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hogman

Experienced Engineer looking for work.....ANY work, in ANY field !

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Hi guys,

 

Newly joined the site having been in Australia since July 2014.

 

Myself and my fiancee lived in Adelaide for the first year, but then moved to Perth with her job as a Senior Sales Manager in Retail.

 

I have struggled to find work throughout my time here in Australia, and we are now in the desperate position that if i do not find some work very soon, then we will be forced to return to UK, one year short of being able to apply for Citizenship, and therefore unable to ever return to Australia in the future.

 

I have an extensive set of 'O' and 'A' Levels, and am Degree Educated in Chemical and Process Engineering, with over 25 years experience as an engineer, both on-site and in the office.

 

I am an extremely practical, 'hands on' guy, able to turn my hand to most things.

 

My last professional job was Commissioning a multi-million dollar plant in Indonesia, working in a team of two others, 10 - 12 hours/day, 7 days/week, for 6 and 7 weeks at a time, without a break or returning home. I am therefore no stranger to hard work or long hours.

 

My last actual job was washing cars at a Dealership in Wannaroo, before that came to an end.

 

I am looking for any work that is going to be able to make up the short fall in our finances to allow us to stay here rather than continue to die a slow death of outgoings exceeding incomings.

 

I am happy to talk to anyone that may want a practical guy for short term or even cash in hand work.

 

I have a profile on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/neiljefferies1 if anyone would like to view my CV.

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Hi, Try identifying , locating and contacting engineering/ manufacturing or mining companies in the city,or industrial areas. ring up, door knock with your cv and tailored covering letter and get your face and name around. Look on agency websites for advertised jobs but write direct to the company by googling the hr contact details. Best of luck.

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Hi guys,

 

Newly joined the site having been in Australia since July 2014.

 

Myself and my fiancee lived in Adelaide for the first year, but then moved to Perth with her job as a Senior Sales Manager in Retail.

 

I have struggled to find work throughout my time here in Australia, and we are now in the desperate position that if i do not find some work very soon, then we will be forced to return to UK, one year short of being able to apply for Citizenship, and therefore unable to ever return to Australia in the future.

 

I have an extensive set of 'O' and 'A' Levels, and am Degree Educated in Chemical and Process Engineering, with over 25 years experience as an engineer, both on-site and in the office.

 

I am an extremely practical, 'hands on' guy, able to turn my hand to most things.

 

My last professional job was Commissioning a multi-million dollar plant in Indonesia, working in a team of two others, 10 - 12 hours/day, 7 days/week, for 6 and 7 weeks at a time, without a break or returning home. I am therefore no stranger to hard work or long hours.

 

My last actual job was washing cars at a Dealership in Wannaroo, before that came to an end.

 

I am looking for any work that is going to be able to make up the short fall in our finances to allow us to stay here rather than continue to die a slow death of outgoings exceeding incomings.

 

I am happy to talk to anyone that may want a practical guy for short term or even cash in hand work.

 

I have a profile on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/neiljefferies1 if anyone would like to view my CV.

 

I might be able to point you in the direction of a couple of companies we work with - feel free to private message me.

 

Thanks

 

John

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Hi guys, thank you for your replies.

 

John, i have PM'd you and would welcome any names of companies or people that you can suggest.

 

Jen, thank you for your well meaning advice but i have already been here nearly three years and have been struggling with this situation all this time.

 

The simple fact is that the job market here does not work like it does in the UK. The agencies are a complete waste of time. I haven't come across a single one yet that is actually interested in you as a client, and finding you work. They see their client as being the employer, not the potential employee. They select candidates entirely on 'buzz' words, and there is absolutely no application of 'lateral' thinking.

 

Add to this a fashion for ludicrously specific job descriptions and requirements, stupid qualifications and licences for literally every job you can think of, and you are left with a situation whereby a newcomer can only get employed if they have done the exact same job before. Oh, and it has to have been with a company, not only in Australia, but in Western Australia, because lots of the job descriptions require specifically, Western Australian experience.

 

Further add in to the mix a complete disregard by employers for non-Australian experience, references from any companies that they haven't specifically heard of, and a tendency for nepotism, and you are left with a situation whereby a new comer can only get a job if they know someone within that company that can personally recommend and vouch for them.

