Navigating the Accredited Employer Work Visa programme in New Zealand

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For business owners in New Zealand, the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) programme represents a significant framework for hiring skilled migrant workers. Understanding this programme and its implications is crucial for those seeking to employ migrants in their businesses.

Access to skilled migrant workers

The AEWV programme is designed to address genuine skill or labour shortages in New Zealand. For business owners facing difficulty filling certain positions domestically, this visa programme provides an avenue to hire skilled migrant workers to meet their workforce needs.

Employer accreditation process

Before hiring migrant workers under the AEWV programme, employers must undergo an accreditation process. This process ensures that employers are compliant with immigration and employment laws, as well as business standards. Business owners need to understand the accreditation requirements and ensure they meet them to be eligible to hire migrant workers.

Compliance and post-accreditation checks

Employers should take their responsibilities seriously to comply with AEWV conditions. Post-accreditation checks are conducted to verify that employers continue to meet the accreditation standards. Business owners should be aware of the potential for these checks and ensure ongoing compliance to avoid penalties, including revocation or suspension of accreditation.

Monitoring and investigations

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) actively monitors accredited employers and investigates complaints or concerns raised against them. Business owners should be aware of this monitoring and ensure they operate in accordance with immigration, employment, and business standards to avoid potential investigations or penalties.

Processing times and job change applications

Business owners should consider the current processing times for AEWV applications when planning their workforce needs. Longer processing times may impact hiring timelines, and employers should allow sufficient time for accreditation and job change applications. Additionally, understanding the job change process is important for both employers and migrant workers in case of changes in employment circumstances.

Improved systems and escalation process

Immigration New Zealand continues to make improvements to the AEWV programme, including the immigration online platform. Business owners should stay updated on these improvements to ensure a smooth application process. Additionally, there's an escalation process available for urgent applications, although longer processing times are currently expected due to high volumes.


Overall, business owners should be familiar with the AEWV programme, accreditation requirements, compliance obligations, and application processes to effectively navigate hiring migrant workers in New Zealand while ensuring adherence to immigration and employment laws.

Have questions about the Accredited Employer Work Visa programme or need assistance navigating immigration processes in New Zealand? Contact VisaAide today for expert guidance and support.

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