How to be job ready when wanting to immigrate to New Zealand

New Zealand is not only one of the most beautiful countries in the world it’s also one of the most desirable in which to live. As a result, over the past few years, New Zealand has become a hotspot destination, with an increasing number of migrants looking to move and work here.

Finding a better job or changing career paths is one of the most challenging activities a person can undertake. What with meticulously researching job opportunities and applying for them, compiling resumes, writing eye-catching cover letters and practicing your interview skills, there is a lot that you need to do to ensure you land that desired new job.

However, if you’re looking for a career change on a global scale, then all these tasks are greatly amplified. Moving to a new country is daunting enough, and getting a job is just one of the many challenges you will have to deal with in the whole process.

If you are wanting to immigrate to New Zealand, no matter how attractive the change of scenery or the promise of a new job or career may be, preparation and getting ready to work is everything. The more forward planning and preparation you do, and the more work-ready you are, the more time, frustration and stress you will save yourself in the long run.

Research the New Zealand job market

If you’re considering to immigrate to New Zealand, make sure you learn as much as you can about the New Zealand job market and the local work culture. You need to be aware of workplace rules and what your rights and responsibilities are, as these may all be very different from what you’re used to. For example, New Zealand has a comprehensive set of employment laws that help keep workplaces fair and require employers to pay a minimum wage and ensure their workplaces are safe for their employees.

Do some research into which industries and work sectors are important in New Zealand, especially those where there is a shortage of skills. Try to build a picture of which companies are big employers in the region you’re thinking of moving to.

Then look for basic background on the employers you’re thinking of applying to – the sort of work they do or what they specialise in, who their competitors are, and so on. Employers expect people who are applying to work for them to at least have some idea of what they do.

Assess your qualifications for New Zealand hiring requirements

Depending on the requirements for your immigration visa, you may need to show that the qualifications you’ve obtained in your home country are comparable to a New Zealand qualification.

If you want to work in New Zealand it may be useful to have your qualifications assessed by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) – this will help any prospective employer understand the qualifications you’ve gained overseas. Getting your qualification assessed could take quite a few weeks, even a month or more, so allow plenty of time to get this done.

If your industry has a professional body in New Zealand it may be able to advise you whether you’ll need your qualifications assessed or translated.

Some professions in New Zealand require their practitioners to be officially registered. If you need to be registered in order to work, you should start the process as soon as possible. Contact the relevant registration authority to see if you meet their requirements and find out what you need to do.

Getting together a proof of your qualifications and any other required documents can be a lot of work and take quite a bit of time – and there will probably even be costs involved. So make sure you budget both time and money for all of this when you’re planning your immigration to New Zealand.

Start looking for jobs

It’s perfectly legal to apply for a job before you get your work visa; you just won’t be able to start working and earning an income until your visa is approved. However, most employers understand the situation and may be quite willing to take your application to interview and job offer stage, on the understanding that their offer is dependent on you acquiring the appropriate residence and/or work visa. If and when you do get a job offer, this will further help you with your visa application.

If you already work for a multinational company or a global brand then find out if there are any internal positions within your company that could take you to New Zealand. If this is not going to be possible, then jump on the Internet and do your own job search. Google the more respected jobs databases – don’t forget to check the TradeMe jobs and Seek websites.

That said, there are many different ways to research job opportunities in New Zealand. You could research companies where you want to work. They will often post jobs on their websites. You can also contact employers directly to ask if they are hiring. You can also look at the classified section of newspapers to find out who is hiring and where. You could use the services of an employment agency that searches for jobs for you.

Work on your resume and cover letter, and your interview skills

The best way to ensure you get to the job interview stage is to tailor your resume or Curriculum Vitae (CV) to what local employers expect and look for. It’s also standard practice to submit your resume with a covering letter. The covering letter is a short explanation of why you want the specific job you are applying for and why you think you are a strong candidate for that job.

Based on your résumé and cover letter, the employer will decide whether to invite you for a job interview. The job interview gives the employer a chance to meet you and ask questions to see if you are right for the job. The interview also helps you to learn more about the job and to decide whether you really want to work for that organization. After the process is complete, and if the employer wants to hire you, you will receive a formal job offer.

New Zealand employers like to check your references, especially references from a number of your previous employers. They do this so they can get a better idea of your work history and skills, and find out more about what sort of person you are. So make sure you ask your current and previous employers for a reference and let them know they may be contacted by a hiring employer asking for a reference.

Interviews in New Zealand can be different from the ones you’re used to. New Zealanders are quite informal, and this may be reflected in the interview process. However, make sure you act professionally, dress smartly and are on time so you make the right impression.

Understand the benefits of networking and volunteer work

Immigrating to New Zealand and finding a job is easier if you have an established network of contacts. Networking can also help you search for jobs and get the message out that you are looking for work.

You could also consider volunteer work. Working as a volunteer can help you get New Zealand work experience, practise your English, build your network of contacts, make friends, find someone who will be a reference for you, and show potential employers that you are willing to work hard.

You may find volunteering opportunities listed on community boards at your local community centre, library or shopping centre. You can also approach charity organisations directly. Just remember, volunteering means performing a service willingly and without pay, so you cannot receive any benefit that can be valued in terms of money, such as accommodation, food or transport.

Assistance with immigrating to New Zealand and job searchwanting to immigrate to New Zealand

If you’re planning to immigrate to New Zealand, it’s required that you get advice from a licensed immigration adviser or an immigration lawyer to ensure the best outcome for your visa application.

Our lawyers in Auckland law firm – Quay Law, are skilled in helping prospective immigrants successfully navigate through the immigration process. We also partner with a job search agency that can advise you about the New Zealand job market and help you tailor you resume, covering letter and job search appropriately.

Wanting to Immigrate to New Zealand?

Get in touch with your immigration lawyer at Quay Law if you need urgent legal advice or need help with your immigration application. We will be happy to help you and guide you through your immigration process to New Zealand.