NZ Employees set to hold the power in 2016

Friday 29 January 2016, 10:04AM
By PR-ink

The balance of power in the New Zealand workforce is predicted to tip in favour of employees according to the findings of a survey by leading specialist recruitment firm Robert Walters.

The global survey, which covers a range of professions and is based on real placements made by Robert Walters consultants, forecasts that competition for talent is expected to intensify as market conditions improve resulting in skill shortages across most disciplines.

This shortage of available talent will drive salaries upwards in a number of markets. Middle to senior level finance, legal and procurement professionals, as well as salespeople with a proven success record will be able to command increases when moving jobs. Digital marketing specialists practised in customer retention and data analytics will also expect significant raises.

As negotiating power shifts from hiring managers back to professionals with niche skills, employers will need to focus on their appeal if they are to entice the best candidates, advises Robert Walters Wellington Director Shay Peters.

“Employers need to consider how they can enhance the overall competitiveness of their offer and explore options like flexible working conditions, as well as increased salaries. Throughout 2016 and beyond, hiring manages will need to identify talent quickly and act fast to secure the professionals they want. So companies seeking new employees need to be clear and decisive about the attributes they are looking for in candidates.” says Peters.

“The cost of recruiting the wrong person is really high – we estimate it is approximately six months of lost time. This has a huge impact on any sized business so ensuring that hiring mangers take the time to be really precise about the skills and attributes they are after is imperative to securing a quality candidate.” added Peters.

The survey highlighted that qualified professionals with both local and international work experience will continue to be in highest demand across all sectors and regions.

It also identified that the New Zealand employment market, particularly in the IT and Banking sectors, will need to lift its appeal as it will be competing against large salary increases from Countries like Hong Kong and the UK, who are also experiencing skill shortages, which will entice Kiwi talent abroad.

Public sector organisations will continue to come under pressure to limit contract spend. However, despite a greater focus on fixed-term and permanent positions across most disciplines, there will continue to be a need for high-end contract hires.

The top five professions in New Zealand for 2016 are:

  • IT (cloud, mobile, digital, e-commerce, cyber security)
  • Risk and compliance finance specialists and commercially savvy accountants
  • Lawyers with 5PQE
  • Construction engineers
  • Sales and marketing professionals 

Robert Walters Auckland Director James Dalrymple said; “We are cautiously optimistic for 2016, anticipating that recruitment levels will be broadly similar to those seen in 2015. However, we expect demand to be especially sensitive to wider economic conditions as New Zealand is increasingly exposed to global market forces. Competition will be particularly intense for experienced financial and commercial managers across all markets.”

On a global scale IT is a key driver for jobs growth across most industry sectors particularly in cyber security, data analysis, cloud computing, mobile applications, e-commerce.


About Robert Walters

Robert Walters is one of the world’s leading global recruitment consultancies, specialising in the placement of permanent, contract and temporary positions across all levels of seniority. Our teams of professional consultants are renowned for their professionalism, integrity and exceptional recruitment consultancy.

Robert Walters has two offices in New Zealand, one in Auckland and the second in Wellington.

Named as the Best International Recruitment Firm at the Recruitment International Awards 2013.