Industrial Rope Access (Working on Ropes)

*The last date for entry to this qualification was 31/12/2017. If you were not already enrolled in this qualification by this date, you need to enrol with Skills

The National Certificate in Industrial Rope Access (Working on Ropes) (Level 4) expands on the skills and knowledge gained during the Level 3 certificate. This programme equips you with the knowledge to find solutions to unfamiliar situations on the ropes and hones your practical skills in the vertical environment. The equipment and advanced techniques are explored in depth as is the theory and advanced legislation.

Graduates of the Level 4 certificate are competent and confident in a wide variety of situations. Advanced rescue techniques are taught extensively; however, the emphasis is placed on prevention and planning.   

  • Level:
  • Credit Value:
  • Awards:
    National Certificate in Industrial Rope Access (Working on Ropes)
  • Location:
    Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch
  • Method of Study:
    Block course and workplace training, 24 months
  • Dates:
    Multiple intakes per year

What is Rope Access

Rope-access is a safe, efficient and cost effective way of accessing a work-site. In its simplest form, it involves abseiling. In its more advanced form, rope access can include techniques such as climbing, hauling and cableways (like a flying fox).

Rope access is used in various situations where access is limited; the most public of these being window washing but it also includes maintenance on high-rise buildings, cell-phone towers, confined spaces, and even on natural sites such as rock outcrops.

Qualifications such as welding, engineering, inspection, carpentry or glazing (just to name a few!) would be beneficial but not essential for a career on ropes.

Core Elements

The Level 4 Industrial Rope Access programme covers advanced techniques, and many theory elements in greater detail:

  • Advanced recovery techniques
  • Plan, Prepare and Installation of permanent fixed anchors
  • Lead and Aid climbing
  • Hauling systems and needles
  • Constructing cableways

Upon successful completion of this programme, you will gain the National Certificate in Industrial Rope Access (Working on Ropes) Level 4.   

Certificate of Competency Card (CoC)

Upon successful completion of the programme, graduates will be awarded with an NZQA/Tai Poutini Polytechnic National Certificate in Industrial Rope Access and are eligible to apply for the Certificate of Competency. This is a Department Of Labour Best Practice requirement for this industry.

Industry Support

The programme has the support of IRAANZ (Industrial Rope Access Association New Zealand) and SRIIT (Scaffolding, Rigging and Industrial Rope Industry Training) and is recognised by employers as a preferred means of entering this industry.

Industry Guidelines

This programme is taught to the ‘Industry Best Practice Guidelines’ which are endorsed by the Department of Labour. We also adhere to the manufacturers specifications when using their equipment.

Career Opportunities

Graduates will have the skills and knowledge to pursue a career in the height access industry in New Zealand or overseas.
Employments options are varied including:

  • Urban (building maintenance etc...)
  • Oil Rigs
  • Telecommunications
  • Theatre and Movie rigging
  • Geotechnical

...and many more!

Entry Criteria

  • Applicants for whom English is a second language must meet IELTS (or equivalent) Level 5.5 or above.
  • Entry is open. However, physical strength, dexterity, balance, co-ordination, and motor skills all need to be unimpaired to work within this industry, for safety reasons, (as per NQF 1017).


This is a Safety Sensitive Programme