New Zealand’s tech sector constrained by skills mismatch

The majority of roles being recruited are not for entry level positions, indicating a longer-term skills shortage for senior talent.
By: | February 4, 2021

Despite strong job growth in the tech sector, New Zealand is struggling to get enough skilled talent, according to a report commissioned by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment with the New Zealand Technology Industry Association (NZTech).

Digital technology businesses are having problems attracting, developing and retaining people with tech and creative skills needed to help New Zealand grow faster, especially out of the pandemic, said NZTech Chief Executive Graeme Muller.

The report highlighted that there has been a lack of coordinated effort among local education pathways not producing sufficient talent, therefore leading to a skills mismatch, and the industry relying heavily on immigration to support growth. 

It also found that the majority of roles being recruited are for senior or experienced individuals, with very few entry level positions available, indicating a skills shortage for senior experienced capabilities and an oversupply of underskilled graduates, stated the report. 

One way to improve is through “better connections between industry and education”, it notes. The report also recommended the development of digital apprenticeship pathways, industry accreditation, and funding of specialisations across ICT graduate schools. 

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“More focus, collaboration and investment is essential now to build a strong local pipeline of talent, to support the transition from education to digital technology careers and to help those already working to upskill or reskill with in demand digital skills,” the report added.