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2012 Forest Industry Training Awards

2012 Forest Industry Training Awards

New Zealand’s forestry sector will need more skilled people over the next decade as technology continues to change, more areas of forest become available for harvest, and the environmental advantages of wood products are increasingly recognised.

Ian Boyd, CEO of the Forest Industry Training and Education Council (FITEC), in releasing the names of finalists for the industry’s 2012 training and education awards, said practically every work discipline is required across the wide range of forest and wood manufacturing operations.

A total of 30 finalists have been selected by independent judges for the 2012 forest industry awards which will be held in Rotorua on September 20.

Mr Boyd said the forestry sector’s wide diversity requires an equally diverse range of award categories in order to capture the different disciplines and skill levels.

“The forest and wood sector extends from forest management to sophisticated wood manufacturing so it demands all kinds of operational, planning, engineering, and commercial skills to perform efficiently,” he said.

“These awards help highlight the skills gained and the desire to achieve and become a professional in the forest and wood industry,” he said.

He said the sector faces many challenges in the next decade to attract quality skilled people to manage, harvest and process the larger volumes coming from sustainable forests. These skill requirements are continually being extended as new end uses for wood are researched and commercialised.



“The industry has an ambitious strategy to grow export revenues from $4.5 billion a year to potentially $12 billion and this means more highly skilled people will be needed,” he said. “It is already the second largest exporter in the Primary Sector which is the foundation of the NZ economy”.

“The finalists this year are great role models for the industry and they will all have future leadership opportunities as the industry continues to grow.”

The finalists have been selected across six categories and include:

1. Modern Apprentice of the Year - furniture, wood manufacturing, forestry

2. Training Company of the Year - furniture, wood manufacturing, forestry

3. Trainee of the year - furniture, wood manufacturing, forestry

4. Outstanding business performance through people development

5. FITEC Training leader of the Year

6. Health and Safety Initiative

Below we have listed the finalists for awards to be held on September 20.

We have listed each finalist by geographic location which may be helpful for you to identify who you would like to contact and interview.

The brief notes with each finalist are compiled from notes offered in their entry forms. You will see that there are also photo opportunities.

If you would like to contact any of these people, please contact me by return email or phone and we can link you with them.


Auckland

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Second in charge in the mouldings department at Jenkin Timber in Auckland, Matani Tupou says his apprenticeship helped him with problem solving and communication skills.
He is thankful to senior staff for giving him the opportunity to be 2IC at the same time as working through his apprenticeship and is keen to move into management one day.

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Furniture
As a master finisher, Reid Jarvie from Finesse Finishers Ltd in Auckland, personally finishes 90% of products as well as dealing with quality control, training new staff and customer service.
“My apprenticeship has taught me, most of all, how to problem solve,” he explains “everyday is a challenge”. Reid aspires to do a small business course and one day, own his own company.

Trainee of the Year – Furniture
Mathew English from Danske Mobler - ‘Rondel Table’
There are six sections in Mathew’s table, with expansion leaves stored within the table. The top sections open when the table rotates, much like the opening and closing of a camera cover. This transforms the table, doubling its seating capacity.
Matthew’s table is made from native rimu; heart rimu for the top and sap rimu for the internal construction. His inspiration came from the ‘Jupe’ table designed in the 1830’s.

Training Company of the Year – Furniture
Company policy at Central Joinery Ltd, Manukau is to have every employee either qualified, in a traineeship or in a modern apprenticeship.
“We are committed to giving everyone the opportunity to do a traineeship” says Shaun Simpson the Managing Director, “it benefits the business to have skilled people so it is something we definitely direct each employee to do”.

Training Company of the Year – Furniture
70% of employees at Danske Mobler in Auckland are in training, that’s 60% more than in 2011 and all employees now undertake the competitive manufacturing programme.
“Our goal is to train and develop trade apprentices to be tradesmen,” explains Alan Winter the Managing Director, “and then on to be supervisors and into management roles – to keep the industry alive.”


Coromandel

Trainee of the Year – Forestry
Leon Samuel from Harvard Logging in Whitianga, says training has taught him that no matter what your job is, everyone is important, everyone’s go their bit to do and everyone must work as a team.
“When the boss isn’t around I’m the team leader of the crew” he explains. “The boss saw me as management material, which has really opened my eyes. I want to train up for management now and one day manage my own crew.”

