INDIGENOUS EMPLOYMENT

How the right mindset and attitude can lead to a permanent role at Rio Tinto

BY: Tracey Mesken26/11/2018

​WorkPac would like to congratulate Marley, one of several WorkPac employees at the Mesa A site who have gone permanent with Rio!​In late 2017 WorkPac and JobTrail underwent a recruitment drive in the Pilbara region focused on offering young Indigenous job seekers who were interested in mining a pathway into the industry. Marley was part of a Robe Valley assessment centre run by the JobTrail team where he was a standout candidate and landed a role as a trainee operator on site at Mesa A.Throughout his entire traineeship Marley’s work performance has been of the highest level and he has been a great team player. Our Site Manager for Mesa A, Kath Collins, caught up with Marley’s Supervisor Dean to learn more about what earned him a permanent position.“Marley is a positive young guy. He is a very productive worker and is always the first to put his hand up for other jobs when the trucks are down. He is a real go getter of a young bloke, and that is why we progressed him. Everyone in the team speaks highly of him. I am confident that Marley will be a great asset to our team and will go a long way with Rio Tinto” he said.When asked what advice he would give to other young people looking for a career in mining, Marley emphasised the importance of keeping a good attitude on site.“Definitely, the number one thing is to have a good attitude. Don’t let the information overload get to you or overwhelm you at first- because there is so much to learn! … There is a lot of adjusting to do at first, but ease into it and be willing to keep an open mind about it all. Be willing and eager to learn, be flexible, and give everything a go!”Kath also spoke with Marley about the best parts of the job, who spoke highly about the Mesa A site and crew.“I would have to say the People, I work with a great bunch of people who make it enjoyable to come to work and catch up. Mesa A is a great Site. The crews are pretty small, so you get to know everyone really well, and feel part of a close team. I felt part of the team from the moment I got out here. Finally, it is a great learning environment, there is always something new learn, and Mesa A and the managers are really encouraging of that”Marley is a fantastic example of how the right attitude and mindset can lead to great things, and a great role model for all those looking to crack into the industry. We would like to wish him the best of luck as he continues his mining career with Rio Tinto- we’re sure he’s going to go far!

WorkPac Employee receives the Robe Valley Employee of the Year Award

BY: Tracey Mesken06/08/2018

​In a watershed moment as part of the 2018 Pannawonica NAIDOC Awards, WorkPac had the honour of presenting Christina Hillman the first ever award for WorkPac Robe Valley Employee of the Year. She was presented the award by WorkPac’s Kath Collins, who made the proposal on behalf of WorkPac to have the new award added in addition to the Rio Tinto Employee of the Year Award, as part of the ongoing partnership between the companies.To honour the Robe River Kuruma Marthudunera people, the awards handed out were framed images of Pannawonica Hill, located on Robe River near the mines. The Kuruma name for Pannawonica Hill is Parlapuuni, meaning a mound of mud from under the sea. The Robe River and Pannawonica Hill are the most significant sites to the Kuruma people. The water in the river is called Jajiwura, and each of its tributaries and major water holes have their own Kuruma names.​Christina Hillman (R) was presented the award by Kath Collins (L)The theme of NAIDOC Week this year was ‘Because of her, we can!’, celebrating Indigenous women who have made their mark as pioneers, roles models, leaders and change makers, so it was only fitting that the award was presented to someone who exemplifies that theme.Christina is a quiet achiever, but through her commitment leads by example on site, always there to lend a helping hand to those who need it, and willing to do the tough jobs when others hesitate. Well respected by all on site, she is known for her fantastic attitude and work ethic, in addition to her friendly, patient and understanding nature.Working in the traditionally male-dominated area of operating Heavy Mining Equipment, she is a shining example of a strong Indigenous female role model, with strong potential to advance her mining career and move into a leadership position in the future.We’re incredibly lucky to have an employee as hard-working as Christina on board with us, and we cannot wait to see where her career in mining takes her.

WorkPac Employee receives the Robe Valley Employee of the Year Award

BY: Tracey Mesken06/08/2018

​In a watershed moment as part of the 2018 Pannawonica NAIDOC Awards, WorkPac had the honour of presenting Christina Hillman the first ever award for WorkPac Robe Valley Employee of the Year. She was presented the award by WorkPac’s Kath Collins, who made the proposal on behalf of WorkPac to have the new award added in addition to the Rio Tinto Employee of the Year Award, as part of the ongoing partnership between the companies.To honour the Robe River Kuruma Marthudunera people, the awards handed out were framed images of Pannawonica Hill, located on Robe River near the mines. The Kuruma name for Pannawonica Hill is Parlapuuni, meaning a mound of mud from under the sea. The Robe River and Pannawonica Hill are the most significant sites to the Kuruma people. The water in the river is called Jajiwura, and each of its tributaries and major water holes have their own Kuruma names. Christina Hillman (R) was presented the award by Kath Collins (L)The theme of NAIDOC Week this year was ‘Because of her, we can!’, celebrating Indigenous women who have made their mark as pioneers, roles models, leaders and change makers, so it was only fitting that the award was presented to someone who exemplifies that theme.Christina is a quiet achiever, but through her commitment leads by example on site, always there to lend a helping hand to those who need it, and willing to do the tough jobs when others hesitate. Well respected by all on site, she is known for her fantastic attitude and work ethic, in addition to her friendly, patient and understanding nature.Working in the traditionally male-dominated area of operating Heavy Mining Equipment, she is a shining example of a strong Indigenous female role model, with strong potential to advance her mining career and move into a leadership position in the future.We’re incredibly lucky to have an employee as hard-working as Christina on board with us, and we cannot wait to see where her career in mining takes her.