 

As a result, new ideas, ways of thinking, and working practices, just do not take hold in Australia, which is why they are still so far behind the Western World.

 

It is such an enormous shame since Australia is so full of potential and has such great advantages, that they will just never realise.

 

So Jen, please forgive the rant, i am as you can imagine, absolutely sick of this situation, and i believe me, i agree that you must try to find out the names of those in charge at the potential company, and target them specifically with phone calls, email, and if possible, in person. Unfortunately, it has been my experience, and that of som many others that we know, that if that person does not know you, then again, they will just ignore your communication.

 

I rather came here, not for advice specifically, but to find Poms out there that may own their own businesses, that might need an extra pair of hands for a while, or Poms that might be in a position in their companies to be able to recommend another Pom for a chance at a job. I wish i didn't have to do this, but it seems that expats sticking together is the only way that they will flourish here.

 

And before anyone says, i do not feel that these problems are specifically due to the economic downturn. I feel that they are systemic and endemic to, certainly Western Australia, if not to Australia as a whole.

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Hi, I'm sorry you're so frustrated, it must be an awful situation. Hubby is a degree qualified engineer also. He managed to get a job out here with BHP in the city while still in the UK, without any experience in the industry or any personal contacts. Maybe he was lucky? There are still some jobs out there, hope everything works out for you.

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Hi, I'm sorry you're so frustrated, it must be an awful situation. Hubby is a degree qualified engineer also. He managed to get a job out here with BHP in the city while still in the UK, without any experience in the industry or any personal contacts. Maybe he was lucky? There are still some jobs out there, hope everything works out for you.

 

Hi Jen,

 

From my experience, i would say that he should have bought a lottery ticket the same day, and neither of you would have ever had to work again!

 

I contacted dozens of agencies before i left the UK, and not one of them ever acknowledged me. I rather put it down to them not wanting to expend time and effort on a migrant who hadn't as yet arrived and may not ever do so, which i thought was understandable. So i was not too disheartened.

 

However that total lack of interest, and i would say manners, continued when i got here. Hays, who is one of the biggest, were without doubt, the worst. I rang the agent specific to Process and Chemical Engineers on a number of occasions, and he never once returned the call. I sent them my CV a number of times, and i even went in to their offices to see if i could see him personally, and again i was told in no uncertain way to go away. And this was in July 2014, before the 'recession' had even begun to bite.

 

I am amazed that BHP picked your husband up in this way, and cannot explain it, but can only congratulate you on your success. Does he need any more engineers?

 

I have had four jobs here, since i arrived. The first was working on the New Royal Adelaide Hospital that was being built. They were so far behind, and delivery of services was so late, that i literally spent six months walking around site, twiddling my thumbs, because there was no power to allow us to start commissioning, before my company decided to pull the plug, and lay me off. Have a look at the press reports on the job to see what i mean.

 

The second company took me on with big noises of their desire for expansion, but what they didn't say was that a few months prior to me starting, a high up employee left to set up a rival business, taking most of the staff and clients with them. So within the first week there, i found out that most of the other people around me were also new starters, and five months into the job, with no contacts, and obviously scraping around for work, the board pulled the plug and myself and a number of others were laid off, again.

 

The third job was a contract position, much more along my previous experience, required that i work in Indonesia, on a completely ad hoc rota basis, hence the 10 - 12 hours/day, 7 days/week, 6 - 7 weeks/tour. This job was also over a year late, used completely incompetent sub-contractors, who literally read drawings upside down, went on strike for more pay, and we were eventually required to leave the country because the company had sent us to site with the wrong Visas, so we could have been arrested at any time for illegally working. Once back, my work was done, but my colleagues returned, still with the wrong visas, and were confined to the office for a week, not allowed to go out on site, before eventually leaving the country again. As far as i am aware, the job is still not complete, and is now 2 years late.

 

And my most recent job was washing cars at a dealership. Not a lot to say about that really, except that i am prepared to do anything to save us from going under.

 

My experience here has been one of completely incompetent and unprofessional companies, with no regard for their employees, and willing to lay people off at the drop of a hat.

