Skilled candidate shortage, real threat to business growth

New Zealand businesses will struggle to grow to their full potential if highly skilled candidates are not actively recruited back into the New Zealand market commented Robert Walters New Zealand country manager Shay Peters in two recent interviews with the NZ Herald and Dominion Post.

Key findings from the latest Salary Survey research

  • There is a growing shortage of highly skilled candidates and this coupled with the potential tightening of immigration laws in NZ has the potential to have a significant impact on growth in industries - especially the IT sector.
  • In 2017, salaries rose for nearly 60% of professionals, and 74% of professionals expect their salaries to rise in 2018.
  • Just over 30% of professionals surveyed want to move out of their current roles for career progression, so employers need to make sure they are making career development of current staff a priority.
  • Nearly 80% of professionals surveyed are expecting to look for a new role in the next one to two years, and over 30% are already looking for a new job.
  • Over 30% of respondents say that career progression would be their primary motivator to change roles, closely followed by a pay rise.
  • Over 60% of respondents feel they are fairly remunerated.


Peters says that due to the persisting pressure of a shortage of candidates, salaries will increase for many professionals, leaving some in a powerful position to negotiate with the employers.

Peters continued; “Kiwi companies are going to have to really tailor their pitch to entice expats back here. They’ll have to upsell the lifestyle balance that New Zealand offers and be prepared to offer salaries in line with those in the UK, US and Asia."

“The fallout from Brexit, combined with the perceived political instability in the United States, is making New Zealand an increasingly attractive option for many Kiwi expats. This trend will assist in meeting the high demand for skilled professionals in New Zealand”, concluded Peters.


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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. 

About the Salary Survey:

The Robert Walters Salary Survey is the most comprehensive overview of salaries and recruitment trends across Australia. The findings are based on the analysis of permanent, interim and contract placements made across each of our geographies and recruitment disciplines during 2017. First released in 2000, this is the nineteenth edition of the Robert Walters Salary Survey.