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Cabinet MakerAlternative titles

Kaihanga Kapata Taonga

This job is sometimes referred to as:

Furniture Maker
Marine Cabinet Maker

Cabinet makers make and repair furniture for homes, businesses and boats.

Contact us

Call us on 0800 222 733

What are the chances of getting a job?


Chances of getting work as a cabinet maker are poor for people wanting to enter the role and average for people with experience.

Job opportunities for skilled cabinet makers are improving after the 2008/2009 recession, which saw the number of people employed in the furniture-making industry decline. The number of cabinet makers has now increased slightly, going from 2,730 in March 2009 to 2,776 in March 2012, according to Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment estimates.

Limited number of cabinet maker apprenticeships available

Most furniture manufacturing stores employ only a few cabinet makers and can take on new apprentices only when the business expands or an employee leaves. Chances of getting a job are usually better at large-scale furniture manufacturers.

Opportunities in other industries for experienced cabinet makers

Experienced cabinet makers can use their skills in kitchen fitting, shop fitting and boat building with little further training. Increasing numbers of cabinet makers are making the move into such roles due to better work opportunties.

Types of employers

Cabinet makers work for:

  • large furniture manufacturing plants
  • small specialist furniture businesses.

Many cabinet makers run their own businesses or work as sole traders from home.


  • Furniture Association of New Zealand Inc, 'Furniture Newsletter May 2010', 2010.
  • Ministry of Business,Innovation and Employment, '2003-2012 Occupation Data’ (prepared for Careers New Zealand), 2012.
  • Trought, D, national careers manager, FITEC, Careers New Zealand Interview, July 2010.

Current vacancies

Cabinet Joiner Listed: 19 Sep 2014 Auckland
Experienced Cabinet Maker / Joiner Listed: 28 Aug 2014 Manawatu / Wanganui
Customer Services/Sales Support-att Cabinet Makers Listed: 11 Sep 2014 Auckland
Cabinet Makers Listed: 09 Sep 2014 Auckland
Carpenter / Frame maker Listed: 11 Sep 2014 Auckland
Trainee Cabinet Maker Listed: 16 Sep 2014 Auckland
Joiner,Cabinet Maker Listed: 10 Sep 2014 Wellington

Other vacancy websites

Progression and specialisations

Cabinet makers can progress into supervisor or management roles, or become self-employed.

Cabinet makers may specialise in marine cabinets for boats, ships and yachts.

How many people are doing this job?

Year 2012
Year 2011
Year 2010
Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, '2003-2012 Occupation Data' (prepared for Careers New Zealand), 2012.

A cabinet maker stacks completed furniture ready for sale.

Cabinet makers work for furniture manufacturing companies

Updated 19 Aug 2014