Working With Us
If you haven't worked with us or another Professional Engineer before you might find the following useful.
We are members of the Association of Consulting Engineers, the Institution of Professional Engineers, Chartered Professional Engineers, and serve as an expert witness in the courts. That means we have a number of obligations and duties we are required to fulfill in addition to our own company and personal values.
All of these require us to act with honesty, objectivity and integrity. We must remain independent and impartial, and must remain within the area of our expertise.
As our client you will always receive our honest and straightforward advice, but it is important to understand that we cannot be your advocate. If our advice or opinion is in conflict with the objectives of your project we will discuss this with you as soon as possible. To adopt the slogan of ACENZ, we aim to be your Trusted Advisor.
When we are asked if we can assist a client with a resource management matter such as an Environment Court appeal our initial engagement will be to review the case and to provide an initial opinion. If that opinion is not compatible with your position our ability to assist you may be limited.
When enquiring about working with us it is important to provide us with enough information to allow us to properly understand the type and the extent of the work as we need to make sure that the work is within our area of expertise and our capabilities.
When we work with you it is important that our understanding of what you are wanting us to do is the same as yours, so an important part of working with us is to define the brief. This should cover a description of the problem or the scope of the work, any assumptions or limitations that apply, what the expected deliverables are, and when they are needed. It is also important for us to know if you want a proposal developed as an estimate of fees or a fixed-price quotation.
If you are asking for a fee proposal or quotation we will need enough information to properly assess the likely extent of the work.
In many cases it is not possible to fully understand the amount of work required prior to starting the work. In some cases this is because the amount and type of work required will depend on consultation with other parties such as Council, NZTA or your roading authority. In other cases we are involved in design review or design development and the amount of work required to get to a design that works well and that complies with the necessary standards isn't immediately obvious.
In those cases we find most clients prefer us to provide them with our best guess initial estimate of what our fees are likely to be and to start work on a time-and-expenses basis. We will update the fee estimate at key stages of the work, such as once consultation with other parties has concluded and the scope of work has been agreed.
We are obliged to disclose any real or potential conflict of interest at the earliest opportunity.
As a member of ACENZ our company is obliged to maintain an appropriate level of Professional Indemnity Insurance.
We use a contract based on the ACENZ / IPENZ Short Form Agreement
- IPENZ Code of Ethical Conduct
- ACENZ Client Information Sheets
- Environment Court Practice Note containing the Code of Conduct for Expert Witnesses