The 3 Most Wanted Mining & Heavy Industrial Positions

Mining & Heavy Industrial

As a recruiter who specializes in the mining & heavy industrial industries, I navigate the ever-changing landscape daily – from interesting new clients and candidates to new job orders and hiring processes. So far this year, my team and I have noticed several trends throughout the labor market. Here are the top 3 most critical positions that we are seeing across the mining & heavy industrial manufacturing.

  1. Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS)

Nearly every client of mine is looking for some sort of EHS Professional. These roles range in seniority, from specialists to global directors. EHS is certainly a must-need so far this year. With the importance of employee safety and environmental safety, EHS seems to be at an all-time high. Different states have different regulations to abide by. As a result, job descriptions and qualifications vary greatly from company to company. The good news is that EHS professionals are some of the best candidates to work with!

  1. Process Engineers

Oh boy, I swear everyone needs a Process Engineer. In fact, most companies are looking for several. With such a focus on continuous improvement projects throughout facilities, Process Engineers are in incredibly high demand. If you have a Chemical Engineering degree and six-sigma experience, get in contact with my team NOW! I believe every HR team is working on at least one Process Engineering position. This goes for just about all industries we work on including mining, aggregates, pulp and paper, and metal manufacturing.

  1. Instrumentation and Electrical (I&E)

The number one most wanted position in the mining & heavy industrial space has to be Instrumentation and Electrical. With mining and manufacturing doing so well in today’s market, everyone needs some sort of I&E position. From power systems to instrumentation and controls, this is by far the most critical role I have received across the board. Luckily, there are a good number of qualified candidates to fill these roles. It certainly wouldn’t be a bad time to have these skill sets and qualifications. In other words, I am seeing these candidates get great compensation packages. Electrical maintenance is a position I work on day in and day out. If you have an I&E background and are looking for a new opportunity, get in touch with me and my team.

Subsequently, if your mining or heavy industrial team has critical roles to fill in these areas, contact me today. I have a steady pipeline of qualified candidates ready to grow their careers and make their next move.

Mining Trends

Mining Trends to Watch for in 2019

Mining Trends

The Mining industry is recovering from a difficult couple of decades. Since October 2016, mining has been steadily growing in both production and job creation. While there are many factors that affect this volatile industry, here are a few mining trends to watch for in the second half of 2019.

Access to resources

As mining companies continue to extract mineral resources, we are seeing once fruitful areas begin to become exhausted. To accommodate, mining organizations have two options:

  • Use new technologies for further extraction and processing
  • Open new extraction and processing locations in areas that were once not economically viable

New technologies will also help make mining processes more efficient and economical. Organizations will be able to save time and money during processing, all while reducing waste. As a result, new plants or mines will open up, which will generate new jobs for years to come.

Transforming the workforce

In 2018, employment in the mining industry increased by an average of 5,000 jobs per month. And in the first half of 2019, average monthly job gains are over 1,000 jobs. This is great news! The mining industry as a whole has left it’s pre-2016 slump and has been steadily growing. However, the labor force as a whole is aging as Baby Boomers near retirement.

In fact, by 2022 more than one-quarter of the U.S. labor force will be in the 55-plus age category. To put it in perspective, the percentage of Baby Boomers who are now retired has doubled since 2010. In the mining sector, 27 percent of the workforce will be over the age of 55 in 2022. This is especially troubling because the mining sector is the fifth fastest growing industry sector with a growth rate of 1.4 percent over the next 5 years. To compensate for the aging workforce, mining organizations will have to find creative ways to attract younger talent.

There’s a skills gap

With a rapidly growing industry and a workforce that is aging, employers are having troubles finding and retaining skilled workers in the mining sector. There are 1.63 million more jobs than available workers to fill them, and the mining industry is feeling the effects of this challenge for employers. As the mining industry continues to digitize, employers have to find ways to attract younger talent and train current employees on new processes and technologies.

