N.Z. Institute of Hazardous
Substance Management (Inc)

Hazardous Substance Certifiers - a Job for You?

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You too can become a Hazardous Substance Certifier

Looking for a job that protects the environment and the lives of all New Zealanders?

Incorrect handling, storage of or exposure to hazardous substances can lead to serious adverse outcomes for the environment, and people's health and safety.

New Zealand needs more people to qualify as Hazardous Substance Compliance Certifiers to meet current and future industry demands.

We can help you qualify as a Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier.

Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifiers:

What is the job really like?

No two days will be the same as a Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier. You'll get to meet lots of different people and travel to different locations. Within any week you can expect to be doing a whole range of tasks:

Some FAQs:

What about legal requirements?

Part of a Compliance Certifier's role is to ensure workplaces meet their legal requirements around hazardous substances by:

What personal and other skills would I need to become a Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier?

What qualifications do I need to have become a Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier?

Step 1: to start you need to have a good grasp of English, mathematics and science at a basic level at secondary school and enjoy learning these topics.

Step 2 : obtaining an undergraduate degree in science, mathematics or in engineering is typically the next step. If you don't have an undergraduate degree you need to be able to demonstrate suitable substantive workforce experience like having an existing skill in a trade.

Step 3: The next step is becoming a trainee which usually involves becoming employed by a company. You will do both office and site work alongside an existing Hazardous Substance practitioner such as Scientists, Engineers or advanced Trades.

The final step is being assessed by the government's regulatory authority WorkSafe NZ. You will be asked questions with assistance from professional bodies.

What career and education pathways are available?

Generally, it takes around three years training to become an independent compliance site certifier.

Once you are a qualified compliance certifier there are some interesting new education pathways you can take to further your expertise and interest in hazardous substances.

HASANZ in-conjunction with HSPNZ, NZIHSM, Skills Organisation and Massey University, with support of WorkSafe are developing a hazardous substances training programme. This programme is the start of a learning pathway for Compliance Certifiers. It is also available to those who wish to develop their hazardous substance knowledge for their workplace or professional development.

The first part of the programme is undertaking two papers at Massey University: 251.272 - Occupational Health and Safety 2 is available with a hazardous substance focus. Apply from Semester 2, June 2021.

250.318 - Special Topic - Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier - available to apply from January 2022.

This course of learning is a great opportunity to develop hazardous substance management understanding, along with an appreciation of the requirements of Compliance Certifiers.

Please contact Assoc Prof Ian Laird I.S.Laird@massey.ac.nz if you are interested in attending these courses.

There are more specialised courses in the pipeline available in the future which builds on the Massey University papers.

Hear what Cam has to say about being a Trainee Compliance Certifier:


What's a career as a Compliance Certifier like - hear Elizabeth's journey:


Find out more about the Hazardous Substances Certifiers Initiative in general at Health and Safety Association NZ.

How can I find out more information about becoming a Hazardous Substances Compliance Certifier?

Email office@nzihsm.org.nz or info@hspnz.co.nz

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