The Wairarapa job market is showing signs of growth, giving new optimism to local job hunters in 2014, a Masterton recruitment consultant says.
Trade Me Jobs has released data for the October-December quarter, showing the number of Wellington region job listings was up 7.4 per cent compared to the same period in 2012.
However, the number of Masterton listings was down 12.7 per cent to 185.
Job vacancies nationwide advertised on Trade Me jumped 17 per cent year-on-year, led by growth in hospitality and tourism - both up 30 per cent - and agriculture, fishing and forestry - up 32 per cent.
IT positions continued to dominate the top end of the pay scale, topped only by specialist healthcare jobs.
It follows newly-released 2013 job data from SEEK job website showing more than 43,000 jobs were advertised in the Wellington region, a 5 per cent drop on 2012. Wairarapa-specific figures were unavailable.
Boss Group recruitment consultant Razia Bi, in Masterton, said good numbers of temporary roles had been available in the last quarter, particularly at Breadcraft, Hansells Food Group and Premier Bacon. She said she was surprised by how busy it had been over Christmas.
"I think I'm still going to be busy over the next couple of months."
She anticipated 2014 would be a positive year for Wairarapa job hunters. However, she said, while many applicants had the skills needed, it was still generally difficult to find reliable, quality applicants with their own transport.
"We have been struggling with that, but apart from that the market is good for us."
Some applicants were willing to work, but some of those referred by Work and Income "don't really care", she said. "I don't give up - I do ring them.
"The ones who are basically tyre-kickers, I do let Winz know 'You're probably wasting your time putting them on benefits [and seeking working opportunities for them] because they don't really want to work'."
Wellington has once again topped the regions for the best average pay rate ($75,753), while Waimakariri in Canterbury has the worst ($45,208).
Head of Trade Me Jobs Peter Osborne said overall many employers predicted a healthy job market was in store for 2014.
The Christchurch rebuild and an "insatiable appetite" for growth in Auckland had dominated recent market activity, but there was also good news elsewhere, he said.
"This quarter we saw year-on-year growth in the number of roles advertised in all regions except Gisborne, and across a majority of industries. This demonstrates the healthy state of the national job market and means there are opportunities for many job hunters across the country."
January and February were peak months for new job advertising, and the strong conditions in the latter half of 2013 looked set to continue.
"We expect there'll be plenty of opportunities for school leavers, uni graduates and those looking for a change in the new year to find the job they've been coveting."
With job listings and salaries trending up, the outlook was rosy. "As confidence flows back into the wider economy, the immediate future is a solid show of strength for the national job market." APNZ