British Sparky Can’t Find Work (updated)

Welcome to our series of Migrant Tales, first hand account of the migrant experience of New Zealand taken from places around the net.

Today’s tale was published in the last 24 hours on an emigration forum.

Despite all the hype about the improving job market in New Zealand the truth is that it’s still damned hard to find work, and what work there is is likely to be given to the locals (aka “jobs for Kiwis”).

You may find this interesting if you’ve heard about the supposedly good job prospects in New Zealand, reading it could save you from making a very costly mistake. If you’re already in his situation it may help to know you’re not alone.

Here’s the Sparky’s tale.

HELP Please – British Sparky in Auckland – not able to find ANY type of work!

Hi I’m a 30yo UK qualified and registered Sparky with nearly 15 years of industry experience. I moved here on a Working Holiday Visa with my Kiwi partner and have been in Auckland, NZ for nearly 6 months now and have had very bad experience in finding work – Electrical related or otherwise! I did find work initially with a trades company and was signed till Dec. for $20p/h, 12 hour shifts. I was doing all their menial work and having a strong work ethic I zipped through the hard bits quickly, thinking that I can move on to the more exciting stuff. But unfortunately, this was about the time the 90 days kicked in and without any valid reason I was let go. Later I found that the employer does this on a regular basis to other tradesmen. Since then I have been looking for work. I have applied for customer services and retail work in Bunnings, Mitre10 and other trades stores and also apprenticeship jobs. I get called in for an interview but theri HR department are so lazy that they don’t even bother calling back or sending a letter to advise that the outcome of my application. I am a well articulated and presentable individual and yet it seems that I can’t even get retail jobs! It has been a struggle here for me and being at home without a job for the first time ever, and it is really a painful experience. I have never worked so hard for so little in return. Would really appreciate to hear from any other Sparkies or anyone in general about their experience and life in NZ. Thanks W

This is a response his post attracted

I’ve been looking for jobs since January which is when my most recent job ended. I’ve applied for dozens of jobs and had several interviews but I’ve yet to be offered a job. There’s huge competition for jobs in the provinces on NZ. Albeit we only came here for my husband’s job in June 2011 as we’d bailed out of Christchurch after a near disastrous start to our immigration three months earlier. We tried to find work in Auckland as we stayed there for three weeks on arrival in Feb 2011. That went nowhere fast and we continued on the way to Christchurch as our furniture was already there. Anyway, enough said. I applied on line for a seasonal Christmas/back to school job at Warehouse Stationery a couple of weeks ago. I filled in several pages of their online form answering the usual questions and some personality quiz type questions. On the last page of it there was written in red, ‘we are only recruiting to the Auckland stores’. Great. There’s a job advertised locally for fruit pickers at a nearby farm but it’s described as, ‘contract work’ i.e. the more you pick the more you earn. I decided to put my foot down and develop some self respect i.e. stop grovelling around for unsuitable jobs. I also applied to be a mystery shopper but that went nowhere fast i.e. I filled in the form and again, all I’ve had is the long silence. I chased up what was happening with the vacancy just to get the same automated e-mail that I got by way of reply when I applied in the first place. I e-mailed the sender of the e-mail direct, just to be asked to fill in the form again. I’ve registered at several employment agencies and just got the long silence. I’ve applied for jobs from various internet sites such as TradeMe etc all to no avail. As I’ve already mentioned, on the rare occasion I get interviewed I inevitably get turned down. There were a couple of admin jobs here in Wanganui that I applied for in the last couple of weeks. I got turned down without interview for both of them. I’m continuing to look for work but I’m so disheartened by all the turn downs that I’m coming to the conclusion that it just wasn’t to be.

Got a similar story to tell? we’d like to hear from you.

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