MINING INDUSTRY

From Tennis To FIFO, And Gardening – How Paige Balanced Her Work & Life

BY: Claude Drulik28/04/2022

​Who are you?Name: Paige NewhillPosition: StorepersonClient: Rio Tinto DSL​Tell us About Your Journey I had previously moved to Dunsborough where I set up a successful, but busy, tennis clinic. Now, a decade on and with my children older, I wanted more time with family. These days I have a bunch of regular, enjoyable tasks in our family garden, but working Monday to Friday at the clinic with only 2 days off was not giving me the time I needed to enjoy the outdoors. I wanted to take the next step towards a better work/life balance. How did you land your role with WorkPac? A friend and former colleague, who now worked with Rio Tinto in Tools, asked if I was interested in a FIFO Warehousing role. I thought it would be a great opportunity. The 8:6 FIFO lifestyle is perfect and really enjoyable for me, so I said yes. I submitted my resume knowing it would be FIFO. Soon after, the Warehouse Supervisor at Rio Tinto called and offered me the role through WorkPac.The Supervisor said someone would next contact me about onboarding. Just as he promised, a WorkPac Recruitment Coordinator called soon afterward. She helped me set up a profile on myworkpac.com and ensured my information, like bank details, etc, was correctly submitted. The mobilisation process was completed very easily with inductions, PPE and Travel details sent through quickly after my medical. I was equally excited and overwhelmed by the role. Once I got to site, the Coordinator checked on me frequently to make sure I was okay. She conducted many care calls. There was a lot of support. I appreciated it all a lot. Onsite, I also met the WorkPac Site Manager. He showed equal support and commitment to myself and other WorkPac employees. What do you most enjoy about your job? People's support has been invaluable. They have taught and nurtured me a lot over the years. I am immensely grateful to them. When I started, I was on the 3T forklift. Now, after training, I can operate the 25T forklift. Everyone has boosted my confidence and helped push me to excel. I really enjoy interactions with the different people who come to the front counter. I like the customer service side of this role. My team is so good! I enjoy working with them because we all support one another. The comradeship is amazing. On a personal note, onsite, I get to enjoy beautiful sunrises and amazing sunsets each day. The landscape here is full of beauty. I feel really blessed at this job, almost as much as when I'm with family in my own garden which I can now enjoy even more than before. ​

From Caribbean Captain To Rio Tinto – How Oliver Landed A Big Career Catch

BY: Claude Drulik27/04/2022

​Who are you?Name: Oliver DubockPosition: Regional OperatorClient: Rio Tinto DSLTell us about your journeyMy journey to where I am now is probably a little unusual. My background is actually in Marine Ecology. Two years ago I was captain of a dive boat in the Caribbean. I met my partner on an island there. However, after a decade at sea, I decided it was time for a change. My partner originally came from Melbourne. Having never even been to Australia, we decided it would be a great opportunity to visit and try our luck at a lap of Australia.We saved hard and booked a flight. We even got engaged along the way. Upon arriving, we started our adventure by buying a car and van. Of course, things went awry when COVID hit as it forced us into lockdown in WA. With neither of us working, funds started to dwindle. Some friends we met while traveling made their way up to Port Hedland. They invited us to join them. We did. My partner took on some work. I applied for my spousal visa. I was keen to start in a new industry, having grown up with machinery on a farm where I operated large equipment of one kind or another for most of my life. The Pilbara was a great fit. Once my visa was approved, I got to work looking for work. The rest is history.How did you land your role with WorkPac?I heard about WorkPac through my partners’ friend. They recommended them to get into a new industry, so I submitted my resume online. It wasn’t long before I was invited to an onsite interview with a supervisor. It must have gone well because I landed the job. After a short period of inductions, I started my Regional Operator role as a contractor with WorkPac at RioTinto DSL Port Hedland.What are your career/personal goals?I really enjoy the role I landed. I’ve learnt a lot in a short period of time. I’ve been afforded the opportunity to work with some amazing and experienced people. My goal is to continue growing and learning in this industry. One day I hope to move into a managerial role where I can encourage and help new starts pursue their dream path.How did WorkPac help you along your career path?WorkPac was instrumental in getting me started and enabling me to grow in my new profession. From the beginning, with the application process being so easy to follow, there was always help available if I needed it. This made it much easier to get into my desired career.What do you enjoy most about your job?I suppose it’s the people I work with that really make my job most enjoyable. That and getting to drive massive machines all day.​

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 opens a new recruitment office in Perth as their work with Rio Tinto continues to grow

