Get Kiwi-ready: Industry insights for a great career start

A practical career series to help you understand what New Zealand employers are looking for in potential candidates.


Our Get Kiwi Ready series has finished for 2023.

In this practical career series for international students, we have asked experts from various fields and industries to share useful advice and helpful tips on getting ready to start your career in New Zealand.

Whether you are just starting to explore the world of careers or have years of experience, whether you are just starting your Bachelor’s degree or have recently submitted your PhD thesis, we have something to share with you to help you boost your chances of success in the New Zealand job market.

All sessions will be held online via Zoom. Our speakers would love to engage in a dialogue with you and will allow plenty of time to answer your questions, so please have your camera and microphone ready.

Take a look at the workshop descriptions and register for the sessions you're interested in via the links below.

Workshop 1: Career in New Zealand – sounds great! But where do I start?

At some point, you made a decision to study in New Zealand, and now you might be contemplating starting or continuing a career in this country. You might be full of enthusiasm, but you will also be facing some challenges. Please allow our employability experts to help you by sharing the most effective tips and strategies to navigate your career journey in a new professional and cultural environment.

We are honoured to host two of the most prominent experts on migrant careers in New Zealand, Vaidehi Kavthekar and Pratishtha Purohit. Vaidehi is a career coach and the Business Intelligence Manager at StatsNZ with a strong background in managing nation-wide career development programmes for migrants. Pratishtha is a career and transition coach, migration expert, and TEDx speaker with 20+ years of experience spanning across business, academia and adult education.

Workshop 2: Thriving in the New Zealand workplace regardless of your role and level of experience

You may just be starting your job search or have a few decades of work experience under your belt. Wherever you are in your career development process, we understand what challenges you might be facing and what you need to know to thrive in any New Zealand workplace. In this interactive session, we will have an open and honest conversation about key features of the New Zealand workplace and various dynamics within companies. Bring your questions and experiences to the session!

Our facilitator, Shailan Patel, is passionate about helping students catapult from education into meaningful employment. Shailan is a graduate from the University of Bristol, England where he was born and raised, before moving to New Zealand in 2010. His career has been diverse, starting off in recruitment in London, in sales and advertising for three of NZ’s largest media companies, before joining MYOB in 2015 to manage their education channel across Australia and NZ. He loves how education is full of promise, ambition, and opportunity, and works with young people to help them find success whatever their career path. Shailan is also on the Board of the New Zealand Association of Graduate Employers.

Workshop 3: Understanding New Zealand’s immigration settings and their impact on your career choices

Join Julia Strickett, Immigration Partner at nationwide law firm, Lane Neave, for up-to-date information on New Zealand’s immigration settings including how to get work and resident visas and what to do if ‘things go wrong’. Bring your questions!

Julia Strickett is a specialist immigration lawyer with more than 10 years of experience in New Zealand, Australia and Europe. She specialises in both corporate and private client immigration law. Julia is a ‘trusted adviser’ to both a range of employers and migrants and their families. She has developed workforce mobility plans for some of New Zealand’s largest projects and regularly advises on complex immigration matters including deportation liability.

Workshop 4: Entering and navigating the New Zealand job market

Navigating the job market is a new and often challenging experience for any student looking for their first job opportunity. Being new to New Zealand and most likely unfamiliar with how job boards and recruitment agencies operate may make things rather difficult. In this session, Jayne Glenister will be sharing insights, tips and tools to ensure you’re well equipped to embark on your job search journey.

Originally from the UK, Jayne emigrated to NZ as a teenager with her family. Her rewarding career in recruitment started whilst seeking a career change following long periods in Finance and Hospitality. Jayne has now been working in the NZ recruitment industry for 20 years, starting out as a generalist agency recruiter working across all industry sectors. For the last 6 years, she has applied her expertise to the Professional Services team at Madison Recruitment as a specialist recruiter, managing permanent and contracting recruitment for the Property and Construction sectors across the Auckland region. Jayne has particularly enjoyed the many connections and conversations she’s had with many interesting people in these speciality sectors.

