New World of Mining
A Lesson in the Virtual Mine
New world of Mining
Australia’s mining sector employs more than 250,000 people as of February 2021, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data.
More than one million other jobs are also supported by the resources sector.
The mining industry has recorded employment growth in the five years to February 2021 of over 15%.
This increase isn’t expected to slow down, with the ABS expecting mining to need another 21,700 workers from 2020 to 2025.
The Australian Government announced a national resources workforce strategy as part of its Delivering Skills for Today and Tomorrow package.
This new strategy aims to help the sector meet its needs for skills and to promote resources job opportunities and training to Australian workers.
Encouragingly, commencements in apprenticeships and traineeships for the mining industry have risen to the highest level in seven years, according to the latest statistics released by National Centre for Vocational Education Research.
The mining industry is working hard to upskill the workforce and be an employer of choice.
Apprentices and trainees that choose the mining industry can expect highly paid and secure jobs.
It is projected that more than 1,000 apprenticeships will be created by mining industry in partnership with the Australian Government through the Mining Skills Organisation Pilot an initiative the MCA is proud to support.
Combined with other initiatives, close to 5000 new apprenticeship positions will be created in the mining industry over the next few years, mostly located in regional Australia.
The Minerals Council of Australia (MCA’s) Mining Skills Organisation Pilot (MSOP), launched in 2019, also aims to address the potential skills shortage on the horizon.
“Australia’s minerals industry already has a highly skilled, highly paid workforce that is very well trained,” Tania Constable, CEO of MCA, says. “However, the combination of technology adoption, industry and learner expectations and skills availability pressures will test how tradespeople are trained and inducted into the mining industry.
“New project hubs in digital transformation, apprenticeships and attraction and retention – part of the industry led MSOP being co-ordinated by the MCA with partners across the mining industry and supported by the Australian Government – will deliver training faster to accelerate skills development and make Australia’s apprenticeship system even more relevant to industry and learners.”
The MSOP also aims to attract workers from other industries, Constable continues.
“They will also boost opportunities for new talent entering the Australian minerals industry and allow existing mining workers – as well as workers from other industries – to access new skills, enabling them to move into mining or shift to new types of jobs if already working in the sector,”
Adapting to the skills required for maintaining safety and productivity will continue to remain necessary in the mining industry, Constable adds.
“The skill to keep yourself and your workmates safe is central to culture and practice in the Australian mining industry,”
“With increasing technology adoption, workers are right to expect that VET (vocational education and training) sector qualifications will make them job-ready or allow them to move between jobs in the mining industry.
“Upskilling and reskilling is constant and as technology continues to evolve, it is critical that our workforce keeps pace with the skills required to boost safety and productivity.”
As the word embraces new technologies, mining is also introducing technology to improve safety and environmental factors, such as rock cutting, renewable energy, autonomous vehicles, drones, robotics. Check out BHP’s “new ways of working”
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