Read about why labour hire is ideal for the mining industry in Australia: we look at how mining companies use labour hire services, the reasons why many mining operations opt for labour hire, and give you tips for choosing a good labour hire firm for your company.
Over the last few decades, labour hire has grown in popularity to become one the most used flexible labour arrangements in the country providing temporary short- and long-term labour for many industries. Among the industries where labour hire has been especially successful is mining.
It’s estimated that labour hire workers make up about 60% of the entire mining industry’s workforce in Australia. This popularity is thanks to labour-hire’s ability to provide quality workers fast while providing the flexibility mining companies require to adjust to the volatile commodities market and remain competitive.
With labour hire, mining companies have the ability to almost-instantly adjust their workforce to ensure they have the optimum number of staff for operations at all times without being understaffed or overstaffed at any one time.
Labour hire in mining – how is it used?
Mining companies leverage labour hire to fulfil their labour needs in the following ways:
- Cover employee shortfalls. Employee absence due to illness, leave or any other reason could leave your operation understaffed and inefficient. Labour hire provides the perfect solution for acquiring temporary workers or casuals to cover for your absent employees before they can resume their duties.
- Increase the workforce to meet demand. It’s common to sometimes have demand spikes at certain times of the year in the mining industry. Mining companies can use labour hire temps to boost their workforce during the busy times without taking people onboard permanently.
- Acquire workers for projects. The nature of projects is that they are for a short while. With labour hire, mining companies can easily and cost-effectively acquire an entire workforce for a project (such as constructing a mine or expanding an existing one) on a temporary basis.
Whenever mining companies require skilled or unskilled labour in a hurry, labour hire can be relied on to provide quality workers very quickly.
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Why labour hire is ideal for mining
There are several reasons why labour hire has worked fantastically in Australia’s mining industry. The most prominent of which are:
- Cost saving
Recruiting can be a very costly affair. You will need to spend money on advertising for the position, evaluating CVs, and vetting candidates to find the best person for the vacancy. These costs can escalate significantly if you need to hire multiple times throughout the year or for several positions.
Labour hire helps keep recruitment costs low for mining companies by enabling them to outsource the entire hiring process to the labour hire provider. These firms, therefore, handle the sourcing and vetting of workers which saves you the trouble and expense of doing it yourself.
Additionally, labour hire enables you to maintain a lean operation with only the optimum number of staff active at any one time. This helps reduce on wages as you will not have to pay for any idle staff capacity when production slows down at the mine.
- Fast recruitment
When you are short on staff due to sudden employee departures, leaves, or sickness; operations could be greatly hampered or even brought to a standstill. To keep downtime at a minimum, quick recruitment of a temporary replacement is needed in these kinds of situations.
Labour hire companies maintain databases with all the types of workers needed in the mining industry who have been pre-vetted and prequalified. These workers are available for work engagements and can be deployed to your site within hours to help you plug your labour gap and get things back on track.
The resources sector can be quite volatile, as witnessed in recent years: one moment the sector could be booming, the next it could be in a downturn. Because of this volatility, mining companies need to stay adaptable to ensure their survival – especially when things slow down.
By using labour hire to acquire workers for their operations, mining companies can maintain the nimbleness and adaptability needed to survive the tough times. That’s because labour hire enables you to instantly adjust your workforce to match your current labour requirements without much hassle. You can bring in extra casual workers when you need them and release them just as easily when production slows down.
- Specialised recruitment
Labour hire companies are in the business of sourcing and providing labour. Because this is their core function, these firms have developed processes and efficiencies to ensure they acquire quality workers within the shortest time possible and at the lowest financial cost.
A good labour hire company that specialises in recruiting for the mining sector will also have mining-industry specialists to conduct the sourcing and recruitment of workers. This ensures that you get quality workers every time you use a labour hire company to source labour.
Also, with this kind of specialisation, labour hire firms can help you track down even the most hard-to-find skill sets for your mining operation.
- Large skills spool
To enable them deliver workers to their clients in the shortest time possible, labour hire companies look for potential workers beforehand, vet them to ascertain their qualification, and then list those who qualify in their databases ready for deployment.
You can leverage the large skills pool created by these firms to acquire any type of worker you need for your operation, from unskilled labourers to highly trained and experienced engineers and technicians. A labour hire company will provide you with a one-stop shop for all your labour needs with a whole host of workers on standby and ready to get to work with minimum notice – and you won’t have to pay their overheads when you’re not using their services.
Tips for hiring a good labour hire firm for mining
With so many options available when it comes to labour hire companies, it can be pretty hard finding a good firm to staff your mining outfit. Here are a few top tips for finding a good labour hire company:
- Specialisation matters. For the best results, make sure you hire a labour hire provider that specialises in recruiting for the mining industry. This will ensure that they have the capacity and capability to provide you with quality labour for your operation.
Read Blue Collar People’s Guide To Labour Hire In The Mining Industry