Step 3: Undertake the assessment

Assessment is the critical part of industry training. It's how you know your people have picked up the skills they need for their roles. It’s where all their hard work can be demonstrated.     

How assessment happens

Our assessment process is all about getting skilled people to make professional judgments on the trainee's competency, measured against the qualification standards.

Assessors are looking for staff to demonstrate the skills and knowledge that is required of the qualification, in their day-to-day work. 

Because our qualifications are hands-on, evidence collection is a vital part of assessment. This can mean observing, recording and verifying information that occurs naturally in the workplace.

Evidence  of competency can be gathered in different ways.

For example: someone in the workplace observing a trainee’s normal day-to-day work; capturing information from the workplace’s records; having someone verify that the trainee has picked up certain skills; and capturing verbal discussions. 

Assessment and evidence collection is usually carried out in the workplace and happens over a period of time. 

Qualifications typically take 6-12 months, and apprenticeships take 1-3 years to complete.

Assessment is a big job, and requires the support of lots of people! Helping put these systems in place is what we're here for.

It’s important for the assessment model to be sorted out up front. This ensures that your staff don’t get left in the lurch.

Recognition of current competency

Some people may be able to gain a formal qualification that recognises the skills and knowledge they already have in a specific role

If this is the case, they may not need to complete the training and assessments over a period of time. Instead, they will need to provide a Skills Active assessor with a portfolio of evidence that demonstrates their skills and knowledge that are relevant to the specific qualification.  

To learn more about this option, read our guidelines and contact one of our regional advisors.


Assessors are qualified industry experts who work with trainees to ensure their skills and experience are recognised.  

Assessors oversee the formal assessment process and are either employed and assess within their own workplace, or work independently as contractors.  

During the set-up phase, we work with you to determine the best assessment model for you and your staff. This might mean training some of your own staff to become assessors, or bringing in the services of an assessor.  

Evidence verifiers  

As well as assessors, managers or supervisors will often play a big role in the assessment process, by observing, recording and verifying evidence for the assessor.   

They usually carry out this role where an assessor is not present while a trainee carries out tasks, or when they are better suited to observe a trainee consistently and repeatedly performing assessment tasks. 

Completing assessment tasks   

Once your staff have completed their assessment tasks, and their assessor has deemed them competent, the credits for each unit standard they complete are sent to NZQA where they are added to their Record of Achievement.

Once they have achieved all of the required unit standards, they will be recognised with a national qualification!  

For more information about assessment, check out our Assessors section. 


Next step? Reward! Recognise! And pathway!  

Why develop your staff?

Upskilling your staff is a great way to strengthen your business and team, by making sure everyone has sufficient skills and knowledge to shine in their roles.