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Hiring? This is Why You Are Struggling Right Now

This is why NZ companies are going ballistic hiring talent right now.  And struggling to do so..

Just in case you never got the memo, read the paper or listened to a recruitment consultant talk about how busy they are right now – it is fair to say that employers are hiring up a storm!  

There are loads of reasons for this, so we thought we’d convey some of them to you and give you a bit of insight as to why (because frankly, the COVID experience doesn’t automatically lead to a conclusion that it’s going to create a hiring frenzy!).

So here is why the market is a bit frantic mid-2021 in New Zealand:

  • Some companies were a little (erm) comprehensive in their restructuring last year.  This time last year companies were dealing with massive uncertainty about what the future looked like.  Many moved incredibly quickly to cut costs (including headcount).  What now looks like a knee jerk reaction was a pragmatic business decision across many organisations (particularly corporates) – but now, it has resulted in many organisations having to hire to regain the headcount.  
  • Many businesses have changed their marketing focus and need different talent.  During COVID, our marketing area was super busy because many organisations were changing channel focus and having to engage with customers in different ways.  (Billboard advertising doesn’t really work when people are locked down!).  Additionally, never before has empathy been so crucial in business so many organisations have looked for a refresh in their marketing and CX approach.  This change is driving demand for new skills in organisations.
  • New pivots, new products, new focus.  (sorry for the p word…) – through the past year, organisations were forced to develop in areas that previously were not hugely important.  For example, there has been a large push within the HR function around WFH capabilities and resilience of staff – so new talent has been needed to make this happen.  Risks with heightened focus (cyber, privacy and H&S anyone?) are also driving hiring decisions.
  • Employee fatigue.  Unfortunately – we’re seeing the health impact of last year on the health of employees.  As a result, temporary and contractor demand has risen due to this (and also due to companies struggling to secure permanent talent).
  • New technology plans.  Many organisations have decided to develop or implement new technology plans – this is placing considerable demand on tech talent for years to come.
  • Increased reporting needs.  Like never before, businesses need up to date information from which to make key decisions with.  This is putting additional pressure and demands on the finance function of organisations that are having to implement or extend their business insights capabilities.  The demand for accounting and finance talent who can interpret and convey information to the business is huge right now.


New Zealand doesn’t have the talent available while our borders are closed.

It’s been an incredibly busy year with many organisations currently scrambling to hire the best talent available in New Zealand.  But the reality is this:

  • Demand has never been higher for talent
  • Our available talent is limited to those in NZ currently
  • Moving forward, either borders need to open, or we will need to lower expectations of who we can hire moving forward OR employers will continue to pay increased amounts to entice talent to their organisations

We are seeing significant salary increases across most roles.

We are losing talent to Australia.  In fact, the Australians are actively poaching our talent with higher salaries, warmer weather and opportunities to get ahead.

So what do you need to do?  Read our coming blogs around how to cope in a hiring environment where there are slim pickings of available talent!

Or drop me a line – I would love to hear from you and how you are coping out there:

About the author

Angela Cameron - CA, CPA

Executive Director

A chartered accountant by qualification, she is a recruitment leader by nature.

  • Hiresmart

    July 13, 2021 at 4:43 am

    Thanks for sharing this article. The challenges that HR and recruiting teams face are real, but by building a strategic partnership with an expert staffing and recruiting firm, one can instantly begin to overcome those challenges and regain your competitive edge.

    • Angela Cameron

      October 11, 2021 at 2:06 pm

      Thanks for your feedback! We totally agree that building strong relationships with a (GOOD) agency is the key to being able to access talent right now. Especially in those hard to fill roles (tech in particular) or in specialist areas where you might now have a decent candidate pool (risk and compliance!!).
      Cheers! Angela

  • Emily Jensen

    September 30, 2021 at 7:16 pm

    Interesting to know! I am self-employed, struggling to find work in NZ, and very open to opportunities! Would love to connect with any recruiters out there!

    • Angela Cameron

      October 11, 2021 at 2:08 pm

      Hey Emily!
      Drop me a line at so we can connect!

  • Shuai Chung Wang

    November 7, 2021 at 11:22 pm

    This article from July is becoming more true towards the end of the year, there is just so many vacancies at the moment and so little talents left in NZ.

    • Consult Team

      November 9, 2021 at 9:42 am

      We couldn’t agree more! Time unfortunately is not making this situation any better – with the borders remaining closed the talent shortages are really biting in most areas. Also with this current lockdown in Auckland; some of the reasons mentioned above like employee fatigue has also been exacerbated!

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