More good signs for job market

JOSH MARTIN
Last updated 13:14 09/01/2014

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The job market's growth has been underlined with a big jump in listings with online site Trade Me Jobs.

The site saw a 17 per cent increase in listings in the December quarter compared to the same period in 2012.

And an analysis of more than 50,000 Trade Me job advertisements showed several positive signs even before the busiest time for recruitment, January and February, kicked in, Trade Me Jobs head Peter Osborne said.

Canterbury and Auckland saw the site's biggest growth in job adswith 22.7 per cent and 16.7 per cent, respectively.

Osborne said New Zealand's largest city continued to shine economically.

"Auckland represents almost 40 per cent of the national market and saw 17 per cent growth on a year ago, providing a clear indication that our biggest employment market is showing no signs of losing speed," he said

But many smaller regions bettered that, with all except Gisborne seeing increases, compared to the last quarter of 2012, with the West Coast (44.3 per cent), Nelson-Tasman (27.9 per cent), Taranaki (26.3 per cent), Bay of Plenty (24.8 per cent) and Waikato (24.4 per cent) leading the pack.

Job listings growth in excess of 20 per cent was "a notable standout", Osborne said.

"Together these regions account for one-third of all jobs on site and their accelerated growth is a major contributor to the overall 17 per cent increase in jobs advertised [on Trade Me]," he said.

"This demonstrates the healthy state of the national job market and means there are opportunities for many job hunters across the country."

In Wellington job listings were up 7.4 per cent for the year-on-year period.

The higher job listings were good news for seasonal workers in the primary and hospitality sectors, as well as graduates and school-leavers, Osborne said.

The number of roles in hospitality and tourism rose significantly in the lead-up to the summer holidays, but the 30 per cent increase over the same period in 2012 was "a pleasant surprise".

Agriculture, fishing and forestry, and customer service roles also typically enjoyed a pre-Christmas spike but were up 32 per cent and 35 per cent year-on-year, respectively.

The strong conditions in the latter half of 2013 looked set to continue in 2014 as more listings appeared in the first two months than any other time, Osborne said.

"We expect there'll be plenty of opportunities for school-leavers, uni graduates and those looking for a change in the new year to find the job they've been coveting," he said.

The increased demand could likely mean higher salaries would be needed to entice the right candidates to apply, he said.

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"We haven't seen a trend of increased job applications, which means candidates in many sectors and regions remain in short supply and are yet to take full advantage of a market leaning more in their favour," Osborne said.

- Fairfax Media

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