Connecting New Zealand

Walking the talk as a Certified Civil Tradesperson

16 Nov 2023

There’s an element of walking the talk to Jane Mana’s Civil Trades certification journey.

After feeling like she didn’t make good use of her time at school, she’s always strongly encouraged her grandson to “study, study, study” and make the most of his education so he would have lots of choices about what he wanted to do. So, when Jane got home from night shift one particularly cold, wet morning and he turned to her and said “Nan, you should go study, so you don’t have to go work in the rain and the cold”, it sparked something.

Not long after that, she signed up for and completed her New Zealand Certificate in Infrastructure Works, Pipeline & Construction Level 2, and then Level 3 – an achievement that saw her recognised as a finalist for the 2022 Civil Contractors New Zealand Z Personal Improvement Award.

It would’ve been easy to stop there, but she then went on to complete her Level 4, which paved the way for her recent Civil Trades certification in Pipeline Construction & Maintenance with endorsements in Trenchless, Wastewater and Stormwater, and Drinking Water.

The certification is the culmination of 22 years in the industry, 21 with Auckland-based civil construction and engineering firm Pipeline & Civil.

“I’d been doing a building apprenticeship but took some time out. When I was ready to get back into it, I walked into Allied Workforce and asked if they had any building jobs. It was tough for building back then so they said, “There’s a job out on the roads, why don’t you give that a go?”.

“I had never worked on the road before and when I started, it was on traffic management. I watched the boys on the civil side – watched how they planned and what they were doing – and thought ‘I can do that’.”

Jane had previous work experience in production and supervisory roles, which she says meant she knew about the challenges, what was expected of her, how to get the best from staff and improve productivity.

“I just used to get involved and as the weeks went on, they enjoyed having me there and they called me back every day. I said to the boss, ‘I can do this job’, ‘I can do that job’, and they said maybe one day we’ll give you a go at it, and then they did.”

Asked if her qualifications and certification have been helpful for her work, her answer is a simple “Hell yes, man”.

“I got to understand a lot more of the theory. As I did the study, I could read about something and relate it to my work.

“Without the knowledge or the theory behind it, your hands-on experience will not get you any further, and no one will ever know what you’ve done. That was my biggest reason to push myself.”

She’s also encouraged some of the other members of her team to consider Civil Trades training and certification.

“I’ve said I’ll help them with it. It’s part of our career pathway at Pipeline & Civil and to get promoted you’ve got to have all the training done.”

For Jane, her qualifications and Civil Trades certification have also been a way to recognise all the hard work she’s put in over the years, as well as to honour the people at Pipeline & Civil who she says took a chance on her and gave her the opportunity to prove herself.

“I’m a Certified Civil Tradesperson now. It’s given me a whole lot of pride and confidence.

“I owed it to the people who took a chance on me, who never gave up on me. I wanted to prove to them that I’ve made the most of the opportunity they gave me.”

But, have her qualifications and Civil Trades certification brought her in out of the rain and the cold?

“I’m still out in the field. I don’t want to give that part up yet.

“The team is excellent ... If you can have a bond like that at work, everything else will fall in place – safety, openness, honesty. It’s like my family, my home away from home. That’s what makes me happy.”

About Civil Trades certification

Civil Trades certification provides professional recognition of your competence and helps you take the next step in your career. It provides evidence of a person’s expertise as a civil tradesperson and demonstrates to managers – and the world – that they have a high degree of practical experience.

Developed by industry, Civil Trades certification is open to anybody who has completed a Civil Infrastructure Level 4 qualification and has 8,000 hours (around four years) of practical experience. Certification and job-specific endorsement can be gained in any of the following areas:

  • Road Construction and Maintenance
  • Road Surfacing
  • Pipeline Construction and Maintenance
  • Piling

Want to apply? Find out more on our 'Applying for Civil Trades certification' page.




Principal Business Partner
Core Associates
Major Associates
Global Survey - Auckland
Vertical Horizonz NZ Ltd
Milwaukee Tool New Zealand
Infrastructure New Zealand
RobLawMax Recruitment
MBP (NZ) Ltd
Humes Pipeline Systems
Firth Certified Concrete
Terra Infrastructure Pty Ltd
Enviro NZ Services Ltd
Trade Me Jobs
Infrastructure Sustainability Council
John Deere Limited
Steelgal NZ Ltd
Over and Out Communications
Komatsu New Zealand Ltd
TRIG Instruments
Northpine Ltd
Kobelco New Zealand
ERoad Ltd
TLC Insurance Limited
Nulca NZ
Doug the Digger
Westpac NZ Ltd
The Drug Detection Agency
Youngman Richardson
Reliance Reinforcing Limited
Commercial Hire NZ Ltd
Coninnova Limited
H.J. Asmuss & Co. Ltd
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency
XCMG New Zealand
Sheet Pile Ltd
Franklin Smith Group
Turners Group Ltd: Head Office/Auckland
Teletrac Navman
Brandt Equipment
Capital Consulting International NZ Limited
Checksafe Ltd
Porter Group Limited
Fluiconnecto Ryco New Zealand Ltd
Hynds Pipe Systems
BNZ Partners
Portacom New Zealand Limited
Marley NZ Ltd
Rettenmaier New Zealand Ltd
TotalEnergies NZ Ltd
Winstone Aggregates
First Gas
Geofabrics New Zealand Ltd
Greenlight Insurance Brokers
UDC Finance
AECOM New Zealand Limited
A B Equipment Ltd
Terra Cat
Mico New Zealand Ltd
Manage Company
Power Farming New Zealand Ltd
TR Group
Holcim New Zealand Ltd
Vertu Equipment Limited
Advice Financial
Hydraulink Fluid Connecters Ltd
Wirtgen NZ Ltd
CSP Div of Fletcher Steel
Absolute Immigration NZ
Brolube New Zealand
Geosynthetic Partners International Ltd
Liebherr New Zealand
Southeys Group Auckland
MATES In Construction
SAMI Bitumen Technologies New Zealand Ltd


Forgot password?
Create an Account