Innovation in Mining


Innovation in Mining

Australia 2016

The Innovation in mining Australia 2016 report highlights results on the state of innovation at work in Australia, presenting the innovation landscape as it stands and identifying key innovation drivers and focus areas from which to bring to life the mine of tomorrow.

The Australian mining industry is going through one of the most intense periods of change we have ever seen, and the ability to innovate – to evolve, adapt, and improve – is indispensable.

With the mining industry’s focus on maximising volume during the boom phase of the cycle, inefficiencies became embedded in operations, organisational structures and in back office functions. When the cycle turned, the industry shifted its focus to unrelenting and often brutal cost-cutting efforts, followed by successes in operational excellence and continuous improvement. With so many gains now realised, the industry has to ask itself, where to from here?

We’ve found a local industry well-placed to lead the world in mining innovation, and with a consensus that it is true innovation that will drive the next wave of productivity gains and financial growth. Yet our study revealed that despite this recognition and our industry capabilities, many barriers still exist to the wholescale adoption of innovation within companies. 

Firstly, while many companies ask innovation actions of individuals, they fail to recognise that innovation is a team sport that requires all players to participate. Secondly, people tend to conflate innovation with creativity – however innovation should be recognised as a discipline, not an innate skill. Like any other business function, innovation has tradecraft that can be learned, practiced and honed. 

For any business imperative to be taken seriously, it must have a clear set of measurable results. Innovation is no different. When we start to measure our innovation efforts, we will start to see truly transformative changes to our industry take place. 

Lastly, innovation should no longer be an ask, but a demand. As executives, employees, shareholders and policy makers, we should set a mandate for the Australian mining industry to innovate. We must set ourselves the task of creating an environment where innovation thrives and where the Australian mining industry is recognised by global leaders as setting the new world standards for innovation.

Innovation in mining Australia 2016

About the Innovation in mining Australia 2016 report

Innovation in mining Australia 2016 is conducted by Deloitte in association with Diggers and Dealers and the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC). This is the third report in a three-part global series including Canada and Africa. Based on local market insights and research from the South African (2016) and Canadian (2015) mining innovation surveys, we know industry-wide, integrating innovation strategy across functions will determine whether mining companies will succeed or fail. 

Innovation in mining - where to from here?

Blog post by David Cormack

One of the unfortunate consequences of the mining industry’s focus on maximising volume during the boom phase of the cycle was that significant inefficiencies became deeply embedded in operations, organisational structures and in the back office functions of mining companies of all shapes and sizes. Read the rest of the post here.

Innovation in mining - where to from here?

Read the blog post
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