Specialists in Migration, Visas, and Overseas Recruitment

Posts tagged ‘Australia’

Australia is #1 in the world because …

You might imagine that Australia’s beaches, exciting career opportunities or national sports teams are all world-beating – but what does the data show?

It shows that Australia does top the charts – here’s a look at what Australia does better than anywhere else in the world.

The world’s most liveable cities

Each year the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) undertakes and releases its Global Liveability Ranking and Report which provides scores for 140 cities worldwide. Its latest report (from 2014 data) places Melbourne at the top of the list – for the fifth year in a row.

The report looks at 30 factors across five areas: stability, infrastructure, education, healthcare and environment. Melbourne received perfect scores in healthcare, education and infrastructure, culture and environment and sport. Overall, it scored a near-perfect 97.5 out of 100.

It’s not hard to see why. Melbournians enjoy unburdened, effective infrastructure. Melbourne may be a big city but it has the Yarra River flowing through it and masses of green open parks and gardens, contributing to its residents’ sense of wellbeing. It boasts impressive arts and culture and winding laneways of bars, restaurants, cafes and shops. It also has a low murder rate, helping its residents feel safe.

Australia also has three other cities in the top 10 – no other country has that many top-ranking cities in the list. Adelaide is joint fifth, with Sydney seventh and Perth eighth.

Check out the rest of the world’s best cities here.

Twelve Apostles by Worakit Sirijinda, sourced from FreeDigitalImages.com. Northern Territory.

The top in civic engagement

The OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) Better Life Index goes beyond GDP data and economic statistics. Instead it delves into the well-being of countries’ residents, looking at 11 essential areas of living conditions and quality of life.

The OECD believes that trusting your government is essential to your sense of well-being and that a high voter turnout is a measure of citizen engagement. In Australia, voter turnout is 93% – whereas the OECD average is 68%.

This means Australia tops the chart of OECD countries in terms of civic engagement. It suggests that the Australian political system performs well as it reflects the will of a huge proportion of the population.

See how Australia performs in other OECD measures.

Make the move

If you think Australia is right for you, you can put your plan into action this October – the Working International Expo is coming to London and Manchester. Meet Australian employers, find out more about your visa options and sort out your move – all under one roof. See you there!

You tell us

What do you think Australia is #1 in the world for? Find us on Facebook and let us know your thoughts.

Dancing Lights by Gav Owen, sourced from Flickr.com. Melbourne.

Immigration news round-up – October 2015

This month, Australia has recently launched a work and holiday arrangement with the People’s Republic of China and a new online visa label system. In Canada, there’s a mixed bag of news – from holds on some visa schemes to increased thresholds for other schemes. With all these changes, you could benefit from some Canadian visa advice – see who can help.

Plus in New Zealand there’s great news for overseas agricultural workers seeking seasonal work, plus some handy information about what you can and can’t bring into the country.

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Australia

Work and Holiday arrangement with the People’s Republic of China now live

As of 21 September 2015, up to 5,000 educated young Chinese nationals per year will be able to take advantage of the Work and Holiday visa arrangement between Australia and the People’s Republic of China.

The visa allows young Chinese nationals to have an extended holiday of up to 12 months in Australia, where they can undertake short-term work or study.

If you’re a Chinese national visit the Australian Embassy Beijing website to see if you’re eligible. Or find out more about Australia’s working holiday visa scheme.

Electronic visa record replaces passport labels

Traditionally when you received your Australian visa, a label was fixed into your passport. However, from 1 September 2015, you’re no longer able to request and pay for a visa label.

Instead, you access your visa record through the free Visa Entitlement Verification Online (VEVO) service. When you scan your passport at the airport, it’s linked automatically to this service and will let passport officials know your visa status.

This change reflects the Australian Government’s agenda to make their services more accessible and convenient to their clients through the provision of secure online services. VEVO is also efficient, reliable and provides real-time information about your visa.

This demonstrates Australia’s commitment to a overhauled, more streamlined and efficient visa system. More information is available at the Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

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Canada

Fast track your move to Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia, on Canada’s east coast, has just announced they will be able to fast track another 300 migrant workers who qualify under the express entry visa scheme that’s aimed at skilled workers.

It also means that Nova Scotia can nominate a total of 1,350 immigrants in 2015 under their provincial nominee program – almost double the previously allowed 700.

Nova Scotia remains a popular choice for skilled workers. In 2014, 2,670 newcomers settled in Nova Scotia – more people than have ever arrived in the past 10 years. Nova Scotia clearly offers a lot to would-be Canadians too – Statistics Canada show a retention rate of 71 per cent for immigrants that landed in Nova Scotia between 2007 and 2011.

If you’d like to take advantage of this fast track entry to Nova Scotia, take a look at some job opportunities – having a Canadian job offer may help your visa application. Or find out more about Nova Scotia’s nominee program.

Alberta and British Columbia release updates to their Provincial Nominee Programs

Canadian provinces manage their own visa schemes, called Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP). They all have their own rules, requirements and application thresholds. Alberta and British Columbia have both released updates to their programs:

Alberta

Due to a 10,000-application backlog, no new applications will be accepted to the Alberta Immigration Nominee Program until January 2016. However, if you’re interested in moving to Alberta, you can still apply through Canada’s express entry visa scheme.

British Columbia

Applications to the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) Skills Immigration stream and Express Entry stream have been put on hold until early 2016, due to application thresholds being met.

However, the Health Care Professional, Northeast Pilot Project and Entrepreneur Immigration streams will continue to accept applications.

Find out more about the BCPNP.

Skill shortages felt across Canada

A new survey by CareerBuilder.ca shows the impact of skill shortages on Canadian businesses:

  • 29% of survey respondents (almost three in 10 employers) have jobs that have been unfilled for 12 weeks or longer.
  • Three quarters of those respondents say this has negatively impacted upon their companies.
  • 31% of respondents said that un-fillable job openings lead to work not getting done – with 22% saying their companies are losing revenue.

With Canadian businesses feeling the pinch of a lack of skilled workers, this may be good news for skilled workers wanting to move to Canada – watch this space.

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New Zealand

Overseas agricultural contractors able to work easier in NZ

By 1 June 2016, seasonal workers from overseas could find it easier to temporarily work and live in New Zealand. A new visa deal means that rural contractors can more simply bring in overseas workers to help them over the busy summer harvest season.

Rural Contractors New Zealand (RCNZ) president Steve Levet estimates that the industry requires around 900 seasonal staff from overseas each year. In New Zealand there is a shortage of suitably skilled operators able to handle highly sophisticated machinery – so they look overseas for the skills they need.

These overseas workers – traditionally from Ireland and England – have good mechanical skills and are already up and running, meaning they don’t require extensive training.

About the new scheme

With a less rigorous process than what currently has to be followed, under the new scheme RCNZ would apply for Approval in Principle on behalf of all its members.

Then their members can apply online for a visa for the person they’re recruiting without having to meet any of the current requirements, which include having to advertise and going through Work and Income New Zealand first.

No further details are available at this stage – we’ll keep you updated. If you’re not already on our New Zealand mailing list, sign up [Link to: NZ newsletter sign up] and you’ll be the first to know.

Arriving in New Zealand – What you need to know

Whether you’re just visiting or are coming to New Zealand permanently, there are things you need to know.

