Tukanga Tono
Application process

When you apply for a job with us, we want you to be prepared so you can showcase your skills. Follow our application and interview tips.

Two of the talent acquisition team sitting with other Council staff at a table outside at Tahiwi office on The Terrace.

Apply online for a role

To apply for a role, you need to set up a profile in our recruitment system, answer a few questions, and upload a CV, cover letter, and any other relevant documents.

Once you’ve created a user profile you will receive an email confirmation. When you’ve successfully applied for a role, you’ll also receive an email confirmation.

Other ways to apply

If you can’t apply online, we still want to hear from you – contact the person on the advert to discuss an alternative way to apply or email recruitment@wcc.govt.nz with the vacancy job title and ask how to apply.

Preparing a curriculum vitae (CV)

Your CV gives us an insight into your work roles and experience (permanent, part time, or volunteer), education, skills, achievements, and interests.

Identify the key requirements of the role and make sure your CV includes the experience that best matches the job's key requirements. Keep it clear, concise, and relevant. Try to give us an understanding of who you are as a person.

  • List your career history starting with your most recent employment. Include the organisation you worked for, your dates of employment, your job title, and outline what the role involved – provide a summary of your past and present responsibilities and key achievements.
  • Give an overview of your qualifications.
  • Be clear about what you are good at – ask friends and whānau for feedback as they can help you to describe yourself and your strengths.
  • Avoid using too many specialised terms or jargon, particularly if it isn't well known or is specific to only one organisation.
  • Spell and grammar check. Watch errors and spelling mistakes – these are obvious to someone looking at your CV with fresh eyes, so have a friend or family member review your CV.

Cover letter tips

Your cover letter should be tailored to the specific role – briefly describe your relevant skills and experience to match the key requirements of the role as outlined in the job description.

Tell us why you want this position. Be enthusiastic. We love people who love Wellington.

Your letter should be concise and make us want to go to your CV to find out more about you.

Application form

To get to know more about you and how we can support you through the process we need to ask you some key questions when you apply for a role. Our application form covers mandatory and optional information about:

  • ethnicity and gender, which helps us to ensure we are reaching a broad and diverse range of applicants
  • employee entitlement to work in New Zealand
  • previous criminal convictions
  • health and safety requirements and 
  • medical and health conditions.

Shortlisting an applicant

All applications and CVs are reviewed. Applicants who are the closest match to the position requirements will be invited to an interview or for an informal catch-up to discuss the role before the interview.

All applicants are important to us, so we’ll let you know whether or not your application will proceed to the interview stage.

If you're invited to an interview, we'll contact you to arrange the details and send you a confirmation email.

Whānau and support people

You are welcome to bring whānau or support people to your interview. Please let us know in advance so that we can make arrangements.

Accessibility requirements

It is important to us that we support you throughout our selection process (interview and assessments). If you have any access needs during this process, let us know in advance so we can make sure these are met.

Interview preparation

We want to get to know you during the interview and for you to present yourself in the best way.

  • Review the position description and advert, taking note of the responsibilities, key skills and knowledge required. Think about the strengths you have in these areas as well as examples that show your relevant experience and ability that align with these areas.
  • Look at our website and specifically the business unit to learn more about the projects and responsibilities of the team.
  • Write down any relevant notes and questions you may have about the role and bring these to the interview.

The interview is as much about helping you decide whether the Council is right for you, as it is for us to assess if you're right for the role.

Behavioural interviews

Interviews will generally be conducted by at least two Council kaimahi (staff). We will ask you to introduce yourself. This is an opportunity for you to tell us about who you are. We will then talk about the role to give you more insight.

During the interview, we will ask you a series of questions, some of which may be behavioural-based interview questions. These are open-ended questions that ask you to describe an experience or event that you were involved with. If you have limited work experience, you could describe an event or experience from a non-work setting. This will help the interview panel to assess how you might deal with similar situations that may occur in the role.

STAR technique

You may find the STAR technique useful to help you answer interview questions. It's important that you focus on your actions, even if they were only a part of a larger picture.


Provide an overview of the situation you were in, why it had come about, and who was involved. Make sure the interview panel has the necessary context for them to understand the situation.


Describe the range of options you considered to manage the situation. Explain how you made the decision of which tasks to action and what you thought or felt during that process.


Describe what you did and said when actioning and/or implementing the task.


Explain the results and what was achieved. What did you accomplish? Talk about what you learnt from the experience.

After the interview

We'll tell you at the end of the interview when you can expect to hear back from us and what the next steps in the process will be. In some cases, we may ask for you to complete some assessments.

Assessments will vary depending on the role. This could be a work sample exercise. For example, if you are applying for a lifeguard role, we will ask you to undertake a swimming assessment. Or you could have to deliver a presentation so we can assess your knowledge of a specialist topic or your presenting skills. Another common assessment is a psychometric test.

Reference checks

Reference checks are an important part of our recruitment process. At your interview, you will be asked to confirm if you are happy for us to contact your referees. This is a requirement of the Privacy Act 2003, however, asking this question does not guarantee we will contact your referees.

After the interview, if you are a preferred applicant, we will tell you that we want to contact your referees to confirm your suitability for the role.

Pre-employment checks

Some of our roles require us to do pre-employment checks. This is to make sure you can carry out the duties of the position, so as not to cause harm to yourself, members of your team, members of the public, or to the Council.

If pre-employment checks are a requirement of the position, we'll let you know. Sometimes we need to complete the pre-employment checks before giving you a verbal offer. If we make you a verbal offer and checks are still needed, your offer will be conditional until after the pre-employment checks have been passed to a satisfactory standard. The hiring manager (and your offer paperwork) will let you know if the offer is conditional.

Offer of employment

Once interviews and reference checks are completed, the interview panel will decide which applicant will be offered the job.

If you are the preferred applicant, you will be contacted – we will give you a verbal offer, which may be subject to pre-employment checks. When you accept the verbal offer, we will send you your written offer of employment. This offer contains all your terms and conditions of employment.

It is important that you look at all the documentation and return it to us so we can start your induction process.

Unsuccessful applicants

We don't want to keep people waiting on a decision, so we will let applicants know as soon as a decision has been made. Depending on the stage of the process, you will either receive an email or a phone call to inform you of the decision.

Contact us

If you have any questions, contact the hiring manager who is advertising the vacancy, or email our recruitment team: recruitment@wcc.govt.nz

Job alerts

Don’t miss out on job opportunities advertised at the Council – set up an alert by creating a profile in our recruitment system.