Building Officials Institute of New Zealand – Celebrating Improving the Quality and Performance of the Built Environment for 50 Years
The origins of the Building Officials Institute of New Zealand (BOINZ) go back to the New Zealand Institute of Building Inspectors Inc (NZIBI), which was formed in 1967 in Christchurch. In 1997, NZIBI became BOINZ, and soon after, in 1998 it amalgamated with the Institute of New Zealand Plumbing and Drainage Inspectors Inc, and then in 2002 with the New Zealand Institute of Clerk of Works.
Today, the Institute’s core work is providing effective industry leadership and advocacy, with a focus on professional consistency through quality training and education programmes, ensuring members’ compliance with legislation, keeping them up to date with relevant products and services, providing opportunities for networking, the development of industry partnerships, and working closely with government agencies on the development of new industry standards. “When it comes to new standards development, we offer contributions and often put people forward for technical committees,” says Kerry Walsh, current President of the Institute.
As the industry’s peak body, BOINZ’s primary objective is to raise the status and advance the interests of the profession of building surveyors with in New Zealand. It is committed to ensuring the quality of New Zealand’s buildings meet the requirements of the community and their occupiers. Poor quality building options are not acceptable and all involved in the building industry need an acute awareness of the Building Code and associated regulations, ensuring the community has overall faith in New Zealand’s building stock.
During February/March 2011 the Institute performed a most valuable task in the co-ordination of over 400 Building Surveyors into Christchurch immediately following the 22 February earthquake, at no cost to the community. The exercise code in conjunction with CCC and DBH was named Operation Suburb and was a significant logistic exercise recruiting Building Surveyors from across the country. It involved the inspection of some seventy thousand plus residential properties in the greater Christchurch area.
BOINZ provides support and keeps in regular contact with its members through a range of initiatives, including monthly e-newsletters, e-news bulletins, which share special or urgent news, and its Straight Up magazine which may include everything from general industry updates and news, through to member profiles, and legislative information. Regular training and networking events are conducted by the Institute at a local level through its branch network, but its two main annual events: its annual conference and a specific Senior Building Officers’ Forum are where members and industry look to understand the current and future direction of the wider built sector. Kerry says BOINZ’s 2017 focus on its 50th anniversary conference at the Langham Hotel in Auckland in May is significant.
This year’s event will be justifiably higher profile than the traditional Institute annual conference covering the past but also be very future focused. The interactive Senior Building Control Officers (SBCO) Forum in August will also challenge the Building Control element of our membership to focus on trends and the requirement to plan for future needs of the industry.
The Conference and Expo is considered a ‘must attend’ event for all involved in building surveying whether it be building control, pre-purchase property inspection or specialist building inspection and advice. The Institute’s conferences also attract significant attendances from Government, architects and engineers, as well as builders and developers and other stakeholders.
Part of the conference programme is about celebrating our member’s success. “We also accept nominations for our Excellence Awards, which is a great way to recognise and acknowledge members who have stood out and made a difference within the building control sector. This year we have again, received many entries and it is quite inspirational to read about the achievements and dedication of our members, and to celebrate and share the joy with the winners when they are announced at the Conference Gala Dinner.”
The conference technical programme is specifically designed to expand participants’ knowledge and industry awareness. An often-overlooked benefit is the networking opportunity, which greatly assists members’ ability to access others experiences and advantage their daily roles in one of New Zealand’s most complex industry’s environments.
Running in tandem with the Conference is a significant Exposition where leading industry suppliers have a valuable opportunity to interact with our building surveyors, giving them a better understanding of product and system technical requirements, thus ensuring and promoting the professionalism of the wider sector.
The ability to ensure compliance, and direct the design and construction sector to access the right information to achieve a “getting it right outcome” not only for them as a practitioner but also for the ultimate end customer is what independent 3rd party assessment (building surveying) is all about. The ability for BOINZ members and industry suppliers to meet and exchange knowledge on products and services is a fundamental platform to guaranteeing the quality of the country’s building stock.
And to top off what will be a big 2017, BOINZ is proud to support the Auckland Build event to be held in November. Given the Institute’s vision of ‘Improving the Quality and Performance of the Built Environment’, we believe the LGNZ Conference and the Auckland Build events which BOINZ will be attending, are further valuable networking opportunities, allowing attendees to benefit in terms of building code knowledge and thus business advantage.