Mining is becoming more and more automated, and mining employers are going to have to make workplace adjustments. A great example of this is Rio Tinto, who recently announced a $2 million vocational education and training initiative to address their skills gap. Programs like this will help ensure the next generation of workers is prepared to make an impact in the mining sector.

Get the talent your team needs

If your recruiting efforts are stuck in a rut, our team can help you find the diamonds in the rough. Our experienced Mining & Heavy Industrial recruiting team knows the ins-and-outs of the industry and will help your team find the talent you need in today’s competitive market. Contact a JSG recruiter today!

Pulp and Paper Industry

10 Interesting Facts About the Pulp and Paper Industry

The Pulp and Paper Industry has been around for centuries and it plays an integral role in our everyday lives. Without even realizing it, we use paper almost every single day. In fact, there are over 5,000 products made from paper and paper by-products. From napkins to coffee filters to even shipping materials, we use paper much more than we typically think about. Here are 10 interesting facts about the Pulp and Paper Industry that you may not have known.

10 interesting paper industry facts

  1. Paper was first invented in China in 100 B.C. and the paper industry was officially created in 105 A.D.
  2. Paper was originally made by mixing chopped bark, hemp, and water. Then, you’d press it flat and let it dry in the sun to form paper.
  3. The first patent issued for a continuous papermaking machine was in 1799 to Louis-Nicolas Robert in France.
  4. Benjamin Franklin was the first paper merchant in America. He also helped start 18 mills in Virginia and surrounding areas.
  5. The U.S. Pulp and Paper Industry produces 78 million tons of paper per year, valued at $187 billion. Additionally, it employs 373,400 people with an annual payroll of over $30 billion and an average salary of $81,300.
  6. Every year, Americans use about 70 million tons of paper and paperboard.
  7. A single pine tree can produce approximately 80,500 sheets of paper.
  8. Paper is one the easiest and most inexpensive consumer products to recycle, and worldwide, 65% of it is recovered.
  9. Since 1990, U.S. paper recovery has increased by 76%.
  10. Ironically, the United States’ printed “paper” money isn’t paper at all. It’s 75% cotton and 25% linen. So, the saying “money doesn’t grow on trees” is certainly true!

Looking for your next paper career opportunity?

The paper industry is full of interesting facts and plays a crucial role in all of our lives. So, if you work in the Pulp and Paper Industry and are looking for a new opportunity, my team and I have several exciting opportunities across the United States. Reach out to me if you’re ready for your next step in your career! Additionally, you can check out the Johnson Search Group job board. We have dozens of opportunities available across the country!


Spring is Here and Idled Mines Are Roaring Back to Life


It was a long winter, and all the off-season work and preparation you’ve done for this spring is about to be put into action. You’re chomping at the bit to start the engines, push some buttons, and start producing. But before you do that, please take a moment and think about safety.

Did you know April is the second deadliest month in the metal and non-metal industry, with 50 fatalities since 2000? Here are a few good reminders to help keep everyone safe, especially during the first few months of producing, when the weather may only allow you to run intermittently.

New Employees

Very often you will have new employees joining your team when your season begins. Whether these employees are industry veterans or brand new to mining, designate time to train and establish safe work practices. Refresh on manufacturers’ specifications for safe equipment operation and make sure to focus training on unfamiliar or new tasks.

First Aid and Emergency Response Procedures

Make sure all employees understand and follow these procedures! It is imperative that you designate a competent person to be available at all times in case of an emergency. This person should be trained and able to provide first aid, including artificial respiration, bleeding control, treatment of shock and burns.

Plan and Communicate

Early in the season, allow extra time to complete tasks and projects. It is common for routine tasks to take longer than normal. Allowing extra time will help ensure they are being completed safely and correctly. Communicate clear instructions, including how to mitigate risk and the proper use of safety equipment.

It’s going to be a busy 2019 in the metal and non-metal industry. Just keep in mind safety has to always come first. It only takes one small moment of carelessness for an accident to happen. Always keep your guard up and look out for one another. Have a great season and let’s all go home safe.


