Assuring a high-quality training and assessment framework.

The Assurance Team is responsible for ensuring that assessors make valid assessment decisions and that learners meet the required standard when they are awarded a Waihanga Ara standard, qualification, or micro-credential.

You can keep up to date with our assurance work by joining the mailing list for our quarterly quality assurance e-newsletter. Sign up now!

There are two teams dedicated to the assurance mahi:

  • The Infrastructure Team/Ohu Hanga Pūnaha is led by Rachelle McNabney, who is assisted by Jeremy Busby, Kashif Ahmed, Reena Patel, Stephen Bocock, Deanne Decke, and Imi Niluthpala. This team support the Access Trades, Civil Infrastructure, Electricity Supply, Electrotechnology, Gas Infrastructure, Plumbing, Gasfitting and Drainlaying, Professional Services, and Water Services sectors.
  • The Construction Team/Ohu Mahi Waihanga is led by Helen Finlayson, who is assisted by Hannah Clark, Leah Lacey, Katy Cottrell, Nikki Laby, Terri Waerea, Tim Reid, and Amy Morris. They support the On-site Construction, Off-Site Construction, and Finishing Trades sectors.

Mike Grumball (GM Assurance), Joy Potter (Insights and Projects Manager) and Te Hapimana King (Mātauranga & Te Reo Māori Assurance Manager) complete the Assurance Team.


The national external moderation system provides assurance in the quality of programme delivery and assessment carried out by organisations with consent to assess.

Consent to assess

Providers (including schools) must apply to NZQA for consent to assess any unit standards they intend to assess and meet the requirements of the appropriate Consent and Moderation Requirements. Applications to NZQA must be supported by the relevant Workforce Development Council.

Capstone unit standards

Capstone standards have been put in place for the Electricity Supply Industry (ESI) and Electrical to ensure national consistency for the assessment of standards carried out through providers or work-based learning.

Information for schools

Building, Construction and Allied Trades Skills (BCATS) are a suite of Level 1–3-unit standards registered on the NZQCF that are tailor-made for schools.

Programme endorsements

Providers must apply to NZQA for programme approval for programmes that lead to a qualification listed on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF).

For vocational qualifications, you must also gain programme endorsement from a Workforce Development Council (WDC) prior to submitting your programme to NZQA for approval.

Register new micro-credentials

Workforce Development Council support is now required before providers can seek NZQA approval for micro-credentials.

Assurance webinars and workshops in 2024

We are holding a series of webinars and workshops for schools and providers. Unless specified as suited to a particular audience group, our events are open to everyone, and we encourage you to attend.

Assurance Plan

The 2024 Assurance Plan builds on the work we started in 2023 and the reflection undertaken by our Assurance Team at the end of 2023. The plan outlines our approach, principles, and deliverables for 2024. It reflects our collaborative and evaluative approach with a focus on continuous improvement. The plan is embedded with the principles of Mātauranga Māori through our Tēnei Te Ara Poutama framework, which has been designed specifically for the Assurance Team.

We will continue the work we started in 2023 through a series of projects where we will work with industry and providers to continuously improve the outcomes for both industry and ākonga by making small incremental changes that will add up to significant change over time. If you want to know more, follow the link to our 2024 Assurance Plan. If you have any questions, queries, or suggestions, please email Mike Grumball (GM Assurance).