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Industry voice vital to primary industry training



Industry voice vital to primary industry training

As the Primary Industry Training Organisation (Primary ITO) moves towards its first anniversary, the organisation’s new governance structure continues to go from strength to strength. Primary ITO is the industry training provider for the primary industries and is dedicated to ensuring the voice of industry is heard through Industry Partnership Groups (IPGs).

When Agriculture Industry Training Organisation (AgITO ) merged with NZ Horticulture Industry Training Organisation (Hort ITO) in October 2012, it provided the opportunity to review the governance structure of the newly established organisation. Also included in the new Primary ITO are Equine Industry Training (Equine IT), Water Industry Training (Water IT) and the NZ Sports Turf Industry Training Organisation (NZ Sports Turf ITO).

As the Primary ITO came to fruition a new constitution was adopted to ensure the many industries the organisation was serving were well represented, from dairy to equine to viticulture to water.

Kevin Bryant, Chief Executive of Primary ITO explains about the role of the IPGs.

“The IPG’s core function is to ensure industry training requirements are heard and met by the ITO and via representation on the National Advisory Group, by the board. The focus of each IPG is the training needs of their industry. New Zealand’s primary industry is essential to our economy and as its industry training organisation, the key to our ongoing success is working alongside well-connected industry people to deliver on our mandate.”

“Growing human capability through facilitating the delivery and assessment of industry best practice in current and future skills and knowledge required a very wide primary industry base.”

“Members belong to IPG’s to represent their industry needs, such as providing consultation on product and qualifications development and on helping the ITO understand current and future training needs in the sector the IPG represents,” Mr Bryant says.

IPG’s will also dictate the Directors that are selected for the board, so industry perspective continues to be a determinant factor in Director make-up.

There are no limits to the number of IPGs, but member numbers of each IPG are limited to 15 representatives. New industries, with the approval of the board, are able to join and form their own IPG and share equal rights and benefits with others.

Mr Bryant continues “Our wider industry people and bodies are enthusiastic about the IPG’s and are not only supporting via representative slots on IPG’s but also encouraging participation with their regional groups (for example Dairy Women’s Network groups, Federated Farmers regional groups and the Nursery & Garden Industry Association of NZ) to ensure IPG members can effectively speak with people on the ground in all regions and represent their needs.”

“This change of constitution does mean that the formal structure of a Regional Committee that existed in the former AgITO is no longer required. However, those people who support us at a local level, who network well, are advocates of our training and feedback directly to us or via the Industry Partnership Group (IPG) are essential going forward. We hope that the members of the committees will continue this association with the ITO, albeit in a different structural context,” Mr Bryant concludes.

Presently, there are 12 approved IPGs established, representing 90% of all Primary ITO trainees. Further IPGs to represent the remaining 10% of trainees are in their development stages and will be confirmed over the next month.

“In 2013, Primary ITO is focused on ensuring the IPG’s are operating effectively, supporting grass roots activity and delivering world-class training and support to employers and trainees in New Zealand’s most important industry. We’re thrilled with the response from industry towards the IPGs and we look forward to the future.”


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