New Zealand Workforce Hopes & Fears Survey 2023

Business leaders in New Zealand and across the world are prioritising transformation. With change and volatility a constant across the business landscape, PwC’s Asia Pacific Workforce Hope & Fears Survey - part of our Global Workforce Hopes & Fears Survey - asked nearly 19,500 respondents about their views on business viability, worker sentiment, workforce skills, emerging technology, work environment and climate action. 1,000 New Zealand respondents shared their views, helping us to understand the employee landscape across the country, and how it compares to sentiment across the Asia Pacific region.

New Zealand employees are generally more optimistic than their Asia Pacific counterparts, with 72% believing that their employer will still be in business in the next decade. Job satisfaction is largely aligned with the rest of the region, but, New Zealand employees are less likely to ask for a pay rise, promotion, or to change employers in the next 12 months. Only 25% believe that the skills they need for their current job will change over the next five years, and New Zealand workers are less excited about the impact and opportunities of AI in the workplace.

In the work environment, 57% feel that they are fairly and equitably treated, with 51% finding their job fulfilling. However, there is a perception that workplace culture is less forgiving in New Zealand than across the Asia Pacific region, with less than half of respondents agreeing that their manager tolerates small-scale failure, and only 28% agreeing that their manager encourages dissent and debate in the workplace.

Although only 32% of New Zealand workers believe that their employer is taking appropriate steps to address climate change, they are less inclined than their Asia Pacific counterparts to push their employer to take action. 

Take a look at the New Zealand Workforce Hope & Fears results below.


Business viability

  • 72% believe that their employers will be in business for more than 10 years (vs. Asia Pacific 51%), making New Zealand the most optimistic territory surveyed in Asia Pacific.

  • Boomers are the most optimistic generation (79%) and Millennials are the least optimistic (68%).

Employee sentiment

  • 57% are very or moderately satisfied with their jobs, consistent with Asia Pacific (57%) and last year’s result (59%).

  • Employees in New Zealand are less likely to seek to make changes in their jobs compared to other respondents in the region.

  • 54% can truly be themselves at work, which is broadly in line with Asia Pacific (52%). 

  • Only 43% think that their manager considers their viewpoint when making decisions (vs. Asia Pacific 47%).


NZ 2023

Asia Pacific 2023

Ask for a pay raise

37% 43%
Ask for a promotion 23% 38%
Change employer 20% 28%

Workforce skills

  • Only 25% believe the skills for their job will change significantly in the next five years (vs. Asia Pacific 44%) - the lowest across all territories in the region.

  • Employees rank people skills as more important than technical or core business skills, including being adaptable/flexible (73%), critical thinking (68%), and collaborative skills (65%).

  • 42% are confident that their employers will provide them the opportunity to apply the skills that are most important to their career in the next five years (vs. Asia Pacific 48%).

Emerging technology

New Zealand employees are less aware about the opportunities and benefits that Artificial Intelligence (AI) will bring to their career.

  • 35% don’t think AI will impact their job (vs. Asia Pacific 16%).

  • 22% think that AI will help them increase their productivity/efficiency at work (vs. Asia Pacific 41%).

  • 18% think that AI will create opportunities for them to learn valuable new skills (vs. Asia Pacific 34%).

  • 12% think that AI will create new job opportunities for them (vs. Asia Pacific 25%).

  • 44% think that digital skills are important to their career (vs. Asia Pacific 59%).

Work environment


  • 57% state that their manager treats them fairly and equitably (vs. Asia Pacific 53%).

Workplace culture:

  • Less than half (44%) agree that their manager often or usually tolerates small-scale failures (vs. Asia Pacific 31%).

  • Only 28% agree that their manager often or usually encourages dissent and debate (vs. Asia Pacific 33%)


  • 51% find their job fulfilling, the same as in Asia Pacific (51%).


  • 44% actively seek feedback and use it to improve their performance (vs. Asia Pacific 53%).

  • 44% provide constructive feedback to their coworkers to help improve the team's performance (vs. Asia Pacific 51%).

Climate action

There is some sense of urgency from employees in New Zealand to push their employers to take climate action:

  • 53% agree to some extent that their employers have a responsibility to take action to address climate change, compared with 41% in Asia Pacific.
  • However, only 32% of employees believe their company is taking the right amount of climate action, compared with those in Asia Pacific more broadly (43%).

There is a need for employers to take more impactful actions to meet employees’ expectations.

Related content

If you’d like to find out more about the survey or have a workforce related query, please contact one of our workforce specialists below.

Griere Cox

Partner, Consulting, Wellington, PwC New Zealand

+64 22 010 5321


Malcolm Foo

Executive Director, Workforce, PwC New Zealand

+64 27 451 2449


Phil Fisher

Partner, Financial Advisory Services, Wellington, PwC New Zealand


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