If you're looking for a career change, then consulting and strategy are where the big bucks are - the only sector attracting an average six figure salary, new data reveals.

The annual average salary for consulting and strategy was $104,117, followed by engineering, construction, information and communication technology, and mining, resources and energy sector.

These were the biggest earning sectors - all raking in more than $90,000 annually last month, according to jobs advertised on Seek.co.nz.

Professionals working in insurance and superannuation, and real estate and property saw the biggest salary hikes with the online recruitment site reporting 23 per cent and 16 per cent average salary rises respectively from January to December 2014.


However the mining, resources and energy sector took the biggest hit, down 7 per cent during the same period.

Wellington and Auckland were the areas where the highest salaries could be found, both up 7 per cent in the past year to $82,357 and $78,414 respectively. While Marlborough reported the biggest drop, down 13 per cent which made it the region with the lowest average salary at just $54,018.

Overall the average salary nationwide rose 7 per cent to $76,538 last year.
Seek New Zealand general manager Janet Faulding said the increase reflected a positive change in the economy and as a result Kiwis were benefiting financially from it.

The pay gap between Australia and New Zealand was also closing with New Zealand workers enjoying an average 7 per cent annual pay hike, while Aussie pay packets were up only 3 per cent.

Ms Faulding said roles in consulting and strategy tended to be the highest earners due to them being quite specialist. "In this instance, the particularly high average salary was largely driven by management and change consultant roles which had an average salary of $117,857 in December."

Meanwhile project management and management roles in engineering and construction - the second and third highest earning sectors respectively - also pushed up wages in those areas.

Ms Faulding said the new year was typically a time where people started to consider career and job changes and the best way to increase their pay packets, so it would be an opportune time for employers to review their salary packages in order to attract or retain good staff.