Outstanding Business Performance through People Development
Phil Cave is the Manufacturing Manager at Thames Timber, says the company got outstanding results from an intensive literacy and numeracy programme, leading into lean manufacturing, that helped the company ‘survive’ in a very difficult year.
“I hate to think what the year would have ended like had we not done the training and development of our people” he says. Not only was there improve business performance and production rates but the programme changed peoples lives e.g. reading and writing for the first time!
http://literacyandnumeracyforadults.com/Professional-Development/Case-Studies/

Central North Island

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Forestry
Tony Brell, from AG & G Sinton in Tokoroa, learned good communication skills when being trained, especially when identifying hazards.
Tony, tree faller and general forest hand, was employee of the year in 2011 and aspires to be a foreman and run his own crew one day.

Training Company of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Shelley Honore started the ‘today for tomorrow’ programme for employees at WPI Timber, Tangiwai Sawmill, Ohakune who had very few qualifications and were about to become redundant.
“WPI staff became engaged in a successful literacy and numeracy programme”, she says “which incorporated work skills qualification training, with remarkable results”.

FITEC Training Leader of the Year
Michelle Harris, HR Advisor at CHH Pulp and Paper Services at Kinleith, Tokoroa identified an industry problem and used her range of skills to develop, sell and implement as solution. She recognised that, with an aging workforce, a pulp and paper apprentice programme would provide the company with new and skilled employees for the future.
“The Kinleith Mill has been running for 50 years and the wood industry is a big part of the Tokoroa community” she says “I want to keep it alive so our employee’s children’s, children’s children can one day work here too…”
The programme has been very successful for CHH and is also a great model for others in the industry to follow.


Taranaki

Trainee of the Year – Furniture
Daniel McCracken, Vogue Kitchen & Appliances, New Plymouth – ‘Coffee Game Table’
The Art and Crafts movement from the late 1800’s was the inspiration for Daniel’s table. He loves the smooth clean lines and geometric inlay designs typical of this era.
The coffee table incorporates one board for three games; chess, checkers and backgammon, with a cavity to store the game pieces.
Daniel has ‘a thing’ for the rich deep colour of dark wood grains so used Prime Panels Shannon Oak with Dezigna white for contrast.

East Coast

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Forestry
“Training is important”, says Mace Smith a tree faller from Logged on Logging in Napier, “if you are not moving forward then you are not going anywhere”.
Encouraged by his employers, his partner and his training advisor, Mace started his training to open up more opportunities, to work to a higher standard and to work safely.

Trainee of the Year – Forestry
Annette Wallis, a logmaker and skidworker from Bockman AJ-HBR in Napier, also keeps the health and safety policy up-to-date. She explains that training has taught how to be safe, how to give quality service to customers, the value of the wood to the owners and how to pass her knowledge on to others.
“My whole crew has been important in my career – and they are my family” she says, “especially my boss, who is my dad. He taught me how to be fussy. Bosses like fussy and fussy leads to results – so everyone is happy”

Training Company of the Year - Forestry
Napier company Logged on Logging owner Clayton Hagen says they are strong supporters of industry training and people development. All 44 of his staff are either in training or have completed a qualification.
Lower accident rates, better health and safety outcomes and improved production rates are some of the results training has delivered to the company.

Trainee of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Born into the sawmilling industry Teresa McKinlay, Office Supervisor at East Coast Lumber Ltd in Gisborne says the industry’s most valuable resource is its people. “Training can transform individuals, companies and their families’ lives, in a positive way” she explains, “building confidence, a sense of pride and mana”.
Teresa applied her learning to workplace challenges. She introduced a cost saving initiative which exceeded targets. The project was a huge success.

Training Company of the Year - Forestry
The JNL Crew 23 in Gisborne use a continuous improvement approach to training. Mark Hunt, the crew foreman, says they have a robust training system which in turn creates a strong workforce, higher job retention and safer working conditions.
“You think training is expensive”, he says “then you want to try not training, that’ll cost you more!”

Health and Safety Initiative
JNL manages forests and wood processing in Gisborne, Wairarapa and Northland. They needed to produce a simple to understand plan of management, specifically written for forestry, to address health, safety and environmental performance requirements.
Senior Supervisor, Martin Brown says that they incorporated the health and safety plan with Juken’s environmental management system and produced one integrated management plan (or IMS). This initiative was recognised at the Eastland Wood Council Forestry Awards earlier this year.

Nelson

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Izaac Filipov is headrig and resaw operator at Nelson Management Ltd, Kaituna Sawmill. He left school at 16 with no qualifications and no direction but when he was offered an apprenticeship at the sawmill he saw an opportunity to turn his life around.
He now aspires to become a future leader in the sawmill and give the opportunities he’s had to others.

