Permanent vs Contracting

A contractor is a person who is in business for themselves. They usually charge a fee for their services and pay their own taxes (see below for more details).

On the other hand, an employee is paid a salary or wage. Their employer pays PAYE tax and ACC levies on the employee’s behalf.

For more details, see the section below:


in detail

  1. Are paid a regular set salary or wage.
  2. Have Income Tax paid on their earnings automatically by their employer.
  3. Have ACC levies taken from their earnings automatically by their employer.
  4. Have Student Loan deductions paid on their earnings automatically by their employer.
  5. Can make automatic KiwiSaver contributions on their earnings, matched by their employer.
  6. Are entitled to holiday leave and sick days.


in detail

  1. Are paid on an hourly or daily rate, often working on contracts of between 1 and 6 months.
  2. Are classified as ‘self-employed’ and as such, must pay their own Income Tax, ACC levies and file GST returns (if applicable).
  3. Don’t get annual leave or sick days.
  4. Usually need to carry their own insurance for the work they do.

How do I manage my taxes as a contractor?

Contracting for the first time can be daunting – income, withholding & provisional tax, GST and ACC for the uninitiated can be a lot to consider.

You don’t need to tackle this on your own though. There are several businesses in New Zealand set up to help contractors in this exact situation for a fairly modest fee. Our Contractor Care team will be more than happy to talk you through your options.

Why do I need insurance as a contractor?

For Independent Contractors, insurance is used to protect both the contractor and the business they are contracting to from potential loss arising from the work that has been completed – including unintentional errors.

The industry and role you specialise in will determine what insurance you need. Without it, you could run the risk of losing money and, in some cases, the opportunity to work on some projects.

At Consult, we appreciate that paying for insurance as an Independent Contractor can be a bit of a ‘grudge spend’, which is why we are happy to arrange and pay the premiums for contractor insurance (professional indemnity, public liability and statutory liability insurance) for individuals who meet the eligibility criteria.

To learn more, please get in touch with one of our team to discuss – or email

How do I find work when my contract ends?

Before your contract end date, it’s important to reach out to your consultant so we can find you your next role.

To determine the direction of your next contract, we’ll discuss your current placement, parts you enjoyed or didn’t, what you’re looking for in your next role and any companies you hope to work for. Also, if you’ve spotted a role that interests you, let us know that too.

Providing us with as much information as possible will help us determine the best fit for you.

Get In Touch

We’re super-good-verging-on-creepy at getting back to people, so ping us with your details and we’ll be in touch pronto.

Consult Recruitment

(+64) 9 410 7235

106-108 Quay Street, Level 2, Britomart, Auckland

    Consult Recruitment

    (+64) 9 410 7235

    106-108 Quay Street, Level 2, Britomart, Auckland