One of the biggest mistakes I see people continue to make, is they keep chasing jobs from the last booms. They spend months, if not years chasing these jobs. Spending a bucket load of cash on RII tickets (that most mining employers can’t use). Trying to get one of the handful of traineeships going in the Iron Ore and Coal mining areas of the industry.
When you are looking for a job in mining the real question you need to ask yourself is. Will I still be able to get a job in the coal and iron ore areas of the industry in 3 to 5 years time? For a lot of people the answer to that questions will be, no. As both the Coal and Iron Ore areas of the industry are using driverless trucks to reduce operating costs.
If I use BHP’s 5 year plan (started in 2018) for their iron ore sites in WA as an example. Most of these sites are strip mines, which means they can replace truck drivers with driverless trucks. I have had so many people tell me their plan over the last 2 years. Which is to reduce the onsite workforce from 6,500 (2018 numbers) to 800 (by the end of 2023, 2024 at the latest). They will have another 1,000 to 1,500 people running the driverless equipment from Perth, but you won’t make six figures doing that job.
If you want a long-term mining career you can’t go past the hardrock underground and exploration areas of the industry. Both areas are having to hire entry level people on sites around the country. On a 2&1 roster these are $100K entry level jobs. The underground employers are hiring new starters for the Nipper, Truck Operator, Agi Operator or Diamond Driller Offsider jobs. In exploration it’s field assistants and surface driller offsider jobs. If you type “underground” or “exploration” into seek you will see all the jobs come up. Don’t waste your time chasing jobs from the last booms.
If you want to have a go at getting a start in hardrock underground mining. Then I recommend getting your mining knowledge up to speed before you go. You can use either of our DIY or Workready packages to do this. The training gives you all the knowledge that underground employers want in a new starter to know. It allows the employers to ask you the mining questions in the interview to test your knowledge. Get them right and meet the other standard requirements and employers hire. Get the questions wrong or don’t meet one of the standard requirements and the employers will move onto the next person. It’s that cut and dry.
What’s in it for the employers? If they get someone that has completed the training, that can answer the mining questions. Then all they have to do is teach them how to drive the truck and they have a productive member of crew. Getting up to speed in weeks, instead of the months that it takes someone that goes in green on day one. When someone goes in green (knowing nothing about mining) on day one, it becomes a sink or swim situation. With more than 50% of people having to be fished out and sent home.
Good luck, I hope everyone gets the job they are after.
The Mining Coach
Mining is Hiring Now
There is 50 hours of important information that you can learn for yourself in the DIY Introduction to Underground mining package linked below. It will not only make it much easier to get a start but 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
“Workready” includes the 4 online Underground Training courses, the Australian mining seminar, a full resume review/redo with training and interview prep. Having access to someone with so much experience within the industry to prep you, is a huge advantage in getting your start.