We're a vertically integrated business which is a fancy way of saying we do it all. We imagine our buildings, design them, do all project managing and consents stuff – and then Ockham Construction does the hard yakka on the ground.
Here at Ockham, we’re committed to creating beautiful, thoughtful and long-lasting buildings. To achieve that, we need to have an exceptional construction team making sure every aspect of the building is perfect from the ground up.
Under the expert management of Will Deihl and Ben Gibbens, Ockham Construction has completed 448 stunning apartments – 119 across three buildings at Tuatahi; 32 at Modal; 95 at Kokihi; 32 apartments at Star Newton; 14 at Koa Flats; 117 at Aroha; and 39 at El Aalto.
Not ones to rest on their laurels, the team – which has expanded to 30 fulltime staff – is currently hard at work on a further 331 apartments on track to be finished in 2023 (The Greenhouse in Ponsonby and Onehunga's Manaaki).
“There’s a huge advantage to being a genuinely vertically integrated development, design and construction business,” says Will, CEO of Ockham Residential. “We’re really nimble. We can go from the land acquisition and design concept phase through to the construction phase in a very streamlined way.
“Our in-house architectural team benefit from having a construction team there who can provide expert cost and buildability advice throughout the design development, which makes for a much smoother and less risky construction phase. And, of course, we benefit hugely from the quick response to any of our design queries. This is particularly important for Ockham as all of our designs are stunning, extraordinary and detailed.”
Making great buildings. Building an epic team
Project director Ben Gibbens agrees that having early access to project designs is integral to Ockham Construction’s success, particularly during a time of global supply chain issues.
“We have real visibility into all of the projects Ockham has on the horizon. This, in turn, provides assurance to our construction partners that they can rely on us to continue to provide a consistent flow of work. We have strong long-term relationships with all of our subcontractors. Because we trust them as our partners, and work with them time and again, we’re confident that they are always working tirelessly on our behalf with their own suppliers to mitigate any price increases.”
Ben says having everyone inhouse also cuts through a lot of irritating red tape. “The construction industry has long been very contractual and adversarial. Because we’re all on the same team at Ockham, we spend more time improving our design and construction methods, and less time on the contractual nonsense that slows up the industry, which means work is much more enjoyable!”
As such, Ockham Construction are lucky enough to have a number of staff who have been with the company since Tuatahi was built, including Will and Ben. There are also a few other standouts including Ockham’s gregarious Glyn Ussher, who is presently managing the gate at Aroha.
“He’s such a great member of the team,” Will says. “He’s been on the gate at Tuatahi, Modal and Kokihi. People in the community we’re working in all start to recognise Glyn. He always ends up being the face of Ockham Construction. He’s super friendly, kind and always up for a chat. We always get loads of really good feedback about him.”
Another teamster, Victoria Martinez, has worked her way up to being a crane operator after working for Ockham as a cleaner at Kōkihi. “Vic was keen to trade in the polish and mop for the high-vis and hard hat,” says Ben. “So we gave her a go. She’s smart, fiercely well-organised and thinks way ahead. She's worked incredibly hard. We’re very lucky to have her.”
Our in-house architectural team benefit from having a construction team there who can provide expert cost and buildability advice throughout the design development, which makes for a much smoother and less risky construction phase.Will Deihl