Joiners use timber in its natural and synthetic form to design and create stunning kitchens, bathrooms, staircases and other types of cabinetry.

No Fees

All Joinery qualifications are free until 2023. Find out more.

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Job Prospects

Very good

Total Fees

FREE until 2023 (previously $3,000–6,500)

Time to qualify

2–4 years

Career opportunities

Joiner, component manufacturer, cabinet maker, kitchen manufacturer, kitchen installer, laminate fabricator, team leader, supervisor, business owner.


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What joiners do

The manufacturing side of joinery industry involves interpreting specifications and using a combination of craftsmanship and technology to create cabinetry and components to be sent to a site for installation. This usually happens in a factory environment where cabinetry is made bespoke or as ready-to-assemble flat pack pieces. Manufacturing provides opportunities to work as a component manufacturer, creating the base components of laminates, hinges and handles to be supplied to cabinet makers.

Joiners interpret instructions to ensure everything fits together as a seamless structure and looks good. They achieve the best possible finish using their expertise with tools and fixing materials.

There are also career options within the retail environment. This might involve:

  • assisting homeowners as a consultant with the purchase of a new kitchen or bathroom
  • promoting and selling wholesale joinery components to the industry.

Watch and see what it's like working in joinery.

Joinery qualifications

BCITO manages apprenticeships for joinery specialists. In your apprenticeship you will be working towards the New Zealand Certificate in Joinery, Level 4.

You’ll work under an experienced employer who'll provide on-job coaching and support throughout your apprenticeship. You'll also receive the guidance of a BCITO training advisor. Joinery qualifications require that you attend block courses for assessment.

There are no strict entry requirements, although it will help if you have good Maths and English skills – you need to be able to understand instructions, and work out measurements, quantities and angles.

Your apprenticeship is the start of a professional career

Joinery isn't just a job – it's a professional career. By doing an apprenticeship and getting qualified, you're setting yourself up for ongoing employment as a well-paid tradesperson. You’ll also open up opportunities to do further study in supervision or site management, go to university, or start a business and train your own apprentices.