Get started

Congratulations and welcome to our whānau! It could feel overwhelming before your first day. Don't panic! Here's some helpful information to support you before you arrive on campus. 

Three people walking through an office space and talking together

Orientation - get inducted into our ways

In your first week, you will join a couple of Organisation Induction sessions to help get you started here.  You will also be invited to start your Induction Programme - consisting of a series of short online training modules that will help you get to know about our vision, values, and strategic priorities.  Soon after this, you will be invited to an induction session to meet the Chief Executive and Leadership Team and enjoy some time networking with other new staff.

Staff development

We strongly encourage our staff to upskill and develop themselves both professionally and personally. We even allocate funds to assist you. You will find out more once you have started working with us or ask your manager for more information about professional development. Find out more.

Your staff ID card

Obtain an Otago Polytechnic ID Card, the official photo ID card for all staff, after you have returned all employment documentation. This enables you to get great discounts and use Otago Polytechnic facilities. Your department administrator will help with this. 

Frequently asked questions

How am I paid?

Otago Polytechnic pays fortnightly. Pay is processed on Tuesday, and is in your account on Wednesday.

How much annual leave do I have?

General staff are entitled to five weeks of annual leave per year. Academic staff receive five weeks’ annual leave, and four weeks’ discretionary leave, per year.

Policies and agreements

Collective employment agreements have been negotiated between Otago Polytechnic and the staff unions with which we engage – TIASA (general staff only) and TEU (all staff).

Please also explore our policy database for further information about employment at Otago Polytechnic. 

Moving to Otago Polytechnic

We welcome staff from around the world to join our Campuses in Dunedin, Central Otago and Auckland, as well as distance-based staff including those allied to our programmes run through Wintec in Hamilton.

If you join us from another location, we may be able to provide some support with relocation costs and temporary accommodation. Please ask People and Culture for further details about this.

Please note that those joining our Auckland Campus will be employed by our Auckland International Campus joint venture partner, Future Skills. Please contact them directly if you have any questions about your employment with them.

The following websites contain information about life in the areas where we have Campuses, as well as information on immigration.


With about 30,000 students in residence during the academic year, Dunedin is one of New Zealand’s best centres of learning. But it's not just students that get to enjoy this beautiful city! Our buzzing metropolis is made up of wonderful museums, art galleries, restaurants, entertainment venues and boutique shopping. 

A short drive from the city centre and you can enjoy lovely beaches and other stunning scenery, and see some of the world’s rarest wildlife. Feel like getting out of town for the weekend? Then head three hours inland to Central Otago and indulge in all the snowsports and adventure activities you can handle!

Central Otago

Central Otago is rightly famous for its mountains, rivers and lakes – not to mention the high-adrenaline adventures that go hand-in-hand with the landscape.

Otago Polytechnic’s main Central Otago Campus is in Cromwell, a township of around 4,000 permanent residents that swells to 7,000 during the peak summer season. The town has beautiful stone buildings and heritage sites, but also offers modern services, supermarkets, shops, cafes and sports facilities.There is plenty of places to socialise, opportunities to participate in sports and activities and a great community of locals.

Moving to Central Otago 


Auckland is the largest city in New Zealand with about 1.5 million people. It is the country’s biggest centre of business and industry and offers excellent employment and lifestyle opportunities.

Popularly known as the ‘City of Sails’ because the harbour is often dotted with hundreds of yachts, there are people of many cultures and nationalities living in this city, and it has plenty to offer with great shopping and excellent museums, theatres and art galleries.

There are still beautiful beaches and islands close by and plenty of places to walk and play sports. It has been rated the third best city in the world, and the best city in Asia and the Pacific for lifestyle.*

Our Campus is located in the heart of downtown Auckland, so you are never far from the action and fun of this cosmopolitan city.

*Mercer Quality of Life Survey, 2011


Visit the New Zealand immigration website for more information about immigration. 

What to do in an emergency

In an emergency, please follow all instructions for emergency evacuations, whether it is a practice drill or real. Note that Otago Polytechnic has regular evacuation fire drill practice. 

Follow all instructions for emergency evacuations, whether practice drills or real. Note that Otago Polytechnic has regular evacuation fire drill practice.

Evacuation procedure  

On the continuous sounding of the alarm:

  • All occupants must evacuate the building in an orderly manner via the stairwell or nearest designated exit. The lift must not be used. 
  • All doors should be closed when the area is clear. 
  • Occupants should assemble in a designated area clear of the building. 

Refer to evacuation plans displayed in hallways and classrooms for assembly points. 

Occupants must not return to the building until an all clear is given. The all clear is usually given by intermittent short bursts of fire alarm sounder, or as instructed by the Building Warden or the Fire Service.

Earthquake evacuation procedure
  • Stay where you are.
  • Move no more than a few steps to a safe place, drop, cover and hold on.
  • If inside, get under a heavy piece of furniture or a doorway, or stay low alongside an inside wall. Keep away from windows.
  • If in a lift, stop at the nearest floor and get out.
  • If outside, stay outside and keep clear of buildings and power lines.
Who to contact in an emergency:

New Zealand 0800 762 786
International +64 477 3014

James Kerr
Health and Safety Director
International +64 3 474 8468
Mobile +64 21 735 058

Contact us

Feel free to chat to us directly about any questions you may have.