Minimum wage rises on 1 April

The minimum wage is going up from $15.75 to $16.50 per hour. Here’s what you’ll need to know for your business

When: 1 April 2018

What: The new minimum wage rates are:

  • Adult — $16.50 an hour
  • Starting-out — $13.20 an hour (up from $12.60)
  • Training — $13.20 an hour (up from $12.60)

Starting-out and training minimum wages are 80% of the adult minimum wage. Read the Business.govt.nz page on minimum pay rules for a summary of who can earn the different rates.

Why: Government must by law review the minimum wage rates every year.

What you’ll need to do: You and your staff can agree to any wage above the minimum rate. If your employment agreements are a few years old, you can use this as a chance to update them using our easy to use tool, the Employment Agreement Builder. Note that it is a legal requirement to have a written employment agreement with all your staff.

If you pay staff minimum wages, recalculate your budget for the rest of the year — you’ll be paying out more in wages.

Read the Business.govt.nz page on checking the cost of an employee to get an idea of how much the increase will cost your business. You can also use the calculator to estimate costs of hiring a new employee.