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How to get a job without any work experience in New Zealand?

One of the most asked questions we get from students is – “How do I apply for a job when I don’t have any local experience?” We tell them to embrace their inexperience and try the following tips to help them find work.

Determine your career goal: 

"People who get what they want tend to be the ones who make the effort to know what they want."

Reflect on your personal goals. Do you want exposure to the fashion industry or apply your marketing and sales skills to sell a product? It helps to start your search with a clear goal of what you hope to achieve. Know what drives you and what is relevant for your future. Once you've chosen a direction, you’ll know what to do to get your dream job.

Build your profile:

“Branding is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”

Once you have set your career goals, beef up your profile. Developing and managing your personal brand for potential employers is vital today. Recruiters and employers rely on social networks to learn more about job candidates. Sometimes, the information they find will determine if you receive an invite to interview.

Be specific:

“I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realise that I should have been more specific”

Customising your resume can be your ticket to your dream job. It pays to research the company, find a link and connect your life experiences to the job role. Keep it simple and honest. Since you’re beginning your career, any efforts to illustrate your life lessons will go a long way with potential employers.

Get noticed:

“Why fit in when you were born to stand out.”

Pick social sites where the relevant people you need to connect to are members (Eg. Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube, Google+) and create a strong profile. This will help you engage with people who can lead you to current job openings. As far as work goes you may not have anything to shout about but what you do have is life experience. Share personal stories that display your ability:

  • to be decisive
  • to recognize the value other people have to offer
  • to expect the unexpected

Recollect these moments and use them as talking points in your interview as well. Successful stories will demonstrate the value you can offer. 

You can also promote yourself by blogging or starting your own website. It’s a great way to share your expertise, build visibility, and position yourself as a niche expert. Give employers one place to get access to everything they need to know about you. 

Keep your options open:

“When nothing goes right…go left”

If all you’ve received are rejection letters, don’t give up as landing a job takes time. Use this time to get volunteer work. 

Volunteering is an excellent way to gain new skills and knowledge. It's a useful networking tool and gives you insight into potential roles or industries of interest.

There are many state and national websites that post volunteering opportunities. Browse what is available near you: 

New Zealand Wide

Seek Volunteer

Volunteering New Zealand

Auckland Region

Volunteering Auckland

Wellington Region

Volunteering Wellington

Canterbury Region

Volunteering Canterbury

Otago Region

Volunteering Otago

Waikato Region

Volunteering Waikato

Bay of Plenty Region

Volunteering Bay of Plenty

Manawatu & Districts

Volunteer Resource Centre

Hawkes Bay Region

Volunteering Hawkes Bay

New Plymouth

Volunteering New Plymouth


Volunteer Whanganui


Volunteer Nelson

Northland Region

Volunteering Northland

Gisborne Region

Gisborne Volunteer Centre

All the best with your job hunt! For more employment and studying tips, check out our blog section or speak to us – it’s free. 

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