WA program to tap into demand for drill rig operators

21 April, 2022

There is a strong demand for drill rig operators in Western Australia. To cater to the demand, the Australian resources sector is offering a new short course. The course is called “The Driller’s Offsider Job Ready program.”

This program promotes the development of a new suite of skills, developed in collaboration with WA industries. The course was designed to deliver short, sharp training for job seekers and young people enabling them to upskill or reskill in industries with a need for skilled workers.

The program will also provide participants with skills to work safely on site. This will include first aid and CPR, work safely at heights and operate and maintain a four-wheel drive vehicle. It is a part of a 5.5 billion investment in WA Recovery Plan initiatives.

The first intake of students is scheduled to start in May 2022. Expressions of interest are currently open. Prior to training, students will take a one-day induction to introduce them to the working environment of a driller.

Students will be connected with work opportunities to transition into employment on completion of the course.

The program is low fee for non-concession students and free for all concession-eligible students, job seekers and young people.

The new training programs are currently being developed by the Education and Training Department. This is to meet WA’s strong demand for workers across the resources sector.

“This new Job Ready program offers a low-cost and fast-track training option to help Western Australians into entry-level drill rig operator jobs. Whilst also providing a pathway to full drilling operations qualifications and employment,” said Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery.

“Strong industry involvement in the program helps to link participants with employers and orientation with the working environment to ensure the industry is a good fit for them.”

The WA Government has been applauded for its response to cater to the state’s mining and resources sector.

“The challenges of the current skills shortage for the sector have been well-documented. Drilling is one area in which the impact has been particularly acute,” said Resources Industry Training Council manager Amanda Hamilton.

“This program will help address both current and future needs. This will be done by equipping participants with the skills they need to be on site right now, and also providing pathways to training that can deliver further drilling qualifications down the track.

“Importantly, the Driller’s Offsider Job Ready initiative has been developed with the assistance of the drilling industry and, in particular, the support of the Australian Drilling Industry Association.”