OEsy come, OEsy go

Despite New Zealanders’ traditional obsession with OE, it appears we don’t value it as highly in terms of career development as people in other countries do.

This rather strange anomaly emerges from global survey by recruitment consultancy Robert Walters. Conducted by web-poll, it attracted more than 6000 responses from 14 countries.

Compared to European countries, where high percentage of respondents considered international experience as either “essential” or “extremely useful” for career development (95 percent in Germany), New Zealand responses were more low key. Just 73 percent gave career OE the big thumbs up, putting the country third from last ahead of Australia and the Netherlands.

Robert Walters’ New Zealand director Richard Manthel is surprised we were found lagging on the OE score. International experience is, he says, that “something extra” on the CV that demonstrates adaptability and the ability to work cross culturally.

“It is also seen as developing an employee’s knowledge of different processes, systems and legalities, as well as expanding communication and negotiation skills. All of which can only serve to enhance candidate’s profile.” Maybe for New Zealanders, the attraction is more in the travel than the career opportunities.

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