For starters, do you need a visa? If you’re going on holiday, you might not – see if you need a visitor’s visa.  If you’d like to work and live in New Zealand, you will – read more about NZ visas.

What you can’t bring in to NZ

Pretty standard stuff, but this list includes:

  • Hazardous materials.
  • Endangered species (without a permit).
  • Weapons (without a permit).
  • Objectionable publications, including videos and digital images, or
  • Controlled drugs.

What you have to declare

New Zealand has very strict biosecurity rules – not surprisingly as any rogue flora or fauna can wreck havoc on its unique ecosystem. This means you have to declare the following items when you arrive:

  • Food of any kind – this even includes any food, especially fruit, you might have picked up on the plane or coming through duty free.
  • Plants or parts of plants (alive or dead).
  • Animals (alive or dead) or their products.
  • Equipment used with animals.
  • Camping gear, golf clubs and used bicycles – even muddy walking boots.
  • Biological specimens.

Anything you declare will be examined to check it’s ok to bring into NZ. This may include it being cleaned or treated before being allowed in.

The fines for not declaring any of the above are very high – and not worth the risk.

For more information about what you can (and can’t) bring in New Zealand, visit the New Zealand Government website.

Migration to New Zealand reaching its peak

New Zealand has always been a popular choice for skilled international workers but now, finally, the figures seem to be nearing their peak. A recent report by Westpac, a NZ bank, shows that migration to NZ is slowing.

One reason that could be behind this is the approval process for a resident visa, which favours applicants who have a job offer in New Zealand. Another is that NZ’s residence approval targets remain at 45,000 – 50,000 a year, which simply has not kept up with the demand.

Finally, Westpac estimated that Auckland (prime location of choice for most migrant workers) is not keeping up with the housing demand, which is under pressure from both migrant arrival and natural occupant increase.

So, if you’re thinking of coming to New Zealand, make sure you consider other parts of the country before you make the move.  It’s not impossible to get your metaphorical foot in the door in Auckland, but making sure you’ve ticked key boxes (like getting a job prior) will help you get ahead.

The Best 3 Ways to Move to Australia

It’s already September – not too much time left in 2015 to make your goal of moving to Australia a reality.  Luckily we’re on hand with our top three tips to get you off your couch and onto that plane to Australia this year.  Yep, this year.  Really.

Sort a job before you land

For your best chance at an Australian visa, it’ll help to work in an industry that desperately needs your skills and experience. We’ve recently done a round-up of the occupations in demand in Australia – check out the list to see if your occupation is on it.

If it is, start searching for your new job in Australia. Working In Australia’s job board is updated regularly with opportunities across Australia in a variety of industries.

However, if your occupation isn’t on the list, there are still other visa options open to you – see ‘Understand your Australian visa options’ below.

Meet Australian employers in the UK

Even better than looking online for your job in Australia is meeting Australian employers on your home turf in the UK.  You can do that this October as the Working International Expo is returning to London and Manchester.

The expos have a fantastic range of Australian employers, across a range of industries. This October we have upmarket retail giant David Jones exhibiting with us, looking for top UK Buyers. Also exhibiting are Retail FM, looking for Maintenance and Refrigeration Engineers. In Healthcare we have four organisations attending the expo, looking to lure doctors, nurses, and other Healthcare professionals to a job in the lucky country.

You’ll also have a chance to learn what it’s really like to live and work in Australia – face-to-face.

Think Beyond Sydney and Melbourne

Sydney and Melbourne are consistently found in the world’s most liveable cities surveys – but the rest of Australia has a lot to offer too.  Competing against the big city lights, certain areas in Australia are desperately in need of skilled workers and they’re attractive options too.

Secure employment, progressive career opportunities, enviable lifestyles without the big city bustle, and incredible scenery can all be found outside Australia’s major centres.  Even better – there’s a visa programme dedicated to regional centres, called the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme.

It’s not a points-based visa scheme which may mean you find it easier to meet the criteria. Applying for this scheme means you cannot move to:

  • The Gold Coast
  • Brisbane
  • Newcastle
  • Sydney
  • Wollongong
  • Melbourne

aborigine art 3

Understand your Australian visa options

There’s a wide range of visa options available in Australia for business owners, family members, students, skilled workers and more.

The best way to understand the Australian visa process and the different options available to you is to get expert visa advice.  At the Working International Expo in London and Manchester, you can meet Australian visa specialists like Migration Planners face to face.  You’ll be able to understand the visa requirements and which visa may be right for you.

The Australian Government’s Department of Immigration and Border Protection has a helpful visa finder tool, too.

Prove your commitment

Australian employers want to know that you’re really committed to taking the big step of moving, living and working in Australia.

Have you visited Australia?  Are you planning to?  Do you have family or friends there?  Are you going to bring all your family with you, or are they staying behind?  How will you cope thousands of kms from home?  Will you arrive only to leave a few months later?

Think carefully about all of the above questions.  If you’re still keen, then great.

One way to show your commitment is to attend the Working International Expo.  All in one place you’ll find answers to all of your questions, and Aussies to grill about what it’s really like to live and work in Australia.

Make the move to Australia this October

From London and Manchester, you can get all you need to make the move to Australia – find a job, sort your visa and make all your moving arrangements, from finding movers to opening your bank account.

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Join us in London or Manchester – we’ve got special discounted Early Bird tickets still available for the Manchester event, but only until this Friday (25 September 2015), so get in quick.

See you there!

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Immigration news round-up – September 2015

As September slides around, it’s been a bit quiet on the visa news front from Australia, Canada and New Zealand. This is true for New Zealand especially – perhaps because the national focus is on that upcoming Rugby World Cup?

This month find out the financial benefits of moving to Australia for skilled workers; about two more visa schemes for Canada; and an upcoming snapshot of life for new Kiwis.

Australia

Moving to Australia pays off?

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has, for the first time, released some data on the personal income of Australian migrants. If you’re wondering about the financial implications of a move to Australia, have a look at some key figures:

  • The total income of migrant taxpayers in the 2009-10 financial year was $37.7 billion
  • Employee income contributed 92% to total income, of which $25.5 billion was reported by migrants from the skilled visa stream
  • Skilled visa holders’ average employee income was about $5,000 higher than the national average of $48,907 for all Australian taxpayers

So moving to Australia under the skilled visa stream means you could have an income higher than other Australian taxpayers.

Read all the data on the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ website, or start looking for that skilled job in Australia.

Canada

Quebec Immigration Investor Program reopens

If you’re keen on Canada, you’ll be pleased to hear that Quebec’s Immigration Investor Program has reopened. One of the world’s most popular immigrant investor programmes, this visa scheme allows qualified investors and their dependent family members the chance to gain Canadian permanent residency through investing CAD$800,000 risk-free, through an approved financial intermediary.

Applications opened on 31 August 2015 and will close 29 January 2016 – although it’s expected that the application quota of 1,750 will be reached before then.

Find out more about the requirements at Quebec’s official immigration website.

British Columbia needs skilled trade workers

Fort St John, in the north of the Canadian province of British Columbia, has recently announced the establishment of a pilot programme to bring in skilled international workers.

They are looking especially for skilled and experienced trade workers, such as electricians and welders.

No further details are available yet, but we’ll update you as soon as they become available.

New Zealand

Migrant Survey

Immigration New Zealand has begun the process of collecting data for its 2015 Migrant Survey. It’s an annual survey, sent out to a random sample of people who’ve been through New Zealand’s immigration process, that asks for feedback on topics including jobs, education background and levels of happiness.