The Limitations and Possibilities in Mining


It’s no news to anyone that the crippling cold weather we had in the Midwest can halt work activities.

While talking with one of my contacts today, we were going over extreme conditions worked in; they do not break ground when temperatures are below 14 °F degrees. Another contact went over the same procedure and they don’t work in anything below -30 °F. It’s so frigid that you can even find images of rail tracks having fires lit on them to warm them up.

It got me thinking about a picture a colleague showed me from a diamond mine in Serbia; some of the extreme mines out there are pushing the boundaries of engineering today.

In cold weather, special rubbers, fluids, and PPE are necessary. So here is something to take your mind off the cold if you’re in the Midwest!

Meet the Mponeng Gold Mine: The World’s Deepest Mine


Source: Wikipedia

Located in South Africa, the world’s deepest mine is a staggering 2.5 miles (or 4 kilometers) below the surface. The temperature of the rock at that depth is 151 °F or (66 °C) and pumps cycle ice slurry down just to make the conditions manageable. Just going to that temperature without the insulation and cooling would be fatal.

As you look at how far we’ve been able to push the boundaries, a number of countries have worked to drill as far as possible. The Kola Superdeep Borehole was a scientific drilling project of the Soviet Union. The project aimed to drill as deep into the Earth’s crust as possible. The USSR made it nearly 8 miles below the surface and is the deepest known to man. The temperature there is 180 °F (356 °C)!

Pushing the boundaries in mining

There are numerous threads talking about the sheer possibilities of using this energy. The Geothermal activity could power boilers and turbines and in turn, may have endless possibilities. And on that point, a number of these deep gold mines in Africa are not possible without modern technology.

Technology in mining is the main reason we’re able to explore and question opportunities for future energy sources. And without us continuing to push the boundaries, who knows where we would be today.

I’m always fascinated by both historical and futuristic views into my industry. If you have any particular sites that you have pictures of or a website that you think is very interesting, I’d love to see it!


Safety in Mining – It’s Come A Long Way


The mining industry has come a long way over the last 120 years. In years past, mining had little to no oversight and miners’ lives were put at risk, daily. The bright spot is that the mining industry in the U.S. has made serious headway in minimizing injuries and deaths. Safety has been moved to the forefront and everyone participates. Training, culture, and active participation all play a role in making safety and saving lives a priority.

Here are some encouraging stats:

  • From 1979-1999 metal and non-metal mining had 1,706 fatalities, according to MSHA.
  • From 2000-2018 for metal and non-metal, that number dropped to 476 fatalities.
  • Coal saw 1,644 fatalities between 1979 and 1999.
  • Coal dropped to 489 fatalities during the period between 2000 and 2018.

Fatalities are trending down in mining

2018 saw 15 fatalities in metal/non-metal mining; up two from 2017, but the second lowest year since MSHA started keeping track. Coal also did well in 2018, having the second-best year ever (tying with 2015) with 12 fatalities. In contrast, this is up from 2016, which saw 8 fatalities and is down from the 15 in 2017. To really slam home the safety improvement within the industry, coal had 3,243 fatalities in 1907 – the most in recorded history. In 1917, metal and non-metal had only 983.

It is a given fact that any fatality is unacceptable, but the strides the industry is making at reducing incidents is very encouraging.

Miners are essential

Those who have read my article “10 Interesting Mining Facts You Probably Didn’t Know,” understand the importance of the mining industry to our world. Miners are essential, and in my opinion, do not receive the recognition they deserve. With that said, a safety culture, while at times inconvenient and cumbersome, is there to ensure everyone gets home to their families at the end of the day.

This article is dedicated to the 128,597 souls we have lost in mining over the past 119 years since the U.S. started keeping records in 1900. Respect, love, and having each other’s backs = mining.


What Am I Looking for on a Resume?


We’ve published many articles discussing resumes. However, as a professional mining & heavy industrial recruiter, what am I looking for on a resume?

