Rio Tinto female recruitment drives attract more than 3,000 applicants
The Transferrable Pathways campaign by Rio Tinto seeks to recruit women across Australia and New Zealand to the mining industry. The company announced that more than 3,000 women who have not worked in the mining industry prior to the campaign have since applied for jobs.
The campaign that was launched in May attracted about 1,600 responses in Western Australia which was roughly the same number received for the Women in Leadership program at Rio Tinto’s eastern Australian and New Zealand Aluminium operations in April and May, bringing total applications for both programs to around 3,200.
The campaigns attracted applicants from a diverse range of industries, including defense, aviation, government, human resources and education.
“The response to both of these campaigns has been overwhelming and it is encouraging to see women keen to enter our industry as we work to create a more inclusive and diverse environment,” said Rio Tinto Chief Executive Australia, Kellie Parker. “Our recent review into workplace culture, the Everyday Respect report, showed clearly that we need to foster a more diverse and inclusive workforce, which includes increasing the number of women in our business.
“One way we are trying to do this is to better recognize leadership and work skills gained in other industries and help transfer those to our workforce.
“Traditional recruitment practices for our industry mean we are hiring women from the same talent pool.
“By opening up our operational roles to women without industry experience, but with transferrable skills and talent, we not only increase representation of women in our business but also diversity across the industry as a whole.”
Transferable Pathways aims to fast track women who haven’t worked in mining before into operational leadership and planner and scheduler roles with Rio Tinto.
After a successful trial program for women operators in 2020, the program will be enhanced in 2022 to include leadership roles. 34 women will be selected for a combination of leadership, planning and scheduling roles across Rio Tinto’s Pilbara operations including Gudai-Darri, Marandoo, Robe Valley, Brockman, Cape Lambert and other Pilbara locations.
Over the first 12 months, each participant will receive a tailored learning and development plan to support their move into mining. They will be asked to bring their unique skills to learning and development sessions which will be focused on the more technical aspects of mining. Each participant will also shadow a peer on site and be partnered with mentors to coach and support them as they gain industry experience.
Women in Leadership aims to improve gender diversity in frontline leadership roles in Rio Tinto’s Aluminium operations across eastern Australia and in New Zealand.
A pilot program was launched in 2021, which led to 15 developing supervisors joining Rio Tinto’s three Gladstone sites. The program has since expanded to include developing superintendents, who can have up to 100 direct reports, with more than 1,600 people applying for eight positions offered across Pacific Operations.
The developing supervisor pilot program will soon also expand beyond Gladstone, with a total of eight more positions available at the other Aluminium sites of Gove (Northern Territory), Weipa (Queensland), Bell Bay (Tasmania) and Tiwai Point (New Zealand).
Successful applicants in both programs will take part in a 12-month course combining on-the-job and classroom training and will be supported through mentoring, networking, coaching and educational programs.
Applicants who aren’t selected for the Transferable Pathways or Women in Leadership programs will be considered for other suitable positions within the company.
Successful candidates will begin the programs later this year.