Our people, history and opportunities

Our company

SenSys is a Kiwi-owned company that produces modern, internet-based, wireless measurement and control systems with intelligence for dairy, horticulture, factory operations and science research.

SenSys brings together a team of  fifteen highly experienced software and hardware engineers, testers, sales and marketing and business people to design, manufacture and distribute throughout New Zealand and Australia.  We architect world-class modern sensing and control solutions for specific applications that bring real solutions to  farmers, factories and families.

Innovation in design and development is central to our being.

Head office is based in a gloriously beautiful setting in rural Tasman, Redwood Valley.  Some of our staff work in other parts of New Zealand.  We are growing and adding to our staff.  Please see Careers below if you are interested in joining a progressive and innovative team.


Our Directors


Warwick Jones 

technology design and consultancy

I’ve played with electronics since I could walk. Fortunately my parents successfully thwarted my many attempts to poke small metal objects into power sockets. That desire to play with electricity eventually grew into an Electrical Engineering degree at Canterbury University, where I developed my love of building weird and wonderful devices and moving electrons at high speed around the world.

I thrive on sensing and control systems challenges.  I’ve built a business or six, but what I get really excited about is software architecture.  Over the last 30 years I have enjoyed developing and supplying several unique plant sensors and environment control systems. For a period of 10 years I focused on consulting and advice for the design of information systems. In 2011 I returned to my first love of designing and manufacturing electronic systems.  Now the focus is modern internet-based controllers for primary industry – clever technology that brings real value to daily life and work.


Karen Matthews 

sales and marketing

At the end of my Hort Science degree I jumped ship into the marketing department at Massey University to round out the science focus. After my OE at the US Department of Agriculture cut flower research lab in Maryland and a stint with the NZ Embassy in Washington DC, I spent a few years in sales with Hardie Irrigation and James Hardie Pipelines in NZ.

I gravitated to managing large scale public events in Nelson. Organising and marketing events has been me for nearly two decades, as well as organising local community social events. I’ve always enjoyed getting people together for a common cause and making it happen on time. All the skills needed in event management are drawn on to keep our clients happy and branch into new markets.

In some of my spare time I’m a life and relationships coach with Living Wisdom.  In time that’s left over I like to work on our 3 1/2 acre patch of land which, given my activities above, is about 3 1/4 acres too much. The team don’t appear to have had time to design an electronic seek-and-destroy weed-sensing instrument yet. I live in hope.


The history of SenSys

It all started in 1964 with a small industrial electronics and biomedical instrumentation operation based in Palmerston North, New Zealand. The business quickly grew into a manufacturing base by the early 70s with the advent of digital electronics. That operation morphed into Design Electronics Ltd in 1976.

The company designed and manufactured electronics and wrote software systems, developing plant environment and sensing systems to a growing market mainly in NZ and the Pacific over many years, and used in countless greenhouses and horticultural operations. Major users of our manufactured products were also the DSIR (Dept of Scientific & Industrial Research), MAF (Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries), Horticultural Research NZ and New Zealand universities.

Our relationship with LI-COR (Lincoln, Nebraska, USA) began 40 years ago after the founder, Bill Biggs, completed his PhD in light measurement in Palmerston North.  The LI-COR range began with special expertise in light measurement.We have distributed and supported their light sensors, which are the industry standard, and their growing range of quality measurement systems since their beginnings four decades back.  We also distribute and support leading measurement equipment from a number of other reputable companies.

We’re now in our fourth decade of providing sensing, monitoring and controlling equipment to the agriculture and horticulture industries, food and beverage industries, Crown Research institutes and  universities throughout New Zealand, Australia, Antarctica and the Pacific Islands.

In 2011 we re-branded from Design Electronics Ltd to SenSys and moved head office to Nelson. We’ve always been about designing systems for sensing and measuring, and the new name better reflected what we do. Today, our team continues to design world-class products, providing true end-to-end solutions, from the sensing and information flow and communication systems, through to delivering the user the information they need, straight to their SmartPhone or tablet. We rely on no one else’s technology to complete the picture.

We create powerful products with the ability to change the world. Products that bring real value and efficiencies to the heart of what keeps economies humming – farming, factory processing, families.



We’re growing the staff and leadership team. We are looking for more high achieving, energetic and focused people who want to be part of a progressive company with big visions and who will have its interests at heart.

For job descriptions and further information please get in touch with us.  The following is a brief overview of current vacancies:

Sales Application Engineers

Lead the way in providing solutions to real needs in the market for: factory process control and monitoring; sensing and measuring applications for dairy and horticulture; monitoring applications in science research.

You may have an electrical or mechanical engineering background or perhaps a teaching background and are ready to step beyond the constraints of being an employee on a  limited salary and a small part to play in the direction of a product, prefering a job where the sky’s the limit for income and your input into market-led design is welcome.  Negotiable location in NZ and Australia.


Software Engineer

Delicious tasks abound for a software engineer with preferably at least 5 years experience in commercial applications.  Role not necessarily based in Nelson.

You will have working experience and proficiency with:

C programming


ARM Cortex processors or other microcontrollers

Creating software test systems and using them in development

Use of Linux (Arch and Ubuntu and the core Linux kernel) and command line level for software development and test, 2 years min

Open source databases (PostGreSQL, SQLite3)

If you can answer YES to at least 10 of the 12 Joel Test questions (JoelTest), we would like to hear from you.


Junior Software Engineer

An opening for a graduate engineer who has competency in the theory of electrical engineering and is ready to contribute to the design and testing of  innovative and exciting products.  Nelson-based role.



Will suit someone highly personable and customer-focused, used to dealing with the public, perhaps from a background of retail with some electronics experience.  Some practical hands-on installation experience useful.  A short-term contract, with the potential to extend to full time.

Must have great communication skills, both written and verbal, detailed, and desire to follow up and complete tasks.  Nelson-based role.


Electronics Engineering Technologist

Design and testing across many areas in electronics, embedded software, application software and IT.  Assessing and servicing electronic products, preparing supplies, building, extending, testing and commissioning electronic hardware and software products, documentation, preparing technical information documents, guiding junior staff.  Intermediate-level, 5 years experience minimum, qualification in Electronics Engineering required.  Nelson-based role.


Production Assistant

For the person with a technology bend, who is thorough and detailed and does what it takes to have orders ready, complete, signed off and orders out the door on time.  Good computer skills necessary, drivers licence and good written and verbal communication skills.  Plenty of scope for career development.  Nelson-based role.


High School-age Cadets

We like to encourage young achievers to reach the stars.  If you’re based in the Nelson or Tasman region – you’re in the right place!  We have hot desks where you can take on an electronics project, perhaps for a school science project, Bright Sparks or the Cawthron Science Fair.  You will get to use ridiculously expensive and exciting equipment that you would not normally have access to at home or school, but more importantly, learn under the watchful eye of the master engineers.  Ask your teacher to work in with us and let’s see what we can have fun achieving.


We’re all exceptional here.  Be prepared to convince us why you would fit right in!

For more details please contact us.