Phillip Pearson - web + electronics notes

tech notes and web hackery from a new zealander who was vaguely useful on the web back in 2002 (see: python community server, the blogging ecosystem, the new zealand coffee review, the internet topic exchange).


Working in New Zealand as a software developer, part 2

[<-- back to part one]

Lots of questions yesterday! Rather than keeping on extending that post, I'll continue answering questions here.

Tremeur Balbous, the Frenchman mentioned in the previous post, asks:

1- How much does it cost for housing with a family (2 children) ?

The bigger the city, the bigger the cost. Auckland > Wellington > Christchurch > Dunedin. In Christchurch, about $200 per week will be enough to rent a 3 bedroom house. You can probably buy a similar house for $150,000 or so.

(NZ$1 = EUR 0.5 = US$0.60; here is some exchange rate data).

2- What are the working conditions (hours/week or /day, holidays...) ?

WorkSite has lots of information here, but most in jobs in New Zealand are for 8 hours/day, i.e. 40 hours/week. Some are 7.5 hours/day (9am-5pm, with 30 mins for lunch).

Salaried workers typically get 3 weeks (15 days) of holidays per year, plus statuatory holidays like Easter and Christmas, although it's common for software developers to get 4 weeks instead. Recent changes to the Holidays Act mean that everyone will get 4 weeks, but not until 2007, so you should try and negotiate 4 weeks of holidays into your contract when you get your job.

From what I've heard, it sounds like writing software in NZ is much less stressful than in the USA.

3- How much could I expect as a software engineer with 2 years of experiences ?

You'll need at least 3 years of experience to qualify for the "work to residence" or related immigration programmes. Straight out of university, programmers tend to start on somewhere between $30,000 and $40,000 per year, but after a few years you might be on more like $50,000.

4- My wife is a nursery nurse, could she expect find a job ?

Midwives and nurses are on the Priority Occupation List, so I'd say yes.

5- How does school work for children ? age for first year... 6- What is the system for babies (children garden, ...)

Kids go to kindergarten (we use the German word) from age 3-4, then primary school from 5-10, intermediate school (which is sometimes integrated with primary or high school, depending on the school) from 11-12, then high school from 13-17.

Woolly Mittens asks: Could you give us some pointers on how to find potential employers? Are there job agencies?

I see advertised all the time, so I'd check them out. A lot of the recent employees at my work have been hired through employment agencies who advertise on the web.

Peter Conrad asks: Did the top really fall off Mt. Aorangi?

Yes :-)

... more like this: []