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Mining engineer skills shortage is imminent – report

It is well known across the mining industry that there is a tangible shortage of specialist skills within the sector, particularly within Australia. These gaps can clearly be seen for the entry-level positions; the numbers of engineers coming straight from university has begun to dwindle over the past couple of years, leading to fewer candidates with up to five years’ experience.

This is not only concerning for the talent gap for entry-level opportunities, but it also creates a much bigger future problem within the industry as the looming shortage of skills at a senior level will become much more widespread.

The demand for talent has seen companies greatly compensate engineers with the relevant skillsets, leading to increased salaries, the introduction of sign-on bonuses, and a promise of increases in responsibility and career progression.

Some of the largest firms in the industry are seeing a rise in the number of skilled employees being approached by competitors offering promotions and salary increases, as reported by Matt O’Neill of Glencore on ABC news.

This talent shortage is surprising, even though the industry is growing and becoming increasingly progressive; there have been sustained increases in values across gold, copper, zinc and iron ore since the initial shock of covid-19.

Innovation in the industry is also on the rise, with new technology solutions utilising automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence. It is a very exciting time to be part of the industry.

So why is there such a skills shortage? As talent experts within the mining industry, CSG Talent’s Australian Mining team has carried out a detailed research study in collaboration with their network of contacts and clients across Australia to uncover the issues that the industry is facing and the reasons behind this.

The research study highlights key industry insight covering:

• Salary trends including average salary by territory;
• Insight into the backgrounds of professionals within the industry including years of experience, education and location;
• Overview of graduates joining the industry;

The research supports the fact that there is an imminent mining skills shortage; the number of students studying mining engineering has been declining for the past 6 years and the lack of diversity is concerning.

Read the full Mining Engineering Skill Shortage report here.

More information on CSG Mining Recruitment is here.