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Golden times for job seekers

Golden times for job seekers

Posted on 1st July 2021 by Russell Phillips

Image 2021 07 01 T02 21 04

"There has, arguably never been more new sites opening, the motor industry has had a big clean up and now it is time to move forward"

With thousands of jobs emerging there has likely never been a better time to update your employment says Automotive Employment NZ's Director. Frankly, we have not seen the likes of it in 30 years. Covid-19’s enforced border closures, stimulated new and used sales of cars, heavy transport and equipment and sent sales volumes soaring in most sectors. With extra cash in the bank, it is hardly surprising corporates and larger companies are pushing ahead with expansion plans and these plans are contributing to fueling the growth in vacancies. At the same time, closed borders have led to a candidate shortage unlike anything witnessed in recent decades.

Remuneration is skyrocketing at levels never previously witnessed. The remuneration estimates page Automotive Employment NZ provides for employers was last updated on March 3, 2021. Just 4 months later the data needs updating once again.

Without a shred of doubt now is the best time to move employment and job seekers will not be disappointed in the gains that can be made; ironically, there are less job seekers in the market at a time NZ has never had a broader selection of opportunities.

Why not check out our own job board while you are here?

Trademe’s Director Matt Tollich wrote the following article this week highlighting the phenomena referred to above:

Job hunters more reluctant to move roles despite surge in job listings - survey says Despite a strong job market with more vacancies than pre-Covid, Kiwis remain reluctant to move jobs, according to a recent Trade Me survey.

Trade Me Jobs sales director Matt Tolich said over 1,400 Kiwis took part in the annual survey, which sought to gain insights into the attitudes of job hunters in 2021.


“A year on from lockdown, we wanted to check in with Kiwi job hunters to ask them how they are feeling about the state of the job market and to analyse what’s changed for them in the last 12 months.”


Mr Tolich said the survey results showed Kiwis intend on staying in their jobs longer when compared with previous years. “17 per cent of respondents said they intend to leave their current roles within a year, that’s down from 27 per cent when we ran our survey last year.”


There was also a significant increase in the number of Kiwis expecting to be in their current role for the next four or more years, with 22 per cent of respondents saying this was their expectation in 2021 compared with 14 per cent in 2020.


“With Kiwis understandably still not 100 per cent confident in the economy after such a turbulent 12-18 months, more job hunters are choosing to stick it out, wait until the borders are open and the world begins to return to normal.”


However, Mr Tolich said it is a good time for those that were considering a career change to make a move with a surge in job listings in May. “If we compare the jobs market now to pre-Covid times, it’s in great shape and there are a lot of options out there for those job hunters who are ready to make a move. Last month we saw a 40 per cent increase in the number of jobs listed onsite when compared with the same month in 2019.


“With a surge in job vacancies but Kiwis reluctant to make a move, it is extremely challenging for those looking to hire. Employers have already been struggling to find talent due to closed borders and the 85,000 drop in net migration, so no doubt the knowledge that people are less likely to leave their jobs will be a tough pill to swallow for businesses looking to grow.”


Job hunters keeping a close eye on the market

While Kiwis were staying in their roles for longer, Mr Tolich said many appeared to be keeping an eye on the market. “Twenty-one per cent of respondents said they were actively looking for and applying for new roles, while 30 per cent said they were keeping an eye out for new opportunities. A further 7 per cent said they were looking but not yet applying.

”The main reason Kiwis were looking for a new role is just to see what is out there. “This accounted for 1 in 5 responses, over double what we saw in 2020 (9%), and knocks better pay off the top spot.”


Mr Tolich said given the past year, a surprising number of respondents were open to leaving the country for a new role. “Even with the Covid-19 pandemic and other countries faring worse off than New Zealand, 23 per cent of respondents said they would consider relocating outside of New Zealand for a job.”


Kiwis work-life balance and job security above all else


Mr Tolich said the survey also showed a shift in some of the factors job hunters in New Zealand view as important in their ideal role, but work-life balance and job security still came out on top.


“Job hunters ranked work-life balance as the most important factor when looking for a new role, with 61 per cent of respondents saying this was essential. This compares to 57 per cent in 2020.


“We weren’t surprised to see work-life balance come out on top this year. Covid-19 made many of us reevaluate our priorities and put time with family and friends, and our own personal well being higher on the list. The lockdowns also blurred the lines between home and the workplace and we’re undoubtedly seeing job hunters think more about that now too.


“In response to this we’ve seen some employers put new things in place to help their people maintain a healthy work-life balance and to attract and retain talent. We’ve also noticed working from home has become a common feature in job listings onsite.”

Factors ranked as very important to Kiwi job hunters in 2020 and 2021


Respondents rated job security and stability as the second most important factor when looking for a new role, with 59 per cent of respondents saying this was very important, interestingly only a one per cent increase on 2020. “We would have expected this number to be much higher if New Zealand hadn’t weathered the Covid-19 storm as well as we have so far”


Mr Tolich said whether the job seeker felt like the company would be a good fit (49%), the culture and values of a company (47%), and the actual work they would be doing (47%) also ranked as very important. Interestingly, feeling valued and opportunities to develop skills, which both featured in the top five most important factors in 2020, saw a downturn in importance this year.


“On the other hand, how others viewed their new jobs was least important, with over 33 per cent of respondents saying this was not important to them.