Thiess calls for girl power

Mining contractor Thiess has marked International Women's Day by calling on its employees to come up with plans and ideas on how to create a more attractive and flexible work environment for women.

Mining contractor Thiess has marked International Women’s Day by calling on its employees to come up with plans and ideas on how to create a more attractive and flexible work environment for women.

Thiess employees gathered in their Brisbane headquarters last week (March 7) in a workshop that sought to examine ways in which the company could increase the diversity and range of opportunities it had to offer.

The company was also keen to identify ways it could encourage people from a diverse range of backgrounds to join its 15,000 workforce.

Women are becoming more visible across the engineering landscape, although they currently represent less than 10% of the engineering workforce in Australia.

Human Resources Manager Sandra Bell said despite the small representation, women were punching well above their weight in a number of areas of achievement.

Thiess is actively recruiting women across all disciplines and geographic regions and has placed a high priority on addressing workplace diversity across its operations.

“As part of our commitment to workforce diversity, we monitor female participation rates and maintain active membership in the Diversity Council of Australia,” Bell said.

“The percentage of women employed by Thiess is approximately 13.5% and we are continuing to develop strategies to attract and retain more women in our business.”

With a combination of a skills shortage and major investment in mining and civil projects as well as major infrastructure developments, Thiess presents young women with a broad range of opportunities to develop and enhance their careers.

Hunter Valley’s Angela Green has taken on workplace stereotypes to drive a 240 tonne truck at Liddell Open Cut Mine.

Having ditched childhood plans of becoming a nurse Angela’s goal is to learn how to operate all machines onsite while working for Thiess.

“I enjoy my job a lot because knowing that I drive some of the biggest trucks in Australia is something to be proud of,” Green said.

“Learning how to drive the trucks is crazy,” she said.

“You think it will be easy but you have no idea until you get in one them and they start teaching you how to drive — it’s really not so easy.

“Besides the fact that it’s like driving a house about, there are so many hazards, blind spots and dangers on a mine site, you really have to be alert the whole time you are driving.”

Angela’s achievements include driving a Haul Truck, Water cart and Loader.

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