BY: Tracey Mesken24/10/2018

​Previously working from the Perth office, WorkPac’s Rio Tinto Project Services team have moved to their own space.​Australia’s largest privately-owned recruitment company WorkPac have opened their second office in Perth, the city where they opened their first business centre in 1997.The second office is dedicated to WorkPac’s Rio Tinto Project Services team, who manage recruitment for Rio Tinto Iron Ore.The Project Services team was created in 2017 as a dedicated team servicing Rio Tinto and have since shared an office space with the Perth Business Centre, but as both those teams have continued to expand the need for a new location became apparent.Business Centre Manager for Project Services, Mr. Dennis Blewitt, said the move is telling of how far WorkPac has come since it was first founded.“Perth is the city where WorkPac was founded, and now 21 years and over 40 business centres later, it’s a proud moment for everyone that we’re opening our second office here.”“It’s also an especially proud moment for myself and my team, as a reflection of all the hard work we’ve put in over the past year.”“This move is not only going to give us the space we need now, but room to continue to grow in the future.”“Having our own space separate from the Perth office is also going to make it easier for candidates to find us for interviews and training”.Mr Blewitt is looking forward to continuing working with both Rio Tinto and job seekers in WA.“We’re very fortunate to have Rio as one of our major clients, and our partnership will continue to focus on finding great roles for great people with an Australian icon”.“I look forward to continuing to provide them with the best service possible”.The new office is in the same building as the Perth Office at 31 Ventnor Avenue in West Perth, with the Perth team being located on level 3 and the Project Services team on the ground floor.Those looking for work with Rio Tinto in the region can get in touch with the team at riojobs@workpac.com or by calling 1300 498 559.Anyone seeking staff in the Perth Region is encouraged to check out our page on Recruitment in Perth

WorkPac's Guide to Coal Mining for Operators

BY: Tracey Mesken17/10/2018

​Are you an experienced Operator looking for work in Coal Mining? Check out our infographic below for information on where the roles are, the qualifications needed, and what recruiters look for.For information on Entry Level Operator roles, stay tuned for our next post over the coming weeks.​​​Be sure to stay tuned for our upcoming posts on Entry Level Coal Mining roles and the types of machinery used on coal sites!You can check out our available roles here or contact your nearest office here

Innovative mechanical fitter redesigns mining skid lights

BY: Tracey Mesken04/04/2017

​Click this link to download the full article: Mechanical fitter redesigns mining skid lightsFor media enquiries please contact Penny Massey at penny.massey@workpac.comTranscript:Local “Iron Man” redesigns mining skid lights, creating potential game-changer in his family garageMeet our real-life Iron Man in the making, Dave.Dave Nicholls is a WorkPac mechanical fitter working at Rio Tinto’s Hunter Valley Operations.Like Marvel’s character Tony Stark, Dave has a creative flair for building machines but he innovates on his off-swing, in the family garage while raising his three girls with his wife Kelly.Working on a mine site, Dave sees first-hand some of the challenges the mining industry faces with lighting plants.This inspired Dave to create a safer, greener, more cost-effective skid light.Building the skid light prototype in his garage for the last two years has been anall-consuming process for Dave and his family but his design has multinational giant Rio Tinto excited.“I built the prototype in my garage at home. It’s about six and a half tonnes all up, six metres long and three and a half metres wide,” says Dave.The early days were hard, Dave struggled to move steel around and turn parts over.Working on a large machine meant everything had to be welded into position.After finishing the base, and fabricating the smaller pieces, Dave transported the skid light to his brother-in-law’s farm where they painted it, installed the engine and started commissioning and trialling lights.“Rio has this unrelenting focus on everyone getting home safe and healthy every day,” Dave said.“Ultimately, my focus is safety. Working on a Rio site where there’s a strong safety culture, safety is the number one priority for everyone. Something I’m really proud of as a worker on the HVO [Hunter Valley Operations] site is a thing Riointroduced called Critical Risk Management”.CRM (Critical Risk Management) is implemented across all Rio Tinto operations and focuses on identifying critical risks and verifying critical controls. For each critical risk, there’s a series of controls that must be in place to prevent an incident.Dave designed his skid light with Rio Tinto’s CRM in mind and has eliminated the risk of lifting operations, entanglement and crushing, uncontrolled release of energy and electrical contact and has greatly reduced the risk of vehicle impact on a person.“That’s what got Rio’s attention and it’s why there’s been so much support for my design”.“The existing skid lights used on mine sites around the world are overcomplicated for what they have to do.“They just shine a light but there’s so much stuff going on and so many moving parts.“This increases the chances of crush injuries, pinch points, cylinders failing, suspended loads and uncontrollable releases of energy.“I thought, there should be something easier. There wasn’t. So I built it.“As well as increasing the safety of the lighting plant, my new design also increases productivity because you’re not stopping trucks and machines that cost $400 an hour while you move a light.“Getting out of the cab, making the machine fundamental, lowering it down, packing it up, isolating it and taking it to a new location holds up the fleet and when you have a reasonably sized fleet like we have at Rio, it adds up.“Something as simple as not having to get out of a cab to lower the mast will save hundreds of thousands of dollars a year.“Rio have been working with me to time the difference between the current skid lights and my design.“It’s proving to be a big time saver”.Dave took an environmental approach to the new design, ensuring his skid light reduces greenhouse gas emissions.“Rio is a firm believer in minimising environmental impact so it’s great that we can take a collaborative approach to the impacts of climate change”.The skid light in use runs on a 415 generator which is fuelled 156 times a year.The new design is fuelled 10 times per year with the option of incorporating a battery pack to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to extend services and refuelling periods.The battery pack will see the new skid lights refuelled four times per year.While Dave might not get recruited for S.H.I.E.L.D any time soon, this Hunter Valley Tony Stark is enjoying a healthy, collaborative relationship with Rio Tinto as they explore the potential of Dave’s innovative skid light.For now, Dave continues to juggle his role as a WorkPac mechanical fitter, father and husband while working on his entrepreneurial project.“WorkPac has been really good to me. It’s great turning up to do your job and getting paid – you don’t have to worry about losing contracts.“If something happens, if a contract is lost, WorkPac has such a wide reach across the industry so you can just swap over to another site.“When you’re working for yourself you get a bit sick of chasing work and chasing money all the time.“The stability of income and employment is good for me and has empowered me to work on my skid light design.“My father-in-law and family have all been very supportive, helping me get the design to where it is now.“We’ve been working on it whenever I’m not at work but I’m confident it will all pay off.“There’s nothing out there like it”.Dave is determined to increase the safety and wellbeing of workers, cut costs and better manage atmospheric emissions through hisinnovative light design.Don’t be surprised if you start to see this new design onsite in the future. 

