Finding out about New Zealand Employers

It is sensible to find out all you can about an employer before you accept a job offer, and perhaps even before you send in your CV – even more so if your new job will have you and your family moving half-way around the world.

What should you look for in a New Zealand employer?

What constitutes a satisfactory answer to many of these questions will vary by industry, the size of the company and your own preferences – but this kind of research can not only make you more comfortable that you are a good “fit” for a particular company, it may also give you an edge in the interview process.

Try to find out:

  • What exactly does the company do? If it is a large company, also try to establish exactly what the division you are investigating does.
  • Where are its main markets?
  • How many employees does the company have?
  • Has the company employed anyone from the UK before? How did it go?
  • Where are their offices located?
  • When was the company established?
  • Who owns the company?
  • Who runs the company? (the CEO and other top positions)
  • Who are their main competitors?
  • How does the company stack up against their competitors – do they compete on price? quality? experience? innovation?
  • Has the company been in the news? (new products, mergers, redundancies, charitable initiatives etc.)
  • Are there any recent or forthcoming significant changes in the industry? (regulatory changes, mergers etc)

It’s quite a list – and this is before you consider more specific requirements such as salary and opportunities for advancement. If you were trying to find out about a prospective employer in the UK you would probably have contacts in your industry or even within the company to give you some idea of what you are getting yourself in to.

How do you find out about a New Zealand employer?

Researching a New Zealand Employer

  • The company’s website – most New Zealand companies have websites, though these vary greatly in their scope and usefulness. Even if you find everything you need here, make sure you dig a little deeper…Google – if you’re looking for specifically New Zealand information, the Google New Zealand search page has a “Pages from New Zealand” search option. If you need to narrow your search, remember that you can surround a phrase with quotation marks to search for a specific phrase.
  • News websites – if the company has been in the news it should appear on Google, but if you would like to do a news-specific search for a New Zealand company your best bet is probably Stuff or Google News.
  • Competitor websites – comparing what other companies in your industry are doing should give you a good idea of what your industry is like in New Zealand.
  • Industry websites – a web search should lead you to professional organisations, unions, regulators and trade publications in your industry. These should give you a good idea of your prospective employer’s reputation in the industry, and recent developments and issues within your industry.
  • Annual reports – If you’re really digging in to a New Zealand company, try New Zealand Companies Office, which posts annual reports online. These reports will give you specific details of company directors, shareholders etc.

The other method of finding out about a company is of course to ask them. Asking a couple of pertinent questions during an interview should impress your interviewer. If the company is large enough to have an HR department you will probably find them very receptive to questions from prospective employees. And if the company has employed staff from the UK before, ask if you can talk to them – as well as answering your industry-specific and employer-related questions, you may be able to get some good lifestyle tips.

To find out more, request a free copy of our Financial and Pension guides for New Zealand.