How to apply

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How to apply

When you find a job you want to apply for:

  • read the position description carefully
  • make sure the salary range, location and start dates work for you
  • apply online
  • include a one-page cover letter that describes why you’re the right person for the job
  • include an up-to-date CV (resume). You can find CV templates online.
  • make your CV and letter as easy to read and professional as possible.

You will be sent an email confirming your application.

Next steps

It will take up to 2 weeks after applications close for you to find out if you’ve been shortlisted for an interview.

You may receive a phone call first to check the salary range you expect and when you could start work.  Think of this call as part of the selection process.  A manager can pick up a lot about you from a short call.

If you’re shortlisted you’ll get a call to arrange an interview and an email confirming the details.

If you’re not shortlisted you’ll get a call or an email to let you know.  You can ask for feedback on why your application wasn’t successful. This can help you improve your next application.


Interviews are usually 45 minutes to an hour long.  There’ll be 2 to 4 people on the panel. One of them will be the hiring manager.

Some roles have ‘assessment centres’ instead of interviews. These include a group activity, an interview and a role play. They’re around 2–3 hours long.

Photo of 2 women talking in front of tapa cloth

Preparing for your interview

Think about:

  • the questions you might get asked
  • examples you can use to illustrate your answers
  • why you want the job
  • why you’d be good at it
  • 1 or 2 questions you can ask at the interview

You should also:

  • practice answering out loud
  • check the Ministry website
  • be on time, dress smartly and be professional
  • turn off your mobile
  • bring along anything you have been asked for. This might include photo ID or forms you’ve been asked to fill in. 

After the interview

The panel will tell you when you can expect to hear back. It will usually be within a week. 

If the panel chooses you for the role the hiring manager will check with your referees and do other background checks.

If these raise no issues the hiring manager will:

  • confirm your salary, start date and other employment conditions with you
  • formally offer you the role.

You’ll be sent an offer pack. You’ll need to fill this in and return it as soon as possible. This will let your hiring manager set you up as a new employee.

For more information


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