You have probably heard stories of people earning over $150 000 a year with little or no real qualifications somewhere on a mine in Australia, and wondered how you can get a job on the mines in Australia as well. The reality is that the mining industry in Australia has in recent years become a very sough after industry, and that the average wage in mining in Australia is generally a lot higher than the majority of other industries, particularly for those who do not have a degree to fall back on.
There are however certain criteria that all recruiters will look for in a job seeker, and if you are serious about trying to break into the mining industry in Australia, which is becoming tougher and tougher due to the downturn in mining, it is important to ensure that you fit the right criteria. The first is it is essential to have a sense of responsibility. Mining can be dangerous and it’s essential that those who work in the mines are aware of the dangers and take safety very seriously not only for themselves but for those they are going to be working with. It is also important to be both physically and emotionally fit and strong, as the conditions can be tough physically and emotionally. You also need to be willing and able to travel and spend time away from home, as the majority of mines are in remote locations.
It is essential that you meet the minimum requirements in terms of qualification. If you have a qualification in engineering, geology or construction you should find it a lot easier to get a foot in the doorway in mining than if you don’t. Having a trade will also help. In terms of qualifications, the circumstances of employment differ depending on what state you are working in, also from company to company. However typically the company will want somebody who has graduated from high school with some form of mining training. The requirements can be from government certification, to safety courses to mining introduction training courses and various other qualifications. I have heard that in Australia many recruiters will require that you have a certificate of level 111 or level 1V. These are generally obtainable by finding a mining apprenticeship and completing the training required. Should you want to operate heavy equipment, you will need to get a Heavy Vehicle license. Doing some first aid and safety training can only help you as well, as mining companies generally prefer job seekers to have some idea about first aid and safety. Trade roles within the mining industry will require job seekers to demonstrate licenses, tickets or apprenticeship qualifications. It is always important to ensure that all training assessments are carried out by registered companies, also that they are recognized nationally and comply with the Australian Qualifications framework.
You will also need to be able to pass a drug and alcohol test. Mining companies are very strict on this because you would be working with and around heavy machinery, in confirmed spaces and hazardous environment, so it’s essential that you have your wits about you at all times.
Although there is generally no requirement that you complete a pre-employment medical at the time of applying for a position, if you do go through the recruitment process, as some stage there is a good chance that you may be required to complete a pre-employment medical check before the job offer is made. Not only will they be looking for any physical ailments that you may have that would be of a concern, but also any emotional or psychological issues that may impact on your ability to carry out your work successfully. Medical requirements do also vary from state to state. In Western Australia for example, all mining workers must undergo a Mining Workers Health Surveillance Test periodically, to monitor any changes in their health.