 

And my fiancee is on her second job, enjoying it and doing well. But her first job was as a senior manager with Australia's answer, so they think, to John Lewis, and they were so unprofessional, disorganised, bullying, and sexist, that despite nearly thirty years experience in retail, twenty of them with John Lewis, she left because she couldn't continue working under such crushing conditions. Oh, and despite her improving her departments turnover by some 150%, and a 400% increase in Card Sales, they let her go without ever attempting to find out why, or trying to convince her to stay. Absolutely unbelievable!

 

But despite all this, i still want to make a go of it here. We thought long and hard before coming out here, and it has cost us a HUGE amount of money. We had good reasons for leaving the UK, and i have no desire to return, so i am not in any way biased for UK. It is just that this experience is a million miles from what we thought it was going to be. We couldn't have been more wrong.

 

EVERYTHING, hangs on getting some work.

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The simple fact is that the job market here does not work like it does in the UK. The agencies are a complete waste of time. I haven't come across a single one yet that is actually interested in you as a client, and finding you work. They see their client as being the employer, not the potential employee. They select candidates entirely on 'buzz' words, and there is absolutely no application of 'lateral' thinking.

 

Bang on there. It was very different back in 2012/13 though. The labour hire companies couldn't do enough for you. Engineering is tough at the moment though, especially in O&G with Gorgon pretty much done and dusted. I am hanging on by the skin of my teeth in an O&G fabrication firm which had sixty employees two years ago and is now down to less than ten. I'm not going to give you any job hunting advice other than to keep doing what you are doing.

 

What I will say though, is hang on for the citizenship. Even if it costs you your life savings, that thing will be worth its weight in gold especially if you go on to have kids. They will be eternally grateful to you for your sacrifice.

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Hi Warnbro,

 

Thank you for your reply. I think that whenever anyone finds themselves in a position like this, if nothing else, confirmation that what they think is correct is comforting, so once again, thank you.

 

The reason that i wrote this Post was not to complain or jump up and down, but was in the hope that there might be somebody out there that could give me some work, any work, for any period of time, from a week or two, upwards. And not just Engineering work. I was imagining gardening, painting, general service work, anything.

 

So does anyone have anything that i could put my hands to?

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What I will say though, is hang on for the citizenship. Even if it costs you your life savings, that thing will be worth its weight in gold especially if you go on to have kids. They will be eternally grateful to you for your sacrifice.

 

I am not sure I would necessarily agree with this.

 

We didn't need to wait for citizenship as we already had it, but we did hang around and blew our life savings in the hope of finding a job - which we didn't achieve. So, we landed back in the UK with nothing but a suitcase each to our name and they were mainly full of things for the dog.

 

So, we know how it is to find yourself with nothing as a result and after my years on the forums and seeing that very few people who end up leaving Oz go back, then if the OP doesn't have children, I wouldn't blow all for it. It isn't easy to find yourself with nothing. We were very lucky and had a lot of help from friends and family and are the sort of people that aren't into possessions much, so we found some of it funny such as making soup for lunch and realizing we didn't own a spoon. But while we laughed, many would cry.

 

For me personally, the only reason I haven't bothered rescinding my Oz citizenship is because they charge to do so.

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I am not sure I would necessarily agree with this.

 

We didn't need to wait for citizenship as we already had it, but we did hang around and blew our life savings in the hope of finding a job - which we didn't achieve. So, we landed back in the UK with nothing but a suitcase each to our name and they were mainly full of things for the dog.

 

So, we know how it is to find yourself with nothing as a result and after my years on the forums and seeing that very few people who end up leaving Oz go back, then if the OP doesn't have children, I wouldn't blow all for it. It isn't easy to find yourself with nothing. We were very lucky and had a lot of help from friends and family and are the sort of people that aren't into possessions much, so we found some of it funny such as making soup for lunch and realizing we didn't own a spoon. But while we laughed, many would cry.

 

For me personally, the only reason I haven't bothered rescinding my Oz citizenship is because they charge to do so.

 

I know a few who have gone back after a quite a number of years. I know one couple who went back for two years and then came back again. Most do it because of family reasons. When we came over, our aim was to get citizenship for the kids no matter what. Back then, it was a three year wait so it wasn't too bad.

 

I am not in your position, I have been lucky in that I survived the downturn in 2008/09 and was also lucky enough to end up with my current employer which has (so far) managed to get through this present quiet time.

