National Advisory Committee for Business Studies (NACBS)

The National Advisory Committee for Business Studies (NACBS) advises NZQA on all matters relating to the New Zealand Diploma in Business (NZDipBus) qualification.  Typically, the committee meets three times a year.

The NACBS consists of nominees from:

  • national business, industry or professional organisations that recognise and support NZDipBus as a qualification (the 'user groups'), and
  • national organisations of educational institutions that are accredited to offer NZDipBus courses ('provider groups’).
Sue Boys Graduate Representative
Kevin Chambers Business New Zealand
Phil Edmondes-Rowe Sales and Marketing Institute of New Zealand
Kay Lion TEO/Academic
Gerry McCullough Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (ITPs)
Wendy Rapana Association of Administrative Professionals New Zealand
Ian Ritchie Co-opted member
Terry Swanson (Chair) Independent Tertiary Education New Zealand
Debbie Stone Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand

Terms of Reference

Adopted by NACBS on 25 June 2008.

Role of NACBS

The role of the National Advisory Committee for Business Studies (NACBS) is to provide industry and education expertise in giving advice to the Qualifications Services (QS) business unit of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) on the New Zealand Diploma in Business (NZDipBus).

Key tasks

The NACBS shall provide advice, with a focus on recommendations to the Qualifications Services (QS) business unit of NZQA, on matters relating to the NZDipBus and its ability to support effective and relevant tertiary education in the 21st century.  This will include:

  • advising on the future direction, structure and development of the NZDipBus in order for the programme to meet the changing needs of New Zealand business and industry
  • identifying and recommending effective models and processes that enable the NZDipBus to support workplace-relevant learning and skills
  • communicating with other business/industry training bodies and organisations, as agreed by the committee (e.g. in order to identify and coordinate learning pathways)
  • initiating the development, revision and approval of prescriptions, including recommending working group members
  • identifying the need for, and recommending changes to, regulations, rules and procedures governing the NZDipBus
  • maintaining an overview of moderation of NZDipBus papers and providing nominations for industry moderators.

The NACBS shall undertake any other activities or advise on any other matters referred to it by NZQA.

These tasks will be undertaken in two ways:

  • meetings
  • liaison and communication between meetings.

Working relationships

The NACBS will work with:

  • National Qualifications Services (NQS), Tertiary Assessment and Moderation (TAM) teams, NZQA
  • Manager, QS business unit, NZQA
  • NZDipBus providers
  • relevant industry and business associations
  • Local Advisory Committees
  • other advisory bodies as appropriate
  • universities and other tertiary organisations.

The NACBS may also have contact with other NZQA staff (e.g. from Approvals and Accreditation and from ITP Sector and Service Support) and contractors, as appropriate.

Review of terms of reference

The NACBS terms of reference will be reviewed by the NACBS and the Deputy Chief Executive, Assessment Division every three years, or when needed, and any amendments confirmed by the NACBS.


The NACBS membership will collectively provide a mix of skills, experience, qualities and knowledge appropriate to business education and the needs of its stakeholders.

Members of the NACBS will be NZDipBus stakeholders, and its membership will be appointed from the following categories:

  • provider representative bodies such as Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics of New Zealand, and Independent Tertiary Education New Zealand
  • professional and industry/business bodies such as Business New Zealand, Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, Institute of Management New Zealand, Human Resource Institute of New Zealand, Financial Services Institute of Australasia, Tourism Industry Association of New Zealand, Association of Administrative Professionals New Zealand Inc., Sales and Marketing Institute of New Zealand, Small Business Association, Chamber of Commerce, Allied Industries Group
  • national organisations that have NZDipBus as part of their training and development structure for staff
  • users of the Diploma qualification, including a recent NZDipBus graduate with relevant business experience.

The need for appropriate balance between industry and providers is noted, and NZQA will monitor this.

Term of appointment

Members will be appointed for a three year term, with no maximum on the number of terms, from nominations against established criteria set by NZQA.

The NACBS may recommend additional representation from organisations and associations according to need.

Membership of the committee can be expanded, when required, with the co-option of up to two members at any one time.  The reasoning and term for co-opting members must be specified.

Members may be represented by alternates with full voting rights.  Alternates must be endorsed by the representative body and NZQA.

Members may bring a support person with technical expertise for specific agenda items at the representative body's expense.

