Where Have All the People Gone? - Innovative Trends and Solutions for a Shrinking Mining Workforce


There are two things on everyone's lips when mining types gather these days - one is the exciting business opportunities that now exist for mine development and expansion, and the other is the dire shortage of human resources needed to design, manage, and even operate the mines. Years of stagnant industry growth, limited employment opportunities, and unwarranted perceptions of remote and harsh working conditions have caused mining to be a less than desirable career choice. Attrition and reduced entry to the workforce has resulted in shortages for not only mining professionals, but also skilled tradespeople and operators. Consequently, to survive, let alone grow, mining companies, suppliers, and educators are all pursuing innovative solutions with technology, inter-industry recruiting, centralized services, and strategic partnerships. This paper describes some of these initiatives and proposes others, now that the people are gone!
Keywords: Labour Shortage, Education, strategic partnership, Consultants, Human Resources, Mining Challenge, centralized services, mentoring, Technology