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Lead Technical Governance Tailings

South32 - Perth, WA

Executive & Strategic Management
Source: uWorkin


Date: 04-Feb-2021

Location: Perth, WA, AU, 6000

Company: South32 Group Operations Pty. Ltd.

About South32

South32 is a globally diversified mining and metals company. We produce bauxite, alumina, aluminium, energy and metallurgical coal, manganese, nickel, silver, lead and zinc at our operations in Australia, Southern Africa and South America.

We are also the owner of a high-grade zinc, lead and silver development option in North America and have several partnerships with junior explorers with a focus on base metals.

Our purpose is to make a difference by developing natural resources, improving people’s lives now and for generations to come.

We are trusted by our owners and partners to realise the potential of their resources.

This position can be based out of our Perth head office in the heart of the CBD, however we are also open to this position being based in other parts of Australia.

About the role

Reporting to the Manager -Tailings Stewardship the purpose of this role is to assist with the global leadership of South32 dam management and stewardship, and governance across all regions and investments. The role provides an effective risk management function to South32 and monitors the implementation of risk management practices in the design, construction, operation and closure of dam facilities in accordance with the relevant professional codes and industry practices and the International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) Tailings Governance Framework.

The lead is responsible for the framework of identifying risks, developing, implementing and managing controls adequate for the company to prevent catastrophic failures of tailings storage facilities. It underpins the essential components of the company’s governance of tailing management by providing both management and functional expertise in tailings governance to all South32 operations in compliance with regulatory requirements and internal company standards.

The role and its function is embedded in a position statement by the ICMM members to which the company is bound.

Other accountabilities include:

  • Establish, implement, maintain and verify policy, defining the risk management framework, roles and responsibilities, setting goals for implementation;
  • Establish, implement, maintain and verify procedures related to the proper management of tailing storage facilities and dams across the company;
  • Identifying known and emerging issues;
  • Identifying shifts in the organization’s implicit risk appetite;
  • Assisting management in developing processes and controls to manage risks and issues;
  • Providing guidance and training on risk management processes;
  • Facilitating and monitoring implementation of effective risk management practices by operational management;
  • Alerting operational management to emerging issues and changing regulatory and risk scenarios;
  • Monitoring the adequacy and effectiveness of internal control, accuracy and completeness of reporting, compliance with laws and regulations, and timely remediation of deficiencies;
  • Establish, document and maintain Dam Management Standard aligned with current regulatory frameworks in the jurisdictions in which the company operates;
  • Provide governance for all dam facilities across the company;
  • Implement and execute governance processes to verify and validate risk controls and the results of dam design & construction, including Periodic audits to identify gaps and tracking related actions for closure;
  • Assess material risks, design and implement critical controls;
  • Assist in developing annual reporting to senior management and the Risk & Audit Committee on the status of risks and mitigating actions associated with Dams;
  • Maintain and manage audit records for each operation;
  • Liaise with Joint Venture counterparts where relevant;
  • Undertake a leadership role with external professional and industry bodies;
  • Carry out training and coaching on accountabilities, dam risk management;
  • Lead internal guidance group, a forum to discuss opportunities to improve dam management across the company;
  • Develop and undertake governance risk controls, including peer reviews, periodic internal technical audits of the underlying work; independent audits of new facilities, annual performance metrics. Document findings thereof. Track specified corrective actions;
  • Direct and participate in audits;
  • Promote programs for the continuous improvement of the evaluation of performance and quantification of risks;
  • Provides leadership in tailings and dam management for South32. Facilitate the communication and information sharing of good resource development and planning processes across South32;
  • Roll-up of key metrics from specific programs for internal company analysis and reporting to Regional and Corporate levels.
  • Implement and execute processes to educate and, where warranted, train other professionals involved in the management of tailings and dams;
  • `Represent the company through various JVP and external activities;
  • Participate, represent South32 on external professional committee, coordinate dissemination of output to the wider South32 community;
  • Participate and/or lead Independent Peer Reviews of Development Projects involving dams.
  • Proactively seeking to maximise and protect shareholder value.

Key Relationships

  • VP Operations
  • Nominated risk owners (operational managers) accountable for dam management at site
  • Vice President Planning and Development for each region
  • Head of JV Brazil
  • South32 Leadership Team
  • Nominated Independent Tailings Review Board (ITRB) at each operation
  • Nominated Engineer of Record at each operation
  • Relevant counterparties of the Joint Venture Partners
  • Relevant professional & regulatory bodies

About you

  • Espouse the company values of Care, Togetherness, Trust and Excellence
  • Overriding commitment to Health & Safety and sustainable development
  • Technical leader in his/her field;
  • Intellectual aptitude and leadership qualities
  • Proven ability to facilitate teamwork, engineer consensus, knowledge sharing and promote collaboration across organisations without direct line management authority. Ability to engineer consensus and build organisational capability
  • A demonstrated ability for the attention to detail, problem solving skills, objective & critical thinking
  • Extensive experience in tailings and dam management
  • Effective relationship and people management skills
  • Well developed oral and written communication skills;
  • Experienced at communicating at all levels in the organisation, particularly to executive management
  • Foster independent thinking and innovation
  • Ability to quickly analyse issues and provide solutions
  • Strong and effective coordination skills
  • Ability to convey messages across a wide range of groups.


  • Civil engineering degree with geotechnical or soft soils experience
  • More than 15 years’ experience in various technical and management including experience with tailings management and geotechnical design roles;
  • Deep knowledge in tailing and dams
  • Deep knowledge of professional standards and regulations
  • Planning and coordination of activities and personnel to deliver the stated results.
  • Deep level of understanding of the companies portfolio of operations
  • Auditing & training skills


  • Post-graduate qualifications
  • Proficiency in other languages an advantage

Our benefits

  • Competitive salaries
  • Industry leading parental leave and family care policy
  • Education and career development
  • Participation in the Employee Share Plan

Our culture

At South32, our people are fundamental to our success. We’re focused on creating an inclusive workplace, with the right people in the right roles, who are engaged, empowered and appropriately rewarded.

We aspire to be an inclusive organisation, where our workforce reflects the broader demographic of the countries and communities where we operate.

South32 embraces diversity and encourages applications from people of all backgrounds.

Applications close on Wednesday the 17th of Febuary.