Recruit Skilled Workers in New Zealand with the new AEWV

Recruit Skilled Workers in NZ With The New AEWV

Labour shortages have become critical after two years of border closure

The current shortage of skilled labour is reportedly the worst it has been in 20 years with skilled jobs sitting vacant, threatening New Zealand’s productivity and export income

However, employers will be able to hire skilled migrant workers on the new Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) which starts on 4 July 2022 once they have completed the Immigration NZ Accreditation process.

Overview of the NZ Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV):

  • Where genuine skill or labour shortages exist, accredited employers can hire skilled migrant workers using the AEWV;
  • Companies must be accredited to employ migrants on the new visa. Companies that were accredited under the previous system need to reapply for accreditation and meet the requirements of the new policy;
  • Applications to become an accredited employer will be accepted by INZ on 23 May 2022;
  • The AEWV is a temporary visa that replaces 6 work visas with a streamlined single visa process;
  • The AEWV work visa can help set migrants on the pathway to New Zealand residence by allowing them to work in New Zealand;
  • Employer accreditation is initially approved for 12 months and at renewal most employers will get accreditation for 24 months.

The new AEWV requires 3 checks before an employer can hire a migrant employee:

Employer accreditation

  1. This is the first step in the new employer-led visa application process. Depending on how many migrants the business wants to hire, you can apply for different levels of accreditation. The first level is for employers who want to hire up to 5 migrants on AEWVs at any one time and the second level is for those wanting to hire 6 or more migrants on AEWVs at any one time. All employers will need to meet standard requirements, including showing you are a genuine, compliant business, and commit to activities to settle migrants and minimise exploitation.
  2. The job check
    Once your business is accredited, you then need to apply for a job check for each job you want to hire a migrant worker for. You can only hire a worker on an AEWV if it has passed the job check. This process confirms the job pays the market rate, ensures that it meets NZ employment laws and standards and that you have done a labour market test (LMT) if you need to. Multiple positions for the same job can be included in one job check if the job details are the same (for example they have the same occupation, pay range, region or city and minimum job requirements), and are all covered by the same advertising (if a LMT is needed) and proposed employment agreement.
  3. The migrant check/visa application
    If the job passes the job check, you can invite the migrant worker to apply for a visa to work in that job. INZ checks if they meet the requirements for the AEWV, including that they have the skills and experience you advertised for. This process remains largely as it was with checks on identity, health, and character, but with fewer requirements for a foreign worker to produce evidence of the qualifications and experience where it is not relevant to the application, or it has already been checked.

Don’t wait - get started now

If you are an employer thinking about hiring migrant employees to fill roles that you are unable to find candidates for in the local market, you need to get started on your application for employer accreditation now.

ConsultingHQ / RecruitNZ / VisaAide can assist you with our multi team approach focussing on our areas of expertise:

  • ConsultingHQ – covering all of the HR aspects
  • RecruitNZ – with a proven background in migrant recruitment
  • VisaAide - NZ licenced immigration advisors.

Contact us to find out how we can help your business.

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Tanya Gray is your strategic HR partner, passionate about driving clients’ productivity with innovative solutions and collaboration.

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