Achieving national consistency - our role in shaping the future of consenting in New Zealand

Last month, we discussed the importance of bringing consistency to the industry. Here's an update on what we have been doing behind the scenes to help bring this vision to life.

The lack of national consistency has been a major problem in the building consent system for many years and is now agreed by all stakeholders (including MBIE) as the key issue to be addressed.

As you are aware, we have been reviewing IANZ report outcomes since July 2023.

Insight from the wide visibility of non-compliances is being utilised in forming decisions for solutions via the customer support process. This insight is also utilised in conversations for workplans and roadmaps relating to enhancements, sprint releases and future development.

Information and knowledge from the IANZ assessment reviews assist in ensuring that developments are aligned to Objective Build's four pillars: Consistency, Transparency, Quality and Efficiency.

Regular meetings have been established with MBIE to discuss areas requiring clarification and guidance.  This clarification is essential for national consistency.  Regular MBIE engagement will also ensure that Objective are recognised as a key partner in the overall building consent system and included as a key stakeholder with future national policy direction.

Where it is appropriate enhancement opportunities identified through the IANZ assessment review process are incorporated into Sprint releases or BAU support resolutions, providing timely, efficient product improvements to customers.

During November 2023 Objective engaged and requested clarification from MBIE on the following topics:

  • RFI clock management
  • Payment of fees process at BC and CCC issue
  • Customer withdrawal of an application process

Development of the RFI clock management is already identified on the road map for January – March 2024. 

The MBIE response in relation to the RFI clock was that there is no allowance for ‘assessment’ of the information in the suspension period. The clock starts the day after the information is received.  We will be using this feedback in our development of an automated solution.

Further response from MBIE have confirmed that there is change required to the legislation to eliminate the issues around separating the payment of fees and the clock management and the need to provide an avenue for the withdrawal/cancellation of a consent.  This is good news although the changes may take some time due to the process involved.

In the meantime, MBIE are advising that the BCA proceed towards separating the clock management from the payment process for both BC and CCC issue.  

The next topic for clarification is the CCC end to end process which encompasses multiple areas that generate non compliances during accreditation audits.

We will continue to keep you all update on new developments or progress in this space. If you missed last month's blog, you can read it here.