How the Future Ready: Money Confidence course has increased performance and confidence at work for Fletcher Reinforcing’s employees


Fletcher Reinforcing handles supplying steel products to construction projects across Aotearoa. As their name suggests, their products ensure that structures keep their integrity and fulfil the function they have been designed for. Similarly, Janice Montgomery, Learning and Development Manager across Fletcher Steel is passionate about providing learning initiatives to equip workers with the skills to do their job and to do it well. 

Responding to staff needs

Regular staff engagement surveys revealed that staff would benefit from training focused on life skills, such as financial literacy, how to use computers, and being more assertive. Janice saw this and realised the need to offer staff a broader range of upskilling opportunities than the ones only applicable to the job. 

Registering for Project Ikuna and its Future Ready: Money Confidence course through Tātaki Auckland Unlimited and being connected with an education provider, Zeducation, to deliver the course on-site was an easy decision.

Quote from Janice

Immediate benefits

While it can be a logistical challenge releasing staff to attend training sessions, the benefits for the organisation and staff have paid off.

After 30 years with the company, Soane has seen how technology had changed his work. From the early days of doing everything manually, Soane is thankful that machines have reduced the load on him physically. Soane was nominated by his manager to take part in the course.  

Not sure what he would get out of the course, Soane turned up and quickly realised he was the perfect candidate. “What little I earnt, I didn’t care,” Soane says of his attitude towards money before the course. He realised that he didn’t have a great relationship with money, often living beyond his means and going without as a result. 

Ian has been with the company for 14 years and is thankful for the opportunity to take part in the Money Confidence course. Prior to the course, he was getting frustrated with how his finances were going. “My spending habits weren’t that great and while I knew about having a budget, I didn’t have the skills to put it into practice,” says Ian.

While the thought of being in a classroom after a long time played on both their minds, they quickly found that the facilitators and their delivery fit who they are.  “Liki delivered the course and he was able to share stories that I could connect with,” says Soane on how he felt during the course. The other added bonus was that training was held onsite, so getting there wasn’t an issue.

Both Soane and Ian’s lives have changed as a result of the programme. 

Quote from Ian, course graduate

Soane too celebrates the fact that he is now able to save. “I talked to my bank and got them to set up savings for me. This came in handy recently when my family had a funeral, and I was able to use that”. They have gone on to champion the programme and encourage their workmates to enrol for the next uptake.

Partnership a key ingredient

Managing the learning and development needs of a big company can be a challenge at the best of times. That's why partnering with an education provider was important for Janice. “Once committed to running the programme, the Zeducation facilitators stepped in and took the lead in implementing the programme. They managed the logistics and marketing of the programme as well as engagement with staff. They not only delivered it, but they adapted their availability to fit within the workers’ schedules to ensure they were able to deliver it face-to-face,” says Janice.

While Janice celebrates the changes she has seen and heard from workers who completed the course, she is most excited by future opportunities for them. “This training made staff feel relaxed, involved and confident and capable of learning new skills,” says Janice.

Upskilling with Project Ikuna 

The Future Ready: Money Confidence course that made a huge change for the Fletcher Reinforcing team is part of Project Ikuna, a four-year MBIE-funded programme designed to help upskill Auckland’s Pacific workforce. It’s aimed at giving people the skills and knowledge they need to adapt to the future of work, particularly after the economic impacts of COVID-19.

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