Immigration New Zealand then takes on board the feedback to work out how new Kiwis settle into New Zealand and whether they can improve their services for future new migrants.

As the survey has just been sent out, we don’t have details of the results yet but it’s sure to be an interesting snapshot of life in New Zealand for new Kiwis. We’ll make sure we post the survey results when they’re released – if you haven’t already, sign up to our newsletter.  We’ll then email you this survey data when it’s available – easy!

Maid of the Mist VII, Niagara Falls

The Skills in High Demand in Australia

Whether it’s calling one of the world’s most liveable cities home (hello Melbourne), exploring some of the most famous skylines (hi Sydney) or losing yourself (not literally we hope) in the stunning job opportunities in the outback, Australia offers a lot to potential new Aussies.

If you’ve got the skills and experience Australia needs then you could be moving, living, working and playing there soon. See if your skills are in demand in Australia.

Sydney Harbour

About the Skilled Occupation List (SOL)

The SOL is updated regularly to reflect the changing needs of Australia. You need to nominate an occupation on the SOL if you’re applying for:

  • Independent points-based skilled migration and you’re not nominated by a state or territory government agency – this is SkillSelect
  • A Family Sponsored Points Tested visa
  • A Temporary Graduate visa (subclass 485) – Graduate Work stream

About SkillSelect

SkillSelect is how Australia chooses which applicants to invite to apply for a visa. To apply you submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) online. You’ll then go into a pool of other applicants where you’ll be ranked on things like your work experience, skills, age and language abilities.

Depending on your ranking in the pool of applicants, you may then be invited to apply for a visa.

Find out more about SkillSelect.

The skills on the SOL

There are currently 191 occupations on the SOL. If you need a skills assessment as part of your visa application, you need to contact the assessing authority directly to get this. They will provide all the necessary forms and information you need and there will be a cost for this.

View the SOL, along with details of the relevant assessing authorities.

The Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL)

If you’re applying for a visa under these programs:

  • Points-based skilled migration and you’re nominated by a state or territory government agency under a State Migration Plan
  • The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS), and you’ve been nominated by an Australian employer to fill a position in an occupation that appears in the CSOL
  • The Temporary Work (Skilled) visa – subclass 457
  • The Training and Research visa (subclass 402)

You need to find your occupation on the CSOL, not the SOL.

View the current CSOL.

Get help with your Australian visa

To help you through the Australian visa process, you can:

You can also start searching for your new job today – good luck!

Immigration news round-up – August 2015

This month has seen the release of interesting findings from Canada’s new Express Entry visa system, and the launch of three new exciting provincial visa streams in Canada.

There’s also news of incentives for would-be Kiwis who are willing to live and work in areas outside of Auckland. Find out how to get your skills assessed in Australia; know your rights on an Australian Working Holiday visa; and beware a phishing scam in New Zealand.

Australia

Assessing Authorities

With some visa applications, you’ll be required to prove that your international skills are transferable and relevant to Australia. To do this, you will need a skills assessment undertaken by an authorised organisation. You’ll need to contact them direct and they can provide you with all the relevant forms and information. You may need to pay to have your skills assessed.

View the assessing authorities in Australia.

Being treated fairly on a Working Holiday Visa

Australia offers Working Holiday visa schemes to many countries, including the UK, Europe and China, giving young people (aged 18-30) the opportunity to travel, work and enjoy Australia.

However two Dutch backpackers are taking their Working Holiday employer to court and suing them for unpaid wages. They undertook the unusual job of golf-ball diving (that’s recovering thousands of lost golf balls from golf course lakes and water features) and are claiming that they weren’t paid fairly for their work.

It’s a good reminder to make sure you fully understand the rules and regulations around Australia’s Working Holiday visa and your rights.

Read more about the backpackers’ experience.

Canada

Express Entry report released

Following the launch of Canada’s Express Entry system in January 2015, Citizenship & Immigration Canada has released a report of key findings from its first six months.

These findings include:

  • The pool is growing by about 1,500 persons/profiles per week.
  • The number of profiles completed was 112,701, with 48,723 (that’s roughly 43%) of these not eligible.
  • The most dominant countries of citizenship of invited candidates are India and the Philippines, which each supplied around one-fifth of those invited to apply.

Through the first 11 draws:

  • 4% of those invited to apply did not have a qualifying job offer or enhanced provincial nomination certificate.
  • 65% had a qualifying job offer.
  • 4% had an enhanced provincial nomination certificate.

However, not including the first four draws (because at that stage only applicants with a score above 600 were invited to apply before this threshold was lowered:

  • 41% of those invited to apply did not have a qualifying job offer or an enhanced provincial nomination certificate.

The majority of candidates selected in the sixth (March 27), eighth (April 17) and eleventh (June 27) draws had neither a qualifying job offer nor a provincial nomination certificate.

See the official data from Citizenship & Immigration Canada.

All of this is great news for people looking to apply for a Canadian visa as the requirements are becoming slightly less restrictive.

British Columbia launches new entrepreneur program

British Columbia has recently launched a new visa program aimed specifically at experienced business people and entrepreneurs. Successful applicants will be awarded a work permit. Then, if their business is commercially viable and provides significant benefits to the local economy, they (and their families) will be able to apply for permanent residency through the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP).

Like other Canadian visa programs, this one will work by you entering a pool of candidates with the aim of getting as many points as possible, out of a maximum 200. Only 200 candidates are accepted into the pool each month. BC PNP will then invite the highest-scoring candidates to submit visa applications.

Requirements for this program include factors such as:

  • Business and/or work experience
  • Personal net worth and source of funds
  • Adaptability
  • Business proposal, including proposal investment and local job creation

Find out more about the BC PNP.

Ontario opens two new immigration streams

Ontario is the most sought-after province by would-be Canadians and it’s just opened two new immigration schemes that are aligned with the Express Entry system:

  1. The Human Capital Priorities stream; and
  2. The French-speaking Skilled Worker stream

Find out more about the streams and whether you’re eligible – Human Capital Priorities stream or French-speaking Skilled Worker stream.

New Zealand

Incentive to move to New Zealand’s provincial centres

Auckland is New Zealand’s largest city, and home to thousands of newly landed skills – and now New Zealand wants to encourage people to look beyond Auckland if they’re making the move.

Effective from November 2015, skilled migrants will have bonus points trebled if they apply for residence with a job offer not from Auckland – although you will have to stay in that region for 12 months, rather than three. If you’re starting a business in the provinces, you’ll have your Entrepreneur Work Visa points doubled.

This means it could be easier and quicker for you to move to New Zealand, as long as you’re willing to live and work outside Auckland.

Scam Immigration NZ website warning

A fake website has been set up that is trying to trick people in providing their passport details. The official Immigration NZ website is www.immigration.govt.nz and the fake one is http://www.immigration-govt.nz.

Beware of this site if you’re searching for the Immigration NZ website.

Read more about the scam. 

Planet-Earth

Immigration News Roundup – July 2015

We keep a lookout for recent immigration changes in Australia, Canada and New Zealand so that you don’t have to. This month discover Australia’s migration trends over the past year, and see whether you’re in demand in South Australia.  Find out about two new Canadian immigration schemes, and see how a licensed immigration adviser can help with your New Zealand online visa application.