Using keywords and phrases

First of all, let me explain the way most resumes are found today during an active job search, excluding direct applicants. Some sort of search is performed whether it’s online or an internal database. Knowing this, you can use keywords and phrases to your advantage. For example, if you have experience with Allen Bradley equipment, I would be sure and add PLC on your resume so hiring managers will notice you in their stack of applicants. In another case, I would be sure to use the words purchasing and procurement. Using relevant keywords on your resume just gives yourself the best chance to be seen.

Add a skills section

I always recommend including a skills section on your resume. In the mining & heavy industrial world, it’s crucial to see what skill sets a candidate has to ensure they can safely perform necessary duties of the job. You should include a bulleted covering your relevant experience. This is also another prime opportunity to add more keywords.

As good as you might be at your job, if your key skills are not easily legible, you may miss out on the job of a lifetime.

Resume format

I always get asked how long a resume should be. I have seen some great two-page resumes.

Some of the better examples I have seen have a brief summary. I personally like a resume with the most recent experience at the top. Dated in chronological order, with a company, title, and then a short overview.

Resume example for a position as a Maintenance Manager

2014 – current

ABC Company: Maintenance Manager

Responsible for 3 supervisors and 15 technicians in a 155-person continuous manufacturing facility. I oversee a maintenance budget of $xxx and schedules, including PM schedules and root cause analysis. We have improved equipment availability from 92-95% in the calendar year utilizing and KPI’s which I created after conducting a full plant analysis. Brought vibration and thermography in-house, saving $xxx.

This is just a short example of what I like for on a resume. The questions I will get from clients are going to be related to your own involvement at a job. Thus, if you can paint that picture verbally, you can get noticed and save some valuable time in the hiring process.

I hope this helps any of you who are looking for answers on a very common question I hear.

coal mines

Five Fascinating Mines from Across the World (Part 3)

I am pleased to bring you the next edition of my Five Fascinating Mines from Across the World blog series. As always, I’ll be sharing pictures and interesting facts about the mining industry. For the first time viewer, I am an executive recruiter in the mining industry. I get to spend my days working with my clients discussing their staffing needs and filling those roles with the most qualified candidates on the market.

Since we’re getting into the holiday season, I want to mention how thankful I am to have this opportunity to help change lives in the most fascinating industry out there. So, if your company is having a hard time hiring in this tight talent market, please reach out to me so we can discuss how we can work together to effect change on your organization or personal career path… Enough of the sales pitch, let’s get to the good stuff!

Rio Tinto’s US Borax Operation – Boron, California

US Borax Operation in Boron CA

Source: Rio Tinto

Individual Americans use an average of 40,000 pounds of minerals each year. That’s right 40,000 pounds! From vitamins to salt, to laundry detergent you are using mined minerals daily!

Bailey Mine Complex – Pennsylvania

Bailey Coal Mine Complex

Source: Wikipedia

The Bailey Coal Mine Complex is a group of three coal mines in Greene County, Pennsylvania. Together, they make up the largest underground mine complex in North America. In 2013, the Complex contributed nearly 20 million tons of coal.

As a matter of fact, in 2016, coal producers paid $39 million in federal coal royalties. Granted, half of these royalties were used to fund public schools.

Mponeng Gold Mine – Johannesburg, South Africa

Source: Volvo Construction Equipment

The Mponeng Gold Mine in Johannesburg, South Africa is the world’s deepest mine, reaching a depth over 4km (13,123.4ft).

Soquimich Mine – Chile

Soquimich Mine - Chile

Source: Research Tree

Did you know that lithium was once a key ingredient in the soda 7 Up!? From 1940-1950, Lithium was in 7 UP, and  Cadbury Beverages Corporation even touted the positive health effects of lithium in their soda! For example, the image above from Soquimich Mine in Chile illustrates brine deposits containing lithium.

