A young builder's knack with technology has resulted in him being recognised as the local Apprentice of the Year.
Born and raised in Napier, Jack Clifford 22, won the top award at the Hawke's Bay and East Coast Registered Master Builders 2017 Apprentice of the Year awards ceremony last Friday.
Up against the highest-quality work in Hawke's Bay, Mr Clifford said it was his utilisation of technology on the building site that made him stand out as the winner.
"I think everyone was producing pretty high-quality work but the way forward for the construction industry is learning how to use the new smartphones and learning how to use them for our benefit."
Mr Clifford said he had shown the competition judges how he used smartphone applications for daily practices like following health and safety protocol.
"When I came on to the site I had to induct them and that's when I used my smartphone and things like that, using some of our health and safety applications. They were quite impressed with all that.
After finishing his final year at Napier Boys' High School, Mr Clifford completed a year-long pre-trade course at EIT while doing part-time work experience at Christie Builders and Joiners, going on to complete his apprenticeship at the company.
"They taught me a lot of things and, like I said at the awards, I couldn't have achieved it without them. They are a really good company and have trained quite a few apprentices over the years and they've always become good tradesmen."
Now a foreman for the company, he said he grew up "tinkering around" in his father's workshop and hadn't stopped.
"Ever since I was about 14 I did some work experience with a builder and was dead-set on it after that. I just love being outdoors. I cannot sit down, I can't stand that, really [it's] not me."
In light of last Friday's win Mr Clifford said he was now focused on doing well in the national competition held in Auckland this November.
Regional winners will be vying for the title of Registered Master Builders CARTERS 2017 Apprentice of the Year, and a share of more than $100,000 in prizes.
"I'm really happy I won the regional event. The New Zealand one is a pretty huge opportunity to be involved in. I just can't let the pressure get to me, keep going and give it my best shot."
He said he wanted to pay special tribute to Richard Bowden, Jae Green and Mike Christie who trained him.