Workshop 5: Knowing and using your strengths

What are your strengths? Have you ever been asked this in an interview? Would you have an answer ready to reply? Find out how you can light up a room with your smile, when you use your strengths in job interviews and how you manage your career. Hear inspiring stories about migrants and Kiwis who have utilised their strengths to secure jobs and develop a career in New Zealand.

Our speaker, Chris Mullan, was born in Taranaki, New Zealand and grew up on a dairy farm, which is a very Kiwi way of growing up. Her love of helping and working with people brought her to the city, despite her long love for animals. Chris is currently a Change Manager at the University of Auckland, and has been supporting the Business Masters students at the Business School with career development for the last 3 years. Chris has 20 years’ experience working in people-related roles, in Human Resource Management, Change and Project Management in NZ public and private organisations. She is passionate about working to your strengths and supporting new Kiwis to flourish at work here. Connect with Chris on LinkedIn and say hi!

Workshop 6: The world of Engineering – insights for early career development

People often say that if you study Engineering, you will never struggle to find a job. That sounds promising, but the reality might look somewhat different. You might be wondering where the jobs are, or how to get one that truly meets your needs and interests. You might be asking yourself where to start or questioning the value of your overseas experience.

The Special Interest Group for Immigrant Engineers (SIGIE) aims to facilitate the settlement of immigrant engineers into meaningful professional employment in New Zealand. Highly experienced and knowledgeable SIGIE representatives will be joining us to share the lessons they have learnt, as well as discuss what employers are looking for in Engineering graduates who are new to New Zealand and what skills students can develop to be more employable in the Kiwi job market.

Workshop 7: Stepping into New Zealand’s tech industry – regardless of your major!

Join us for an insightful Tech Career Panel hosted by the CDES Team and Summer of Tech as we explore the diverse pathways available for international students who are interested in pursuing a career in Aotearoa's tech industry.

Have you been thinking about a career in tech? Whether you are studying a tech-related degree or are simply curious about the industry, join us in this session to learn about the current state and the future of the tech industry in New Zealand. You’ll discover what capabilities you need to develop to be successful in the industry and what Kiwi employers are looking for with regard to technical expertise and other skills.

Summer of Tech is a free programme that empowers Aotearoa’s diverse tech students to bridge the gap between learning and earning, by making it easy and attractive for Aotearoa New Zealand employers to hire them. The programme offers career-readiness support, industry connections and more than 400+ paid jobs in 2022 (internships and graduate roles). This session will be facilitated by Yekti Crow, Industry Engagement Manager at Summer of Tech. She will be joined by employers/industry mentors and University of Auckland alumni.

Our speakers will share their stories, insights, and advice on topics such as navigating cultural differences, understanding what it needs to find employment in the tech industry, building a network, the role of AI and other technology in building a career and finding the employment opportunities that align with your values. 

Workshop 8: Crafting your study experiences to find meaningful employment

In this session, our speaker Dr Deepika Jindal will share research insights' on how students can craft their study experiences to find meaningful employment and gain employability-related skills. She will also share her own story about how she navigated challenges and created a fulfilling role for herself. Deepika will deliver the presentation from the lens of 'job crafting', which refers to changes people make in their tasks and relationships to craft roles for themselves that fit with their needs, abilities, strengths, and passions. The 60-minute presentation will be followed by a 30-minute Q&A. 

Dr Deepika Jindal is a Professional Teaching Fellow at the University of Auckland and teaches Human Resource Management and related courses. Outside her role at the University, Deepika is Branch President of Human Resources New Zealand's (HRNZ) Academic Branch and an Auckland Branch committee member. Prior to joining academia, she worked in an Indian manufacturing conglomerate, for over a decade, in their Corporate HR department.