Last updated 4 June 2020

The Reform of Vocational Education (RoVE) represents a generational change in how vocational training is delivered in New Zealand, and will create a stronger, more unified, and sustainable vocational education system. The transition to the new system is not expected to be completed until December 2022, and we are committed to keeping all stakeholders informed of progress throughout. Please check this page regularly for updates.

To find out more about WDCs, check out this TEC video.


February 2019
Minister Chris Hipkins announced proposed sweeping reforms to the entire vocational education system, aimed at creating a stronger, more unified, and sustainable vocational education system.

August 2019
Following a period of public consultation, these reforms were largely confirmed to proceed.

  • Industry Training Organisations (11) will be disestablished
  • The 16 Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics (ITPs) will be merged into a single NZ Institute of Skills and Technology (NZIST), and will assume responsibility for supporting both workplace-based (on-job) training, and classroom-based (off-job) training
  • Between 4 – 7 Workforce Development Councils (WDCs) will be established, and will assume responsibility for skills leadership and standard setting*
  • Unified funding system, that funds all provider-based education and all industry training (levels 2-7)

December 2019
*In December 2019 Education Minister, Chris Hipkins, announced that there will be six industry-led Workforce Development Councils, one of which will be for Health, Community & Social Services, which encompasses most of Careerforce’s current coverage. Careerforce currently also has cleaning within its coverage, but the changes announced will see this sector fall within a Service Industries Workforce Development Council.

April 2020 – legislation passed, NZIST created (with ITP’s becoming subsidiaries) Refer website

April 2020 – ITOs became Transitional ITOs (TITOs)

May 2020 – Expressions of Interest sought re the establishment of Workforce Development Councils

Transitional Industry Training Organisations (TITO’s)

Effective 1 April 2020, all ITOs, including Careerforce, became TITOs, or Transitional Industry Training Organisations. This change simply allows for the necessary transitions to take place, and has no other impact on our organisation or operations.

While the recent Budget announcement will see transition timeframes escalated for the skills leadership and standard setting functions within Careerforce (to a WDC), the transition timeframe for our arranging training function remains the same, and is not expected to be completed until December 2022.

Our focus remains very much on supporting the immediate workforce development needs of our employers, and supporting our trainees and apprentices on their training journeys with us.

What’s next

These reforms represent a generational change in vocational education, and we will be working closely with officials over coming months to jointly develop the reform implementation plans.

Transition timeframes will vary across each ITO, and we will continue to provide you with regular updates, but can’t emphasise enough in the meantime that transition timeframes are long, and we should all continue with business as usual.

  • October 2020 – all WDCs established
  • December 2022 – transition of workplace-based training from TITOs to NZIST (or other providers) completed

More information

For further information please visit the Ministry of Education website and the TEC website

If you have any questions, please contact your Workplace Advisor or email us at