Brine deposits are essentially underground reservoirs that contain high concentrations of dissolved salts, such as lithium. Not to mention, dry lakebeds create it!

Graymont Minerals – Pleasant Gap, Pennsylvania

Graymont Minerals Pleasant Gap

Source: Graymont

This one is for my aggregates clients! 85,000 tons of aggregates are needed to construct just one mile of interstate highway.

I tried to cover a little bit of everything on this one. From minerals, coal, and even gold, I really hope you enjoyed these interesting facts and breathtaking images. In addition, if you haven’t checked out the first or second edition of the Five Fascinating Mines from Across the World, you won’t want to miss them!


10 Interesting Facts About Silver


Silver was discovered in 5,000BC and has been overshadowed by Gold since its’ discovery. While there are dedicated miners to silver, most silver is produced as a byproduct of gold, copper, lead and zinc mining. And it’s not uncommon for many mines to use the silver byproduct to pay for operating costs. Silver is used significantly in heavy industrial applications and doesn’t get much love compared to other metals.

Here are some interesting facts you should know about silver:

  • The chemical element for Silver is AG
  • Silver has a melting point of 1,763°F (961.78°C) and a boiling point of 3,924°F (2,162°C)
  • In 1913, Silver traded for $2.64/oz. In January of 1980, adjusted for inflation, silver traded at $114.27/oz. And in April 2011, it traded for $54.54/oz. Today, September 19, 2018, it is trading for $14.24. Per the US Debt clock, silver should be trading at $599/oz!
  • According to silver expert Ted Butler, JP Morgan owns 700 Million ounces of physical silver!
  • There is less silver above ground than gold.
  • Silver is one of the most reflective metals in the world.
  • Mexico is the largest producer of Silver in the world.
  • Silver has natural antibacterial properties and the saying, “born with a silver spoon” came from wealthy families who would feed their young children with silver spoons for the germ-killing properties.
  • Unlike gold, silver is typically not recycled. Much of the mined silver used in TVs, electronics, etc., is buried in landfills.
  • Silver is slightly harder than gold.

It amazes me how little love silver gets! This incredible metal is so vital to our lives and yet receives very little respect. Silver has an interesting future; the high demand due to our technology consumption and the low physical inventory makes it incredibly important to our lives. I predict that this underdog will have its’ day and command the respect it deserves. Got silver?

stay out, stay alive

SOSA: Stay Out, Stay Alive!

stay out, stay alive

Summer is upon us and the urge to get outdoors and explore is calling; abandoned mines are a strong lure to the curious and adventuresome, both young and old.  MSHA estimates that approximately 30 people die each year at these abandoned mines with more than 60 percent of the deaths being from drowning. What may look like a picturesque watering hole, can hold some real dangers.

Here are some things to think about:

  • Abandoned mines and quarries can hold and hide dangerous equipment. That jump into the water could have devastating results if there is large equipment underneath.
  • Mining companies are held to high environmental standards when closing mine sites; however, some locations may be on the radar as superfund sites or even extremely old mine sites that just never got on the radar. Hazardous materials could be present; ignoring the no trespassing signs and no swimming signs, could cost you your life.
  • Quarries traditionally have steep walls. The urge to take a flying leap into the water, at high elevations may seem exciting, but high walls, cold water, hidden equipment, and harsh impact could lead to devastating results.
  • Underground mines can contain miles and miles of dark, damp tunnels and crumbling walls. Losing your way could cost you your life.
  • Abandoned underground mines most likely no longer have proper ventilation. Potentially hazardous gases and contaminated dust could be present.
  • MSHA has a staffed toll-free emergency line that runs 24 hours a day.  This number (800-746-1553) is to report mining accidents and hazardous condition at a mine – including abandoned mines.

I remember when I was a kid, going out to swim at a quarry. Obviously, nothing went wrong, but proper education and awareness of the dangers of these sites should be taught to all. The “No Trespassing,” and “No Swimming” signs are there for a reason! Remember: stay out, stay alive!