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Who earns what?
Find out which job areas are the highest and lowest earners, how qualifications relate to earnings, and what industries have the highest and lowest-earning employees.
What are the highest and lowest-paying jobs?
The average annual pay in New Zealand at the time of this survey was $47,900 before tax.
Highest-paid jobs in New Zealand
According to Trade Me’s salary survey, the highest average annual salaries in 2009 were paid to:
- Doctors $143,495
- IT architects $126,443
- IT sales & pre-sales $121,418
- Financial controllers $115,472
- IT project managers $114,352
Lowest-paid jobs in New Zealand
The lowest average annual salaries were paid to:
- Kitchen staff $31,457
- Bar staff & baristas $31,785
- Caregivers $32,551
- Waiting staff $32,576
- Hotel front desk/ reception $32,773
Note: Within each job, pay can vary depending on factors such as qualifications, experience and employer.
Source: Trade Me, Trade Me Salary Survey: July-December 2009, (www.scoop.co.nz).
The impact of qualifications on earnings
Your level of education has been proven to have a big effect on how much you can earn. Generally, the higher your qualification, the more you will earn.
Average yearly pay by qualification level (based on students who left study in 2008)
Source: Statistics New Zealand, 'Student Loans and Allowances: 2009', 2009, (www.stats.govt.nz).
Whether you complete the qualification you start also makes a big difference to pay. Students who completed a Bachelor's degree in 2004 earned about 18% more after five years than those who started but did not complete the qualification ($48,410 and $41,060, respectively).
What are the highest and lowest-paying industries?
The top five highest-paying industries (includes self-employed workers) are:
- Finance and insurance
- Electricity, gas and water supply
- Professional, scientific and technical services
- Information and telecommunications.
Read more about what jobs you can do in some of these industries:
The lower-earning industries (including self-employed workers) are:
- Accommodation, cafés and restaurants
- Retail trade
- Arts and recreation services
- Administration and support services
- Rental, hiring and real estate services.
Note: Many of the jobs in the lower-earning industries are part time positions. Also, for many workers, these jobs are their secondary employment.
Source: Leed, "Employment, Earnings and Income Statistics", 2009.