January arrived with promising news for candidates across New Zealand. The latest data from SEEK Employment Trends shows opportunities were up by 9.4% and the majority of industries recorded an increase, so you could be in for a very happy New Year.
This year-on-year growth may be a reflection of a general positive sentiment across the country. Consumer confidence rose in January after three months of declines and the Government posted an unexpected operating surplus.
“The mood is generally very positive in the market right now,” says Lee Tyrell, Director of recruitment firm Franklin Smith. “The Construction industry remains quite strong and the property market is doing well. It’s been a very good start to the year.”
Building the nation
Strength in New Zealand’s Construction industry was also recorded on SEEK with a 19% lift in opportunities in January. The average advertised salary for construction was $103,048 – this was the highest of any industry in January.
“We’re seeing good demand for project management across the industry,” says Tyrell. “Fletcher Building, which is the country’s largest construction company, has been recording a loss in recent times but we’re not seeing that translating across the broader sector in terms of demand for talent. A lot of the existing infrastructure projects still have years to go until completion.”
A lift in mining
While the Construction industry continued to deliver more opportunities for candidates, the Mining, Resources and Energy industry recorded the highest year-on-year growth. Prospects rising 84% year-on-year, however this was coming off a low base. The average advertised salary for the sector was $91,944.
If you’re looking for your next role in the Manufacturing, Transport and Logistics industry, your prospects were up by 30% year-on-year and the average advertised salary was $65,519. Candidates in Government and Defence also saw 23% more opportunities coming their way and the average advertised salary was $83,431.
Shane Mackay, General Manager, Wellington, at OCG Consulting Limited, attributes much of this growth to the recent change in Government. “A new Government means new policies and we’re seeing good demand for strategic policy people,” he says.
A small slip for banking and financial services
The majority of industries experienced year-on-year growth on SEEK in January, however, Banking and Financial Services recorded a minimal decline of 1% and the average advertised salary was $85,763.
Accounting was stable and the average advertised salary was $78,135. Meanwhile, the Insurance and Superannuation Industry recorded a slip of 11% and the average advertised salary was $71,282.
Trends across the regions
Candidates in Southland and Northland had reason to smile in January. The two regions were out in front for opportunities, growing 24.4% and 23.7% respectively.
Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch have also recorded high levels of job ads relative to the past fives year, however the trend has been quite flat over recent months. Bay of Plenty and West Coast have recorded high levels of job ads relative to recent years and the trend has been looking up for the past four months.
Tips for success
If you want to stand out from the competition in 2018, you may need to polish up your communication skills. Mackay says employers are placing a focus on candidates with soft skills. “Collaboration is highly valued, so it’s good to be able to show how you’ve worked successfully with others to achieve results,” he says.
Tyrell stresses the importance of researching a company before applying for a role. “It’s important to show that you know their business,” he says. “It also helps you to be clear that it’s a company you actually want to work for. Have lots of questions prepared for an interview to show that you’re interested. This will also help you to know that it’s the role for you. If you are clear about what you’re looking for, you’re more likely to get what you want.”
The year got off to a great start for candidates with even more opportunities coming your way on SEEK. Let’s hope the momentum continues in the months ahead.