Connecting New Zealand

Survey highlights immigration’s role in construction skills shortage

05 Aug 2021

Ninety per cent of construction firms are having difficulty recruiting in New Zealand, a new survey of CCNZ and other key industry body members has found. The primary reasons identified by respondents are skill shortages, recruitment challenges and immigration policies that don’t meet industry needs.

The 135 organisations that responded to the survey collectively reported 3,229 vacancies across a wide range of jobs and experience levels, varying from professional services to trade roles.

The survey found that while many firms usually recruit from overseas, most are currently not doing so because of concerns about New Zealand’s border exception processes and criteria.

CCNZ Chief Executive Peter Silcock said the findings showed that many in the industry felt that Immigration NZ’s border exception criteria were too narrow, and in some cases at odds with the Government’s intention to allocate MIQ places for the construction sector.

A report on the survey  findings has been sent to Government, along with a request to meet key ministers to discuss the issues raised.

The main recommendations include:

  • aligning Immigration NZ’s border exception criteria for “long-term critical workers” for the infrastructure sector with the MIQ group allocation criteria,
  • lowering the salary threshold for workers whose skills are in short supply,
  • adding construction sector professions and occupations to the list of approved classes of workers, alongside dairy farm managers and shearers etc,
  • improving levels of support from Immigration NZ for the sector, including help with applications for MIQ places and border exceptions (e.g. nominated key sector contacts and application templates).

Mr Silcock said access to a skilled workforce and pipeline of talent was essential if the current and proposed infrastructure investment across New Zealand is to be delivered. He said the survey findings could play an important role in highlighting the need for change to our current immigration settings.

The survey was sent to members of CCNZ, the Association of Engineering and Consulting (ACE New Zealand), Te Kāhui Whaihanga New Zealand Institute of Architects, and Registered Master Builders Association.

Read the detail in in the survey report >>




Principal Business Partner
Core Associates
Major Associates
Checksafe Ltd
Brandt Equipment
MATES In Construction
Hydraulink Fluid Connecters Ltd
Brolube New Zealand
A B Equipment Ltd
Franklin Smith Group
Capital Consulting International NZ Limited
BNZ Partners
Coninnova Limited
ERoad Ltd
Doug the Digger
Marley NZ Ltd
Global Survey - Auckland
Firth Certified Concrete
H.J. Asmuss & Co. Ltd
Northpine Ltd
John Deere Limited
Vertu Equipment Limited
SAMI Bitumen Technologies New Zealand Ltd
CSP Div of Fletcher Steel
Milwaukee Tool New Zealand
Greenlight Insurance Brokers
Geosynthetic Partners International Ltd
Humes Pipeline Systems
Nulca NZ
Enviro NZ Services Ltd
Liebherr New Zealand
Youngman Richardson
TLC Insurance Limited
Reliance Reinforcing Limited
TR Group
UDC Finance
Rettenmaier New Zealand Ltd
First Gas
Porter Group Limited
Manage Company
MBP (NZ) Ltd
Winstone Aggregates
Geofabrics New Zealand Ltd
Commercial Hire NZ Ltd
Trade Me Jobs
Komatsu New Zealand Ltd
Mico New Zealand Ltd
Sheet Pile Ltd
Westpac NZ Ltd
Vertical Horizonz NZ Ltd
Terra Infrastructure Pty Ltd
Infrastructure Sustainability Council
Hynds Pipe Systems
Holcim New Zealand Ltd
Teletrac Navman
AECOM New Zealand Limited
RobLawMax Recruitment
TotalEnergies NZ Ltd
Over and Out Communications
The Drug Detection Agency
Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency
Kobelco New Zealand
Southeys Group Auckland
Power Farming New Zealand Ltd
Steelgal NZ Ltd
Infrastructure New Zealand
Fluiconnecto Ryco New Zealand Ltd
XCMG New Zealand
Terra Cat
Absolute Immigration NZ
Portacom New Zealand Limited
Wirtgen NZ Ltd
Turners Group Ltd: Head Office/Auckland
Advice Financial
TRIG Instruments


Forgot password?
Create an Account