If you have specialist skills or work in an area of skills shortage, and have a qualification that is comparable to those that New Zealand employers are used to, you’ll find that there are great career opportunities for you here.
Skills in demand
Some skills are in chronically short supply, and Immigration New Zealand has lists of skill shortages and a separate list of shortages of the skills needed to help rebuild the Canterbury region after the earthquakes there in 2010 and 2011. If you are offered a job in New Zealand which appears on a skill shortage list and you have the qualifications and experience to match, getting a work and residence visa will be easier. This is because the Government has identified that employers need to recruit people from overseas to help meet demand for your skills.
Choosing the right visa
There may be a number of visas you are eligible to apply for – each with its own criteria and application process.
Resident visas generally allow you to live and work in New Zealand indefinitely and access most publicly funded services. The Skilled Migrant Category uses a points system based on factors such as age, work experience, your qualifications, and an offer of skilled employment to determine eligibility.
Another option is the Residence from Work visa. Once you’ve held a Work to Residence visa for at least 24 months, you may be able to eligible to apply.
Temporary visas allow you to live and work in New Zealand for a set period of time. Working temporarily can be used as a step towards gaining residence and settling here permanently.
There are a range of work visas for people that work in a profession that is experiencing skill shortages or have a job offer from a New Zealand employer.
The Working holiday visa is designed for young people, usually aged 18-30. This option lets you travel and work in New Zealand for up to 12 months, or 23 months if you’re from the UK.
There are a number of other New Zealand visas available for specific situations. Visit Immigration New Zealand’s website for the full list.