Working in New Zealand

Get advice on planning a move, and working in New Zealand, for electricians and other electrical workers.

Planning to work here

If you’re thinking of coming to New Zealand to work, you’ll need a work or resident visa. To get that – you’re likely to need a job. To work independently in New Zealand as an electrician or other electrical worker, you need to gain New Zealand registration and a practising licence.

If you plan to work in New Zealand, you may wish to refer to these government websites for advice on visas and the job market:

New Zealand Now(external link)

Finding work(external link) Preparing your job search, finding opportunities and tips for success.

Job market and key industries(external link) Explore our key industries and get information on our job market.

Move to New Zealand(external link) Practical advice on planning your move to New Zealand.

Immigration New Zealand(external link)

New Zealand Visas(external link) Information and advice on applying for a visa.

Skills shortage list checker(external link) Check if your electrical skills are needed in New Zealand with this tool. If you’re offered a job that’s on one of our lists, and you’ve got the qualifications and experience to match, getting a work or residence visa may be easier.

Electrical work in New Zealand

To work in New Zealand as an electrician or other electrical worker, you need to gain New Zealand registration and a practising licence. If you are registered or licensed in your home country this experience may be recognised to allow you to work under supervision in New Zealand while holding a Limited Certificate.

Progress to registration for overseas applicants

Step 1 Assessment (apply for registration)
Step 2 Approved with conditions OR Declined
Step 3 Limited certificate Trainee Limited Certificate
Step 4 Complete required exams and practical assessment(s)
AND Complete any outstanding work requirements Complete all required work experience
Step 5 Apply to complete registration Apply for registration and a practising licence (NZ based)


The New Zealand Electrical Workers Registration Board has established the following classes of registration to ensure any prescribed electrical work is done by a person competent in that field:

Classes of registration

Class Description
Electrician (E) Is able to do all prescribed electrical work except inspection.
Electrical Engineer (EE) Is currently able to do the same work as an electrician though there may be limitations placed on your licence. Please note that this class of registration may not be on the Skills Shortage list for Immigration New Zealand’s visa points.
Electrical Installer (EI) Is limited to wiring and equipment installation in the field they have gained experience (ie heat pumps, lifts, alarm systems).
Electrical Service Technician (EST) Limited to maintenance and servicing only, though can disconnect and reconnect from a power supply.
Electrical Appliance Serviceperson (EASQ) Are endorsed to disconnect and reconnect - limited to maintenance and servicing of 250V, single phase equipment disconnecting/reconnecting from a PCU.
Electrical Appliance Serviceperson (EAS) Limited to maintenance and servicing of 250V, single phase, plug in equipment.
Line Mechanic (LM) Transmission lines,  distribution supply and traction supply
Cable Jointer (CJ)  Jointing of high voltage cables

Your experience

If your experience is in any of the areas above and you can provide proof of that experience (in the form of employer references) the Board may accept your application for registration and advise you as to the requirements you must meet in order to gain full registration. All references must contain descriptions of the electrical work you have done.

Our requirements

Check out training, qualifications and requirements and view the “Time based Pathway” for the class of registration that best matches your experience. Note the type and duration of experience required for registration. Do NOT apply for registration if you do not have the required amount of experience. Declined applications are not refunded.

In the classes of Electrician and Electrical Engineer certain overseas qualifications can gain you exemption from some of those requirements (examinations and practical assessments). This does not apply in any of the other classes.

Take the next steps towards registration

Apply for a registration assessment

How to get your overseas work experience and overseas qualifications assessed for registration.