Learn more about issues we care about, work we’ve done and topics we have made statements on in the past. You can learn what we stand for in the NZRise Constitution.

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Code of Conduct


NZRise is a group of business leaders from NZ owned digital technology firms which exists to support and represent the interests of the NZ owned sector.

We have a diverse community with a range of priorities and interests – this is an opportunity and a strength. We welcome and actively seek a wide and diversely representative range of views in our collaboration. To ensure this is always respectful and constructive, these guidelines and norms apply to all of our discussions and spaces. They can be considered part our kaupapa for conversation, or as a code of conduct for those who participate in our events and online spaces.

Our three pillars

  • Be respectful.
  • Be conscious.
  • Be supportive.

Be Respectful

We want all NZRise events, meetings and online spaces to be safe for every participant. Harassment of any kind, in any form, will not be tolerated.

People’s gender (or lack thereof), sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, work experience, body size, race, religion (or lack thereof), socioeconomic status – or any other defining characteristic – are not to be criticised or joked about or commented on. Where it is appropriate to acknowledge these characteristics this should be done with respect and with a positive purpose to elevate those being discussed. As a group we maintain this as basic human decency, and refrain from discussing people’s personal attributes, affiliations, or beliefs.

The skills, backgrounds, experiences and priorities of our community are rich and varied. Together we respect this, and when we disagree, we disagree with people’s ideas not them as people.

NZRise is predominantly a professional body a community of professionals and professional behaviour is expected at all times including at all social functions.

As an organisation made up of mainly corporate members any individual who develops a pattern of behaviour inconsistent with this guidance will have their personal attendance restricted and their organisation or company notified of any inappropriate behaviour.

Be Conscious

As a professional body, who advocates on behalf of members and our wider industry, our existence is predicated on being able to share confidential information with our members. Members should be conscious when sharing any information that they have learned through any NZRise discussion, meeting, event or online forum and always ask permission of the original source or author before sharing anything with anyone who is not an NZRise member.

Sharing information in inappropriate ways compromises the trust of our membership and has the potential to have very real commercial consequences for the companies we represent and/or our relationships with business leaders, Ministers of the Crown and their officials.

We don’t want to stifle discussion, but we do all have an obligation to keep information and our members safe, and uphold the integrity of our industry. At a minimum “Chatham House Rules” should apply to all conversations, messages and emails unless stated otherwise.

Being conscious extends to conflicts of interest. If a member is conflicted through their role or position those conflicts should be declared to other NZRise members as soon as identified.

Positively representing the role, positions and outcomes NZRise achieve is actively encouraged when members as conscious of the context and statement above.

Be supportive

NZRise exists to support and advocate on behalf of the NZ owned digital technology industry. We are run on the voluntary support given by our members and it is expected that all members will occasionally volunteer their time, knowledge, and experience to support the organisation in a range of ways.

We also advocate on behalf of the wider New Zealand technology industry and are supportive of efforts to grow our sector and the efforts of other organisations working in this space.

We don’t take for granted people giving their time to share and engage, so we keep our meetings, events and online spaces on topic and constructive.

As a group, we take responsibility for ensuring that discussions aren’t dominated by a few voices, and that a wide range of views are welcome and sought out. Voices that may be disadvantaged through systemic privilege will be amplified by those around them. Equally hearing the voices of the wider community is invaluable to our overall mission so active contribution as a means of supporting those fronting issues is an important contribution to the success of NZRise.

Digital Skills

Digital skills are the skills needed to find, evaluate, utilize, share and create content using information technologies and the Internet. Digital skills can be basic, such as the ability to use email or online banking, through to more advanced skills such as programming. As many services move online, basic digital literacy skills are now required by the entire population. These skills are needed to carry out essential functions such as digital communication or basic internet searches in a secure way.

The Digital Skills Forums is a collaboration between New Zealand Government agencies and the private sector through industry groups NZRise, NZTech and IT Professionals NZ, supported by the MBIE Digital Economy team.

This report is the first of it’s kind in New Zealand designed to understand the Digital Technology skills landscape – and has found we have a shortage and growing demand.

For example approx. 14,000 new jobs were created in 2016 with 5,090 students graduated from studies in Computer Science or Information Technology in 2015 and 5500 technology visa’s granted in 2016 there was still a shortfall of skilled workers.

Our government have a goal of Digital Technology as the 2nd largest contributor to GDP by 2025 meaning the industry is ramping up and in growth mode. This coupled with Digital Technology becoming part of all businesses the demand will continue to grow. New Zealand is not alone here. Europe anticipate a shortage of 500,000 Digital Technology specialists by 2020.

Digital Technology careers also provides a key to economy prosperity in New Zealand. The median wage here is $49,868 whereas the media wage of a worker identified as Digital Technology is $82,000. We do however need to focus on diversity with women only making up ~30% of those employed in Digital Technology roles, along with underrepresentation of Maori and Pasifika.

This report recommends we need to collaborate and focus on:

  1. Make sure every child is exposed to digital technologies
  2. Help all kiwi’s understand the importance of digital skills
  3. Increase the number studying advanced digital skills
  4. Actively encourage a more diverse group of kiwi’s into digital technology
  5. Undertake a programme of constant digital attraction
  6. Develop and promote pathways into digital tech roles
  7. Develop a platform to support interships
  8. Develop programmes to support re-entry to work
  9. Create upskilling programmes for those likely to be hit by automation
  10. Educate the market on the importance of education and training

Read more about Digital Skills here – Digital_Skills_Report (Online) 2017 Dec


NZRise members recognise that engaging people from a variety of backgrounds, views and experiences is critical to building the skills and talent New Zealand needs. Diversity benefits the Digital Technology sector, our community and the New Zealand economy as a whole, as such NZRise members are committed to promoting diversity, equality, respect and inclusion.

