A recent study has shown mining engineers are the most in-demand engineering professionals across Australia.
Off the back of the resources boom and continued infrastructure development, experienced engineers have become one of the most highly sought after candidates in the Australian employment market.
Engineering recruitment specialist, Experis, a ManpowerGroup company, has tracked the ‘Top 5 Hottest Jobs in Engineering’ for the first half of 2012, based on its industry insight and market intelligence. The results have shown that the jobs that are most difficult to fill are:
• Mining Engineers – especially those with 5 to 7 years’ experience
• Civil Engineers – in particular Quantity Surveyors & Cost Engineers
• Environmental Engineers – in Construction, Oil & Gas, and Mining industries.
• Hydrogeologists – Particularly Ground Water Modelling for Underground Mining Assets
• Pipeline Engineers - in Coal, Iron Ore, Gold, Oil & Gas and Mining
According to Sue Howse, Experis Australia general manager, the nation’s engineering industry is experiencing significant skills gaps across many positions in this sector.
“Engineers with 7-15 years’ experience are particularly hard to find. In mining, these are the people who drive projects and expansions through to commissioning stage, so they are vital to the industry,” she said.
A range of engineering roles that feed into the resources industry are also increasingly hard to fill.
“Civil engineers are in demand for infrastructure, earthworks and rail projects. In particular, design and costing, and project management specialists are needed,” Ms Howse said.
“There is also a growing need for environmental engineers because of the heightened focus on environmental issues and standards by the Government and public as the carbon tax is implemented. Resources businesses are looking for environmental specialists to increase innovation in the area, streamline operating procedures and deliver on environmental management strategies.”
Ms Howse said that although these skills shortages are an issue, sluggish international markets in Europe, America and other regions are making Australia an attractive opportunity for engineering professionals willing to make the move.
“We have seen an increase in the number of engineering candidates coming out of the Middle East, indicating a slowdown in construction and civil engineering work there.
“Most of these candidates have re-located for work before, so they have done their homework, often have their visas already arranged, and have already experienced working in remote or isolated areas on FIFO rosters - so they complement our workforce needs well.
"This will take some pressure off the skills shortages in the Australian market but essentially we still have an acute shortage of engineering talent in Australia,” she said.
“Local job seekers should be looking at developing their online presence in order to make the most of the opportunities in this market. Joining social networking sites such as LinkedIn will make you visible to recruiters, HR professionals, and people that might refer you to job openings.
"Our engineering team runs various LinkedIn groups for engineering professionals which promote job openings, and also table industry news and issues for discussion,” Ms Howse said.
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