List of access keys

Senior Human Resources Adviser—Fixed Term

About this role

  • 12 month fixed-term or secondment opportunity
  • True generalist position
  • Challenging and interesting work

This is an outstanding opportunity to join a professional and highly respected organisation, dedicated to drafting legislation to support the Government’s legislative programme.   

New Zealand's Parliamentary Counsel Office (PCO) is a key advisor to the Government and Parliament, and is New Zealand's legislative drafting and publishing office. The Legislation Act 2019 gives PCO a clear leadership role for stewardship of New Zealand's legislation.

The Senior HR Adviser—Fixed Term will provide additional capability to our HR team following a period of organisational change. This is a rewarding opportunity for a talented professional to help us to implement the systems, process, and cultural change to deliver on this.    

Reporting to the HR Team Leader you will undertake generalist HR tasks including tasks relating to recruitment and induction, policy development, Organisational Development projects, L&D, remuneration and benefits, employment relations, and project work supporting our change processes.  

You will be a flexible and pragmatic practitioner with a commitment to providing responsive and high-quality service. You’ll need initiative, great time management, and strong organisational skills. Attention to detail, very good written and verbal communication skills, and competent computer skills are essential.

To be successful in this position, you must be suitably qualified, ideally in human resources, with a background in generalist HR.  
Entry to New Zealand from all countries remains strictly controlled to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. You may only apply for this role if you have the right to work in New Zealand. For information about New Zealand work or residence visas, please visit

For further information please see the job description and person specification below or contact Diana Beswetherick, HR Team Leader, email

Applications will only be accepted if they include the PCO application form, a CV, and a letter of application sent to

Applications close: 8am Friday 22 October 2021

How to apply »

Job description


Senior Human Resources (HR) Adviser—Fixed Term
Fixed term 12 months


Parliamentary Counsel Office
Reserve Bank Building
2 The Terrace

Reports to

HR Team Leader

Liaises with

HR Adviser
Senior and third tier Managers
PCO Staff
Parliamentary Service

Primary purpose

The primary purpose of the role is to provide an HR advisory service for the Parliamentary Counsel Office (including deputising for the HR Team Leader when required). The Senior HR Adviser also delivers organisational development initiatives. This is a generalist role in a small-medium organisation and will work across a wide variety of tasks.

There is a need for further temporary support in the HR area to deal with current workloads and anticipated workloads due to organisational leadership changes occurring during 2021.

Key accountabilities

The Senior HR Adviser will have accountability for:

1.  supporting the HR Team Leader in providing HR advice and services to managers and staff

2.  ensuring the HR Team Leader is kept informed of any issues and identifying risks

3.  leading or contributing to delivery of organisational development projects and activities (eg staff surveys, health and safety and wellbeing initiatives, organisational change, workforce planning and capability development)

4.  contributing to the development of a supportive, effective, inclusive and positive organisational culture

5.  providing clear information and interpretation on PCO policies and processes to managers and employees

6.  developing (as required) and maintaining HR policies which are appropriate for organisational needs by:

  • maintaining an overview of policies for additions or updating
  • bringing the HR Team Leader's attention to any matters requiring attention
  • making written recommendations to the Executive Leadership Team (ELT)
  • updating as required by the ELT
  • ensuring all staff are consulted or notified of any changes

7.  producing documentation for new/changed roles by:

  • development or updating of job descriptions as required
  • arranging job sizing via external provider

8.  writing or updating guidance and information documents, documenting HR and organisational processes (eg recruitment, induction, performance management)

9.  identifying and implementing improvements to processes

10.  providing a recruitment service to managers by:

  • working with managers to advise, plan and process recruitment
  • arranging recruitment advertising
  • providing advice and guidance to managers to ensure compliance with best practice and legislation
  • participating as a member of recruitment panels
  • arrange for psychometric testing, interpreting report and providing HR assessment to Managers
  • ensuring the completion and coordination of recruitment papers including the recommendation to the Chief Parliamentary Counsel)
  • drafting letters of offers, individual employment agreements, and assisting in drafting contracts for services

11.  advising on learning and development opportunities and programmes and back up for the administration and coordination of the learning and development programmes through:

  • researching and advising on appropriate providers for training
  • being a contact point for training and development
  • making venue and booking arrangements for development and training
    sessions, seminars and conferences

12.  developing (as needed) and operating systems and processes for complying with Public Service Commission (PSC) standards and requirements, and compliance with programmes such as legislative compliance, protective security and risk management

13.  contributing to resolution of employment relations issues and performance management processes

14.  responding to information requests

15.  providing a comprehensive HR service as required, including:

  • managing employee processes such as updates to flexible work arrangements, changes to hours, secondments
  • assisting in the annual remuneration review and implementing outcomes
  • research and maintenance of appropriate resources
  • creating and maintaining personnel files and the HR filing system

16.  any other duties as required by the HR Team Leader.


In addition, the role provides back up for the permanent HR Adviser in the following duties:

17.  producing (or contributing to) quarterly HR reports, other regular and ad-hoc reports, identifying trends and providing reports for ELT information

18.  providing an induction and staff exit administration service for managers by:

  • arranging an induction programme for each new staff member
  • collating the induction handbook
  • arranging exit clearances

19.  back up for payroll input if required (outsourced provider)

20.  assisting with the onboarding of the summer clerks and coordinating with the Government Legal Network (GLN) on the yearly GLN/PCO summer clerkship

21.  maintaining the PCO databases for leave, training and personal information including assistance with any queries

22.  providing statistics and other information to the Public Service Commission, Audit NZ, select committee inquiries, and remuneration survey providers when required.

Person specification


1.  The ideal Senior HR Adviser will have a qualification in the field of HR management or another relevant qualification.


2.  Previous experience in the field of human resource management at a senior adviser level is or similar is required. Experience working in the public sector would be useful, as would experience in learning and development, and organisational development.

Competencies and attributes

3.  With regard to the Human Resources skills, the Senior HR Adviser is expected to advise on HR strategy and operational matters and ensure managers manage staff within the law and best practice by:

  • advising at a strategic or operational level
  • developing or contributing to HR policy and reports
  • applying updated knowledge of employment related law and case law
  • facilitating
  • mediating
  • supporting managers and staff
  • project managing.

4.  Other personal skills required are:

  • advanced, professional written communication skills with the ability to write in plain language
  • the ability to communicate effectively at all levels, including with senior management
  • critical reasoning
  • strong analytical skills
  • a balanced and informed approach to problem solving, as well as situations involving change, stress and conflict
  • maintaining a calm demeanour under pressure
  • using initiative, and the ability to plan ahead and anticipate requirements
  • excellent organisational skills
  • effective process management
  • excellent attention to detail to produce accurate work
  • ability to deliver high-quality work

5.  The Senior HR Adviser is expected to have or acquire the PCO generic skills and the Human Resources skills set out in Schedules 1 and 2 of the PCO Skills policy. The PCO generic skills, in summary, relate to:

  • personal integrity
  • building and maintaining effective interpersonal relationships
  • effectively and efficiently co-ordinating, performing, and progressing work to completion
  • providing high-quality results for each person for whom the HR Adviser provides a service
  • continually developing knowledge and skills in others and personally.


© Crown copyright 1997–2021