The short answer to that question is, YES! Of course it can help you get a $100K mining job. Take an underground truck operators position as an example. Employers don’t just need you to learn how to drive the truck to do the job. They need you to know how the mine works, the language and terms used on site. So, they can leave you in the truck, alone, to get on with the job safely. This is what most new starters struggle with, learning the language and how the mine works. It’s not learning how to drive the truck, that’s the easy bit. The hard part is knowing what is going on around you, so you can do your job safely and keep your $100K mining job.
The problem most people have, is not picking up this information quick enough and it can cost you your job. Most employers for these underground truck position, turnover more than 50% of their new starters. So what goes wrong, I hear you ask. There’s lots that can go wrong. For most it begins with the wall of information that you get hit with in the first few weeks in the job.
When you go in green (no mining knowledge) you are on the employer’s timeline and they want you up to speed as quickly as possible. This means the pressure is on, for a new starter to find their feet as quickly as possible. It’s like any job where you get employed first and trained second. It quickly turns into a sink or swim situation. Those that can’t get up to speed are tapped on the shoulder and sent home. This is where the turnover begins, with many more mistakes easily made for those that don’t understand how the mine works and what is going on around them.
The problem is there is very little information/training out there that teaches you how the mine works. Training that you can do before you get the job and get to site. This is because the owners have to be able to prove (in a court of law) that they have trained and supervised everyone on site. They do this using onsite equipment tickets and procedures. Every time you move site (even with the same employer) you have to redo everything, no matter how much experience you have.
This means employers haven’t bothered investing in formal qualifications that they can’t use. You just have to look at the job ads for Hardrock Underground (type underground into seek). No one is looking for RII tickets or the S11 (which is only for coal and only in Queensland). These things are a complete waste of time and money if you are looking to get a job on a Gold, Nickel, Copper, Silver, Zinc, Lead, Lithium, Base Metal or Rare Earth mine. This is where 80% of the new starter jobs are. There’s lots of opportunity out there, but if you go in green, you end up taking your chances with the high turnover. It’s not anyone’s fault, its just the way the system works.
That’s why here at Underground Training, we believe in the 6 P’s. Prior planning prevents piss poor performance. This is why we wrote the Introduction to Underground Mining package, so people could learn what they need to know before they get to site. The training covers how the hardrock underground mine works from top to bottom and what your buddy should be showing you down the hole, on the job.
One big problem the industry is experiencing at the moment is a lack of trainers. It is not uncommon for a new truck driver to be trained by someone that has only been in the job a couple of months themselves. So if your buddy, doesn’t know, can’t communicate the information or is just a dick (it happens) you still have the knowledge to make the most of the situation.
As long as you can show the employers that you know how their mine works and what is going to be expected of you on site. Then you have something to offer them to get your $100K mining job. This is one thing that I see lots of people don’t seem to get. The employers like it when you invest in yourself. It shows them you have thought about what you are getting into and prepared appropriately.
If you want a pathway into a hardrock Nipper, Truck Operator, Offsider or Agi driver job, then there is 50 hours of important information that you can learn for yourself. It’s all in the Underground Training package.
It will not only make it much easier to get a start. It will ensure you have all the information and tools you need to make a career out of it.
If you don’t want to become a statistic, then education is key.
I hope that info helps.
The Mining Coach