​New Zealand is known for attracting tourists seeking adventure, beautiful landscapes and breathtaking scenery. In fact, earlier this year, New Zealand scored the top spot for best country in the 2015-2016 Telegraph Travel Awards for the fourth year in a row.

Unsurprisingly, this also means there are plenty of people seeking work in New Zealand. Taking on a job in a new country always comes with its fair share of cultural difficulties – whether it is navigating a new tax system or simply decoding the local lingo.

Taking on a job in a new country always comes with its fair share of cultural difficulties.

Once you've obtained your working holiday visa, it's time to get to work on understanding what to expect from this exciting country. Let's take a look at the most important things to know when entering New Zealand for your new job.

1. Obtaining an IRD number

If you are in New Zealand on any kind of temporary work visa, one of the first things you'll want to do is secure your IRD number. This is a eight to nine digit number that is unique to you.

Your IRD number is very important because all of your taxes, entitlements and personal details are linked to it. According to New Zealand Inland Revenue Department, there are four steps to obtaining your IRD number:

  1. Open a New Zealand bank account

  2. Complete the IRD number application form

  3. Collect the relevant document to hand in with your applications (passport, statement of address, work visa, bank account details)

  4. Send in your application

The IRD suggests getting this done as soon as possible – an early start on securing this number will simply make it easier for you.

2. Opening a bank account

Most holiday goers coming to New Zealand to work are eligible to stay for a year. As such, it makes sense to open a bank account with one of New Zealand's many banking branches. The process of opening your account should be simple enough. However, it's worth noting the documents you'll need to get started.

For starters, you will need some form of identification – a driver's license, a passport or birth certificate. New Zealand banks will also require you to provide a statement of address. If you are staying in temporary housing, such as a hotel or hostel, you will need to go to the front desk and ask for this document. This will likely be one of the easiest types of statement of address to secure, however, any of the following documents are accepted by most major banks:

  • Recent bill from electricity, heating or phone company

  • Council rates notice

  • Any bank statement

  • Insurance policy document

  • An Electoral Office letter

  • Travel itinerary

  • Anything from a government agency that includes your name, address and a unique reference ID (such as IRD number, Client File Number or Tenancy Bond reference number)

  • Property Sale and Purchase Agreement

  • Unexpired Rental or Tenancy Agreement

Many banks will require a minimum deposit when opening a new account – make sure to have some currency ready.

3. Understanding the business culture

New Zealand has its own unique set of cultural intricacies when it comes to business. New Zealand Now noted that many foreigners may be surprised at how small companies are in New Zealand. A considerable number of businesses have an average of 14 employees and small- to medium-sized enterprises (made up of less than 20 employees) are responsible for 40 per cent of national economic output.

Additionally, hierarchies are much less distinct in Kiwi companies. Employees are much more likely to work side-by-side with senior management, enabling more space for influencing major decisions.

4. Decoding Kiwi slang

One of the most interesting parts of travelling to a new country is learning the local lingo. The slang in New Zealand can be hard to grasp but the learning curve will be a source of lots of laughter. Before travelling over for work, it may be good to brush up on a few of the most common Kiwi terms, so at the very least you can sort out what your coworkers are saying.

Mean: Used as an adjective to describe something that is particularly amazing or cool.
Example: "That was a mean movie we saw last night."

Suss: Most commonly used to mean "to take care of" when referring to plans or a task. Can also be used as a replacement for "suspicious."
Example: "Have you sussed out the plans for later?" or "I don't hang out with him, he's always acting suss."

As: Often used as a way to beef up a preceding adjective, equivalent to "really" or "very"
Example: "Only $13? That's cheap as for a good meal."

Working in a new country is an exciting experience for any traveller and New Zealand is a highly sought after destination. For job seekers looking to find employment in New Zealand during their holiday, TradeStaff is here to help. We can find temporary jobs that suit your needs and estimated work time – get in touch today to learn more!