SmartNZ partners with iwi, business, education and government agencies to deliver a range of practical, effective and innovative initiatives that better support rangatahi transitioning from education to employment. SmartNZ offers scalable and unique solutions that transform secondary schools to integrate learning and the world of work.

Read more about what we do 〉


“It’s really exciting to have got to the stage through SSEP that we’ve now employed one of the students [after school]. For me it’s so rewarding to teach someone from scratch and in the future, I’d be keen-as to take someone on again.”

– Makus Woustersern, Dairy Farmer

SSEP has exposed students to opportunities they might not otherwise have seen. More importantly, it has given them the confidence to see themselves in an industry setting. They now have different career ambitions and have been exposed to careers they never knew existed. We are meeting with local employers this week to help us develop our term two learning modules. SSEP enables teachers to deliver curriculum in the context of local industry and expose the students to real career opportunities.

– Sharon Moller, Principal

“From a board perspective we’re all very much in favour of SSEP. The students are coming back enthusiastic about learning because they can see its relevance. SSEP also fits in with the school’s strategy of getting our kids ready for life outside the school gate. This is more how we would like to see things from an eduxational perspective.”

– Karl Thornton, Board of Trustees Chairman

Secondary School Employer Partnerships

SmartNZ’s Secondary School Employer Partnerships (SSEP) is an award-winning initiative raising student aspirations, resulting in higher achievement, retention and better transitions. We have successfully integrated Secondary School Employer Partnerships into 50 schools (within Waikato & Canterbury) impacting 10,000 students, 250 teachers and 250 employers. SSEP can be licensed to your region.

Employability Record

endorseMe® is a digital work-readiness tool to help identify, develop and record real skills for the real world. endorseMe® gives young people the opportunity to be endorsed for their employability skills by their mentors, employers, teachers and others working in the community – and create a record of their skills, achievements and experiences. endorseMe® is available nationwide.

Our Impact


 students worked with since SSEP began in 2015


of donated time per year from our SSEP employers


FutureForce® Careers Hub users

15 year

milestone was celebrated in 2024


employers worked with over all our initiatives

Social reach

100,000s Facebook and Instagram reach

1000’s of post engagements


Winner: 2018 Economic Development NZ ‘Excellence Award’ for Best Practice in Collaboration for SSEP

Finalist: 2023 Economic Development NZ Excellence Award for Best Practice Inclusive Development and Wellbeing for Career Hauora

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