New guide helps FIFO workers adapt to the lifestyle

A NEW guide has been released by the Queensland Resources Council to help fly-in fly-out workers in the state's mining and gas operations.

Chief executive Michael Roche said fly-in-fly-out (FIFO) and drive-in-drive-out (DIDO) practices were integral to attracting and retaining sufficient skilled workers in the sector.

"We recognise though that the lifestyle does have some challenges for families, and this guide provides valuable advice for people already working FIFO or DIDO rosters, or those considering them," Mr Roche said.

"Times have changed, and as the state's police force is finding, you can't always expect families, particularly where there are dual careers, to pack up and move to remote or regional centres."

Mr Roche said the council's Workforce Accommodation Survey released in 2012 showed that people on long-distance commutes and those living near their workplace had equal satisfaction with their living/working arrangements.

He said the guide, which followed on from that work, aimed to inform workers and their families on what to expect, and outline useful strategies to manage the FIFO/DIDO lifestyle.

The guide project, carried out by the University of Queensland's Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining, included an analysis of existing research along with interviews with HR professionals and representatives of FIFO family support organisations, to identify the factors that would assist FIFO and DIDO employees adapt to their new routine.

The guide outlines the benefits and challenges of the commuting workforce lifestyle and identifies the social and personal factors that enable individual workers to adapt to the lifestyle.

It contains a list of useful organisations that can provide assistance to commuting workers and their families and can form the basis of an induction tool to be used by HR professionals.

The Reference Guide for FIFO/DIDO Workers can be downloaded from the QRC website.