New Zealand builders need to invest in their industry’s future by employing and investing in apprentices, which Haack Construction Ltd has done since its inception.
Jon Haack, of Haack Construction Ltd in Blenheim, says his company has been in business for 24 years, and hired its first apprentice soon after the company started out.
“We take our industry very seriously, and we take great pride knowing we’re giving something important back when we are hiring apprentices,” Mr Haack says.
“The future of our building industry is so important. All builders should work on the philosophy that once upon a time someone made the effort to give their knowledge and skill to us, so we should do the same for the next generation.”
Mr Haack believes the new Apprenticeship Re-Boot Scheme, which will see the Government providing up to $2000 for each new apprentice and their employer, will encourage more employers to take on apprentices.
“The best learning takes place on site, but very few New Zealand builders actually train apprentices. In my opinion, taking on apprentices should be a compulsory part of being a builder,” Mr Haack says.
“I agree with anything that supports employers to take on apprentices. To create better builders for New Zealand, we need to encourage more apprenticeships. This is a step in the right direction.”
Haack Construction apprentice Daniel Crockett took out first place in the Upper South Island 2012 Apprentice of the Year, and went on to the national finals in Wellington.
Mr Haack says Apprentice of the Year is a great experience for young builders, and believes anyone considering entering should do it.
“The competition is so important for building self-esteem. It gives apprentices the chance to show all their mates that they didn’t have to go to university to gain high success,” he says.
“Dan was our first apprentice to enter Apprentice of the Year. I wish we had entered others in the past — we’ve had some great young carpenters working for Haack Construction.
“After watching how high Dan set the bar, I’m looking forward to seeing how our next guys go.”
Entries for the Apprentice of the Year competition are now open, and will close on June 13. For further information, or to enter the competition, go to www.apprenticeoftheyear.co.nz.
Apprentices, employers and those young people aspiring to be a part of the construction industry are also encouraged to join the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/apprenticeoftheyear.
The Apprentice of the Year competition is made possible thanks to principal sponsor Carters, the Registered Master Builders Federation, the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO), and supporting sponsor the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).