Know your stuff: On-the-job learning for LBPs

Posted: 23 March 2017

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As more licensed building practitioners (LBPs) transition into the new skills maintenance system introduced in November 2015, we are receiving more queries about the on-the-job learning component of the LBP scheme. It is important LBPs have a good understanding of this, so we’ve put together information to explain how on-the-job learning works.
Article is relevant to all LBP licence classes.


By way of a reminder, on-the-job learning was introduced as a simple method of recording naturally occurring learning that has taken place during your everyday work on-site or in the design office. Many LBPs are practical people and learn by doing, rather than by sitting in a classroom. The LBP licence class competencies have been written to reflect this, requiring action and the application of a skill in order to demonstrate understanding. For example, requiring LBPs to construct, install, fabricate, prepare, fix, set out or erect by way of ‘performance indicators’.

Where do I start?

The following table provides some useful pointers and questions you might wish to consider to recognise and harness on-the-job-learnings.

Question Guidance Examples
Have I done anything lately that extended my knowledge base or tested my thinking in relation to my work? If you have come up against a new and/or complex task that caused you to take stock and read the plans several times before launching into a particular task then this might be a good example of on-the-job learning.
  • Prepare, set out and construct a complex engineered foundation system
  • Design or construct a fire-rated, sound-rated and diaphragm ceiling
  • Design or construct a house in an extra-high or specific engineering design wind zone
  • Fix a new drained and ventilated wall cladding system
  • Install a new roofing profile
Have I used a new product, material or method of construction lately? Often new products require you to review plans, specifications or product literature. You may even contact the manufacturer for guidance on how to install the product. This is a valid example of learning that can be used to meet this requirement. This could be in the design office or on-site.
  • Install a new bracing system (eg wall, ceiling, floor)
  • Prepare deck framing for a new proprietary balustrade system (eg new fixings, strapping blocking and joist layout to accommodate the balustrade)
  • Fit a new insulation product
Have I attended a trade talk or ‘builders’ breakfast’ where a new product, material or regulatory requirement has been presented? If you have attended a trade talk and later used the product or practice in question this is an example of on-the-job learning.
  • Install a new window and flashing system
  • Fix ‘Grade E mesh’ in a raft slab
  • Fit a new generation ‘internal vapour management’ or ‘airtightness system’
  • Comply with a new health and safety requirement on-site
Have I failed a council building inspection that caused me to revisit a piece of work? A failed inspection or request for information (RFI) can lead to a legitimate learning.
  • Remove and replace non-compliant flashings
  • Answer an RFI (eg design a junction detail between two dissimilar cladding types)
  • Install additional brick ties to comply with consented drawings
  • Adjust cavity construction to comply with the Building Code
I don’t work on the tools anymore. How do I meet this requirement? Supervision, site management, interpreting drawings and applying learnings on regulatory compliance can all be utilised by those who are no longer actively working on the tools.
  • Implementing the 2015 consumer protection measures (completing disclosure and contract requirements for the first time)
  • Mentoring/supervising staff when they are installing a new product or method on site
  • Running site safety training sessions – implement a new health and safety requirement
  • Learning about and then inspecting the installation of a new product or method of construction (eg recent changes to NZS 4223 for barriers, passive build, SED foundation, alternative solution)
  • Providing on-site technical guidance about some building work using a new product or method of construction that you were previously unfamiliar with

How do I keep track of my learning?

On-the-job-learning is not about creating more administrative work for you. Rather it is about harvesting learning opportunities that arise during your everyday work. Here are some handy ways of keeping track of what you’ve learned:

  • Go to and either:
    • download, complete and submit the Record of Learning form
    • submit your learning activity through the LBP portal
  • Provide a relevant record of work or certificate of design as evidence.
  • Take a photo (this is an easy way to create a record to file later).
  • Use one of the industry-led apps to record your activities – these are widely available.


1. Why was on-the-job-learning introduced in 2015?

a. So that legitimate learning occurring on the job can be easily captured.
b. So your boss can keep tabs on you.
c. To increase the administrative burden of being an LBP.

2. Does on-the-job-learning only relate to technical competence?

a. Yes.
b. No. It can also relate to health and safety, regulatory knowledge and any other relevant part of performing your role.

3. Where can I learn more about on-the-job learning?

a. In the builders’ omnibus 2017.
b. On or contact the MBIE service centre on 0800 24 22 43.
c. In the Dominion Post or the New Zealand Herald.

4. Can I use a record of work or certificate of design as evidence of doing something new where I have learnt something?

a. Yes, simply retain the record as evidence.
b. No, neither can be used.
c. Maybe, but it depends if I have a site licence or not.

Check your answers

This information is published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Chief Executive. It is a general guide only and, if used, does not relieve any person of the obligation to consider any matter to which the information relates according to the circumstances of the particular case. Expert advice may be required in specific circumstances. Where this information relates to assisting people: