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Thread: Christchurch/surrounding area?

  1. #1
    drumminj is offline Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Hey all. I've picked Christchurch as my target location - I'm a software developer, and believe I would like to live on the South Island.

    I'm curious if anyone has any suggestions of other places to look that might be a good fit, and also curious if anyone knows of a good website to get information about Christchurch and the surrounding areas to figure out where specifically I may want to live.

    Thanks.

    J

  2. #2
    chucklesg is offline Junior Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Howdy J...we just came back from Christchurch (Chch). Both are hi tech execs...thought like you, Christchurch was the place for us. But we found good jobs in Wellington. Chch recruiters poor as most companies are small and do not use recruiters, but we were told networking is the way. But you have to be there to network! Recruiters want to fill slots with bodies right away and they are not sensitive to migration issues. We talked with four of them, reportedly IT recruiters...but as you probably know, if you can't hack the IT world, you stumble off as a recruiter!

    BTW, if you like Austin, you'll like Wellington!

  3. #3
    drumminj is offline Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Thanks for the reply, chuckles. I actually figured that the small size of most Chch software companies would be problematic. At the least, it'd make it so that, when they're hiring, they're looking to fill a position right away, not 6 months in the future.

    So are there quite a few tech companies in Wellington, then?

    Everything I've read about wellington has described it as being a more "cosmopolitan" town. I love how Austin is laid back - you can go to the nicest restaurant in town wearing at most a pair of jeans and a polo shirt and no one cares.

    So did you take a trip just to look for jobs? How long were you there, and did you do any prep work before going there (contacting companies, etc), or did you just show up and start knocking on doors?

    Thanks.

    J

  4. #4
    SteveNetWriter is offline Oh Masterful One
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Hi,

    [quote:b3e9d7e38a]Chch recruiters poor as most companies are small and do not use recruiters[/quote:b3e9d7e38a]

    That's what I've found looking at the companies there.
    It's amazing how few people some of them have.
    Like 6 and one programmer.
    It's true in Auckland too.

    That's why I've been collecting links to companies using the directories.
    That way at least you can find out what they do, how many employees they have, and contact them directly.

    Chucklesg,
    Did you get an idea of what the job market is like for techies ?
    I'm more small scale hardware/software. So all the 'IT' jobs don't suite me. Chip design & assembler/C/C++/Java for things like TVs, miltary radios, security tokens. That sort of thing.

    Your experiences are invaluable to people like us.

    Thanks

    Steve

  5. #5
    chucklesg is offline Junior Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Steve, both my wife and I are senior management/IT management types so we may have not had any exposure to opportunties for programers and designers etc. But I would encourage and suggest to anyone who is serious in consieration of working in any tecnology field in NZ to go there on a vacation and bang on the doors. Use the internet first to determine who and what kind of companies are in the areas, try to establish some good contacts, but don't expect to find a "job" before going there. Most hiring outfits, be they employers or recruiters are suspect of off shore folks who say they want to come but won't invest the time to visit first, as these people feel you may not "like" the place and leave after a short time. Then everyone is unhappy!

    New Zealand is a fabulous place for a holiday. And we did not feel taking about half of our vacation time to look for work a waste of time. We learned a lot, made some good friends, and it will be much easier to actually leave the US later because we took the first step.
    Chuck

  6. #6
    SteveNetWriter is offline Oh Masterful One
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Hi,
    Thanks for that.
    Until the selection point started dropping like a stone we had intended to sell our house and go on a long holiday and get work.
    We may well do that, but if we get picked from the pool it should be a lot easier.
    I hope it's a fabulous place for a VERY long holiday. The rest of our lives :icon_biggrin:
    Cheers
    Steve

  7. #7
    drumminj is offline Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Steve -

    I was kind of thinking the same thing. I'll probably still make a seperate trip, at the least to get a better feel for Welly and Chch, and see which suits me best. Hell, if I can get a PR without a job offer, I may just stay on with my current company and work remotely. I am pretty certain I could at least contract with them at least for 3-6 months. Part of me wants to ask about that right now, but I don't want them to know that I'm 100% set on the NZ thing, as I haven't quite given "notice". Though, they are aware I'm looking into it. Kind of curious to see the reaction when NZIS calls to confirm my employment and work history :icon_eek: icon_exclaim.gif

    J

  8. #8
    drumminj is offline Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    Got a Kiwi's persepective on Chch and Wellington. Thought I'd add it to the general knowledge pool:

    [quote:465c6005e7]
    Happy to be of help. Wellington is our capital city (like Austin) but is
    strangle devoid of 'freaks' etc. It's mainly a white collar town, set
    almost entirely on hills around a big harbour. The city itself is very
    lively and has a huge cafe scene, but tends to very windy (like up to
    100mph) and can rain a lot. It's quite expensive to live in the city itself
    (maybe NZD$350-400per week) for an apartment in the city. A house with
    grass is almost out of the question if you want to live in the city. From
    Wellington there would be more options in terms other cities within 3-4
    hours drive, but we do call it the 'windy city'. (pop 250,000) (prices per
    apartment, not per person). Not a lot of beaches or mountains, so you've
    really got to have a city interest of have the money to travel a bit.

    Christchurch (pop 400,000), is actually a sister city to Austin, I find
    them very similar, with the city on flats and hills on one side. The bus
    system is great, and you can get an apartment in the city for around
    $300p/w, or a house further out (by that I mean 5-10 minutes from city
    centre) for say $250-300p/w. It's a bit of a drive from CH to get anywhere
    (4hr to nearest other centre) but the scenery in the South Island is
    SPECTACULAR...and if you're a skier...let just say the Swiss and Austrian
    ski teams come here in their off season. I'm born and bred in CH and would
    live nowhere else in NZ (having said that, I do at the moment, but will be
    back there in about 12 months) I've spent a couple off weeks in total in
    Austin, and If you like it, you'd love CH. Also has the best Rugby team in
    NZ (which you'd be expected to support..part of an immigration clause I
    think!). Beaches are never more than 30 minutes from anywhere in the city,
    and are well used in the summer (lots of nice Kiwi women!!)

    NZ is not a big place to get around..1 1/4 hr in a Boeing from top to
    bottom, and you can fly to most cities for about $100 or less but we
    basically we just drive everywhere.

    You'll have more luck getting to music scene in CH if that's what you're
    thinking. At for IT work, I'd have to has Wellington has more established
    companies where Christchurch is more up a coming new companies.
    [/quote:465c6005e7]

    J

  9. #9
    netchicken is offline Senior Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    As someone living in chch right now, its easy to buy a house. Prices have gone up but they started at a low base. So don't be suprised if you find yourself able to buy instead of renting.

    I certianly love the city, especially for its outdoors. The porthills are beside us, the rim of an extinct volcano, and are amazingly popular for cyclng, running, walking. Inside the volcano, is a harbour great for sailing, and kayaking etc. Its a pretty place. The local council, which is very foward thinking, has been buying up farms in the port hills, and turning them into recreation areas.

    The best place to live there, according to me :) is Sumner. Its expensive with a longish commute to the city (20mins) but an awesome view.

    [img:fc9977aecf]http://stuffucanuse.com/Odds_and_Sods/sumner/S14.jpg[/img:fc9977aecf]
    this is from sumner looking back into chch. More pics here..
    http://stuffucanuse.com/Odds_and_Sods/sumner/Sumner.htm

    Here is the local rag..http://stuff.co.nz/stuff/thepress/0,2106,0a6009,00.html

  10. #10
    Propertytalk is offline Junior Member
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    Default Christchurch/surrounding area?

    For IT jobs I'd be voting for Wellington or Auckland. Wellington because there are a lot of Vendors due to Government being located in Wellington. And Auckland because there are a lot of SME's.

    Christchurch is a llifestyle choice - the adventure city of NZ - gateway to everything you'd want to be doing outdoors.

    I read an article saying Auckland and Dunedin had most innovative people/businesses in NZ

    Cheers,

    Donna

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