Are there New Zealanders available for the role?
Note: the information below is subject to major changes early 2021.
Will your candidate need a visa?
Some temporary visa holders in New Zealand may already have open work rights as part of their visa. If that is the case, you may hire them without advertising locally. This includes Working Holiday visa holders, International students with work rights, partners of New Zealanders or visa holders with open work rights.
The Labour Market Test: will you need to advertise?
Before you offer the job to a foreign national who needs to apply for a work visa, you need to ensure you have tested the labour market, or are exempt from doing so.
You may be exempt if:
- you are an Accredited Employer with Immigration New Zealand, and the job offer meets certain salary requirements
- the occupation is on a Essential Skills in Demand List and the candidate meets the requirements of the list
If you are not exempt, you must then advertise the position. If you are unable to fill the position with a New Zealander, then Immigration New Zealand will seek evidence of your attempts. This may include:
- advertising evidence (screenshots, receipts, etc.)
- list of candidates who applied, shortlist
- why it is impossible to train up locals for the role
- attempts by recruiters
- feedback from the Ministry of Social Development on available local workforce
What is 'advertising' evidence?
Popular websites such as Trademe or Seek are accepted by INZ. Social networks are also considered, but not a sole evidence. It is also very important that you do not advertise the role in a way that may discourage New Zealand employers from applying, such as unrealistic requirements, low salary, or hours of work.
Note that Immigration New Zealand also considers 'market rate' when assessing an employer-assisted work visa application, ie is the salary offered within a reasonable bracket, considering the job (level of responsibility), employer (size of the company), and candidate (years of experience).
Certain occupations are deemed low-skilled, as determined by the Australian New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO), or by being the salary threshold indicated in policy. For these roles, an employer must seek feedback from Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) in the form of a Skills Match Report showing no New Zealanders can be found locally to fill the role, and provide the document in support of a low-skilled work visa application.
Can a person be trained for the role?
In certain cases, Immigration New Zealand may deem possible that a local be trained for the position available. They may seek evidence of your training programme, records, and plans. You may also have to show attempts to reach out to relevant industry associations on the availability of suitable candidates, and seek their feedback on current shortages for certain types of positions.