Top 20 most-needed jobs in New Zealand
The upheavals we’ve seen in the job market this year have impacted which industries have the most demand for new workers.

We’ve looked at the latest data to uncover the top 20 most-needed jobs in New Zealand. Several can be found in two industries that are vital to the country’s recovery from COVID-19: Healthcare and Construction.

Here’s a snapshot of the top 20 most-needed roles, and what employers in these industries will be looking for when you apply for a role.

Most-needed jobs
Current rank
Change since Feb
Nursing-All roles 1 +4
Administrative Assistants 2 -1
Warehousing, Storage & Distribution 3 0
Developers / Programmers 4 0
Retail Assistants 5 -3
Automotive Trades 6 +2
Sales Representatives / Consultants 7 0
Chefs / Cooks 8 -2
Labourers 9 +6
Business / Systems Analysts 10 -1
Building Trades 11 +7
Child Welfare, Youth & Family Services 12 +21
Psychology, Counselling / Social Work 13 +21
Civil / Structural Engineering 14 -2
Account & Relationship Management 15 -1
Customer Service - Call Centre 16 -6
Machine Operators 17 +8
Management - Store 18 -5
Government / council roles 19 +18
Technicians 20 +2

Healthcare and Construction in the spotlight

Health has been a defining theme of 2020, so it’s little surprise the industry is seeing an increase in demand for roles such as Nursing and Psychology, says Doug Steel, Senior Economist with BNZ.

“I expect that this will continue for some time as healthcare will remain a focus this year,” he says.

The building industry has also signalled a greater need for roles. Steel says this may be due to a $3 billion government infrastructure investment that’s been announced to help fund the country’s recovery from COVID-19.

“There was also significant infrastructure funding in place prior to COVID-19, and the recent increase will likely lead to demand for more construction workers,” he says.

“Residential construction may also be adding to the growth in roles,” he adds. “Councils weren’t issuing building consents during the lockdown, but that’s all changed now, so I expect there will be renewed residential building activity between now and Christmas.”

What does it mean for you?

If you’re looking for your next role in Healthcare or Construction, there may be more opportunities coming your way. But you may still face strong competition, so how can you make your application stand out?

When applying for healthcare roles, Dan Hobson, Director of Hobson Health Recruitment, suggests that you highlight your genuine commitment to supporting the health of others.

Healthcare workers play an incredibly vital role during this pandemic, Hobson explains, “Especially in nursing sectors such as aged care, community care and emergency departments or ICU,” he says. “Also, showcase all the skills you’ve developed during your career,” he adds, recommending you don’t leave out any vital information that could support your application.

If you’re applying for a labourer or building trades role, highlight your positive and hard-working attitude. That’s the advice from Troy Thurston, Operations Director at Adecco.

“A strong work ethic will always enable you to stand out quickly and become key to a construction project’s operation,” says Thurston. “Demonstrate that you are hardworking and committed to getting the job done, share examples of projects you’ve worked hard to complete and detail ways you have taken responsibility for the work you have done before.”

As COVID-19 continues to shape the job market, we’ll keep you in the loop on which industries have the biggest demand for employees.

For now, if you’re focusing on finding your next role, check out these tips for getting your application noticed, and see what’s different about going for a job now so you can prepare for the interview process with more confidence.

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