Working after study.

Working After Study in New Zealand

It is possible to stay and work in New Zealand after completing your programme of study in the country.

There are various employment opportunities in virtually all industries in the economy from finance and information technology to engineering and health care. In order to work, you need to obtain a work or residence visa.

You will have the highest chances for this if you take up a job which is on the skill shortage lists of Immigration New Zealand.

Obtaining Work and Residence Visa

Upon the completion of your programme of study and the achievement of qualification, you may be able to obtain a work visa under the Study to Work category defined by Immigration New Zealand. If you do not have a job offer after obtaining your qualification, you can apply for an open post-study work visa which enables you to stay in the country for 12 months and find a job related to your field of study.

If you have a job offer or if you are offered employment related to your field of study as a holder of an open post-study work visa, you can apply for an employer-assisted visa of this type. It will enable you to stay and work in the country for another 2 years at least. It will also give you the opportunity to apply for a resident visa under the Skilled Migrant category.

A resident visa will give you access to all the healthcare and social benefits which New Zealanders are entitled to. You will be able to stay and work in the country indefinitely.

Job Opportunities Overview

The New Zealand employment market is experiencing growth which is expected to reach 4.4% by 2016. The demand for workers with professional, scientific, technical and administrative skills is high and remains on the rise. The largest job growth is expected in the two regions with the strongest economies in the country - Auckland and Canterbury.

As a holder of qualification from a tertiary education institution in New Zealand, you will have good chances of securing a job which is related to your field of study. Keep in mind that this is a major requirement for obtaining a post-study work visa with a duration of at least two years. You must demonstrate professional knowledge and skills, excellent English language skills and positive attitude.

Skill Shortage Lists

You will have higher chances of obtaining a work or resident visa if you are offered a job which is on the skill shortage lists or on the List of Skilled Occupations compiled by Immigration New Zealand. The four lists are as follows:

Long Term Skill Shortage List

It includes occupations in which there is a continuous shortage of skilled workers both locally and across the globe. If you qualify for a job which is on this list, you may be able to obtain a work visa under the Work to Residence category. This will give you the opportunity to apply for a resident visa in 2 years.

Immediate Skill Shortage List

It includes occupations for which skilled workers are immediately required but the vacancies are not filled by local workers. If you are offered a job which is on this list, you may be granted an Essential Skills work visa which will enable you to work in the country on a temporary basis. You may not be able to apply for resident visa.

Canterbury Skill Shortage List

It contains occupations which are in skill shortage in this particular region after the recent earthquakes and which are relevant to the rebuilding of the region. You may be granted an Essential Skills work visa if you get a job which is on this list. You may be able to apply for a resident visa if your job is on the Long Term Skill Shortage List as well.

List of Skilled Occupations

You will be able to apply for a resident visa under the Skilled Migrant category if your occupation is on this list. In order to apply for a resident visa under this category, you must be under 55 years of age, have the required skill level, and meet health, character and English language requirements.

To access the lists and to search for your occupation, visit http://skillshortages.immigration.govt.nz/.