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Auto-mate has continued its direct involvement in Austmine’s METS Career Pathway Program with the appointment of engineering graduate Vinuri Hewamalaweera.

Across Australia, the shortage of skilled mining workers is having a significant impact on the industry.

S&P Global predicted the “West Australian mining skills shortage to peak in 2023 amid ongoing tightness”.

As an industry, and more specifically the METS sector in Western Australia, we need to attract and support new talent if we are serious about maintaining our place as leaders, from an operational, safety and efficiency perspective, in the global mining industry.

Auto-mate, as a smart automation technology provider to the mining industry, recognises this and prioritises initiatives such as the Austmine program.

Run in conjunction with METS Ignited and the Federal Government’s Industry Growth Centre dedicated to the METS sector, the program provides the opportunity for students to gain first-hand experience of the METS sector.

Through the program, Auto-mate has committed to supporting and nurturing the expertise of future talent and is thrilled to welcome to the team.

Hewamalaweera is an engineering graduate with a focus on embedded systems, machine learning and AI, computer vision, hardware and software design and programming.

Auto-mate engineering vice president Mark Siddoway said the graduate will be a perfect fit for the company.

“Vinuri’s broad range of experience from Neural Network and Electronic Circuit design to image processing, object detection and tracking through OpenCV and ROS environments are some of the key competencies we’re looking for,” Siddoway said.

“We’re well advanced in the adaptation of our technologies for a number of applications which will provide a good opportunity for Vinuri’s learning, especially as field testing commences on our heavy automation platform.”

Auto-mate is growing rapidly as projects progress from concept and scoping to development and implementation, and additional skills are required.

The company’s participation in the Austmine program will alleviate some of the immediate resourcing challenges, however the broader intention; to attract the next generation of technology skills to the industry, will be a slower advancement but a no less important goal.