Accredited Employer Work Visa – applications now open

Applications are now open for you to apply for accreditation in order to use the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) to hire migrants on visas for up to 3 years. You must pay at least the NZ median wage $27.76, and follow a process to prove that you cannot find suitable New Zealanders to fill the role first.

What does the Accredited Employer Work Visa mean for employers?

New Zealand has now transitioned to a new Accredited Employer Work Visa, leaving behind six temporary work visas:

  • Essential Skills Work Visa
  • Essential Skills Work Visa — approved in principle
  • Talent (Accredited Employer) Work Visa
  • Long Term Skill Shortage List Work Visa
  • Silver Fern Job Search Visa (closed 7 October 2019)
  • Silver Fern Practical Experience Visa.

The accreditation and the job check process have been designed to ensure New Zealanders are considered for roles first before migrants, and if you do hire migrants that you are a viable business with good practices.

Before you can hire a temporary migrant worker, you will need to work through three steps:

  1. Apply for accreditation, (applications open 23 May 2022) and pay the fee
  2. Apply for a job check to make sure the role you want to fill cannot be done by New Zealanders (opens 20 June 2022), and once the above steps are completed:
  3. Request a migrant worker employee to apply for a visa (applications open 4 July 2022)

Further details on the 3 step application requirements:

1. Accreditation:

There are different accreditations you can apply for, depending on the number of migrants you are hiring.

  • Standard Accreditation: for employers who want to hire 5 or fewer migrant workers.
  • High-Volume Accreditation: for employers who want to hire 6 or more migrant workers.
  • Franchisee Accreditation: for businesses that are part of a franchise (no limit to how many migrants you can hire).

You will pay a fee depending on the type of accreditation you need. You also need to have:

  • an NZBN (unless you are a foreign diplomatic mission)
  • a business IRD number
  • completed Employment New Zealand modules.
2. Job check

Once you have the accreditations you will need to apply for the job check. This will confirm the job pays the required market rate, the terms and conditions comply with employment laws, and you have done a labour market test if required – this includes advertising the role to New Zealanders for a minimum of 2 weeks, and confirming there are no New Zealanders available to do the job in that region.

You need to include:

  • a thorough job description
  • an employment agreement that contains all compulsory minimum employment standards
  • the results of any advertising you had to do

If the job check is approved you can offer the work to someone from overseas.

Note: Jobs paying 200% of the median wage ($55.52 per hour) and those on a skills shortage list do not need a labour market test.

3. Request your potential employee apply for a visa

Once you have passed the first 2 steps, your potential migrant worker can then apply for a visa. They must show they meet character, identity and health requirements, and have the skills to do the job before being granted a visa. 

If you have any questions on how this may impact your future hiring process please get in touch with our Advice Service on 0800 472 472 (1800 128 086 from Australia) or email

Our Supporters


Would you like one of our team to give you a call? Let us know and we will get back to you.