Working towards accessibility for all

Tane Kingi, General Manager - Project Management

Tane Kingi, RPS Melbourne General Manager of Buildings and Property is standing in Degraves Street in Melbourne CBD.

With a career spanning nearly two decades and multiple countries including the United States and England, Tane Kingi brings invaluable knowledge and experience to RPS’ Melbourne team. We sat down with Tane for a chat about what he and his team are working on at the moment, the advice he’d give his younger self, and his thoughts on the importance of quality staffing.

QWhat’s your role at RPS, and what does your average workday look like?

I’m the General Manager for Project Management in Melbourne and on a day-to-day basis I’m responsible for overseeing our staff and the delivery of the projects they’re working on across our various business units. That being said, every day is different and varies depending on our clients' and my staff’s needs. Curveballs definitely aren’t unheard of!

Quick Q&A

How long have you lived in Melbourne?

14 years now.

Top pick for Melbourne coffee?

There’s a place along the beach in Edithvale.

Footy team?

I’m a rugby league guy, so the Storm. Or the Rebels. But in AFL country, I have to say my son's team - the Western Bulldogs!

Best place to spend time?

Anywhere I can spend time with my kids. Wherever my wife and kids are is my favourite place to be.

QWhat kinds of projects do you and your team have on the go at the moment?

At the moment I’m focused on the work I’m doing with the National Disability Insurance Agency which is aimed at providing new offices both here in Melbourne and up in Canberra. I think it’s a fantastic opportunity to be able to work with the NDIA and lead a team with disability and access requirements at the forefront of their minds. It will help us deliver on the promise that NDIA makes, which is to be an all-inclusive workplace and take that knowledge and philosophy onto other initiatives and clients.

We’ve also started on a new program of work with the Victorian Schools Building Authority called Kindergartens on School Sites. The objective is to bring modular construction to existing school sites so that we can add kindy facilities to existing schools while reducing construction times and the health and safety concerns surrounding those developments.

And of course, our largest projects are orientated around our biggest client, the Department of Defence. We have two of our business units working with the Department actively navigating the complexities of capabilities and construction, especially during a pandemic, and helping them solve real problems.

QWhat do you think Victoria’s biggest opportunity is going to be going forward?

I think the biggest opportunity, both currently and going forward, will be the infrastructure space. It’s already taking off and we’re looking at infrastructure in a much broader sense, so that we can assist clients in delivering fantastic projects on a massive, massive scale. Not just in the traditional infrastructure space of roads and rail, but within energy and water too.

But, I think the most important opportunity over the next 12 months is dealing with the environment and making sure that we’re doing the right thing by it. We’re lucky at RPS to have an in-house Remediation Project Management team who we are helping clean up the mistakes of the past and work on bettering the environment for the future.

QIf you could go back in time to your first day on the job, what advice would you give yourself? 

Thinking about my first day walking into a builder’s office and trying to wrap my head around that professional environment, I’d probably tell myself to trust my gut instincts a lot more. Your gut is usually right and if you’ve got good instincts, you’ll usually get good results.

QWhat would an ideal project look like for you?

A dream project for me would involve leading a team of people within an environment that gives people the opportunity to learn, the space to fail, and then the ability to learn from those failures. I’d also want to work with a team that fosters respect and allows for a robust conversation to deliver the best outcome for the project. Whether it’s a small $50,000 fitout or a billion-dollar multi-site project, good people make a good project.

QWhat makes you proud to live in Victoria? 

Our diversity! Melbourne is amazingly diverse – it’s one thing to encourage individuality but we really live and breathe it. I also appreciate our resilience, we can deal with whatever gets thrown at us.

Want to know more about our work in project management? Get in touch!

Tane Kingi

General Manager - Project Management (Buildings and Property)

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