful company.
Instead, we may select, in certain circumstances, smaller, newer businesses. That way we are helping build capacity in the sector,” he says. “We will make sure we are comfortable that their fi nancial capacity is aligned with the fi nancial requirements of the project.
” Contractors willing to use local community labour are also at an advantage, as that’s another way the Corporation can help build capacity within the housing sector. The Corporation’s sponsorship of the Community Development Award in the Registered Master Builders House of the Year is one way the Corporation can recognise the contribution of builders working in the social housing sector.
“A social focus is a special quality. Not everyone is driven by social objectives, but we like to ensure those who are and who are contributing to the social housing sector are recognised. This award allows us to achieve that.”