21 August 2007

New Zealand needs more IT professionals

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Numbers of skilled IT staff immigrating to New Zealand are up but the Department of Labour says yet more are needed. In the year to June 2007, 770 IT professionals were granted a New Zealand visa, according to figures produced by the department and Statistics New Zealand.

The department is actively encouraging IT professionals to consider New Zealand immigration. It is planning its first on-shore jobs expo for IT workers in Auckland next month, in partnership with Tourism New Zealand and non-profit body Accelerating Auckland.

Department spokesperson Matt Hoskin told the Dominion Post that the event will be aimed at encouraging international students, people on temporary and New Zealand working holiday visas and "potentially even tourists" to stay and pursue a career in IT.

Another method being used by the department is to put employers in touch with IT specialists living overseas who have expressed interest in New Zealand immigration and have been "pre-qualified" to migrate.

"Temporary migration - people coming to New Zealand for a specific period of time to live and work here - is a trend we are increasingly seeing," said Mr Hoskin, speaking to the Dominion Post.

"It is good for us and for migrants, and it also means if they do settle here permanently, we know more about them and they know more about us, so the long-term settlement outcomes are much better."

The department's definition of IT professionals includes computer programmers, analysts, engineers, administrators, web designers and developers, IT managers and IT consultants.

New Zealand needs skilled IT specialists: anyone interested in New Zealand immigration should complete the New Zealand Visa Bureau's online New Zealand visa assessment to see if they qualify for a New Zealand visa.


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