As of October 2020


It has been a few months since my last market update, and seeing that the only certainty of 2020 is uncertainty, a lot has happened since. In August, Auckland entered a second lockdown which was drastically different from the first. We saw a huge difference in terms of augmented hiring volumes and hiring pace, observing a significant increase in the number of organisations equipped to hire and onboard remotely.

Over the past few months, we have also started to see contracting predictions come to fruition. In terms of contingent labour hire, there has been an increase in discussion across organisations as they consider this as a strategy for flex and scale. This is particularly true of the technical software/infrastructure areas; however, I predict that the transformation space will bounce back post review and prioritisation of internal programmes.

The implications of our borders being closed are also really starting to play out in the way of the formation of tighter talent pools. Although the media has commented on the growing number of Kiwis returning home and the associated demand for these candidates’ skills and experiences, we are not seeing that in high enough volumes to balance out talent-short pipelines. Another surprising trend is an increase in counteroffers for candidates. Across the market, we’re finding that the search for top talent is a difficult one.

In terms of movement with salaries, we have seen candidates exercise more flexibility in general. In practice, I would say there is a more realistic expectation that one might not be able to secure an increase with every move which is causing a bit of a levelling out of the market. In terms of contractor rates, we’re seeing things start to settle with short-medium term “discounts” soon coming to an end as the tech contractor market stabilises. Candidates’ expectations are also shifting, with a large focus being placed on flexible work arrangements, stability and potential promise of further contractor extensions.

As we move towards some sense of stability, organisations are starting to experience the impact of how they handled the pandemic in its initial stages, with consequences arising for their employment brand and retention rate. Those who reacted quickly and led with a people-first approach are reaping the benefits now.

Across the market, WFH and hybrid models continue to be a hot topic. While the initial market response to these models was positive, as the year has progressed, we have observed a sense of caution emerge. This sentiment is particularly strong around topics such as the maintenance of culture, collaboration, and burn-out. It is now a matter of figuring out what works best for teams as we continue to adjust to this new way of working.

Kara Smith
General Manager - AKL




17,477 technology professionals, with an average tenure of 1.5 years.


Contract: Software Engineer, Business Analyst, Tester Perm: Help Desk Analyst, Tester, Software Engineer


Salesforce developers/consultants, Data Analytics, DevOps and Cloud Engineers, React Developers, Financial Services BA's with Compliance experience


Flexibility - option to work from home often, career/skills development, certification support


Datacom, Spark New Zealand, ASB Bank, Auckland Council, The University of Auckland


66% Male

34% Female

*The information in this site has been retrieved from sources with gender binary data. We acknowledge those who do not fit within this rigid framework and understand there are many more gender identities beyond the binary.




Auckland, the ‘City of Sails’, is known for both it’s beautiful scenery and for being a growing urban oasis.  


Tāmaki Makaurau is home to the largest Polynesian population in the world and also houses large European and Asian communities.  With trade relations currently being developed with other regions such as India and South America, immigration has increased significantly from these destinations over the last several years – creating a very dynamic and diverse city. This diversity contributes to a plethora of talent as well as amazing food options.

Auckland's relaxed working environment lends itself to a good work-life balance, which attracts talent from around the globe. Whilst the cost of living is relatively high in this city, easy accessibility to social services and New Zealand's world ranking as the easiest place to do business, makes it an enticing city to reside in. 

Auckland is also a land of opportunity, operating as a hub for many start-up and scale up businesses with big aspirations. New Zealand's 'number 8 wire' mentality, which represents the Kiwi problem-solving and can-do attitude, permeates throughout Auckland's culture and in all that its citizens set out to do.

All prices quoted are in local currency.

Average cost of a coffee


Average cost of renting a 1 bed in the city 


Average gym membership per month 





Permanent roles are annual salaries and contract rates are hourly. All data is in local currency. Salaries are exclusive of superannuation. Contractor rate is the rate paid to the contractor.

See what opportunities await you in Auckland right here




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