IBIS World state that the market size for accounting in New Zealand has exceeded $3.5 billion in 2022 (1). According to National Business Review (2), $1.5 billion in revenue is generated by the top nine firms alone. Of these, Deloitte and PwC were the largest earner, with both in the $300-$349 million bracket for 2021.
These firms also account for the majority of employment, especially in Auckland. While Deloitte has the most partners with 146, PwC has the most staff at just over 1600. Deloitte chief executive Mike Horne was quick to acknowledge that access to talent is their biggest constraint.
EY New Zealand managing partner Simon O’Connor agreed, saying:
“It is difficult to get people, but when you’re growing really strongly and doing exciting jobs, you find that people come to you.”
O’Connor goes on to say that their clients have had the same difficulty in getting key staff vacancies filled.
NBR note that the borders re-opening is a two edged sword. On one hand, there will be relief from people wanting to return or begin working in New Zealand. On the other hand, many kiwis are frustrated by the covid-related delays for their OEs.
Interestingly, Auckland now employs more accountants than the rest of the country combined, with over 14,000. By contrast, the next best is Wellington, which only employs just over 4,000. The top six regions are rounded out with Otago employing 1,000.
An interesting fact is that well over fifty percent of accountants in New Zealand are female. However, median and mean salaries for women continue to lag behind their male counterparts.
While, this may simply be because many of the top earners are male partners and owners, it is still a concern for many in the sector.
Pay for accountants varies depending on qualifications, experience, the region they work in, and the size and type of organisation they work for (3). Howver, the average salary is somewhere between $70,000 – $90,000 depending on your source (4) (5).
Taking into account experience alone, average salaries range from $67,000 for a graduate to $196,000 for a partner (3).
Overall, accounting continues to be a stable environemnt in terms of employment . RSM chair and partner Charles Worth says the accounting profession is largely insulated against swings in the economy (6):
There’s always work going up or down. But it’s certainly better on a growing economy than a shrinking economy.
So, if you have an eye for detail, a natural aptitude towards business, and fantastic interpersonal skills, maybe accounting is the career you’ve been looking for.
(1) IBIX World, https://www.ibisworld.com/nz/market-size/accounting-services, (accessed 7/11/22)
(2) National Business Review, https://www.nbr.co.nz/business/bookkeepers-2022-sizing-up-nzs-1-5b-accounting-industry, (accessed 7/11/22)
(3) Careers, https://www.careers.govt.nz/jobs-database/finance-and-property/finance/accountant, (access 7/22/22)
(6) Jobted, https://www.jobted.co.nz/salary/accountant, (access 7/22/22)
(5) Talent, https://nz.talent.com/salary?job=accountant, (access 7/22/22)
(6) National Business Review, https://www.nbr.co.nz/business/bookkeepers-2022-the-next-tier-how-nzs-smaller-accounting-firms-fared, (access 7/22/22)