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May 24th, 2022

APPRENTICESHIPS – THE ANSWER TO THE MINING INDUSTRY’S SKILLS SHORTAGE

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There is no secret that the mining industry is experiencing a considerable skills shortage, and unsurprisingly, industry leaders are concerned. To tackle the ever-increasing demand for skilled labour, Schlam’s approach to addressing this shortage is to encourage more people to consider the benefits of an apprenticeship as a route to a long-term career. 

Schlam People Solutions General Manager Mat Rigby, who had started off his own career as an apprentice, is thrilled to see more young people using this path to a career in the mining industry. 

“Apprenticeships are vital in developing the next generation of highly skilled tradespeople,” said Mat. 

“We know apprenticeships are an excellent way to combine training with work, enabling people to have a job while they complete training towards a nationally recognised qualification.” 

Apprenticeships have always paved the way for a great career, but now they offer an attractive proposition for people considering their future. The opportunity to earn an income through training makes apprenticeships a stable option for young graduates launching their careers or workers looking to pivot between industries or trades. 

No university fees, real-life work experience, hands-on training that leads to nationally recognised qualifications and getting direct exposure to the mining industry are all appealing reasons for job seekers to sign up. 

Fortunately for Schlam, an enthusiastic employee, who was looking to sign up for an apprenticeship program, was already in its ranks. 

Zane Rowden, originally a carpenter by trade, will soon be starting his apprenticeship to become a qualified HD fitter. Having previously completed qualifications in heavy automotive and carpentry, Zane had always wanted to join the mining industry with aspirations to learn another trade. 

Zane jumped at the opportunity to join Schlam in October 2021 as a trades assistant and has since become a revered member of the team. He has proven that his go-getter attitude and thirst for learning can open new doors. 

Born and bred in sunny Queensland, Zane frequently travels from the east coast to WA for work. Quiet and reserved by nature, despite his towering stature, Zane explains his experience at Schlam.

 “Schlam has always been a great employer. The blokes on-site are very accommodating and approachable” said Zane. 

“The team I have worked with have taken me under their wing and have been great at showing me the ropes.” 

Zane knew he wanted to be an HD fitter and there was always something drawing him to Western Australia to work in the Pilbara. 

“My goal has always been to come to Perth and travel around the Pilbara” Zane explains. 

“There is still so much for me to see and do while I am here”. 

He has now signed up as an apprentice to complete a Cert III in Mobile Plant Technology, which will take him four years to complete. 

“I’m looking forward to learning the ins and out of the trade, and I am excited for where this opportunity will take me in my career,” Zane eagerly explained. 

Zane will continue working for one of Schlam’s clients on a 2/1 roster. Here, he intends to gain the experience required to complete his apprenticeship. The program also requires Zane to complete offsite training each term at TAFE. Completing his TAFE training will see Zane in Perth more often. 

“Flying back and forth from Queensland has been relatively easy. I hope to one day make the move over to WA. Many people have told me how great it is to live in the west.” 

Mat Rigby and the rest of the team at Schlam are thrilled by Zane’s eagerness to start this new chapter in his career. 

“We always aim to recognise those with a strong work ethic and great attitude. We will do our best to support people like Zane to grow in the industry,” Mat Rigby concludes.

Congratulations Zane!

For more information about working with Schlam, visit schlam.com/careers

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