The mining boom had a profound impact on Australia’s economy and continues to show positive growth. Today the industry continues to be an essential part of Australia’s economy, accounting for 60 per cent of its exports and 8 per cent of its GDP.
As a result, mining, oil, and gas companies are extremely profitable and, in addition to international career progression, can offer top students the highest average graduate salaries of all the industries. According to the Association of Australian Graduate Employers Employer Survey 2019, the average starting salary for graduates in the mining industry is $84,000. For those in oil and gas, it rises to $93,000.
But what do graduates themselves look for? The answers can be found in the results of the 2019 GradAustralia Top 100 Graduate Employers survey. Ten companies from the mining, oil, and gas industry made the list, with the top five including BHP (31); Rio Tinto (37); Shell (59); BP (73); and ExxonMobil (74).
The top five represents a selection of the world’s most influential mining companies: BHP, for example, is the world’s largest mining company (by market capitalization) and the third-largest company in Melbourne (by revenue).
However, global reach and the promise of high pay might not be enough to attract all graduates: the Top 100 survey found that 82 per cent of science students and 72 of engineering students believe it is more important to be fulfilled at work than to receive high pay.
Like graduates from other disciplines, those in mining prize stimulation and positive workplace culture. ‘The culture is excellent both in the office and after hours,’ says one graduate at BP. ‘I love the exposure to so many different teams and opportunities,’ says a graduate at Rio Tinto.
‘The high pay and high profile of the mining, oil, and gas industry might make it seem like an outlier among graduate employers,’ explains Geoff Adams, co-founder of GradAustralia. ‘But the Top 100 survey results make it clear that the priorities of students now considering that industry is not unique: they’re hoping for a positive and intellectually stimulating workplace, just like everybody else.’
The definitive list of the Top 100 Graduate Employers can be found on the GradAustralia website. 50,000 books were distributed to university students around Australia – the Top 100 Guide includes 400 pages of comprehensive employer profiles, sector information, insider tips on how to get hired as well as real-life stories from graduates on the job.