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Organisational health indicators

NZQA’s Board, Strategic Management Team and business unit managers undertake regular monitoring of NZQA’s performance against service productivity and organisational capability targets.

Some of the higher-level organisational health indicators annual results are provided below.

Organisational health indicator results

org health indicators

Towards a bilingual future 2020

NZQA has the goal of ‘Te anga whakamua ki te reoruatanga 2020’ (Towards a bilingual future 2020). Our commitment to supporting employees with their te reo Māori journey has intensified over the last year. Six new activities designed to lift capability and understanding of tikanga me ona te reo Māori have been introduced, these are: Te Kākano Reo Māori; Te Kākano Tikanga Māori; Te Māhuri Reo Māori; Karakia; Kokonga Kōrero; and Waiata sessions. The new activities are in addition to the current imbedded activities of language classes, tikanga workshops, marae visits and whakatau for new employees. Additional changes have been made to the NZQA App, Te Puāwai, to include the ability to capture personal development plans. NZQA has also entered into an agreement with Te Taura Whiri i te reo Māori. This Mahi Tahi agreement will see us share our knowledge and resources, and in turn, draw on the experience of Te Taura Whiri i te reo Māori.

Our People Plan 2019-2020

NZQA employees play a critical role in the achievement of our organisational goal to ensure learners experience equitable access to, and outcomes through, assessment and quality assured tertiary education. NZQA supports the development of its employees to ensure NZQA continues to provide quality services to our stakeholders. During this period NZQA refined its People Plan strategic focus areas to ensure relevance and alignment with overall organisational goals. These strategic focus areas have been simplified to:

  • Equity focused
  • Learner and customer centred.

These strategic focus areas are further supported by the following skill set expectations:

  • Innovative
  • Evidence based and results focused
  • Programme and project management capable
  • Digitally capable
  • Change enabled.

We continue to roll out activities under our People Plan which supports NZQA to have a high calibre, engaged and agile workforce. This is achieved through three key work streams: Consolidating and stretching our skills and capabilities (ways of Learning), Strengthening our leadership and management expertise (ways of Being), and enhancing our performance and culture (ways of Working).

NZQA’s People Plan deliverables for this year have included:

  • Secondment opportunities (internal and external)
  • Retirement planning workshops
  • Pasifika cultural awareness workshops
  • Health and safety training (including first aid)
  • Career development workshop
  • Leadership group hui and management workshops.

Measuring our organisation health and capability

Customer-centred service design and delivery

NZQA continues to use a variety of ways to receive feedback from customers.

We realise that for many customer groups face to face engagement is the most productive way to hear what they have to say. As an example, during the 2018/2019 year several workshops were held with our Pasifika ‘STEM Ambassadors’ (high achieving students engaged in tertiary study in STEM). Insights from these sessions have been used to inform the development of some early prototypes of innovative assessment.

We are piloting a survey and analytics tool that will enable us to get real time results, analysis and insights from both our regular customer satisfaction surveys and focused pulse surveys. Analysis can be targeted for particular customer roles and readily shared with the NZQA teams supporting those customers.

Our Call Centre has been upgraded with new software that integrates phone and email communication. The analytics enable greater insights into customer interactions and will support us to structure our services to better meet demand.

NZQA as a good employer and good employer activities

NZQA’s People Plan continues to be our core workforce capability plan which is used to drive and position the organisation to successfully deliver our key organisational goals. This plan supports our commitment to be a good employer and continues to embed the principles of Equal Employment Opportunities (EEO) into our work. NZQA has achieved 100 percent compliance on the reporting of our EEO programme. Critical to this success is the integration into the People Plan of the capability building workstreams of our Te Kōkiritanga14 and Takiala Pasifika15 strategies. Employees were involved in co-designing the new iteration of the People Plan through workshops, interviews, surveys and feedback galleries.

Regular workforce reporting and monitoring was conducted ensuring we were delivering what we intended to, and at the same time took into consideration the changing needs of our employees. NZQA continues to support employees looking to continue study (lifelong learning) and fulfil professional development accreditation activities. 

Regular collaboration and consultation continues to occur with union representatives.

NZQA workforce profile as at 30 June 2019

As at 30 June 2019, NZQA had 418 full time equivalent employees. The NZQA workforce profile by gender, ethnicity and age is outlined in the tables below. NZQA collects data on staff with disabilities and responds to their individual needs as required. NZQA has an updated Evacuations Staff List that identifies staff with temporary and/ or permanent disabilities who will need support in an emergency. This list is updated on a monthly basis and is monitored by a health and safety representative.

NZQA employs an additional workforce of up to 6,500 to manage the annual examination cycle.

Gender of staff as at 30 June 2019

staff gender


This year has seen a slight increase in the proportion of female staff (60 percent compared to 56 percent as at June 2018). Note that staff who do not declare their gender are excluded from these percentages.

Ethnicity of staff as at 30 June 2019

staff ethnicity


NZQA continues to focus on maintaining a diverse workforce. In 2018/19 the proportion of both Māori and Pasifika staff was maintained. Note that staff who do not declare their ethnicity are not counted in these percentages.

Age of staff (in 10 year groupings) as at 30 June 2019

staff age

A large proportion of NZQA’s workforce (45.8 percent) is between 40 years and 59 years. The proportion of staff in the 60+ years decreased slightly from 21.6 percent in 2017/18 to 20.6 percent in 2018/19. The majority of Māori and Pasifika staff fall within the age grouping of 40-59 years.

Workforce planning and active use of flexible working arrangements are used to respond and manage workforce demographics. Note that staff who have not declared their age are not counted in these percentages.

Health and safety

NZQA is committed to providing a safe workplace and meeting our responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015. Key activities that NZQA has undertaken to meet these responsibilities in 2018/19 were:

  • raising awareness of mental health issues through running a Mental Health and Wellbeing at work week
  • a focus on employee wellness and wellbeing promotions throughout the year
  • the purchase of an online health and safety system which will enable easy reporting of incidents, accidents and near misses, and also assist with the identification of trends to help NZQA help minimise risk.

The Board and Strategic Management Team continue to regularly review health and safety performance indicators and are provided with updates about activities. The Health and Safety Committee includes a nominated union representative.

New Zealand business number

NZQA continued to consider the New Zealand Business Number and its inclusion in appropriate information systems. The invoicing system has the ability to include this number and we will factor its inclusion into specifications for new systems that hold organisation and/or business information.

Risk management

NZQA actively identifies and manages risks, and its work programmes are managed proactively in response to both inherent and emerging risks.

The Strategic Management Team monitors risks monthly and reports them to the Board according to the mitigated level of risk.

Risks affecting the strategic, operational, and transformational objectives of NZQA are systematically identified, assessed and treated as an integral part of doing business, in accordance with a defined risk appetite.

Our goal is to achieve sustained benefit through improved decision-making, performance and accountability.

NZQA’s approach to risk management was reviewed during the first quarter and is consistent with the Joint Australian/New Zealand International Standard for Risk Management (AS/NZS ISO 31000:2009).



14 Te Kōkiritanga is NZQA’s Māori Strategic Action Plan setting out the strategic direction NZQA will take to ensure Māori learners enjoy and achieve education success as Māori.

15 Takiala Pasifika is NZQA’s Pasifika Strategic Action Plan setting out the strategic goals for Pasifika learners.


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