Striving to understand the mining workforce of the future – by Len Gillis (Northern Ontario Business – December 16, 2019)

Sudbury mining panelists discuss how to recruit, retain employees in the digital age

It is going to take imagination, better communications and some good listening skills for the mining industry to attract and retain enough workers skilled in data-driven and digital technology.

Those were some of the comments during a recent panel discussion held in Sudbury at the annual general meeting of SAMSSA (Sudbury Area Mining Supply and Service Association).

The panel was made up of well-known experts in various sectors of mining. They included Michael Gribbons, vice-president of sales and marketing at Maestro Digital Mine; Lynn Iturregui, project management for mining at Hatch; Roy Slack, the president of CIM (Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum); and Shayne Wisniewski, general manager of mining projects for Glencore’s Sudbury Integrated Nickel Operations.

Moderator Shannon Katary told the panel that companies are striving to understand what the workforce of the future will be like, what skills will be needed and what companies need to do to attract new talent.

“Given the competitive nature of the digital and data-driven skills required, how do you get it into the mining sector where the traditions and outdated reputation of mining is a bit of hindrance?” Katary asked the group. Roy Slack, who said he talks to mining students at various universities, said the mining industry itself will have to take on the role of training for specific skills.

For the rest of this article: