Job Prospects... At a glance
Job prospects for packers and movers, also known as removalists, are average. There is currently increasing demand for movers because of a strong housing market in Auckland, but this is not expected to lead to a large increase in employment numbers.
Packers and movers prepare, pack, load and move furniture and other items from one location to another. They are usually involved when businesses move, or when people move out of houses.
Packers also work in storehouses, packing and organising goods for delivery.
There are no entry requirements to work as packers or movers. Most skills are learned on the job. Qualifications that could be useful for working in the relocations industry include:
For packers, a forklift licence may be needed, and movers may need a driving licence and heavy vehicle licence. Physical fitness may also be needed, as there could be heavy lifting involved.
|On the job training|
*if completed as an employer-funded traineeship there may be no fees for the trainee.
The least expensive way to train as removalist is to become an industry trainee and learn on the job. As a trainee you can earn while gaining a qualification.
Current fees for a MITO traineeship are $1,145 (GST exclusive) per year, which includes all training, training resources and learner support.
A driving licence, heavy vehicle licence, or forklift licence may be needed, and there are costs involved in getting these.
Rents vary from place to place. Estimated market rents by region, city and suburb are available on the MBIE Tenancy Services website.
The StudyLink website provides general budget advice for students, and the Sorted website provides help with detailed budget planning.
MITO New Zealand Incorporated (MITO) is the Industry Training Organisation (ITO) that facilitates on-the-job training for the relocations industry.
MITO's on-the-job training programmes are designed to help those employed in either the domestic or international sector of the relocations industry become a safe and efficient removalist with high levels of customer service. Generally, it takes around 12 months to complete each programme.
The annual income for packers and movers is estimated to be around $41,000. Many packers and movers work on the minimum wage, or just a little more.
|Estimated Average Income|
Source: MBIE estimates based on Statistics NZ Census and Labour Cost Index
Packers and movers employment
Source: Statistics NZ Census and MBIE projections. Percentages are compound annual growth rates.
* Growth projections are based on the wider category “Storepersons”.
The number of packers and movers in employment fell slightly from 2006 to 2013. An increase in numbers is projected to occur over the next few years. This stable employment pattern means that there should be openings for new workers as older ones retire.
Source: Statistics NZ Census and MBIE projections
Packers and movers are not on Immigration New Zealand's skill shortage lists.
Immigration NZ, skill shortage list: skillshortages.immigration.govt.nz
The best chance of getting full-time work in the relocation industry is to start in a casual position. Employers may offer permanent jobs to casual workers who show they have the skills and aptitude for the work.
The number of online job vacancies for ‘Storepersons’ declined at a faster rate than the average for all vacancies between 2008 and 2010. However, since 2010, it has grown at a faster rate than the average for all occupations. One reason could be a heated housing market, where houses sell quickly. This means it should be easier to get a job as a packer or mover now than it was a few years ago.
Jobs advertised chart
Source: Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment
Packer and mover vacancies are advertised through websites such as Trade Me Jobs, Seek and MITO websites.
Experienced removalists often progress to supervision, business management and ownership.
Removalists can move into related fields such as sales/business development, operations despatcher or management, freight forwarding, and customs broking.
The following occupations are related roles or alternative titles. Some of the roles may require a higher level of skill than entry-level packers and movers.
More information on packers and movers is available on the Careers New Zealand website.
Careers New Zealand: www.careers.govt.nz
The Australian New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) is the official classification of occupations in New Zealand.
The occupation of packers and movers has been coded to the following ANZSCO codes for the purpose of this report:
7411 – Storepersons
733113 – Furniture Removalist