BRANZ walks the talk

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

As BRANZ em­ploy­ees look to pro­vide up- to- date in­for­ma­tion on is­sues af­fect­ing the build­ing in­dus­try, they can’t have too many com­plaints about work­ing con­di­tions.

The Judge­ford- based com­pany opened the $11.4 mil­lion state-of-theart ‘‘To­tara’’ build­ing ear­lier this year, where many of the ad­min­is­tra­tion, pub­lish­ing, fi­nance, mar­ket­ing and se­nior man­age­ment are housed.

The de­sign, which has the lat­est heat­ing and cool­ing tech­nolo­gies, brings them for­ward from their ‘‘sta­teof-the-ark’’ of­fices that had ex­isted for 30 years, says qual­ity and en­v­i­ron- men­tal man­ager Don Richards.

The com­pany strives to use the most en­ergy-ef­fi­cient work­place prac­tices pos­si­ble.

‘‘It’s ex­ceeded our ex­pec­ta­tions, the ar­chi­tects [War­ren and Ma­honey] and con­trac­tor [Fletcher Build­ing] have really made some­thing spe­cial.

‘‘We are in the build­ing mar­ket­place and we need to be seen to be a leader in in­no­va­tion. It’s im­por­tant our mes­sage is con­sis­tent and we’re seen to be walking the talk.’’

The To­tara build­ing’s cen­tre­piece is the cafe­te­ria and recre­ation area, with chairs, pool and ping-pong ta­bles.

‘‘ We want to make the work en­vi­ron­ment as good as pos­si­ble. We want staff to so­cialise and we’ve cre­ated the chance to do that.’’

BRANZ in­tends to up­grade its test­ing ar­eas and labs, and its waste­water treat­ment plant.

To put a pos­i­tive full stop on the To­tara up­grade, War­ren and Ma­honey were re­cently given two gongs at the New Zealand In­sti­tute of Ar­chi­tects re­gional awards, in the com­mer­cial and sus­tain­able cat­e­gories.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Pi­eter Burgh­out says BRANZ is now work­ing on re­build­ing Christchurch’s res­i­den­tial sub­urbs with ef­fec­tive ma­te­ri­als and prac­tices; the dura­bil­ity of in­dus­try prod­ucts; weath­er­tight­ness so­lu­tions; and com­bat­ing mois­ture in homes.

Rec room: BRANZ’s qual­ity and en­vi­ron­men­tal man­ager Don Richards in the recre­ation space in the To­tara build­ing, where em­ploy­ees can so­cialise in their down­time.

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