Sizing jobs

Council size index

The size index is compiled using:

  • the population served by the council; and
  • the council’s expenditure.

The Authority believes it is important to use standard data that can be externally verified. Both expenditure and population have been found to be key indicators of council size when sample councils have been reviewed.

Every year the Authority will recalculate the size index using the latest available statistics provided by Statistics New Zealand.

The size index does not take into account the following:

  1. Assets. Assets are not at present included as an indicator.
  2. Geographic size. Distance travelled by councillors in larger areas is now addressed in the travel-time component of the travelling expenses policy.
  3. The effects of fluctuating populations in tourist or holiday home areas. To a large extent the variation in population in tourist areas is recognised by the inclusion of council expenditure in the size index.

The size index applies to all councils except Auckland.

Job-sizing different positions

The Authority uses the Korn Ferry HayGroup system of job evaluation to size positions. The evaluation takes into account time spent on governance and representation. The Authority believes that in most cases the role of mayor or regional council chair is increasingly full time, even for smaller councils, but this is not the case for councillor roles


Because Auckland accounts for a third of the country’s population, and also has a different governance structure, the Authority has undertaken separate job-sizing exercises for Auckland Council and Auckland has a separate determination. For an explanation of the current remuneration approach for Auckland, refer to (link to determination on Govt. Leg site).