We encourage businesses small, medium and large to operate a policy whereby diversity, equality, respect and inclusion form a basis of their culture and are considered in all hiring, wage and salary, leadership and promotion decisions. The following can be leveraged by businesses in forming this policy statement.

As an employer we will:

  • promote and support initiatives to attract and retain women and other under-represented groups, including (but not limited to) Maori and Pasifika peoples, into digital technology studies and careers,
  • create and foster a sector that reflects a diverse range of individuals, experiences and views, and treats all people with respect, regardless of gender, sexuality, disability, race, age, ethnicity, religion, culture or any other arbitrary feature,
  • pay and promote staff fairly and equitably based on performance, skill, knowledge, responsibility and effort.

In the Media


Internship Position Statement

NZ Rise members agree that all interns should be paid a fair market wage.  Accordingly, we believe that internships should consist of the following characteristics:

Interns should be paid at least the minimum wage for all hours of their internship but preferably (at least) the living wage.
Internships should primarily be about developing the talents of interns with a hope of bringing talent into your companies our industry.
All interns should be treated the same as employees and with dignity regardless of sex, sexuality, disability, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or other arbitrary feature.
All interns should be supported in their position and given opportunities to grow in their learning.
Companies should consider bringing diversity to our industry and reduce inequality as a key part of any internship.
We support any company undertaking the above and are happy to work with companies and connect with the wider industry regarding this Policy Position.

Information in Support of this Position

Internships are a messy and undefined area of employment law, to assist employers a comprehensive guide has been produced by NZ Rise NZRise Guidance Paper Internships called “The ‘Down-Under’ on Unpaid Internships” which should be essential reading by any company working with (or thinking about working with) interns. Without being aware of it any company offering an unpaid internship may unintentionally be opening themselves up to legal liability if internships are not structured in the correct way.

NZ Rise exists to support New Zealand technology business to achieve their full potential and speak with one voice when it comes to growing and developing our industry. We believe that in order for New Zealand to be a prosperous and high earning economy our industry needs to achieve maximum growth and be supported at all levels.

There is also no doubt that internally New Zealand lacks the number of people with sufficient technology skills required of high growth successful companies and we need to look for ways to create and nurture future employees. In order to do this we support any company that is able to take on interns and develop their skills in order to meet the challenges of developing talent. We believe that internships offer great monetary value for companies and opportunities for those new to our sector to gain skills and “real world” experience. The hope is that any intern with the right support will be able to transition into being a full time employee.

As businesses we are concerned about the creation of long term unpaid internship positions within both our own and all industries in New Zealand. We believe that interns should be paid at a fair rate to compensate for their time in the hope that they will be able to offer real value to the company and wider economy over time.


NZRise Guidance Paper Internships

NZ Digital Manifesto

Twenty of New Zealand’s leading Digital Technology industry associations, including NZRise, released a manifesto for the future of New Zealand from a tech perspective on 24 May 2017.

The manifesto describes goals across many sectors, including education, the changing nature of work, immigration and skills, connectivity anywhere, digital exports, cybersecurity, research funding for tech, government procurement, open standards, privacy and open policy development.

Initially conceived of as a guide to support political parties in the formation of their election manifestos and policies, the Manifesto also serves as a vision for a thriving economy, digitally literate workforce and export-led Digital Technology sector.

Included among these goals is the call to establish a Ministry for the Future, focusing on positioning New Zealand, society, and all government agencies to best take advantage of a technologically enabled future.

You can read the full manifesto via the link below. Don Christie and Victoria MacLennan, Co-Chairs of NZRise were both authors of this document and would welcome your feedback, support or questions.

NZ Digital Future Manifesto

NZRise Procurement Principles

Version 2.0

We consider these principles will encourage the growth and creative potential of New Zealand-owned and operated digital technology companies, and will help to create a strong and dynamic local economy.

  • INCLUSIVE: Procurement must be based on inclusion rather than exclusion, with any  provider that meets the defined criteria being eligible to supply products and services.
  • ENGAGEMENT: Early engagement improves the understanding of all parties and increases the likelihood of delivering successful outcomes.
  • TRANSPARENT: Procurement must operate in a transparent manner with full disclosure.
  • EXPERTISE: Procurement must recognise the value and importance of local knowledge and experience over the whole‐of‐life of any initiative.
  • DISAGGREGATION: Breaking up large-scale initiatives into smaller, more manageable components helps to increase competition and reduce risk.
  • IMPACT: Procurement must take into account the economic, social, and environmental impact of different proposals over the whole‐of‐life of
    any initiative.
  • INNOVATION: A strong and diverse local digital technology sector encourages creative innovation and effective competition.
  • OPEN: Procurement must be open and accessible to all providers, who are each treated consistently in a fair and impartial manner.

Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

Our position on TPP

NZRise has been active in advocating for an outcome to this process which is good for the NZ Digital sector. To this end we have presented directly to negotiators, from all countries, over a number of rounds of negotiations. As with other international agreements, we have held the position that extreme intellectual property regimes, such as those proposed by certain interests in the USA, hold back innovation, reduce competition and create unnecessary cost and restrictions on consumers.

Our position on the TPP is explained in the following two documents.

NZRise’s concerns on the impact of the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement


Explanatory Note on NZRise position statement on Trans Pacfic Partnership Agreement


Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) resources: