Update from the Manager, Standards NZ

Carmen 123

Welcome to our last update for 2019 on what’s been going on in the life of Standards New Zealand. It’s good to look back and recognise milestones and accomplishments over the past 12 months and even more so to look forward to what the New Year will bring.

Key highlights from 2019

Removing barriers in the building system. Over 120 building standards used for Building Code compliance were funded for free download thanks to a successful collaboration between MBIE and Standards New Zealand. We’re working with the Building Systems Performance team in MBIE on similar future opportunities.

In another pre-funded arrangement, MBIE has sponsored the self-containment standard NZS 5465:2001 for free download. The insulation standard NZS 4246:2016 is also now available for free download on our website.

Joint Committee Member Training Workshop. We and Standards Australia jointly presented a successful first-ever two-day Joint Committee Member Training Workshop in Wellington. It gave joint committee members valuable up-to-date information on best practice for writing standards.

Techweek. We hosted a well-supported event for Techweek 2019, where our expert panel discussed the role of standards in the digital economy under the topic, 'Are we innovating for the best or is it the Wild West?'

PASC roundtables. We hosted two roundtables in parallel with the 2019 Pacific Area Standards Congress (PASC)-International Organization for Standardization (ISO) workshop in Wellington. They provided a unique opportunity for local business, government and industry leaders to meet with executives from the ISO and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

World Standards Day. We celebrated this year with an expo at our Wellington offices, together with various standards-related organisations. It was an excellent opportunity for attendees to learn more about New Zealand’s quality infrastructure: standards, accreditation, measurement and conformance. Informative workshops were held in parallel and the day concluded with a recognition ceremony for retiring standards committee members.

Pre-funding of standards-related services. We signed three-year agreements this year with Worksafe New Zealand and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA). They provide for a range of services to support local, trans-Tasman and international standards and are great examples of the benefits of working with key partners on longer-term programmes of work.

Looking ahead to 2020

New website. Our website and e-commerce webshop are undergoing a revamp and are due for launch in March next year. The website includes a new collaboration tool for standards committee members.

The digital conversion of our catalogue of New Zealand standards into XML format is now underway. XML is a platform-independent standard for word processing documents and allows for the future publishing of standards in a variety of digital formats and ePublications.

We have added environment and climate change to our list of priority sectors, to ensure we stay up to date and relevant with multiple agencies and industries in this evolving space. We are also playing an active role in a number of industry transformation plans (ITPs) led by MBIE, which includes both the digital technologies and agritech ITPs.

Standards development. Our team is working with the Ministry of Health to revise a suite of standards in the health and disability and fertility services areas. We are also initiating several standards development projects with BSP, the building regulator within MBIE. Several scoping workshops are coming up in the New Year, as we work with industry and regulators to develop hydrogen as a fuel and as a demand response for electricity. Compostable packaging is also on our programme of work.

If you’d like to talk to us about developing standards, or digital access options, please get in touch.

Wishing you and yours a relaxing holiday. We look forward to working with you in the New Year.

Carmen Mak
Manager, Standards New Zealand

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