Careers advice

10 entry level jobs to kickstart your career

Looking for your launching pad?

Last updated: 2 November 2023

We all know that we’re going to have to get a job at some point in our lives. But that knowledge doesn’t necessarily mean it’s easy to know where to find good entry level jobs.

It’s probably easy to work out that you can't, for example, jump straight into a surgery role with no prior experience (something we should be glad about). But there are a whole bunch of jobs you can do, even if you’re brand new to the workforce.

Here, we’ll show you 10 examples of such roles, and talk about some of the things you’d gain if you decided to follow these career paths.

Entry level jobs you can apply for today

1. Customer Service Representative

Customer service representatives are the frontline ambassadors of a business. They interact directly with customers, addressing inquiries, resolving issues, and providing excellent service. This role will equip you with communication, problem-solving, and interpersonal skills, making it a strong foundation for various career paths.

What you'll love about it:

  • Skill development: Working as a customer service representative hones communication, active listening, and conflict resolution skills, which are transferable to many other professions.
  • Job stability: Customer service positions are in high demand across industries, helping to improve your overall career security.
  • Career advancement: Many professionals start their careers as customer service reps and eventually move up to supervisory or management roles, or sideways into marketing, sales or HR positions.

Focus on learning soft skills in your first job.

2. Administrative assistant

Administrative assistants play a pivotal role in maintaining the smooth operation of offices and organisations. They handle tasks like scheduling appointments, managing external contractors, and assisting with paperwork, providing essential support to managers and teams.

What you'll love about it:

  • Versatility: Administrative skills are in demand in nearly every industry, offering a wide range of job opportunities.
  • Organisational skills development: This role builds time management, organisation, and multi-tasking abilities, essential for career growth.
  • Networking: Administrative assistants often interact with professionals across different departments, providing valuable networking opportunities.

3. Retail sales associate

Retail sales associates are responsible for assisting customers, maintaining store appearance, and processing sales transactions. This role offers valuable experience in customer service, sales, and teamwork.

What you'll love about it:

  • Sales skills: Sales experience is highly transferable, making it a stepping stone to roles in sales, marketing, and business development.
  • Interpersonal skills: Building relationships with customers enhances interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Incentives: many retail positions offer commission or bonuses based on sales performance, providing potential for extra income.

4. Data Entry Clerk

Data entry clerks are responsible for inputting, updating, and maintaining data in databases or spreadsheets. This role is perfect for those who are detail-oriented and love to work with numbers.

What you’ll love about it:

  • Attention to detail: Data entry makes you detail oriented, a skill valued in many professions, including accounting, research, and quality control.
  • Flexibility: Many data entry positions offer remote work opportunities, allowing for a flexible work-life balance.
  • Career growth: Proficiency in data entry can lead to roles in data analysis, quality assurance, and database management.

Lots of entry level jobs can be fitted around studying.

5. Junior content writer

Content writers create written content for websites, blogs, social media, and marketing materials. This role is ideal for individuals with strong writing skills and creativity.

What you'll love about it:

  • Writing skills: Content writing positions will help you refine your writing abilities, which are valuable in just about every career path, but particularly in roles relating to marketing, journalism, and public relations.
  • Variety: You might find yourself writing content for all kinds of topics, ranging from blogs to TV ads.
  • Remote work opportunities: Many content writing jobs offer remote or freelance options, providing flexibility.

6. Healthcare assistant

Healthcare assistants provide support to medical professionals in hospitals, clinics, and long-term care facilities. They assist with patient care and ensure a safe and comfortable environment for patients.

What you'll love about it:

  • Healthcare experience: This entry-level healthcare role provides a pathway to more specialised positions, such as nursing or medical technician roles.
  • Rewarding work: Helping patients and making a positive impact on their lives is emotionally fulfilling, giving you a reason to go work every morning.
  • Job security: The healthcare industry continues to grow, offering stable employment opportunities.

7. Social media coordinator

Social media coordinators manage an organisation's social media presence, creating and scheduling content, engaging with followers, and analysing performance metrics. This role is perfect for those with a passion for digital marketing and social media, and who want to put their creative side to use.

What you'll love about it:

  • Digital marketing skills: Social media coordination provides valuable experience in digital marketing, a skill set in high demand due to our collective obsession with social media.
  • Creativity: Crafting engaging social media content allows for creative expression and innovation.
  • Analytics knowledge: Tracking and analysing social media metrics contribute to data-driven decision-making abilities. This is a highly transferable skillset that’s only likely to grow in value.

8. Teaching Assistant

Teaching assistants provide support to educators in schools, colleges, or universities. They assist in classroom management, grading assignments, and providing one-on-one support to students.

What you'll love about it:

  • Education experience: This role offers insights into the field of education, which can be beneficial for aspiring teachers or educators.
  • Leadership skills: Teaching assistants often have opportunities to lead small group activities and develop leadership skills.
  • Making a contribution: Assisting students in their academic journeys is highly rewarding and fulfilling.

9. Human resources assistant

Human resources (HR) assistants support HR teams in tasks such as recruitment, onboarding, benefits administration, and employee relations.

What you'll love about it:

  • HR knowledge: This role offers exposure to HR processes and regulations, which can lead to a career in human resources management.
  • People skills: Interacting with employees and candidates helps develop strong interpersonal and communication skills.
  • Contribution to workplace culture: HR assistants play a role in shaping a positive workplace culture by supporting employees' needs and well-being. This is highly valued by modern New Zealand businesses, making it an important responsibility within an organisation.

10. Event coordinator assistant

Event coordinator assistants help in planning and executing everything from conferences to showcases to corporate events. They coordinate logistics, manage vendors, and ensure everything runs smoothly.

What you'll love about it:

  • The responsibility: Pulling off large corporate events doesn’t happen by accident, and it requires some hard mahi. Making this happen is a significant responsibility, and will develop skills you can put to good use throughout your career.
  • It’s fun: Good, well-run events are enjoyable, and you’ll live and breathe events in this role. From selecting venues to selecting entertainment, it’s not your average first job.
  • Networking: Event coordinator assistants often interact with various professionals and stakeholders, fostering networking opportunities.

Entry-level jobs serve as essential stepping stones to fulfilling and rewarding careers. These positions provide invaluable skills, hands-on experience, and a strong foundation for personal and professional growth. Embrace these opportunities, seize the chance to learn and grow, and set yourself on a path toward a successful and fulfilling career. Your journey begins here, and the possibilities are limitless.

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Al Hall
Al Hall

Al Hall is a regular contributor at Trade Me Jobs and Trade Me Property. He’s dedicated to helping people succeed in their aspirations to find their dream job and place to live.