Southland is a great place to work. There are opportunities for specialists in industries such as medicine and engineering, as well as agriculture and professional services.

Working in New Zealand

To work in New Zealand you must have:

  • Citizenship of New Zealand or Australia or hold Australian residency, or
  • A residence visa, work visa or variation of conditions which allows you to work on a student or visitor visa.

Contact Immigration New Zealand for more information on gaining a visa to work in New Zealand.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) provides an overview of some the minimum rights and responsibilities of employers and employees. It is important that you understand your rights as an employee in New Zealand.

Modern Dairy Farming in Southland

Job preparation

Employers will usually require you to submit a Curriculum Vitae (CV) or résumé, and a covering letter when applying for a job. Careers New Zealand is one service that can help you with your career choices and preparation for job search, including preparing a CV and a covering letter.

English Language Partners NZ provide a wide range of programmes designed to help newcomers improve their English. Work Talk is a four-week course to help you prepare your CV, approach employers and practice for job interviews. 

Finding a job in Southland

There are a number of different options you can take when looking for a job in Southland, New Zealand.  It is estimated that 70% of jobs are filled without being advertised. Of the 30% that are advertised, most appear on job websites or in the local newspapers.

In a region the size of Southland, it is generally quite easy to make your own networks or join established networks both professional and personal. New Zealand's informal nature and way of doing things should make this even easier.  Don't be afraid to use all your social and professional connections to make yourself known - you never know when this may lead to an offer of employment!

Discuss business ideas in Southland

Job search websites

There are numerous websites that list general vacancies across Southland and New Zealand; we have listed the main New Zealand sites below:

Local Southland recruitment/employment companies

You can contact these local companies to provide them with your CV so they can approach local employers on your behalf:


The Southland Times advertises jobs in its Wednesday and Saturday editions.  Local community papers such as the Southland Express, The Eye, The Ensign and The Fiordland Advocate also carry job advertisements.

    Immigration New Zealand

    The New Zealand Department of Immigration handles all paperwork for immigrating to New Zealand, including work permits and student visas.

    Find information about living and studying in Southland

    New Zealand Now

    Your guide to living and working in New Zealand

    Live and work in Southland

    English language for speakers of other languages (ESOL)

    A variety of ESOL training options exist to assist in the study of English as a second language.

    International student group

    The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment

    Employers and employees have rights and responsibilities towards each other, including young employees, and where employees work alone or work more than one job.

    Southland is a leader in innovative industries


    An innovative culture and an abundance of natural resources, the mainstay of the economy continues to be the high performing farming sector in Southland.

    Work in the agriculture industry in Southland


    Be your own boss. Southland is committed to developing opportunities for business growth and helping you grow, manage and promote your business.

    Find business support for growth and development in Southland