Australia

Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014

The Australian Department of Immigration and Border Protection has recently released a new report called Australia’s Migration Trends 2013–2014. Some of the key statistics from the report are that in the 2013–2014 programme year:

  • 207,947 permanent migration visas were granted – a decrease of 4.2 per cent on the previous year.
  • This included 190,000 places under Australia’s migration programme.
  • Of the migration programme’s 190,000 visas:
    • 128,550 visas (or 67.7 per cent) were granted through the skill stream.
    • 61,112 visas (or 32.2 per cent) were granted through the family stream.
    • 338 visas (or 0.2 per cent) were granted under the special eligibility visa category.
  • The place where most people moved from was India, with 39,026 places (that’s a 20.5 per cent share).
  • This was followed by the People’s Republic of China (26,776 places) and the UK (23,220 places).
  • Demand for the Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) visas decreased significantly. Grants for these visas fell 22.0 per cent which may be due to the government’s February 2014 review of the 457 process.

Check out the full report for further details.

Revised South Australia State Occupation List

On 1 July 2015, Immigration South Australia published a revised State Occupation List. Visit Immigration South Australia to view the new list. This list gives you an idea of what skills and jobs are in demand in South Australia. New English requirements for South Australia There have been some changes to the English requirements for some occupations on the South Australia State Occupation List including:

  • ICT occupations – Proficient English is required in each band score (or an overall score of Proficient Plus, i.e. IELTS 7.5 overall).
  • Engineering occupations – Competent Plus English (or an overall score of Proficient, i.e. IELTS 7 overall).

The State Occupation List contains the changes to the English requirements for other occupations.

Canada

Express Entry points requirement decreasing

The new Express Entry system for skilled migration to Canada involves creating a pool of potential applicants, who are invited to apply for a visa through a regular draw. Applicants are awarded points based on certain criteria, like their skills, experience, language capabilities, work history, etc. Two recent draws in June 2015 have seen the level of applicants’ points decreasing yet the number of invitations to apply for a visa increasing. This means meeting the requirements for skilled entry to Canada may be getting a little easier.

New immigration schemes for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia

Two eastern Canadian provinces, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, have recently announced new immigration schemes that are looking for skilled newcomers from overseas. The streams are aligned with the federal Express Entry systems. Although you don’t need a job offer from a Canadian employer to make an application, you must be eligible for either the:

Follow the links to find out more about the New Brunswick Express Entry Labour Market Stream or Nova Scotia Experience: Express Entry.

New Zealand

‘Apply on behalf’ now live

Immigration New Zealand has launched a new service called ‘Apply on Behalf’. This means that licensed immigration advisers and other people exempt from licensing, like lawyers, can now apply for visas online on your behalf. This means they can:

  • Start a new online application for a Student, Work or Visitor visa
  • Complete the application in much the same way as you can
  • View submitted applications and upload supporting documents

This means you could benefit from expert support when it comes to completing your visa application online – and it’s one less thing for you to do. Visa-and-Passport

The Top 10 Best Reasons to Move to Australia (the June 2015 list)

Last week we posted some fantastic reasons why you should definitely move to New Zealand.  But if you have your heart set on moving to Australia, you’re in luck because we have written a Top 10 list for Australia as well!

So here’s our Top 10 Best Reasons to Move to Australia list – compiled by the staff here at Working In, especially for this blog.

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Reason #1 – Employment Prospects

Australia has good job prospects, over most industries.  Here’s a great place to start searching for your new job Down Under:  http://www.workingin-australia.com/jobs 

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Reason #2 – Lifestyle

People living in Australia generally have a good work/life balance – that means more time for yourself, and more time with your family.  T

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generic beach AU Reason #3 – Climate

Australia’s climate has to be one of the best in the world.  Queensland is known as The Sunshine State because of its approx. 300 days of sunshine per year.

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multicultural australia Reason #4 – Society

You’ll find Australia is one of the most multicultural nations on Earth.

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Reason #5 – Nature

You can be close to water, the city and the bush in nearly every inhabited location in the country.

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Xmas AU Reason #6 – Opposite Seasons

You get to have Christmas on the Beach!  You don’t need snow to have Christmas .. it can be just as magical in the sunshine.

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bunyip

Reason #7 – Culture

Has some of the best slang words ever invented. Do you know what Ankle Biter, Rip Snorter, or Bunyip mean?*

(Don’t worry, we’ve given you the answers at the end of the blog post)

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melb Reason #8 – And more culture!

The food, wine and coffee are some of the best in the world. Australians really take pride in these – check out The Coffee Experience in Sydney this September, or why not take a Self-Guided Tour of the Barossa Valley?

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adventure collage 2Reason #9 – There are things to do

There are so many things to do in Australia – whether you like relaxing, adventure, or family fun, there’s something for everyone.

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Reason #10 – Because you have always wanted to live and work in Australia..

..and why shouldn’t you?

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We hope our list helps you with your decision to move to Australia.

There will never be a ‘right time’ to move country, so don’t spend your life waiting for that moment to come along. Make it happen for yourself!

All the best,

Working In Team

* Wondering what those words mean?  Child / something fantastic / a mythical Outback creature

The Opportunities Overseas Expo UK and Ireland roadshow July 2013

This July, it certainly seemed like the Opportunities Overseas Expo brought the best of the weather to the UK – we landed in a heat wave that continued throughout the week and half of this July’s roadshow.

London: 6-7 July

We started in London, our flagship location where hundreds of people turned up (even though the weather was glorious and it was the Wimbledon final).

A nicely busy expo, visitors enjoyed meeting overseas employers and recruiters such as the Department of Health – Western Australia, Hays Recruitment (Australia and New Zealand), Hire A Hubby (New Zealand), The Physicians Recruitment Agency of Saskatchawan (Saskdocs – Canada) and Top Energy (New Zealand).

Opps Overseas Expo London July 2013_2Opps Overseas Expo London July 2013_1

Dublin: 10 July

Next stop was Dublin with a dedicated New Zealand jobs and seminars tour. Three employers flew in from New Zealand (Naylor Love Construction, Ryman Healthcare and Top Energy), alongside migration experts VisaFirst and Bayleys Real Estate Taranaki.

All the employers were really impressed with the expo attendees and met some great candidates.

Irish media really helped to plug the event with coverage in the Irish Examiner and the Daily Edge.

Top Energy Dublin July 2013

Newcastle: 11 July

We visited Newcastle for the very first time this July with a boutique event focused on migration advice and employment in Australia and New Zealand plus Canadian visa information.

The Department of Health – Western Australia and Hays Recruitment had roles available in Australia and New Zealand whilst Brazolot Migration Group was kept busy with Canadian visa enquiries.

Birmingham: 13-14 July

Our final stop was Birmingham, another busy weekend expo in the midst of the glorious British summer. The first time we’d been to Birmingham in a few years, the show brought a large number of Kiwi employers to central England, including Hire A Hubby, Naylor Love Construction, ACCENT Health Recruitment and Hays Recruitment.

They were joined by visa specialists Migration Planners, the Government of Western Australia running skilled migration seminars, The Physicians Recruitment Agency of Saskatchawan (Saskdocs – Canada) and Brazolot Migration Group (Canada).

What’s it like to attend an Opportunities Overseas Expo?

Here’s a selection of visitor feedback from the July shows:

“Really informative seminar, all questions/facts answered. Friendly staff and great venue. Very enjoyable.”

