Diploma in Small Business & Project Management

Diploma in Small Business & Project Management Programme

Te Wananga o Aotearoa’s Diploma in Small Business and Project Management (DSBM) is a practical Level 5 New Zealand business programme with a vision of ‘Developing successful and responsible business owners’.

This programme, owned by Te Wananga o Aotearoa and delivered by Ochre Business Solutions Limited, is designed to develop New Zealand business owners who have the ability to apply project management skills to the successful operation and growth of their own businesses, alongside providing New Zealand with business owners and operators who have improved capability to establish, operate, grow and sustain a small business.


DSBM Programme Content

The DSBM consists of the following five core Kōnae Ako (modules):

Kōnae Ako (Modules) Overview
Business Risk Analysis This kōnae ako covers content relating to: business risk analysis; social, cultural and environmental impacts and opportunities for businesses; strategy development and evaluation; and project planning tools and techniques.
The Sales and Marketing Project This kōnae ako is delivered concurrently with Kōnae Ako 3. The focus of the kōnae ako is the implementation of the sales and marketing project for which tauira developed a project brief and project plan in Kōnae Ako 1. However, tauira will also analyse a case study business in regards to sales and marketing issues and opportunities.
The Operations Project This kōnae ako is delivered concurrently with Kōnae Ako 2 and follows the same structure and format. The focus of this kōnae ako is the implementation of the operations project which supports innovation and positive organisational change. Tauira will also analyse a case study business in regards to operational considerations.
The Elective Project This kōnae ako is similar to Kōnae Ako 2 and 3. However, tauira choose the type of business development project to implement in their business. They may, for example, choose to complete a project relating to human resource management and development, or one relating to improvement of accounting systems and financial monitoring. They may even choose to complete a second operations or marketing/sales project.
Presenting Success This kōnae ako commences in Week 10 and then runs concurrently alongside Kōnae Ako 2 and 3 to Week 25, and alongside Kōnae Ako 4 from Week 26 to 36.In this kōnae ako, tauira present two of the three projects developed and implemented during the programme. A focus of each presentation is a discussion regarding the results of the project and of how the operational efficiency, effectiveness and overall performance of the business could be improved. This is to encourage best practice of reviewing business projects as well as to foster a culture of seeking continuous improvement and innovation in the business. For the first of the two assessments in this kōnae ako, tauira will also contribute to discussions relating to a peer’s project. Tauira may choose to take the feedback they receive from their peers into consideration when formulating their project for Kōnae Ako 4.


Entry Criteria

  • A minimum of 16 years of age or over (unless exemption has been granted) at the commencement of the programme;
  • A New Zealand citizen (or citizen of Australia, Tokelau, Niue, Cook Islands) or permanent residents;
  • Tauira may only enrol in more than one programme concurrently if the dual programme options are approved within Te Wānanga o Aotearoa;
  • Meet the eligibility, suitability for admission, and external support criteria as outlined in the programmes pre-enrolment guidelines.


Pre-Enrolment Guidelines

A potential tauira must:

  • Meet the entry criteria;
  • Attend an Information Session and an enrolment interview (these may be combined into one session);
  • Be a graduate of a Level 4 business qualification (or higher) or demonstrate competence in numeracy and literacy exercises that reflect the comprehension, writing and numerical abilities for the programme.
  • Meet one of the following requirements:
    • Be an existing business owner;
    • Be in the process of establishing a business for which they already have a business plan; or
    • Be involved in the management of an existing small business, for which they are authorised to initiate and implement projects in the areas of operations, sales and marketing.
  • Be fully committed to the programme.


Tuition and Resource Costs

There are NO tuition fees for DSBM. Participants will receive their own comprehensive set of DSBM resources including Kōnae Ako Magazines containing programme content, lesson plans and activities and supporting text material.


DSBM Delivery

Length: 36 weeks
Location: Mangere, Newmarket & Henderson
Start dates: Semester A: Weeks beginning 11 March 2019


Intakes are subject to sufficient class numbers and are not always offered in all areas.



At the completion of the DSBM programme tauira will graduate with the following qualifications:

  • New Zealand Diploma in Business (Strand in Project Management) Level 5
  • Te Wānanga o Aotearoa Diploma in Small Business and Project Management


Employment Pathway

The main pathway for this qualification is self-employment.  However, the skills and knowledge may also be applied to a range of employment pathways, particularly in the fields of business administration, sales and marketing, human resource management and financial services.  The project management skills are of particular benefit to management positions in a variety of business entities, as well as to community group and volunteer project roles.

Register your interest here.

  • Step 1

    Review course information

  • Step 2

    Select desired course

  • Step 3

    Register with Ochre Business and begin your journey

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