Sign of the times in Queenstown


A Queenstown worker is taking novel measures to find a job. 

Nathan Smith has an in-your-face approach for prospective employers – he donned a sign and stood at the Ballarat and Stanley Streets roundabout for an hour while people drove to work this morning (Tuesday). 

He’s tried the ploy before in Tauranga and Rotorua, and hopes it’ll work down here, quickly – he’s living in his car in the meantime. 

Originally from Mount Maunganui, Smith arrived in the resort in late May and didn’t expect to have trouble finding work. 

Smith has a degree in sports and recreation, has worked as a personal trainer, in rentals, in cleaning and painting.
He says any work offered would be welcome, preferably full-time. 

“I’m tertiary educated but I can’t get a job,” he says. 

Smith questions the effectiveness of job agencies and claims it takes weeks to hear back from internet job applications. 

“Someone’s got to help me out – I’m a New Zealander.” 

Job agency Allied Work Force Queenstown manager Michael Brettell, who has lived locally for seven years, says the local job market is dire, particularly with the lack of commercial projects, but he’s optimistic it’ll pick up. 

“This is the tightest I’ve ever seen Queenstown.” 

“At some stage it’ll just turn round – it always does.”