Australia’s resources sector sources up and coming talent from a fit-for-purpose apprenticeship system. The Apprenticeships hub seeks to regain levels of enrolment in apprenticeship commencement and training programs comparable to the last resources cycle of mid-2012. During the June quarter that year, apprentice and traineeship commencement rates were at approximately 3,000 and there were an additional 14,000 individuals in training. Towards the ambition of meeting these previous success rates, this project seeks to modernise how the industry produces skilled tradespeople in a more timely and efficient way.
The Apprenticeships project hub will initially focus on an identified pressure point within the industry – diesel mobile plant mechanics.
The project is comprised of the following key elements:
- Program design - The project will determine appropriate training program content that delivers a skill and knowledge specification confirmed through engagement with industry and key stakeholders
- Program delivery – Working collaboratively with public and private training providers, the project will explore alternative models for training delivery and assessment with acceleration options and consideration of technology enabled learning resource development
- Program administration - This project element includes administrative functions associated with the apprentice sign-up and monitoring processes to ensure apprentice completion rates are maximised.
The employment of contemporary technological products is central to future-proofing an enduring Australian mining workforce. The digital transformation project hub aims to develop and test a mechanism which will allow accredited training products to be part of Australia’s nationally recognised training product library. Such products will be developed for the sector relating specifically to automation and the application of digital technologies
This mechanism will allow an enhanced speed to market response in merging existing and new digital related accredited content into training packages, thereby allowing accelerated system response to identified digital/technology based skills.
Closer alignment between technology adoption and the development and deployment of training products will close the gap between technology implementation and availability of a skilled workforce.
The new approach will be piloted with automation-related training products developed by Rio Tinto, in partnership with the Western Australian Government, South Metropolitan TAFE and in collaboration with industry. These training products are as follows:
- Certificate II in Autonomous Workplace Operations
- Automation Skill Set (for existing tradespeople/apprentices)
- Certificate IV in Autonomous Control and Remote Operations.
Attraction and retention
This project hub seeks to position mining as an industry of choice through developing, testing and activating a framework for attracting and retaining the talent pipeline the modern mining industry and the mining equipment, technology and services (METS) sector needs, now and into the future.
The aim of the project is to:
- Offer an industry-level framework that complements existing company level initiatives, programs or approaches
- Identify and test strategies that make a career in the industry attractive to those with partial or transferable skills and qualifications
- Align the skills necessary for an upward and prosperous career in mining with those in other industries
- Provide potential, new and existing talent with a centralised hub to explore their learning and employment options across the mining industry through a suite of processes and models, mechanisms, tools and resources, as well as training products.
To achieve this, the hub covers elements that are crucial to securing a highly skilled, robust and future-ready workforce, including:
- Workforce planning – establishing and testing a process for codifying capability sets at role level and understanding broad industry demand for those capabilities
- Pathways – understanding and capturing the talent (learning and employment) pathways across the industry, including the diversity, flexibility and breadth of choice
- Skilling – providing upskilling and cross-skilling options for potential, new and existing talent, establishing a mining knowledge fundamentals skill set
- Transferable skills – facilitating a model for the identification of transferable skills and capabilities and a tool/mechanism for developing candidate skills profiles that can be integrated with pathways
- Attraction and retention framework and Mining Talent Portal – refining the relationships between workforce planning, pathways, skilling and transferable skills to finalise the definition of a holistic attraction and retention framework, and packaging it into the mining Talent Portal – a centralised hub for exploring employment and learning pathways across the mining industry.