How “the entry level mining job” keeps moving

When people start looking for a way into the industry, they are all looking for the same thing. The entry level mining job. But what is “the entry level mining job”, where are they, how do you get one and why do these jobs keep moving?

If you start doing your research you will soon discover all the different pathways and advice. The problem with most advice is, it is for “the entry level mining job” in one of the old booms not the current one. Each boom for the last 25years has generated it’s own need for new starters to enter the industry. These jobs are specific to that area of the industry the boom is. You can identify these areas from the high prices of the commodities being mined.

When I first started it was Gold and Nickel, the jobs were Nipper, Truck (surface & underground) offsider and jobs in the mill. Then it was Iron Ore and everyone wanted surface truck drivers. In the early 2000’s it moved into Coal and they needed surface truck drivers and underground operators. It moved back to Nickel, Iron Ore and Gold in 2005. Then there was the huge Oil & Gas construction boom that went from 2006 to 2016. This is why so many people tell you to get a T/A job. Whenever I hear that advice, I always think “you will need a Tardis (time machine)” as now there are only a fraction of the T/A jobs that were once available.

Today it’s Gold along with Copper, Nickel, Zinc and everything you need to put into a battery or EV to make it work. Iron Ore and Coal have spiked in the last 12-18months. This has more to do with supply chain issues and both are expected to return to long-term price averages in the next 12 months. This current boom is all about the metals that go into a battery, EV’s and Gold. This is where the jobs have moved to and where you need to be looking for “the entry level mining job”.

While there are a number of pits around the country mining these metals. It’s the hardrock underground mines that are responsible for most of the production. As an example, all the major Nickel mines in the country are underground mines. If you type “underground” into seek you will see all the job’s come up. The entry level jobs are Nipper, Truck Operator, Agi Operator or Diamond Driller Offsider.  There is also lots of work in the exploration area of the industry as an offsider. Just type “Offsider” into Seek to see the jobs.

I hope you found that information helpful.


If you want to have a go at getting in yourself, then it doesn’t cost much or take long to teach. There is 50 hours of important information you need to learn. You can use this DIY Introduction to Underground Mining package to do it. 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. Giving yourself a head start climbing the crew ladder into the $700 to $2000 a day jobs like Charge Up, Longhole, Bogger and Jumbo.

If you want some help getting your start then checkout the W1N-W1N and Workready packages. They both offer a full resume and interview prep service, with Workready offering extra support learning the mining information and making a plan. If you want to talk to one of the Underground Training shift bosses about how to get into the industry then leave your details in the link.



The Mining Coach