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Guest essexdave

opinion of an experienced FIFO worker

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Guest essexdave

hiya, just joined this site and saw that a few people seem to have questions/misconceptions about FIFO work, so thought i might put my two penneth in ;-)

 

FIFO is great, for me it's all about the swing/roster not being a long one. i've been here since '89 and have done them all. 6 and 3 (weeks), 3 and 1 (too long), 2 and 1 (quite good) etc. the best one is of course any 'even time' swing (normally 2 weeks on 2 weeks off) but these are mainly offshore and/or offered to those with rarer skill sets (because they demand it), but failing that, 9 days on 5 off is not bad at all. More and more mining co's are offering this, and, increasingly, 8 and 6 (days). simply because they want to avoid the very high costs of a 'high churn' workforce. with 9 and 5, by the time you've had enough you're flying home! to answer an earlier question about money: if you don't get over 80K something is wrong. as others have said, however, if you're working outdoors up in NW of WA you'll earn every penny, it's so hot from nov to march. having said that, precautions are taken, no one wants anyone to die.

 

re: what tickets to get? i can only offer this tip: start reading the ads on Seek.com, what skills/tickets are they asking for? how many companies are asking for the same skill/ticket? how many ads per day/week? collect these ads as they have valuable contact names/numbers on them. also, i've found it useful to call any agency that you keep seeing (as you look through the seek.com ads) and chat to them. ASK for advice/help, you might be surprised how helpful these people can be. they love to tell you what they know about an industry. and, by calling around a few you will build up a picture of what's what and which of your current skills you can build on to get yourself in with a chance. also, the old 'right time right place 'factor is not one to be sniffed at. who knows what might have just come across their desk? one small tip along those lines: when the person answers the phone they will ALWAYS say their name, listen closely for it and ALWAYS use it. "oh hi Melissa, i was just wondering if you..." it works.

the best thing to remember is this: if you have to do a long swing on your first job up there, don't fret, you will very soon find out which other companies are looking for your skills and you move. 'Rome wasn't built in a day' and all that.. ;-)

 

one more thing: look into the tax allowances you get when you stay away from home for work. they can be significant when calculating whether this (fifo) life is for you. all the best to you all.

 

ps: if you have any questions, feel free. though i don't know anything at all about visas or immigration matters. cheers

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Hi Dave, welcome to PIO. :cute:

 

Thanks for sharing your experience with us. It will be helpful to many I'm sure.

 

Jxxxx


' Life is but a fleeting moment.....so do not waste a second on something that doesn't make you smile.' :wubclub:

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Guest scrumpy

So what do you exactly do on a day to day basis? (I dont mean on your time off, unless its really interesting !!!!!!)

Cheers

Edited by scrumpy

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Hi Dave, thanks for your post, really helpful to me as I`m hoping to be employed as a Coded welder/boilermaker at the mines, so will be living the fifo life, if my sponsorship is approved.:biggrin:

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Hi Dave

 

Thanks for that. Good timing and useful to read, as I was just today looking at at a FIFO job advert (telecoms related) and wondered if the FIFO life might suit me.

 

Cheers

 

Lloyd

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Guest essexdave

 

So what do you exactly do on a day to day basis? (I dont mean on your time off, unless its really interesting !!!!!!)

Cheers

i use ultrasound waves to look inside metal for defects. not 007, but it's interesting enough...if you like that kinda thing. currently work a 9 and 5 but we are changing to an 8 and 6 "pretty soon".

 

that reminds me; a benefit that i didn't mention earlier was that with 9 and 5 you get 3 x 19 day holidays a year.. as long as you take 2 days unpaid (25 days annual leave is the norm and you need 27 to have 3x9 days off).

this works because you start your leave on the first day of the 5 off (at the end of the previous (normal) 9 day swing), then you have the 9 days annual leave, then you have the 5 off that you would have had if you had worked that 9 days. so, 5+5+9=19... confused? don't be, it's much easier to understand with a calender in your hand. just count the days in between when you arrive back home from your last swing until you're expected to go back after the leave is over.

 

 

what about yourself scrumpy?

Edited by essexdave

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Guest essexdave
Hi Dave, thanks for your post, really helpful to me as I`m hoping to be employed as a Coded welder/boilermaker at the mines, so will be living the fifo life, if my sponsorship is approved.:biggrin:
\

 

i'd be surprised if they turn a coded welder down.

