Working as a paid firefighter

Fire and Emergency New Zealand

Working as a paid firefighter

Do you dream of a career where no two days are the same? Do you want to work as part of a team to help others and make a difference? 

Then step forward to a career that counts.

Becoming a firefighter

Some people think that becoming a firefighter might require you to be some kind of superhuman. The reality is quite different.

If you can think on your feet, are driven to succeed, are a people person and have a fit, healthy lifestyle, firefighting might be the career for you.

We have people from all walks of life, various ethnicities, ages and gender who are a part of our crew and love what they do in their local communities.

There’s a lot more to being a modern firefighter than just responding to emergencies. You work closely with communities to help protect what they value.

A typical day in your life as a firefighter

  • You’ll be responsible for operational readiness, first and foremost. A ready station is an effective one.
  • You’ll fight fires, with the number depending on the season and the location. We typically fight more fires in summer and answer more call-outs in cities.
  • You’ll help with medical emergencies, motor vehicle incidents, search and rescue, civil defence and natural disaster responses.
  • You’ll be busy with fire prevention activity, presenting the Get Firewise programme in schools, checking fire alarms in homes and businesses, and offering safety advice wherever it’s needed.
  • You’ll help out with administration, data input, station and equipment cleaning and maintenance. Even making the odd batch of scones. Everyone pitches in!

Attending emergencies

Some emergencies are emotionally difficult to deal with, but we’ll do all we can to prepare you for these situations.

Keep in mind that while the situation may be hard, someone needs your help. Stepping forward in an emergency to help a member of your community in their time of need is something you can be genuinely proud of.

What we’re looking for in you

Some life experience

Life experience is important to help you cope with the wide range of emergencies you'll encounter. But remember, we also train and support you to help prepare you for this.

Mental strength

You need to be able to think clearly under pressure, to apply common sense amidst the action, be emotionally resilient, and exhibit courage when the going gets tough.

Strong morals and ethics

Firefighters need to believe that looking after one another is an essential part of life in a community.

Drive, energy and a can-do attitude

The right attitude is important. You have to be ready to focus on achievement, to rise to the challenge, and have a desire to get stuck in and get your hands dirty!

Experience as a team player

You need to be a people person, with a drive to lead, be led and have an appreciation for discipline and direction.

Effective communication skills

Communication skills are essential. You must be able to listen effectively, accurately pass information on and clearly articulate yourself. 

Physical fitness

Firefighters need to be fit. That means maintaining a healthy lifestyle and being ready to keep up a good level of physical fitness and strength.

What you get

This is your opportunity to be part of New Zealand’s most trusted profession, as voted by Kiwis for 10 years in a row! Plus: 

  • Fun: Find energy and excitement in a stimulating environment. Be paid to work out!
  • Achievement: As you grow in your career you’ll see the tangible ways you’ve progressed through career advancement and/or personal growth.
  • Diverse family: You’ll become part of a passionate and dedicated crew and wider family that has a bond like no other.
  • No two days are the same: There’s no such thing as Groundhog Day.
  • Plenty of training: Constantly learn new and valuable skills.
  • Opportunities: There are plenty of career opportunities available, from firefighter to Chief Executive! There is also a variety of other pathways available – in training, volunteer support and fire investigation.
  • Respect: Firefighters are seen as trusted members of the communities they serve.
  • Pride in what you do: Become fulfilled in a career that gives you a very real sense of purpose.

Next steps

If you need further information, or have any questions, please feel free to contact us

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