Toi Ohomai recognised at Defence Force Awards

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Toi Ohomai | Te Pūkenga has been recognised for its commitment to kaimahi at the annual Minister of Defence Force’s 2023 Tohu Awards.

Run by the Defence Employer Support Council (DESC), the annual awards officially acknowledge how employers of Reserve Force and Cadet Force Officers are vital to Defence Force effectiveness, enabling attendance of training, fulfilment of deployment opportunities and supplementation to Regular Force members.

The awards recognise that employers also benefit in employing and supporting members of the Reserve and Cadet Force Officers, as well as Limited Service Volunteer Graduates, as the training they received through the NZDF helps develop and sharpen their skills in leadership, teamwork, communication, discipline, planning and management.

Toi Ohomai |Te Pūkenga, was named the Employer of the Year, and was nominated by Major Eli Crawshaw, an automotive tutor and a Cadet Force Officer. In the nomination, it stated that Eli’s commendable service was made possible through the institute’s commitment to the New Zealand Cadet Forces (NZCF). The judges said the institution had consistently provided support to Eli and the Cadet Units in the Western Bay of Plenty.

The recognition extends beyond a mere acknowledgment of employer support.

“Toi Ohomai | Te Pūkenga has human resources policies that prioritise service in the organisation and recognise the value of skills obtained through the NZCF training program, regularly utilising skills gained from NZCF in the workplace,” judges said. “Leadership and guidance provided by line managers at Toi Ohomai | Te Pūkenga have been instrumental in helping MAJ Crawshaw achieve success in his role as a senior Cadet Force Officer.”

Toi Ohomai | Te Pūkenga Associate Dean Dan Taylor says the institute values its kaimahi (staff), and says it was humbling to accept the award on behalf of the organisation.

“As Eli’s line manager, I was able to accept this award. I’ve seen first-hand Eli’s dedication and commitment, not only to Toi Ohomai but also in his role as a Cadet Force Officer. It’s great that we have been acknowledged for our attentive and responsive approach to the needs of our kaimahi.”

Dan says all employers who were nominated spoke about people who have volunteer roles outside of their main employment and the exceptional value they bring to their respective organisations.

Encouraging volunteer work and social contributions, Dan says, leads to diligent, high-performing employees in the workplace.

“They bring these skills and their values into our organisation, which is hugely valuable.”

Toi Ohomai | Te Pūkenga’s recognition as the New Zealand Cadet Force Officer Employer of the Year highlights the institution’s commitment to fostering positive relationships between employers and members of the Reserve and Cadet Force Officers, contributing significantly to the overall effectiveness of the Defence Force.

Related: Toi Ohomai begins Te Pūkenga co-branding

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