Membership selection criteria

Members should have relevant skills appropriate to their representative capacity.  This is based on an appropriate combination of the following:

  • commitment to business education and an awareness of current education issues
  • curriculum knowledge
  • NZDipBus delivery and assessment experience
  • strong communication skills
  • pragmatic ability to enhance industry/provider partnership
  • membership of a stakeholder group and credibility within that group
  • an awareness and commitment of Māori and Pasifika educational issues
  • awareness of international/global educational trends and issues
  • knowledge of strategic planning and a future focus
  • knowledge and involvement with the New Zealand Qualifications Framework.



Every three years NZQA will seek NACBS advice in order to determine desirable committee representation and identify gaps in membership.

To fill identified gaps or to replace members who resign or who are released, NZQA:

  • contacts appropriate organisations/bodies to request a nominee/nominees
  • requests a profile of each nominee against the established membership criteria
  • evaluates the profiles and appoints new members, as appropriate.

Organisations/bodies of members who have served for three years will be asked to reconfirm that representative for a further term, or provide a new nominee.

Chairperson and deputy

After nominations and the recommendation of the NACBS, NZQA will appoint the chairperson and deputy chairperson from the NACBS membership.

The criteria for appointment will be the ability of the chairperson/deputy to achieve outcomes consistent with its terms of reference and the ability to achieve effective working relationships within the NACBS, with NZQA and with NZDipBus stakeholders.

The term of the appointment will be for a three (3) year term.

Responsibilities of members

The chairperson/deputy chairperson:

  • ensures that all members contribute at meetings and seeks decision-making by consensus
  • leads meetings effectively
  • sets and adheres to meeting protocols and ground rules
  • liaises with Qualifications Development Facilitator, QS, in preparation of agenda papers, schedule of meetings and meeting records
  • ensures that minutes properly reflect decisions.

All committee members:

  • contribute positively and openly to the work of the group
  • maintain regular attendance
  • respond to communiqué's
  • are prepared and informed
  • consult with and report to, as appropriate, the stakeholders they represent regarding NZDipBus matters
  • provide a channel of communication for other relevant industry groups/organisations, as appropriate.

Meeting protocols

Meetings are:

  • semi-formal
  • interactive
  • outcomes focused
  • results orientated
  • consensus driven
  • constructive
  • open and honest
  • structured to achieve key actions and decisions.

A quorum for decision making is half the committee plus one.

The NACBS should regularly review and assess its own performance.

Sub-committees and task groups

NACBS may recommend to NZQA the setting up of sub-committees and short-life working groups to carry out specific tasks as required.  When a working group is established, its terms of reference and its powers, duties, reporting procedures, membership and duration of office should be clearly recorded.

Responsibilities of NZQA staff

NZQA staff:

  • prepare a schedule of meetings in liaison with Chairperson, in accordance with approved project and business plans, standard-setting priorities and budgets
  • organise meetings
  • attend and contribute to the business of meetings, as appropriate
  • keep meeting records
  • work with the Chairperson to ensure agenda papers and consultation documents are prepared and disseminated in a timely manner (including background papers, analysis of issues, and recommendations to the committee)
  • ensure that the NACBS receives appropriate information and advice to undertake its role and make decisions effectively
  • ensure regular and effective consultation and communication with NZDipBus stakeholders regarding NACBS meeting outcomes.

Disestablishment of NACBS

The NACBS may be disestablished by the NZQA Board at any stage following consultation with the Deputy Chief Executive, Assessment Division and the Manager, QS and consideration of strategic directions, progress against approved business plans or other NZQA imperative.  NACBS members will be informed prior to any decision to disestablish.

The Board can disestablish the NACBS if it has become inactive or ineffective in meeting its terms of reference.  If the NACBS is disestablished, the Board will need to consider putting in place an alternative mechanism for carrying out the current key tasks identified in these terms of reference.

Release of members

The Manager, Qualifications Services, in consultation with the Chairperson of the NACBS, may release an individual from membership as a result of failure to meet the stated responsibilities.


NZQA will provide to NACBS members:

  • actual and reasonable travel, accommodation and catering
  • reimbursement, on the production of required documentation, of relevant and agreed costs
  • detailed information and analysis prior to meetings, giving sufficient time for members to consult and consider material
  • agendas and papers distributed 10 days in advance of meetings
  • draft minutes distributed to members within 15 working days after meetings.

Reporting requirements

NACBS activities will be reported and noted at TAM and QS meetings.  Issues identified by the NACBS as relevant to other NZQA units will be reported to those units.


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