New research says expansions in the resources industry mean Queensland will need an extra 30,000 mining workers over the next five years.
According to research firm Kinetic Group's annual Heartbeat Report, new and expanding projects in Queensland are predicted to double the state's mining workforce over the coming decade.
"When these growth rates are applied to Queensland's Office of Economic and Statistical Research baseline of 55,500 mining employees this equates to 14,500 new staff by 2014," it said.
"Longer term forecasts indicate the need for an additional 30,000 employees required in Queensland over the next five years."
Kinetic said employment demand, including operating and construction staff, was expected to reach its peak in 2014 and training graduates, apprentices, trainees, and cadets was expected to rise 21 per cent in two years.
The report said more than 13,000 of the new jobs would be unskilled operator jobs, but new workers were also hurting companies by quickly leaving the industry.
"18.4 per cent of employees who separated in 2010-11 were new recruits that commenced work in the previous 12 months," it said.
The report also said the mining industry was ageing fast, and a lot of new entrants were older than the current workforce.
It said research indicated less than 10 per cent of the industry was under 25 years of age, and almost one third of new recruits were 50 or older.
Earlier this year Kinetic Group CEO Derek Hunter told Australian Mining many unskilled applicants weren't serious about working in mining after facing the reality of the cost of training and the tough work conditions.
"A lot of people are excited about getting a job in mining, but whether they are suitable for it is a major question," he said.