“Was brief but good. I found the Canada stand very helpful and quick. Very satisfied with attending.”

“It was great having a chance for one-on-one conversation.”

“Keep up the good work. The knowledge at the booths was good.”

“Generally interesting, had most of our questions answered and have lots of useful contacts.”

Next events

The Opportunities Overseas Expo will be back in October, details of upcoming events can be viewed at Working In Events.

Fight or flight: what to expect when you arrive in a new country

You’ve been excitedly planning your move for months but now you’ve landed and you’re not feeling so sure. Don’t worry – these feelings are absolutely normal and part of what’s known as the settlement curve.

In fact, there are six distinct stages most people go through as they settle in a new country – here’s what to expect over your first 18 months to two years.

The settlement curve

 

Diagram source: Immigration New Zealand Settlement Services.

Stage one: forethought

This stage is all about the excitement of planning with lots of positivity about your move to your new country. It’s important to have realistic expectations about your new home country, however, so now’s the time to look into jobs, get an idea of cost of living and research where you’re going to settle.

Stage two: fun

You’ve arrived and it’s brilliant fun. New people, new places and new experiences mean you’re feeling really positive about your new home.

Stage three: fright

Uh-oh. Something’s happened. It might be something major (a family member has fallen ill) or something small (you’re stuck in traffic for the fifth day in a row) – whatever it is, it’ll make you feel frustrated which in turn makes you feel unhappy.

Stage four: flight

Ok, something has happened – and you don’t have a strong network of friends or family to call on yet in your new home country. This is the point that you may decide to move on or return to your country of origin.

Stage five: fight

Time to embrace your inner Rocky. This is your turning point – you become realistic about what it’s like to live in your new country and make a conscious decision to stay and build your life here.

Stage six: fit

Welcome to everyday life. By this stage, your challenges are more about the usual day to day stuff people think about, rather than being about living in a new country. You’ve now decided to stay which helps you to feel like you ‘fit’ in. Congratulations – you’ve made it!

Dealing with the six stages

First off, remember that everyone who has ever been in your position will have experienced these emotions at some point. Understand that it’s completely normal and natural and try some of these tips to help you deal with your emotions:

  • Keep talking – to your other half, your family or your employer. Sharing your fears will help you deal with them.
  • Get out and about – the couch may be calling but that’s not going to help you feel more settled. Go for a walk, get some fresh air, make the most of that new lifestyle you were after. Remind yourself why you wanted to move.
  • Get involved – join your colleagues at the next social gathering, sign up to a gym, research local clubs – anything that gets you mingling with people and involved with your new life. Say yes to every offer that comes your way.
  • Research settlement services – there’s organisations dedicated to helping new migrants feel happy in their new homes. Check out Settlement Support New Zealand, find settlement services in Australia or search for immigration services in Canada.

Have you made the move? Did you experience a rollercoaster journey through the settlement curve? What helped you?

The average Aussie

The average AustralianAustralian 2011 census data has just been released and it’s painting an interesting picture of the average Aussie stereotype you may be used to: a cork hat wearing, crikey-exclaiming, tanned bloke? Not any more. Read on to discover what the average Australian looks like in the 21st century.

Overview

The Australian census data revealed that Australians:

  • Come from more than 200 countries
  • Speak over 300 languages at home
  • Belong to more than 100 different religious groups
  • Work in more than 1,000 different occupations

Man or woman?

The average Australian is a woman. In 2011, just over half of Australia’s population was female. In fact, since 1979, women have slightly outnumbered men.

How old?

In 2011, the average Australian was 37 years old.

Where were they born?

In 2011, only 3% of Australians reported they were Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.

Although Australia’s known for its long history of immigration, the average Australian was born in Australia – and so were both their parents:

  • 74% of people were born in Australia
  • 54% had both parents born in Australia

The largest group of people born overseas continues to be those born in the United Kingdom – they make up 5% of Australia’s population and 21% of all overseas born people living in Australia.

However, amongst recent arrivals (so people that arrived in Australia after 2006), the top position is held by India. UK-born people made up 12% of recent arrivals, and India-born people 13%.

What is their ethnic background?

Australians come from a large number of different cultural and ethnic grounds. Most commonly reported ancestry:

  • English (36%)
  • Australian (35%)
  • Irish (10%)
  • Scottish (9%)

Nearly three-quarters of Australians had at least one of these ancestries.

What language do they speak?

The average Aussie only speaks English at home – 81% of the population reported only speaking English at home. But nearly one in five people spoke a language other than English at home.

The most common languages spoken, apart from English:

  • Mandarin (1.6%)
  • Italian (1.5%)
  • Arabic (1.4%)
  • Cantonese (1.3%)
  • Greek (1.2%)
  • Vietnamese (1.1%)

Where/how do they work?

According to the 2011 census, 67% of men and 56% of women were employed.

For both men and women the most common occupation in Australia was sales assistant.

Other common occupations for men:

  • Truck driver
  • Electrician
  • Retail manager

Other common occupations for women:

  • General clerk
  • Primary school teacher
  • Office manager

Men work an average of 41 hours, compared with 32 hours for women.

Where do they live?

The average Aussie lives in one of the state or territory capitals.

60% of people lived in a capital city, with 35% living in either Sydney or Melbourne.

Capitals and other major cities accounted for over two-thirds of Australia’s population in 2011 – 69%.

The average Australian lives in a free-standing, three-bedroom house.

In summary: profile of the average Australian

From the Australian Bureau of Statistics:

“According to the 2011 Census, the average Australian is a 37 year old woman, born in Australia and with both of her parents also born in Australia. She has English, Australian, Irish, or Scottish ancestry. She speaks only English at home and belongs to a Christian religion, most likely Catholic.

She is married, and lives with her husband and two children (a boy and a girl aged nine and six) in a separate house with three bedrooms and two cars in a suburb of one of Australia’s capital cities. They have lived in that house for at least five years, and have a mortgage where they pay $1800 a month.

She has a Certificate in Business and Management, and drives to her job as a sales assistant, where she works 32 hours a week. She also does unpaid work around the house for five or more hours a week.

While many people will share a number of characteristics in common with this ‘average’ Australian, out of the nearly 22 million people counted in Australia on Census Night, 9 August 2011, no single person met all these criteria.

While the description of the average Australian may sound quite typical, the fact that no-one meets all these criteria shows that the notion of the ‘average’ masks considerable (and growing) diversity in Australia.”

Keen to read more?

See the full report of Australian social trends.

Have you got the Australian M factor?

The M factor Australia

So, you’ve given it some thought, had a chat with your nearest and dearest and watched enough episodes of Neighbours and Home & Away to have developed the required nasal twang to make you fit right into your new dream life in Australia.

Then you made the fatal error of starting the real research and, before you knew it, you were curled up in the fetal position in the front room, singing Swing Low Sweet Chariot and promising yourself you’d never stray again.

If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. The process of migrating is huge, not just from a legislative point of view, but also logistics, costs, and perhaps most importantly, the emotional strain that it induces. There are few things in life more unsettling than living with one foot in two continents – unable to move forward in your old life and unable to put roots down in your new destination. We call this the M factor – migration ready, move ready and mightily motivated. Yes, it’s tongue-in-cheek, sure, but stay with me – there are definitely parallels to the TV show with a similar name.