 

It is tough out there at the moment. I know quite a few people who were on $200k a year plus just a few years ago who are now scratching around mowing lawns and cleaning windows. I know a brickie who hasn't laid a brick since Christmas.

 

If you have kids though, or are planning on having kids, you should hang on for the citizenship in my opinion. Give the kids the option to come back at some point in the future. This place is going to get harder and harder to get into as years go by.

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I know a few who have gone back after a quite a number of years. I know one couple who went back for two years and then came back again. Most do it because of family reasons. When we came over, our aim was to get citizenship for the kids no matter what. Back then, it was a three year wait so it wasn't too bad.

 

I am not in your position, I have been lucky in that I survived the downturn in 2008/09 and was also lucky enough to end up with my current employer which has (so far) managed to get through this present quiet time.

 

It is tough out there at the moment. I know quite a few people who were on $200k a year plus just a few years ago who are now scratching around mowing lawns and cleaning windows. I know a brickie who hasn't laid a brick since Christmas.

 

If you have kids though, or are planning on having kids, you should hang on for the citizenship in my opinion. Give the kids the option to come back at some point in the future. This place is going to get harder and harder to get into as years go by.

 

Yep, we went from $200k a year to my last full years tax return of $22k. That was July 2015. Between then and when we left in May 2016, we had an income of the grand total of about $11k for nearly a year. Savings all gone. We had built a house which was suddenly less than we paid to build it a year previously - I was made redundant the day the first brick was laid. As we don't have kids all we could claim was dole. Which doesn't go far towards meeting mortgage payments.

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Yep, we went from $200k a year to my last full years tax return of $22k. That was July 2015. Between then and when we left in May 2016, we had an income of the grand total of about $11k for nearly a year. Savings all gone. We had built a house which was suddenly less than we paid to build it a year previously - I was made redundant the day the first brick was laid. As we don't have kids all we could claim was dole. Which doesn't go far towards meeting mortgage payments.
WA is a great place if you have a job but it is nothing like the UK when you lose your job. No comfortable cradle to grave benefits system over here. Plus, it's as expensive as hell over here for everything as well. You need to be pulling in a minimum $50k a year just for a basic standard of living. Hope things are better for you back in blighty.

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hi Hogman!

 

How are you doing?

Hope you found job as I read that market is moving slowly.

I work in O&G in UK at the moment and patiently waiting for market improvement.

Fingers crossed !

Good luck :)

 

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On 24/03/2017 at 02:32, hogman said:

However that total lack of interest, and i would say manners, continued when i got here. Hays, who is one of the biggest, were without doubt, the worst. I rang the agent specific to Process and Chemical Engineers on a number of occasions, and he never once returned the call. I sent them my CV a number of times, and i even went in to their offices to see if i could see him personally, and again i was told in no uncertain way to go away. And this was in July 2014, before the 'recession' had even begun to bite.

The agencies did very well during the resources construction boom. I was employed on an EPCM job in Asia and I was paid via an agency. They were not involved in any part of the recruitment process (I was approached directly by the client). All they did was handle my timesheets, invoice the client and pay me my wages. They wanted 60% of the invoice price as their cut. I was doing 12 hours a day in a foreign country, they were shuffling a couple of bits of paper and wanted 60%. I told them to stuff it and threatened to change to another of the clients approved agencies. In the end, they took 20% which was still way too much for what they were actually doing.

During the construction boom, these parasites (agencies) were all over you like a rash. Couldn't do enough for you. Once things started to quieten down, they lost interest.

You say that July 2014 was before the recession began to bite? Technically yes, but the writing was on the wall a good year or so before that. All the big construction projects had one thing in common. They were all going to be completed and all at around roughly the same time. All of our Gorgon packages had to be on site by early 2014 as did our only Wheatstone platform package. We started getting process and mechanical engineers knocking on our door from around mid 2013. Most had brilliant CV's, had good site experience on some of WA's biggest projects. These guys would have been head hunted only a few years before but were now pacing the streets looking for work.

Sooner or later, things will pick up again and those who are already here will reap the rewards. Those who turn up soon after will also do well. Those who arrive a bit late to the party will find themselves in your situation.

 

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Hi Hogman just wondering what the update was with regards to the job front? Did you manage to find suitable work? are you still in Australia or have you returned?

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