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last updated 01/09/2023

NZ ranked best in world for work/life balance

last updated 01/09/2023

29 June 2023 – A new index ranks New Zealand as the most attractive country in the world for those seeking a balanced lifestyle

The global index study by Remote, a global payroll, tax, HR and compliance supplier for distributed teams, assesses the quality of life-work balance in the world’s top 60 GDP countries, ranking each nation out of 100. The overall score is determined through factors including minimum wage, sick leave, maternity leave, healthcare availability, public happiness, average working hours, and LGBTQ+ inclusivity. See the full study here.

The top 5 places on the list were filled by New Zealand, Spain, France, Australia and Denmark. The United States is ranked a lowly 53rd in the index owing to a lack of statutory annual leave or sick pay, and the absence of a universal healthcare system.

Here’s what the study said about New Zealand as a place to live and work.

Overall index score: 79.35

'Our index revealed the island nation of New Zealand to be the country with the best work-life balance. Boasting a strong economy, New Zealand ranks at #1 in our list by scoring highly across a number of metrics, offering a generous statutory annual leave allowance (32 days), a high rate of sick pay (80%), and a government-funded universal health care system.

Famed for its heart-stopping scenery (providing the backdrop to Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy), the rich Māori culture, and always-welcoming locals, New Zealand is a bucket-list destination to many. The country also offers the second-highest minimum wage of the places on our list.'

While many in New Zealand might wonder about the ‘strong economy’ comment in the current climate, it’s good to be reminded of the many benefits of living in this country as seen by the rest of the world.

Remote's chief revenue officer, Christopher McNamara, told Stuff everyone should be able to enjoy both personal fulfilment and professional success, no matter where they lived. 

‘New Zealand being the first on our global life-work balance list, showcases New Zealanders as role models in leading the way for a brighter future of work by embracing this philosophy and offering the infrastructure to support it,’ he said.

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