NRL legend Scott Prince joins the WorkPac Group to deliver Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment program in Queensland

BY: Tracey Mesken03/03/2017

​Scott Prince, new ambassador for Indigenous employment program, Murri’s in the Mines, is encouraging Indigenous WorkPac employees to complete their traineeship and build a career in mining.15 Indigenous participants have started their Certificate III in Surface Extraction at Rio Tinto’s Hail Creek Mine in Central Queensland.WorkPac and its Indigenous division JobTrail is delivering the program with mentoring provided by Traditional Owners and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service.Murri’s in the Mines ensures Indigenous trainee operators have the right support at home and in the workplace to finish their traineeships and grow their careers.Scott will go onsite as the program’s ambassador, meeting with participants and their supervisors to provide support and motivation to the 15 trainees currently completing the program.Scott says he got involved in the program to support and encourage Indigenous trainees to be successful in their pursuits in the mining sector.“I think that like footy, the workplace offers individuals the opportunities to perform and succeed, but it’s not without challenges,” Scott said.“My father Les was a miner in Mount Isa, without his hard work, I wouldn’t have been able to pursue my football career.”“I’m proud to offer support to these guys and girls who are starting out in mining. I’ve seen first-hand with my dad; a mining career really helps provide for your family and gives back to your community and hopefully we’ll see another Maroons halfback come out of a mining town.”Scott’s work as an ambassador for Indigenous community programs demonstrates his strong commitment to increasing Indigenous participation in the education, training and employment space, says JobTrail National Manager, Julian Genn.“Being a proud Aboriginal from the Kalkadoon tribe in the Mount Isa region makes Scott someone our participants can relate to and look up to,” said Julian.“Scott is a well-known ex-NRL player and his profile will bring exposure to the program and help increase employment in the local Indigenous community”.​To learn more about WorkPac’s Indigenous division JobTrail, click hereTo download a copy of our Reconciliation Action Plan, click here

Decades-long friendship the catalyst for WorkPac’s first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP)

BY: Tracey Mesken28/02/2017

​Australia’s largest privately owned recruitment company WorkPac, will launch the company’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in Perth, Wednesday the 1st of March, to complement its pioneering Indigenous Workforce division, JobTrail, in connecting Traditional Owners, business, and governments, in growing strong, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workforces.WorkPac Founder and Chairman, Phil Smart, was the driving force in creating the group’s own division dedicated to fostering equality in Australian workplaces – an undertaking that evolved through his 25-year friendship with Albert Bowie.“The Bowie family, whose tribal heritage is from Badu and Erub in the Torres Strait and Palm Island, and Nancy Bowie (nee Go Sam) from the Jirrbal and Ngadgon-Jii tribes in Far North Queensland have a strong history of business ownership and are well-respected in the Indigenous community,” Mr. Smart said.“Albert and his family have been active in the reconciliation movement, and have been pivotal in helping us to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation, create more culturally safe and tolerant workplaces, and give workers the opportunity to contribute to new projects, industries, services, products and ways of doing business, right across Australia,” he said.WorkPac Group Managing Director, Mr. Praanesh Prasad said, “this is a long-term commitment to working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in communities where we operate”.WorkPac and its JobTrail division will launch its RAP with a traditional Aboriginal dance performance, followed by a Welcome to Country, at Kuditj, 201 Beaufort Street Perth.JobTrail Regional Manager Julian Genn, said the event was an important step in the group’s journey toward a brighter future for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.“Attracting, recruiting, on boarding and supporting Indigenous workers is a dedicated function that many companies need external support to undertake successfully,” Mr. Genn said.“But one of our keys to success is that we involve Traditional Owners and Elders in our projects and create genuine partnerships in regions to drive community engagement, enabling us to deliver program outcomes that are aligned with Indigenous employment targets.“The Bowie family has helped us every step of the way in this journey so we could minimise the challenges, and connect with the community in a way that’s enabled JobTrail to provide ongoing holistic support,” he said.To learn more about WorkPac's journey to reconciliation, click here.Click here to watch our video on the story of WorkPac's Reconciliation Action Plan artwork.