Push for Mt Gambier as SA’s new FIFO hub

A new model to create regional fly in, fly out hubs will be piloted in the south east of South Australia.

Working in collaboration with the District Council of Grant in the south east region of South Australia, the pilot will be facilitated by leading jobs website for the Australian resource sector, The Resource Channel, which also developed the model. 

Managing director of The Resource Channel, Jody Elliott, says the model provides a highly cost effective and practical mechanism to engage Australians in the resource sector from regions that may not otherwise have that opportunity.

She says the model provides the opportunity for Federal, state and local governments to actively engage their regions in FIFO opportunities that could otherwise exist, including interaction with workers, businesses and training centres.  It will also provide each region with a structured process which delivers education and awareness about work in the industry and FIFO life, while at the same time helping to manage expectations about the results of the process.

“The outcome will be a comprehensive report for the region which will enable local councils to determine planning requirements and for The Resource Channel to facilitate introductions to employers on behalf of the Council where we know the profile matches the need,” Elliott said.

“We will also work with regional councils to identify other opportunities for local businesses and training centres to participate in the resource sector and grow a new service industry in the region.”

She went on to say that “the model is a ready-made and practical solution for employers seeking skills.  This solution will include airport and plane load availability, skills profiles and ascertain the level of interest in participating in FIFO and on what rosters.”

The report outcomes will be presented to employers identified as having a need to source a significant number of skills and allow the region to showcase the businesses that may be able to engage with the mining sector. 

According to Elliott, a number of major employers have already shown strong initial interest in the model.

“The report will very quickly enable employers to assess if the region offers the types of skills they require.  Because we also include an analysis of local business, airports and support infrastructure, it offers a quick, simple and effective option for employers to move in and commence recruitment and engage with local industry to support the mining sector,” she said.

Elliott believes there is a huge benefit to the local regions that might not otherwise have had an opportunity to join the sector, may now be able to do so, while retaining and possibly expanding the population with the benefit of FIFO and thus not having people moving away to seek employment in the sector. 
“Importantly, it enables future employees to retain their home base where their families, friends and support infrastructure exist, and at the same time, alleviates pressures on other mining locations already struggling with the supply of housing and infrastructure.”

Elliott says the south east of South Australia is a logical location to pilot the program because it boasts outstanding trade, engineering and operator skill sets from the transport and logistics, building and manufacturing industries.

The pilot program will begin in June.

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