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Extractive Industries (Quarrying)

Overview

This page provides information and data on the Extractive Industries (Quarrying) sector, which is one component of the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure industry.

The Extractive Industries sector focuses on the extraction of raw material used in building and construction such as sand, rock, gravel and limestone. The value of the Extractive Industries sector to the Australian economy was increasing at a rate of 14% between 2007 and 2016. The sector is largely made up of small operators with only a handful of businesses employing over 200 employees as at June 2016. The Extractive Industries sector is expected to grow until 2023, driven by increased activity in the Civil Infrastructure and Residential Construction sectors given they are the primary users of the materials quarrying produces.

Vocational education and training (VET) is required for a range of Extractive Industries sector-related occupations such as:

  • Drillers, Miners and Shot Firers
  • Earthmoving Plant Operators.

Nationally recognised training for Extractive Industries (Quarrying) is delivered under the RII - Resources and Infrastructure Industry Training Package.

For more information on Civil Infrastructure, Coal Mining, Metalliferous Mining, and Drilling sectors, please visit the respective pages. For information and data on training qualifications that apply to multiple sectors within the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure industry please visit the Resources and Infrastructure Cross Sector page.

Information sourced from the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure IRC's 2019 Skills Forecast.

All data sources are available at the end of the page.

IRC and Skills Forecasts

Employment trends

Employment snapshot

The employment levels for the Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying industry sectors fluctuated between the period of 2000 and 2018, reflecting industry cycles. In 2023, industry employment levels for Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying are projected to be similar to that of 2018, with a decrease for Construction Material Mining and an increase for Other Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying.

The occupations of Drillers, Miners and Shot Firers, and Truck Drivers make up just under 20% of the Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying industry workforce. The employment levels in these occupations are projected to increase until 2023. Earthmoving Plant Operators and Machinery Operators and Drivers nfd make up just over a further 14% of the workforce, with employment levels in these occupations projected to increase 0.5% and 4.4% respectively to 2023.

Training trends

Training snapshot

During 2018, there were 22,300 program enrolments in Extractive Industries-related qualifications and approximately 4,130 program completions. Enrolment and completion numbers decreased quite sharply between 2017 and 2018 after remaining relatively stable in the previous years.

The majority of enrolments were in the Certificates II and III in Surface Extraction Operations qualifications in 2018. The main intended occupation for the training was Miner, with 90% of training delivered by private training providers. Funding for subjects was split between government (56%) and domestic fee-for-service (44%). Almost 70% of students were from Queensland, with 11% from Western Australia and 8% from New South Wales.

In 2018, apprenticeship commencements decreased from the previous year to approximately 1,680 and were similar in number to 2016. There were around 1,400 apprenticeship completions in 2018, a substantial increase on the previous year, and the highest annual in the period covered. As at December 2018, 49% of training was reported in Queensland, with Western Australia accounting for 25% and New South Wales 22%. Most apprentices were training towards the intended occupation of Miner.

For more data specific to your occupation, industry or training package, visit NCVER’s VET Students by Industry. If you are prompted to log in, select cancel and you will continue to be directed to the program.

For more data specific to your region visit NCVER’s Atlas of total VET.

If you are interested in extracting NCVER data to construct tables with data relevant to you, sign up for a VOCSTATS account.

Industry insights

Industry insights on skills needs

The Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure IRC's 2019 Skills Forecast identifies the top priority skills for the Extractive Industries sector as:

  • Digital literacy
  • Workplace safety practices
  • Communication skills
  • Problem solving
  • Environmental sustainability.

The top generic skills listed in the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure IRC's 2019 Skills Forecast in order of importance to the industry are:

  • Language, literacy and numeracy
  • Managerial / Leadership
  • Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills
  • Financial
  • Learning agility / Information literacy / Intellectual autonomy and self-management.

According to the job vacancy data, the top requested skills by employers were communication and problem solving. The most advertised occupations in the Extractive Industries sector were Truck Driver followed by Concrete Batching Plant Operator.

The Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure IRC's 2019 Skills Forecast identifies three issues affecting skills and training needs within the Extractive Industries Sector:

  • Skills gaps have been identified in work practices to mitigate health, safety and environmental concerns. Quarrying operators and managers require new skills in activities such as planning and construction for dumps, dust risk management and ground instability control.
  • Growth in the uptake of new technology has highlighted the need for new competencies on remote operating centres, remote vehicle operations, autonomous vehicles and drones
  • Current nationally recognised training products do not show clear pathways for the quarrying sector. The right competencies need to be available at the right levels and more senior roles have an appropriate mix of technical, inter-personal and business skills. Stakeholders have suggested that non-technical skills be incorporated into higher level qualifications.

For insights on the broader Resources industry, please visit the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure cluster page.

