Claiming Points for Skilled Employment

You can claim points for your job offer of skilled employment in New Zealand or current skilled employment in New Zealand as part of your expression of interest for the skilled migrant category resident visa. (Note: this is different to claiming points for skilled work experience, which refers to past work experience.)

Skilled employment is employment that meets a minimum remuneration threshold and requires specialist, technical or management expertise obtained through relevant qualifications and/or relevant work experience. For example:

  • A skill level 1 job is considered high-skilled
    Construction Project Manager, Accountant, Architect, Doctor, ICT engineer, etc.
  • A skill level 2 or 3 job is considered mid-skilled
    Electrician, Retail Manager, Chef, Fitter-Welder, Engineering Technician, etc.
  • A skill level 4 or 5 job is considered low-skilled
    Administration assistant, Clerk, Beauty Therapist, Farm Labourer, Delivery Driver, etc.
You may be able to claim up to 50 points for skilled work experience, providing that the following criteria is met:

Current employment in New Zealand or an offer of employment in New Zealand will be assessed as skilled if:

  • the job/ job offer is a substantial match to an ANZCO occupation and
  • you were suitably qualified by training and/or experience for your occupation and
  • the employment is full time and
  • an immigration officer is satisfied the work is genuine, ongoing and sustainable and
  • the occupation is:
    • a skill level 1, 2 or 3 occupation and the remuneration for that employment is $27.00 per hour or above (or the equivalent annual salary); or
    • a skill level 4 or 5 occupation and the remuneration for that employment is $40.50 per hour or above (or the equivalent annual salary); or
    • listed at Appendix 7 and the remuneration for that employment is $27.00 per hour or above (or the equivalent annual salary); and

What does ‘substantial match’ to an ANZCO occupation mean?

For the job/job offer to be considered a ‘substantial match’ to an occupation, the employment must be consistent with the ANZSCO occupation description and tasks listed for the occupation.

You can view a list of ANZSCO occupations here, including the occupation description and relevant tasks.

What does it mean to be ‘suitably qualified’?

Skilled employment requires specialist, technical or management expertise obtained through:

    1. the completion of recognised relevant qualifications; or
    2. relevant work experience; or
    3. the completion of recognised relevant qualifications and/or work experience

Relevant qualifications and work experience are also outlined next to each occupation here. 

Case Study Example

Joseph has been offered a job in Auckland as an ICT Consultant. He needs to prove that he is qualified for this job by holding the equivalent of a Bachelor Degree or at least 5 years of relevant experience. He is about to submit an EOI.

This is Joseph’s work experience to date:

  1. Three years as a Software Engineer (skill level 1)
  2. Three years as Database Architect (skill level 1)
  3. Four years as an ICT Programme Manager (skill level 1)

If Joseph had a Bachelor Degree prior to his first experience as a Software Engineer, he would be able to claim 10 years’s relevant work experience. However, if Joseph was an autodidact or learned on the job, he would need to deduct 5 years of prior experience to become ‘suitably qualified’. He would then only be able to claim 5 years.

Bonus Points

You may claim up to 15 bonus points if: your occupation is on the Long Term Skill Shortage List and you meet its requirement in terms of qualification, experience, or occupation registration.

You may claim up to 20 bonus points if: the current skilled employment or an offer of skilled employment qualifies for 20 bonus points if the remuneration for that employment is $54.00 per hour or above (or the equivalent annual salary)

You may claim up to 30 bonus points if:  the employment is outside the Aukland region.

For other requirements to apply for Expression of Interest (such as health, character and english language requirements) in detail, view our guide to applying for the skilled migrant category resident visa. 

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