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Work in New Zealand

Ready to start a career? Let’s find your dream job.

With its spectacular sceneries, great work-life balance and unbeatable lifestyle, New Zealand is a popular country for job seekers across the world to seek work in. Before you apply its best to do plenty of research to ensure you’re able to apply and get your dream job.

Now that you’ve graduated, you may hope to stay longer and continue your life in New Zealand as a worker. This is possible but it’s important that you clarify with New Zealand Immigration or contact us to speak with a counsellor to help you understand your visa options and rights. There may be a number of visas you are eligible to apply for – each with its own conditions and application process.

Qualification and recognitions

If you are new to New Zealand, you may need to have your qualifications recognised. You can get your qualifications assessed by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA). They will clarify how your qualification suits New Zealand levels.

Don’t worry if your qualifications aren’t what is required in New Zealand as you may be able to take certain courses or earn qualifications that will assist you land a job. 

Job search in New Zealand

Your chances of securing a job will depend on several factors including skills, qualifications, field of work and the city of choice. Work experience in New Zealand is invaluable so if you fail to find a job in your chosen field, don’t fret. Your priority should be on gaining local experience to improve your employability.

There are many ways to find work that fit your goals, including:

  • Industry specific websites
  • General job websites
  • New Kiwis online migrant recruitment
  • Regional newcomer skills matching and job search Assistance programmes
  • Recruitment companies
  • Direct contacts
  • Social media groups
  • Notice boards on campus, malls, community centres and local supermarkets 

Applying for a job

Job applications usually include a cover letter expressing your interest in and suitability for the role with a copy of your resume/CV. It’s important to check your CV to see that it makes sense, is well formatted, concise and has no spelling or grammatical mistakes.

Make sure your applications show that you have the relevant skills, qualifications, a good understanding of the role and attributes that the employer desires. It must be tailored for each job to give you the best possible chance of being selected for an interview or testing. 

Once you secure the role, you will need to provide your new employer with your bank account details and IRD number for tax purposes. 

If you meet the criteria for automatic enrolment, you must be enrolled in KiwiSaver, unless employers offer an approved alternative superannuation scheme. You can choose to be enrolled in both your alternative scheme and KiwiSaver. Employers will be required to deduct employee contributions for both schemes.


Internships are a wonderful way for you to gain hands-on experience in your area of study. It can be paid or unpaid, depending on the industry and length of your placement. 

Undertaking an internship can help you acquire experience working in New Zealand and increase your chances of getting full or part-time work later. It can also help you improve your English and develop a network of professional contacts for future references.

Refer to Careers NZ for a step-by-step guide to job hunting.


Volunteering is the best way to give back to the community and have a sense of purpose. While waiting for full time/part time employment, volunteering is a great option for you to meet new people and obtain hands-on work experience based on the role that suits your interest and motivation. You can start your search at Volunteering New Zealand.

You can also find out more here about how to secure a suitable role, your rights as a volunteer and tips to ensure you get the experience that’s right for you.

Your work rights

All employees in New Zealand, including international students and those on working holiday visas, have basic rights in the workplace. Visit Employment New Zealand to get a clearer picture of the rules and what your rights and responsibilities are. 


KiwiSaver is a voluntary work-based savings initiative to help all New Zealanders aged under 65 years with their long-term saving for retirement. Get more information about KiwiSaver, including what employers and individuals need to do to start a savings scheme, is available from the following websites:



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