The Waitaki Resource Recovery Trust, holds the fund for the contract with the Tertiary Education Commission. Supervisor, Rob Jordan said they started the programme after recognising the need to upskill workers. “We had one guy whose attendance and timekeeping was hopeless. He now gets to work an hour early, makes eye contact, talks and wants to engage with others,” says Rob. “His time keeping is fantastic. He’s gone on to do his driver’s licence, sets targets for work and meets them. He’s also now the best health and safety person as he looks at the whole picture.”

Rob has notice a general change in the team after literacy and numeracy training. “Everyone is a bit more bubbly,” says Rob. “If morale improves, customer service improves. There’s still a bit of reluctance from some, but absenteeism has improved dramatically. People have pride in their work and want to be part of it.”

Gillies Metaltech is a manufacturer of cast ferrous fittings, valve systems and special purpose pumps. While their workers are technically qualified, the written communication needed work. “The co-ordinators can all do their job, but we wanted them to write better reports – get all the information across,” says Operations Manger, Noel Ward, who says the reports have improved hugely, and co-ordinators are now taking turns to chair meetings, “They have the confidence to do this.”