Firstly, the world is full of people who think they have the M factor. For example, there are those who go at it like the proverbial bull in a china shop and then pull up at the last minute. This is after investing a significant amount of money and realising that they actually don’t have that last piece of drive to leave behind all that is familiar and comfortable in return for an uncertain future in a foreign land full of strangers. They’re like the folk who get to the auditions, all bluster and confidence, and then freeze in the wings while waiting for their turn.

Then there are those who are pushed into it by others – their partners, friends or family, who tell them repeatedly that it’s the right thing to do. But deep inside, they know that they really don’t want it and end up miserable, trapped in living out someone else’s dream.

But then there are those who are so right, and so ready, and don’t even know it. Or maybe they do know it, but just don’t know what to do with it.

That’s where working with an expert comes in. Definitely less judgmental than those on that TV show, a Registered Migration Agent will offer you sound, honest feedback on what your options are and advice on the process. The good ones will make sure that they spend time with you, understanding what you hope to achieve, what your goals are, and what your timeline expectations are, and then will put a plan in place to help you achieve those.

In some cases, you may get answers that you don’t want – but those answers might stop you making an expensive and humbling mistake. In other cases, you may get information that you hadn’t considered that put a new spin on the direction you thought you wanted to take. But in all cases, you’ll come away from the experience wiser and more knowledgeable.

Don’t take a chance on missing out on a life that you’ve always dreamed of by trying to undertake something as legally complex and emotionally challenging as an international relocation on your own.

Top 10 Easter traditions from around the world

If you were hoping that Australia, Canada and New Zealand enjoyed some weird and wacky Easter traditions, sorry to disappoint… You’ll be bombarded with Easter eggs in the supermarket from the day after Christmas and will undoubtedly overdose on chocolate over the long weekend.

However, other countries around the world have some pretty fantastic ways of celebrating:

1. Czech Republic and Slovakia: women and girls are whipped with decorated instruments by men and boys in a ritual designed to encourage good health and beauty. Hm.

2. Poland and Russia: they show off their knife skills by crafting butter into the shape of a lamb which accompanies their Easter meal.

Easter Lamb
3. Germany: the Germans like to celebrate the coming of a new season by burning the remnants of the winter season – they pile the remainders of their Christmas trees and burn them.

4. Australia: ok, we lied, Australia has one quirky Easter tradition – the chocolate Bilby. Not only is it impossibly cute and different, it contributes to the Save the Bilby fund to raise awareness of their dwindling numbers.

Chocolate_bilby 5. Switzerland: not content with just eating the delicious chocolate version, the Swiss like to decorate their fountains with flowers, ribbons and eggs.

6. France: a very traditional celebration, the bells in France’s churches are silenced on Good Friday in recognition of Jesus’ death. The legend goes that actually these bells fly to Rome and then back again to be rung on Easter Sunday.

7. Orthodox and Catholic nations (some parts of Greece, Mexico, Portugal and Spain): an ancient Easter ritual, an effigy of Judas may be displayed and burnt.

8. Poland: apparently men are not allowed to make Easter bread because of a fear their moustache will go grey.

9. Finland: some children will dress up as witches and go searching for treats, which sounds a bit Halloween-like to us.

10. UK: another inventive use for an egg, in some parts of the UK, they like to roll their eggs down large hills.

Think we’re happy with the chocolate eating here in New Zealand.

15 misconceptions about Australia, Canada and New Zealand

Australians love cork hats, Canadians live in igloos and there’s more New Zealanders than sheep, right? Actually, no. Here we blow the lid on the most common misconceptions about Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Australia

  1. They don’t say crikey all the time: beloved croc-wrestler Steve Irwin may have coined the catchphrase “crikey!” but it’s certainly not used every day in Australia.
  2. They eat Skippy: Australia’s national icon – the kangaroo – is considered a darn tasty food source in Australia.
  3. They don’t ‘chuck shrimps on the barbie’: snaggers, yes (that’s sausages), shrimps, no. Also, they call them prawns, not shrimps.
  4. Not every animal in Australia wants to kill you: their poisonous snakes and spiders are easily avoided and they’re also home to possibly the cutest critter on the planet – the Quokka.Quokka Australia
  5. Australians don’t all live in the outback: yes, your map might show a massive country with plenty of desert-like space in the middle but in actual fact, over 90% of Australia’s population lives in urban areas on the coast.

Canada

  1. It always snows in Canada: afraid not. Their summers can be positively balmy in parts with the thermometer topping 30 degrees.
  2. Moose, bears and beavers are everywhere: if you don’t step outside the urban areas, your wildlife encounters will be restricted to pigeons and squirrels. Famed Canadian wildlife can be seen – but usually on specially planned tours. Beaver
  3. Mounties wear fancy red outfits: only on official, ceremonial occasions actually.
  4. All Canadians speak French: Statistics Canada reckons only about 22% of Canadians use French as their first language. Most of the French-speaking population lives in Quebec – where the official language is French.
  5. Toronto is the capital: it might be Canada’s largest city and the country’s financial centre but the capital is actually Ottawa.

New Zealand

  1. New Zealand is governed by Australia: definitely not. New Zealand was once governed as a part of the territory of New South Wales (now a part of Australia). When Australia federated in 1901, New Zealand was offered a place as one of their states. New Zealand refused and is its own country with no ties (other than economic and commonwealth) to Australia.
  2. There are 20 sheep to each person: no one’s going to deny New Zealand has a lot of sheep but in fact there’s presently around seven sheep to every one human.New Zealand countryside with a flock of sheep
  3. New Zealand is all one country: actually, it’s split into two islands – the imaginatively named north and south islands, both enjoying vastly different landscapes and climates. And no, there isn’t a bridge between the two islands. There is a ferry though.
  4. It’s small and everything you want to see can be done in two weeks: don’t be fooled. New Zealand’s landmass is about the same as the UK’s – and there is a heck of a lot to cram in. You could travel for months and still not do everything you want to do. It’s not a short break sort of place.
  5. The weather is incredible: it definitely can be. It can also be incredibly terrible. The far north of the north island is sub-tropical, summer is cyclone season and the south island suffers bitterly cold winters, including plenty of snow.

Sydney Festival 2013

Alanah, a business development manager at Working In, recently attended the fabulous Sydney Festival 2013 – three weeks of diverse arty entertainment. Here she tells us what it was like:

SydFest2

Those of you who have been lucky enough to be travelling through Sydney in January would have experienced the last throes of the “Silly Season” (that heady, fun time that occurs between the Melbourne Cup in early November and Australia Day on the 26th of January where summer is enjoyed and corporate attire takes a casual approach). But most importantly, you would have experienced the Sydney Festival!

The Sydney Festival is a major arts festival held in Australia’s largest city. For three weeks each January, Sydney Festival offers a diverse program of around 100 events involving over 1,000 artists delivering 300 performances from Australia and around the world covering dance, theatre, music, visual arts, cross media and forums. Literally it has everything from burlesque circus to New York rap to Russian theatre; from contemporary dance to family programs to traditional Indigenous arts practice.

Incoming DuckThe Festival always kicks off with a bang and this year it featured an enormous rubber ducky. Honestly, he was huge! He hung out in another Sydney icon Darling Harbour for the length of the festival much to the delight of people of all ages. If there was any doubt, my Facebook newsfeed was filled with ducky photos for the entire three weeks. “Day One” also offered up a free Soul Review concert in the Domain (central Sydney parklands) where 60,000 people came together to get down to Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings and other bands. To see some of the highlights of Day One; a marathon with hype girls for example; check out this YouTube clip!