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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

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Infographic on Mining Jobs in the Pilbara

BY: Tracey Mesken30/01/2017

​WorkPac surveyed over 250 Western Australians to understand what’s important to people working and living in the Pilbara.Check out our infographic on favourite rosters, job roles, pay, how many workers FIFO, what influences people to relocate and more. Call your local business centre todayWorkPac Karratha +61 8 9159 6622WorkPac Newman +61 8 9177 9722WorkPac Port Hedland +61 8 9158 5522WorkPac Tom Price +61 8 9189 2922

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Mining Jobs in the Pilbara [infographic]

BY: Tracey Mesken16/02/2016

​WorkPac surveyed 125 Western Australians to understand what's important to our local and FIFO workers in the Pilbara and to job seekers considering mining jobs in the region. We wanted to know who would relocate to the region for work in the mines, what the most popular rosters are and what percentage of mining jobs are FIFO. Check out our infographic to see what our respondents had to say.Would you relocate to the Pilbara for a mining job? Or would you prefer a FIFO job? Register at www.workpac.com/register and our Recruitment Coordinators will let you know what mining jobs we have on offer.Call your local Business Centre todayWorkPac Karratha +61 8 9159 6622WorkPac Newman +61 8 9177 9722WorkPac Port Hedland +61 8 9158 5522WorkPac Tom Price +61 8 9189 2922

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WorkPac Miner on My Kitchen Rules Tonight

BY: Tracey Mesken01/02/2016

​Image courtesy of Seven Network. My Kitchen Rules brings us a smorgasbord of characters tonight as the seventh season launches after the 2016 Australia Open tennis.WorkPac's very own FIFO miner Alex and his best mate Gareth are representing Queensland, affectionately dubbed the Miner Diners.​The Miner Diners hope to transition from the mining sector to the restaurant business and say despite their blue collar day jobs, they won't be serving up "pub grub"."We have been saving money from our jobs in the mines so that we can open something of our own and we’re kinda hoping MKR will help fast track it. Like a bar and grill type of atmosphere, where you meet your mates and serve food that we like cooking," said Alex.Alex and Gareth love Asian cuisine, roasting meats and and describe food as "a bit of an artwork".The competition in the kitchen is fierce and the boys come up against the show's villain but with the MKR theme, "real people real food" our Aussie miners are as genuine as you get.In support of Alex and Gareth's culinary adventure, WorkPac is bringing you a month of food content as we follow the boys on MKR.We'll be serving up WorkSnacks, lunchbox ideas for tradies, summer BBQ recipes, healthy food solutions for FIFO workers, bite-sized nosh for the footy season and beer-based dishes.To follow Alex and Gareth's My Kitchen Rules story, tune in to Channel 7 at 7:30pm tonight and subscribe to the WorkPac blog and Facebook page.

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