A survey has found that the participation of women in the Queensland resources sector increased to 14% in 2008-09, up from 11.3% in the previous year.
The survey, conducted by the Queensland Resources Council (QRC), also revealed that the amount of women in non-traditional roles, such as engineering and geology, had increased to 10.8% from 9.8%.
According to QRC chief executive Michael Roche, the figures reflect the fact that from 2005-06 to 2008-09, female employment in the industry grew by 111%.
By comparison, male employment grew 64% while total employment grew 70%.
“Of particular note is the significant increase in women working in executive and senior management roles,” Roche said.
“They numbered just 22 in 2005-06, but by 2008-09, this figure had increased to 110, which equates to 400%.
“In that same time period, the proportion of female engineers rose by 62%, geologists by 59%, trades people by 275% and operator and production employees by 207%.
“It’s particularly gratifying to see that women are taking up these non-traditional roles.”
Roche qualified these statistics by noting that women still only comprise 1% of trades people, 8% of operators and production employees, 12% of engineers and 11% of executives.
According to the survey, there was also been an increase in the proportion of women applying for resource sector jobs.
Women made up 21% of the applicant pool in 2006-07, compared to 22.4% last year.
“The resources sector cannot afford to become complacent in the attraction and retention of women,” Roche said.
“Women are still a largely untapped pool of skilled employees and the sector cannot afford to miss out on their talents.
“The QRC will continue to support its member companies, through the Women in Resources Action Plan, in their efforts to attract and retain women over the next 12 months.”