More than any other cultural event, Sydney Festival defines Sydney’s personality. Global, local, challenging, light hearted, diverse and inclusive are just some of the words that spring to mind when I think of what the Festival means to our city. I don’t always get involved in the festival activities as January is a busy time, however when I have, I have seen some amazing sites in some breath-taking venues that remind me why I am so pleased to have chosen Sydney as my home.

Day One looking at the stage

Lastly, the Sydney Festival helps to proves that Australia is not the cultural wasteland that some people may think! Yes, buildings in Australia are considered “heritage” if they are over 100 years old, but Australia is a unique land, both ancient and yet so young with a melting pot of cultures which all come together under a common cultural purpose for three weeks. Best of all, with a population approaching five million, Sydney’s a big city, but Sydney Festival works hard to make sure it doesn’t feel that way.

*Photos from Sydney Festival Facebook page.

 

Top 10 most broken New Year’s resolutions

Scrabble tiles spelling out Happy New YearAs January kicks in down here in the southern hemisphere, it means only one thing – summer. Yet for northern hemisphere-ites, the tree and tinsel is down yet winter is still firmly hanging around. So it makes sense for anyone hoping to work and live overseas to take advantage of the New Year and make a resolution to make the move.

Which brings us onto this post and a look at the most commonly broken New Year’s resolutions – now, you don’t want to see your work and live overseas resolution on here in a year’s time do you? If you recognise any of these, don’t worry – you’re clearly in good company.

  1. Get fit and lose weight
  2. Give up smoking
  3. Learn something new
  4. Eat healthier and diet
  5. Get out of debt and save money
  6. Spend more time with the family
  7. Travel to new places
  8. Stress less
  9. Volunteer
  10. Drink less

If you need any motivation to stick to your New Year’s resolution, check out this quote by poet Edith Lovejoy Pierce:

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called ‘Opportunity’ and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.”

Hopefully see you here in 2013 – get here by checking out an expo near you!

Top things to do if you’re celebrating Christmas in Australia, Canada or New Zealand

The countries that we work with offer the best of both worlds when it comes to Christmas. You have the traditional northern hemisphere Christmas in Canada – snow, roaring log fires and hot chocolates while wrapped up like snow bunnies. Or, you have the southern hemisphere Christmas in Australia and New Zealand – barbecues on the beach and Santa in his shorts.

Here’s our round-up of the top things to do if you find yourself in one of these countries over the festive season.

Australia

Ayers Rock Uluru Sounds of Silence Australia

  1. Make the most of the sunshine and get out on the water – especially in one of Australia’s most iconic watery spots: the Sydney Harbour. You could enjoy a harbour cruise whilst tucking into a Christmas dinner.
  2. If you’d prefer a more active Christmas day, how about climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge? That’s guaranteed to be more memorable than another turkey dinner.
  3. In keeping with the active theme, you could take a trip out to the Great Barrier Reef and spend Christmas day snorkelling or diving with the fishes.
  4. An Aussie icon – Ayers Rock or Uluru – offers an incredible dining experience on Christmas Day. Its Sounds of Silence experience includes sunset canapés, dining under the stars (a BBQ buffet, naturally) and stargazing. Sounds pretty magical to us!
  5. Of course if you really want to make the most of Christmas down under, you could just hit up one of the many beaches and enjoy a picnic or BBQ.

Canada

Capilano Canyon lights Canada

  1. Don’t miss your opportunity to see the already spectacular Niagara Falls all dressed up for Christmas with the CAA Winter Festival of Lights, with over 125 animated lighting displays and three million tree and ground lights.
  2. You could really embrace a traditional Christmas with a Prairie Christmas (at Prairie Gardens and Adventure Farm). It boasts a roaring bonfire for roasting marshmallows over, gingerbread cookie decorating, hot chocolate and hot apple cider – toasty.
  3. The Capilano Suspension Bridge Park puts on a legendary lights show for Christmas, with a zillion sparkling lights on the bridge, rainforest and cliffwalk.
  4. Enjoy Christmas up high – Grouse Mountain hosts real reindeers, sleigh-rides and ice skating in naturally snowy surrounds.
  5. Let someone else take the strain during your Canadian Christmas – and hop on a sled drawn by dogs as you explore the snowy Canadian wilderness.

New Zealand

Kelly Tarlton's Sea Life Aquarium New Zealand Santa

  1. Soak away the Christmas stress in the great outdoors in some hot pools – New Zealand’s got hundreds of ‘em. You can even dig your own at Hot Water Beach in the Coromandel.
  2. Head underwater – whilst staying dry. Check out Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium where Santa will be feeding the fish and you can explore the brand new, snow filled penguin enclosure.
  3. If you think Christmas isn’t the same without some snow, you could head to Snowplanet for some indoor skiing, snowboarding and snow tubing.
  4. Hit up Queenstown, where the adventure never takes a Christmas break. On Christmas Day you’ll still be able to enjoy a Milford Sound flight and cruise, paragliding, a helicopter flight over The Remarkables, lake cruises, jet boating…
  5. Or for a real novelty factor, treat yourself to the only ice you’ll find in New Zealand over Christmas – ice cream. Following on from a BBQ on the beach, obviously.

Have you been to Australia, Canada or New Zealand over Christmas?

Tell us what you got up to!

Best bits of 2012

As 2012 draws to a close, it’s a great chance to look back over the year that was – what a busy and eventful year it was for the team at Working In!

January 2012

As our teams in the southern hemisphere enjoyed an extended sunny summery break, Alanah (one of our Business Development Managers) decided to have a truly wintery experience. She headed to Lake Louise, Canada for an incredibly snowy skiing spectacular!

February 2012

Splore Rox_FebRoxann (our Marketing Communications Manager) made the most of the summer months by heading to Splore festival, in one of Auckland’s regional parks, for a fantastic festival experience.

March 2012

Charlotte (our Marketing Production Manager) is well-known for her ridiculously active and generous, charitable nature. She proved this by taking part in the Oxfam Trailwalker – a 100KM walk/run in Taupo. Teams of four take part over the 36-hour long challenge. Not content with doing something brilliant for a good cause, Charlotte’s team (Tyrrell’s Trampers) also won 3rd fastest all girls team and a prize for single top fundraising effort.

Oxfam trailwalker_Char_March April

April 2012

Ok, we’ll admit it. No one can really remembered what happened in April – let’s assume we ate a lot of Easter eggs.

May 2012

As the weather heated up in the northern hemisphere, Alanah found her way back to Canada and had a memorable encounter with some local residents.

June 2012

As the middle of the year approached, the Working In team welcomed two new arrivals – Keri (our Marketing Production Manager), her husband and dog expanded their family with baby Summer while Kylie (our Marketing Manager)’s new little one, Charlotte, joined Ruby, husband Simon and the two family cats.

July 2012

July marked a pretty momentous occasion as we launched our brand new events website – Working In Events. It revolutionised the ticket buying process and allowed us the perfect stage to showcase our expos.

July also saw CEO Scott and Business Development Manager Bridget heading down to Christchurch, meeting a range of recruiters and local stakeholders to discuss the recruitment of the skilled professionals needed to rebuild Christchurch.

