Job advertisements across New Zealand increased by 13% this January, compared to the same period last year, chiefly led by the ICT industry.
New data released by SEEK, one of New Zealand's largest job sources, shows in January 2014, close to 24,000 jobs were advertised in New Zealand compared to less than 21,000 in January 2013 and just over 19,000 in 2012.
"January 2014 has seen the strongest start for new job ad volumes in three years with over 18,000 jobs listed on www.seek.co.nz," says Janet Faulding, General Manager of SEEK New Zealand.
"The job market is benefiting from the continued improvement in the wider New Zealand economy and we see this as a strong indication of what's to come for the remainder of 2014."
The Auckland market boasted the greatest number of jobs in January with a total of almost 12,000 opportunities listed, a 13% increase from January 2013 and representing almost 50% of the total number of jobs posted in that month in New Zealand.
This was largely driven by the ICT industry, with almost 2,000 jobs on site. Canterbury and Wellington also enjoyed an improvement of job opportunities increasing by 15% and 13% respectively.
Interestingly, it's the smaller regions taking charge of the greatest percentage surge, with Marlborough job ad volumes increasing by a significant 55%. Southland enjoyed a 33% and Northland a 30% growth of job opportunities posted on www.seek.co.nz in January 2014 compared to January the previous year.
"The seasonal nature of job opportunities in regional areas definitely has an influence over the increase of positions available," Faulding adds.
"However, this improved activity in the job market is an encouraging indication that the smaller regions in New Zealand are benefiting from the overall increase in economic confidence."
The job hunting season for employees has also gained early momentum in 2014, with a significant 8% increase in applications year on year in jobs advertised in New Zealand.
CEO and General Management personnel have the itchiest feet, with a 65% growth of applications for the month of January, followed by candidates in self-employment at 37%, then Design & Architecture and Consulting & Strategy both increasing their applications by 36%.
"More opportunities and confidence in the economic outlook provide employees the incentive needed to look at other roles," Faulding concludes.
"The increase of applications is indicative of a buoyant job market and we can expect to see more movement in the months to come."