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my husband is a coded welder and we're looking into getting sponsorship so he can go out in advance and earn some of those lovely $$'s before we join him. Does anyone know what the best companies are - we've looked at Monadelphus so far.


Moved to Gold Coast July 2014!

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Also, sorry to be a pain, did you get your trade assessed independently, or did the sponsoring company sort this for you?

 

We're very early in the stage, as you can guess!


Moved to Gold Coast July 2014!

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Guest

Do you do it on a contract basis? owning a pty company or are you a perm employee?

80K sounds crap to me for FIFO rotations are good

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Guest scrumpy

So what do you exactly do on a day to day basis? (I dont mean on your time off, unless its really interesting !!!!!!)

Cheers

 

i use ultrasound waves to look inside metal for defects. not 007, but it's interesting enough...if you like that kinda thing. currently work a 9 and 5 but we are changing to an 8 and 6 "pretty soon".

 

that reminds me; a benefit that i didn't mention earlier was that with 9 and 5 you get 3 x 19 day holidays a year.. as long as you take 2 days unpaid (25 days annual leave is the norm and you need 27 to have 3x9 days off).

this works because you start your leave on the first day of the 5 off (at the end of the previous (normal) 9 day swing), then you have the 9 days annual leave, then you have the 5 off that you would have had if you had worked that 9 days. so, 5+5+9=19... confused? don't be, it's much easier to understand with a calender in your hand. just count the days in between when you arrive back home from your last swing until you're expected to go back after the leave is over.

 

 

what about yourself scrumpy?

 

Im just a plumber in the UK, but when we get to Oz (should be well within next 2 years) I am desperate for a change, I really dont want to re-train as plumber as need a change of country/lifestyle/career. Any sugestions welcome! Cheers for the reply

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I will put my tuppance in. FIFO, works for some, but it has a enourmous divorce rate so families need to go into it with very open eyes.

 

I was at a conference a while ago and the nature of my job means the vast majority of people are fifo. There was a guy doing a talk on the social effects of fifo. He asked for people to raise their hands if they were still on their first marriage. Not a single hand out of 200 went up

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Women eh - they want the money and nice house/car but cant stand the hardship it takes to get it :biglaugh:

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Guest essexdave
Also, sorry to be a pain, did you get your trade assessed independently, or did the sponsoring company sort this for you?

 

We're very early in the stage, as you can guess![/quote

 

i learnt my trade here in oz and my immigration wasn't sponsored by a company, so i can't answer that first bit, sorry.

( i just bailed out of the uk due to low/no wages and high rents).

 

welders i know though simply produced a copy of their trade papers and employment refs (during the immigration process) and these (uk) trade papers are accepted in the same way as australian ones, by employers.

before any med/large company takes on a welder, they make them take a welding test... especially coded welders, but i expect they do that in the uk anyway...

 

all the best.

Edited by essexdave
clarity

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Guest essexdave
I will put my tuppance in. FIFO, works for some, but it has a enourmous divorce rate so families need to go into it with very open eyes.

 

I was at a conference a while ago and the nature of my job means the vast majority of people are fifo. There was a guy doing a talk on the social effects of fifo. He asked for people to raise their hands if they were still on their first marriage. Not a single hand out of 200 went up

 

true enough. there's a lot to consider, ESPECIALLY for new migrants as they typically have little/no support even when back at their new 'home'. fifo is bloody hard for young parents left at home base in a new country.

 

keep swings short helps. try and get both of you doing it. have kids later.. is also a plan (for some).

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Guest essexdave
Im just a plumber in the UK, but when we get to Oz (should be well within next 2 years) I am desperate for a change, I really dont want to re-train as plumber as need a change of country/lifestyle/career. Any sugestions welcome! Cheers for the reply

 

sorry mate, can't really help there...except to say that plumbers are in demand here in WA right now. pop growing fast too so it should hold for a while...

failing that, maybe check out seek.com and see what jobs are in demand then see if you can re train for one of them.

all the best.

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Guest essexdave
my husband is a coded welder and we're looking into getting sponsorship so he can go out in advance and earn some of those lovely $$'s before we join him. Does anyone know what the best companies are - we've looked at Monadelphus so far.

 

also, monadelphus tend to offer a 22 and 9 swing...too long for my money. most construction sites in remote areas (new mine projects) do work a 21/7 though (you get higher pay for longer swings generally, but something to consider is that you'd be apart for 3 weeks every month. and he'll be knackered for at least 2 days of the week off.... 12 hours a day soon adds up, as they do 13 day fortnights.

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