It gave Scott the opportunity to observe the beginning of the city’s rebuild, his thoughts from July include:

“It’s incredible how much of the inner city has gone and is getting ready for the rebuild. It’s hard on an iPhone to show how much damage is here. A lot of cranes down here and a lot of work to be done.”

photo 4

August 2012

Our Oz-based team moved into a frankly fantastic new office overlooking Sydney harbour – much to the jealously of the Auckland-based team.

The Auckland team made up for it by celebrating the Olympics – office-style. Each team took turns to present an Olympics-country themed morning tea and presentation, including quizzes and the very American beer pong…

Pablo, our Business Development Manager for Spain and Latin America, also celebrated a very special occasion in August – his wedding day!

September 2012

Hanna (Visa Delivery Manager) flew over to Sydney to take part in the marathon, achieving an incredibly impressive four hours and eight minutes.

Embracing the active spirit, Alanah met up with Brendan (Business Development Manager) in Vancouver where they undertook an epic cycle trip around the city.

October 2012

Anika & Morgan_Cathy_OctoberOctober heralded the arrival of not one, but two babies. Cathy (Business Development Manager) and her family welcomed twins Anika and Morgan.

In keeping with the new theme, we launched a new look Australian newsletter (with Canada and New Zealand following in December).

November 2012

As spring kicked in down under, our Visa team arranged a BBQ for their clients who they helped to secure visas for. It was a great opportunity for them to enjoy an uniquely Kiwi experience – an afternoon on the beach.

We also held our first ever Dublin expo that was a fantastic success, with Ireland’s national broadcaster even coming along to film.

The final new arrival of the year was welcomed – Business Development Manager Bridget and her husband said hello to baby John.

December 2012

WI Christmas do 2012_1 Dec

As we look forward to an exciting expo season in 2013, we finished up 2012 with our Christmas celebration. The Auckland team headed to Waiheke Island to sample the local goods (i.e. wine) and enjoy some laser clay pigeon shooting and archery.

Your best bits

Let us know what you enjoyed most about 2012.

Auckland, Vancouver and Sydney ranked some of the best places in the world to live

The Mercer 2012 Quality of Living Survey has just been released, and it’s full of good news for anyone looking to move to Australia, Canada or New Zealand. Vienna, Austria remains at the top of the European country dominated survey.

The survey

The survey evaluates more than 460 cities worldwide on a variety of factors to produce a snapshot of what it’s like to live there.

The survey analyses the following factors:

  • Political and social environment (political stability, crime, law enforcement)
  • Economic environment (currency exchange regulations, banking services)
  • Socio-cultural environment (censorship, limitations on personal freedom)
  • Medical and health considerations (medical supplies and services, infectious diseases, sewage, waste disposal, air pollution, etc.)
  • Schools and education (standard and availability of international schools)
  • Public services and transportation (electricity, water, public transportation, traffic congestion, etc.)
  • Recreation (restaurants, theatres, movie theatres, sports and leisure, etc.)
  • Consumer goods (availability of food/daily consumption items, cars, etc.)
  • Housing (rental housing, household appliances, furniture, maintenance services)
  • Natural environment (climate, record of natural disasters)

Auckland, New Zealand

Auckland New Zealand third in 2012 Mercer Quality of Life SurveyAuckland has retained its position as the highest-ranking city for quality of living in the Asia-Pacific region – it’s 3rd. Clearly the high standards of education, the buzzing night life and culture and clean, green surrounds of Auckland have impressed on a global scale.

Wellington also made the top 20, coming in 13th. In total, New Zealand has two cities in the top 50.

Vancouver, Canada

Vancouver Canada fifth in Mercer 2012 Quality of Living SurveyVancouver came in 5th, while other Canadian cities dominated the top of the index for the Americas region (Ottawa (14), Toronto (15), Montreal (23) and Calgary (32)). Known for its world-class green spaces, exciting culture and entertainment plus being the stage for global events (like the winter Olympics games), Vancouver has plenty to offer.

Canada boasts five cities in the top 50.

Sydney, Australia

Sydney Australia 10th in Mercer 2012 Quality of Living SurveySydney drew with Bern in Switzerland as the 10th best city in the world for quality of living. Iconic tourist attractions, an energetic metropolitan feel and a fantastic climate all make up the Sydney experience.

Australia tops the three countries with six cities in the top 50.

Here’s the top 10 best cities for quality of living 2012:

  1. Vienna, Austria
  2. Zurich, Switzerland
  3. Auckland, New Zealand
  4. Munich, Germany
  5. Vancouver, Canada
  6. Düsseldorf, Germany
  7. Frankfurt, Germany
  8. Geneva, Switzerland
  9. Copenhagen, Denmark
  10. Bern, Switzerland
  11. Sydney, Australia

Most—and least—desirable places to live
Infographic by Mercer Insights

Details of the full survey can be found here.

What do you think?

Do you agree with these findings?

The real land of opportunity

This week we have a guest post, courtesy of Amy Knapp at InsideTrak. Here she tells her story about finding a job in your profession in your new country.

Blue sky with the land of opportunity written across it

When people talk of “The land of opportunity”, they’re usually referring to a country in which they’ve travelled, immigrated or done business. People rarely refer to their own country in this way – and there’s a reason for that.

You arrive in a new country blissfully unaware of the usual limitations of your profession. You don’t know the history so you don’t have the intimidation factor. And when you don’t have the intimidation factor, it becomes easy to apply for that top position at that top company, to ring the most influential person in the industry and ask her for some career advice, to switch professions on a dime and act like you’ve been doing it all your life.

It takes guts to relocate to a new country. The major bonus though, is that you leave a lot of your fears behind and leave yourself free to take chances you wouldn’t normally take in your own country. There’s no one around to judge you if you fail, no one around to say, “No kidding! You’re applying for a job there? My cousin’s been trying to get a job there for years!”

I arrived in Australia with an impressive resume that unfortunately had zero correlation with what I actually wanted to do, which was write. In Canada I’d managed a small business, been director of an NGO, and even put in three years at law school. When an opportunity came up to do some writing part-time, I jumped on it. I wrote an outrageous letter, laid the whole situation on the table and voila! I became a writer.

Some key things worked in my favour. Being a foreigner, I had some skills none of the other applicants had: I spoke French, had worked in three different countries and had a certain liveliness that must have been contagious.

Equally important were the things I didn’t know about the job, namely that there were over a hundred other applicants, most of whom had PR backgrounds and at least two internships under their belt. That should’ve been obvious. In Canada, I’d have known that I wasn’t qualified and probably not bothered at all. But since I was away from home and living life large in a foreign country, I took a shot.

The real reason they gave me the job was because they liked my letter. My employer at the time was an open-minded guy looking for a great writer. Turned out that none of the other stuff really mattered as much as I’d have thought it did (if I’d thought it through – which I didn’t).

That first writing job spiralled into another job, which spiralled into another and another and eventually became a cosy career as a freelance writer. Back in Canada, I demanded the same fees I did in Australia, even though Canadian salaries are significantly lower and technically I should have corrected for that. But you know what? Nobody complained. Not one single person.

The moral of the story is that it can in fact be an advantage not to understand the culture of your profession in a foreign country. It helps you escape your fears. It motivates you to take chances. There’s no fear of judgement or rejection. You don’t know these people. Why not take a shot?

Amy Knapp is a freelance blogger for InsideTrak, where you can find free job postings from Australian employers.

 

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