Trainee of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
As head saw doctor at Nelson Management Ltd, Kaituna Sawmill, Jamie Howieson leads by example.
“I completed my own apprenticeship and I’m now training up new apprentices” he explains, “teaching others helps me learn and grow myself”.
One of the biggest things he’s learned is how much downtime costs the company. With his teams help, Jamie has managed to knock hours off downtime, making a big cost saving for the company.

Trainee of the Year – Forestry
With over 30 years in the industry Tim Davison from MJ Fraser Logging Ltd in Nelson decided over two years ago that it was time make a training plan, get some good training, take on leadership roles and move into a management situation.
“Training has helped me understand action & reaction and to communicate my ideas with more confidence.”

Training Company of the Year - Forestry
Moutere Logging Limited, Nelson has the majority of their 100 staff in training. Dale Ewers, the owner, says he is passionate and active with training in the company.
“To get your people in the right space and to make your business go forward, you have got to have training” he explains, “training our people comes back and pays us ten times over.”

Health and Safety Initiative
The database records at Moutere Logging Limited in Nelson/Marlborough indicated two main areas of high risk: tree falling and breaking out.
“Tree falling issues had already been addressed by mechanisation so it was decided to mechanise the breaking out for the hauler part of the operation,” explained Dale Ewers the Managing Director, “so a hydraulic grapple carriage was trialled and modified to our needs.”
With no people on the hill breaking out, no person can be injured. Early data shows the grapple carriage is competitive with manual breaker outs.

Health and Safety Initiative
Mike Fraser a Director at Nelson based MJ Fraser Logging Ltd believes identifying and addressing issues is a key component to being proactive in safety and reducing incidents.“I am motivated to have every person go home safe every day” he says.
Together with his managers and company psychologist, Mike has implemented many initiatives including a personal hazard rating classification, a working alone system, “Top Spot” an external audit scheme, individual people development plans and a number of improvements to machinery and design.

Canterbury

Training Company of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Niagara Sawmilling Company Limited has sites in Ashburton and Invercargill where a lean manufacturing culture has been set up over the past two years.
Phillip Towshend, the Office Manager, says 60% of staff have completed a Competitive Manufacturing qualification. “Our training commitment to the future” he explains “is for all new employees to complete a CM qualification”

FITEC Training Leader of the Year
Timaru Forest Manager Barry Wells leads, promotes and manages Blakely Pacific’s training effort. He has facilitated a number of health and safety initiatives with ACC which has had direct impact on reducing serious harm injuries, increasing health and safety culture awareness and increased the uptake and commitment of training.
“I get a thrill seeing guys, with training, move through from a junior in the crew to more senior positions”. Barry is also actively involved in promoting forestry as a career with the University of Canterbury.


FITEC Training Leader of the Year
Phillip Townshend is the Office Manager at Niagara Sawmilling in Ashburton. He’s spent 20 years in different processing plants and manages health & safety training and compliance across two sites in Ashburton and Invercargill.
“The most successful programme has been competitive manufacturing which incorporates real workplace examples into the material” he says. “It’s my firm belief that we need a highly skilled workforce to move forward, especially if we want to compete on the international market”.

Otago

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Forestry
Gareth Williams, from Gamble Forest Harvesting in Dunedin, says his training has given him better communication skills and now he can take a lead role in the crew. He aspires to the position of crew foreman so he can participate in the day-to-day running of the crew and also wants to lean business skills.
Gareth, who is a log maker and general assistant, is also the recipient of the Southern Wood Council Modern Apprentice of the Year 2012.

Trainee of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Kelvin McSkimming from Millstream Lumber in Otago, moved from supervisor at the start of his training to green mill manger. He says the training he received helped him understand a lot of the issues he’d been having giving him more confidence and better communication skills.
Next step for Kelvin is working towards his level 5 national certificate and assessor training. Eventually he would like to become the overall site manager.

Southland

Modern Apprentice of the Year – Wood Manufacturing
Stephen Gray, from Dongwha Patinna in Invercargill, is an MDF technician who operates a computerised sander and grads panels. He saw training as a great opportunity to learn new skills and push his career further.
Stephen wants to continue his training and either become a fitter or engineer as he ‘loves fixing things’ or do a diploma or degree in wood manufacturing.

Trainee of the Year – Furniture
Roderick Hall, Ivan L Bulling Ltd, Invercargill – ‘Display Side Table’
Roderick wanted to design a contemporary piece of furniture that would fit into older style homes but also retain modern elements. Rather than be used for storage, Roderick wanted objects of value to be displayed yet be protected so a glass top was incorporated into the design.
American black walnut and American white oak are the predominant materials used in Roderick’s display table, as well as timber veneer.

ENDS

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