Links and resources

Regulators

Access Canberra

Australian Explosives Industry and Safety Group (AEISG)

Northern Territory Department of Primary Industry & Resources

NSW Department of Industry - Resources Regulator

NT WorkSafe

Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines

Safe Work Australia

SafeWork NSW

SafeWork SA

South Australian Department of Primary Industries and Regions (PIRSA)

Tasmanian Department of State Growth

Victorian Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources

Western Australian Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety

WorkSafe Tasmania

WorkSafe Victoria

Worksafe WA - Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety

 

Industry associations and advisory bodies

Australian Asphalt Pavement Association (AAPA)

Cement Concrete and Aggregates Australia (CCAA)

Construction Material Processors Association (CMPA)

Institute of Quarrying Australia (IQA)

NSW Mining and Petroleum Competence Board

Victorian Limestone Producers Association (VLPA)

 

State Training Advisory Bodies

Construction Industry Training Board (SA)

Energy Skills Queensland (ESQ)

Industry Skills Advisory Council Northern Territory (ISAC NT)

Resources Industry Training Council (RITCWA)

Resources and Infrastructure NSW Industry Training Advisory Body

 

Employee associations

Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU)

Australian Workers' Union (AWU)

Construction Forestry Mining & Energy Union (CFMEU)

 

Relevant research

IResources and Infrastructure: Industry Workforce Analysis and Forecast – SkillsDMC

Data sources and notes

Department of Employment, 2018, Employment Projections, available from the Labour Market Information Portal website:

  • by ANZSIC 3 digit industry, employment projections to May 2023
    • 091 Construction Material Mining
    • 099 Other Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying
    • 090 Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying nfd.
  • by ANZSCO, selected 4 digit occupations, employment projections to May 2023
    • 7122 Drillers Miners and Shot Firers
    • 7331 Truck Drivers
    • 7212 Earthmoving Plant Operators
    • 7000 Machinery Operators and Drivers nfd
    • 3232 Metal Fitters and Machinists
    • 7129 Other Stationary Plant Operators.

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2018, Employed persons by Industry group of main job (ANZSIC), Sex, State and Territory, November 1984 onwards, 6291.0.55.003 – EQ06, viewed 1 November 2018 http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/6291.0.55.003May%202018?OpenDocument.

  • Employed total by ANZSIC 3 digit industry, 2000 to 2018, May Quarter
    • 091 Construction Material Mining
    • 099 Other Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying
    • 090 Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying nfd.

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2017, 2016 Census – employment, income and unpaid work, TableBuilder. Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data.

  • Employment level by ANZSIC 2 digit industry:
    • 09 Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying
    • 4 digit level occupations to identify the relevant VET-related occupations in the industry as a proportion of the total workforce.                                                           

Training data has been extracted from the National VET Provider Collection, Total VET Students and Courses from the following training package or qualifications:

RII Resources and Infrastructure Industry Training Package:

  • Certificate II in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII20209 – Certificate II in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII20213 – Certificate II in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII20215 – Certificate II in Surface Extraction Operations
  • Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII30109 – Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII30111 – Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII30112 – Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII30113 – Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII30115 – Certificate III in Surface Extraction Operations
  • Certificate IV in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII40109 – Certificate IV in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII40113 – Certificate IV in Surface Extraction Operations
    • RII40115 – Certificate IV in Surface Extraction Operations.

Superseded qualifications and training packages are grouped with current training products.

Data covers a range of selected student and training characteristics in the following categories and years:

  • 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 program enrolments
  • 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 subject enrolments
  • 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 program completions.

Total VET students and courses data is reported for the calendar year. Program enrolments are the qualifications, courses and skill-sets in which students are enrolled in a given period. For students enrolled in multiple programs, all programs are counted. Program completion indicates that a student has completed a structured and integrated program of education or training. Location data uses student residence. Subject enrolment is registration of a student at a training delivery location for the purpose of undertaking a module, unit of competency or subject. For more information on the terms and definitions please refer to Total VET students and courses: terms and definitions document. 

Low counts (less than 5) are not reported to protect client confidentiality. 

RII Resources and Infrastructure Industry Training Package apprentice and trainee data has been extracted from the National Apprentice and Trainee Collection, including:

  • 2010 to 2018 commencements
  • 2010 to 2018 completions 
  • 2018 apprentices and trainees in-training October to December 2018 collection, by qualification and state and territory of data submitter.

Generic skills data have been extracted from the Mining, Drilling and Civil Infrastructure IRC's 2019 Skills Forecast.

Job vacancy data have been extracted from Burning Glass Technologies 2019, Labour Insight Real-time Labour Market Information Tool, Burning Glass Technologies, Boston, viewed July 2019, https://www.burning-glass.com.

Data shown represent most requested generic skills and occupations according to internet job postings in Australia between July 2016 and June 2019 filtered by ANZSIC and ANZSCO classification levels listed below.

  • Labourers, Machinery Operators and Drivers, Technicians and Trades Workers
  • 09 Non-Metallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying.
Updated: 01 Nov 2019
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