New Zealand's first digital salaries report: Who’s making the big bucks?

With the digital revolution upon us changing the way we work, live and play, the employment outlook for digital professionals is bright. The 2017 Digital Remuneration Report breaks down the incomes of different roles within the industry in Aotearoa, as well as how we fare against our Australian counterparts. 

The 2017 Digital Remuneration Report is the first of its kind and will be released every six months, using data from as its main source. Most surveyed (88 percent) were from the private sector, while 10 percent were from the public sector and two percent were from the not-for-profit sector.  

The report makes a couple of interesting points on how much the digital industry has grown. First, less than 10 years ago, jobs such as data scientists, digital marketing specialists, iOS developers and cloud services specialists did not exist. Now, they’re in hot demand.

This rise will only increase, as professionals with digital skills are needed more and more by businesses across the entire industry spectrum.

An EU report on ‘ICT for work: Digital Skills in the Workplace’ found that 90 percent of workplaces in the EU require basic digital skills from jobs like engineers, teachers, lawyers and journalists, while 80 percent of workplaces require basic digital skills for sales workers.

Co-founder of Absolute IT Grant Burley says the field is so new and expanding so fast, there is already a digital skills gap worldwide.

“We think it is important to start monitoring the salary trends for digital professionals in New Zealand, to see where we are at and to keep the industry informed,” Burley says.

He says the soaring demand for digital skills has led to two trends: New jobs that have never existed before, as well as the transformation of traditional, non-IT job sectors.

 “Machines, products and people are interacting more with each other and we are seeing new job roles that did not exist a few years ago,” he says.  

The other trend is that digital skills are moving into areas that traditionally haven’t had an IT component, such as medicine, agriculture and retail.

“As we are becoming a society that connects and communicates on a variety of digital devices, we are seeing a rise in the need for digital skills in almost all workplaces,” Burley says.

Here’s a breakdown of the key statistics:

  • Median digital professional base salary: Auckland – $70,000, Hamilton –$65,500, Wellington – $77,750 and Christchurch – $65,000.
  • Where digital talent resides in New Zealand: Auckland – 50 percent, Wellington ­– 33 percent, Christchurch – 7 percent, Hamilton ­– 6 percent.
  • Digital salaries compared to our Australian counterparts: New Zealand’s median digital professional salary – $71,000, Australia’s median digital professional salary ­– $72,000. New Zealand’s median hourly contracting rate – $70, Australia’s ­– $65 an hour.
  • The number of people who receive ‘work perks’ in the industry: Flexible working hours – 41 percent, mobile phone or mobile allowance ­– 27 percent, paid company training – 25 percent, healthcare ­– 23 percent, car park – 19 percent, bonuses or commissions  – 22 percent.
  • Breakdown of salary by job type:

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