Against a backdrop of intense nationwide demand for more quality public and market housing, delivering well-designed and built homes at a faster rate for people and communities requires us to think differently.

Transforming construction through innovation; our offsite manufacturing plan [PDF, 1.8 MB], sets out the action Kāinga Ora is taking to realise the benefits of offsite manufacturing (OSM), how it can contribute to building homes more effectively, affordably and sustainably, and how we can help grow the capability and capacity of the New Zealand OSM sector.

General Manager Construction and Innovation, Patrick Dougherty says Kāinga Ora has a huge opportunity to lead change.

“As the largest provider of residential homes in New Zealand, Kāinga Ora has a responsibility to invest in build methods that show a clear pathway to delivering more quality homes, at a faster rate, and with the best possible outcomes for people, communities, and the construction industry. Offsite manufacturing can play a significant part in achieving these results.”

OSM explained

Offsite manufacturing (OSM) is the manufacture of buildings and components offsite in a factory, which are then transported to the sites where they are needed.

OSM construction has numerous efficiency benefits; the homes can be built up to 40 per cent faster than traditional builds, there are fewer variables to allow a more streamlined build process, materials are not exposed to the elements during construction, and less construction waste is produced.

Importantly, these homes meet quality and sustainability thresholds expected of a traditional build in New Zealand, including Healthy Homes standards and the New Zealand Green Building Council’s 6 Homestar ratings.

Committed to innovation

Dougherty says the OSM plan delivers on our priority to increase housing supply and improve construction productivity through innovation.

“We know that the construction sector in New Zealand is operating at full capacity, and we can’t rely solely on traditional stick build methods of the past. Innovative approaches such as OSM are needed to start turning around the challenges that have beset the sector.”

“A key part of the OSM Plan is to ramp up our use of OSM from the 15 per cent we currently utilise, to a yearly increase of 20 per cent. To achieve this we will further develop partnership frameworks with suppliers, so that together we can meet the growing demand for housing. By leveraging our guaranteed pipeline of work, we can provide our build partners and suppliers with assurances through multi-year contracts which enables them to increase their capacity and capability to provide this type of home at scale.”

“Our OSM plan helps us deliver on our broader construction plan for the future homes – Building Momentum, and sits well alongside the OSM Rapid Response Programme currently underway.”

General Manager Commercial, Caroline McDowall says the OSM plan supports our role to drive system transformation.

“Kāinga Ora has a Government mandate to lead change. The Government expects us to look beyond the way we currently do things towards new processes, technology and solutions that utilise modern construction methods and systems.”

“The OSM plan is another example of our commitment to innovation across our build programme including public, market and affordable housing, and how we can use our scale and strong partnerships to lead a more effective and sustainable future for the building sector.”

Read more about our OSM plan

Are you an OSM manufacturer?

If you are an OSM supplier with capacity to build homes at scale, we want to hear from you. Please email

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Page updated: 15 December 2021