Our suppliers are very important to us and play a critical role in supporting our operations and our people.
COVID-19 has already had a significant impact on the global economy and it is not lost on us that there are more immediate impacts for many of our supply partners than anticipated, at this time.
Our first priority is the safety and health of our workforce and communities. Safely remaining open for business is also important and we recognise the important role we play in continuing to provide livelihoods for our workforce, partners and suppliers.
That’s why we have implemented a number of specific measures to support our supply partners during this period of uncertainty.
This page will be regularly updated with what we’re doing so please check back for any questions you may have.
Update 3 April 2020
Protecting at-risk team members
As we navigate the challenges of the current COVID-19 global pandemic, nothing is more important than protecting the health and wellbeing of our teams. We all need to continue working together to prevent the spread.
The World Health Organisation and Australian Government Health Department, have identified several groups that are especially at risk from COVID-19, including people over 60 years of age, those with a weakened immune system or with chronic medical conditions and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Using guidance from health experts, BHP has recently implemented measures to protect our team members who are identified as high-risk. If you have any questions on this or need further details, please speak with your contract owner or contact our vendor queries team on:
Preparing your business to operate securely and remotely during COVID-19 pandemic
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, businesses worldwide are rapidly enabling capabilities to allow their workforce to work from home or other remote locations.
Whilst this is important from a health and business continuity perspective, it could lead to additional cyber threats in an already challenging environment as a remote workforce will face new and unfamiliar threat vectors e.g. phone scams, phishing attacks, credential theft etc.
To help to protect against these threats, we would encourage all of our suppliers to implement the following actions to operate more securely while operating remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Ensure your workforce is aware of the increased risk level and additional threats
- Establish and implement appropriate protocols, training and required behaviors for secure remote working (e.g. home office), including by:
- Reminding your workforce to process, store and transfer confidential data and information only using secure platforms and applications
- Educating your workforce on secure remote collaboration methods and mandating use of secure meeting platforms such as WebEx for remote meetings
- Educating your workforce on home network security best practices (including the use of trusted and reliable internet service providers, secure home Wi-Fi network passwords and configurations)
- Ensuring devices used by your remote workforce are up-to-date with the most current operating system and application versions (including patches)
- Ensuring your remote workforce understands how to configure and connect to your corporate network in a secure manner (using a secure connection such as VPN) and avoids connecting to multiple networks simultaneously
- Plan for prolonged execution of Business Continuity Plans including necessary cybersecurity monitoring and incident response from remote locations
- Plan for out-of-band or back-up communication platforms, as many telecommunication providers may encounter scaling issues when the majority of the workforce is working remotely
Plan for alternative backups and restoration operations that may become unavailable due to pandemic travel restrictions and network failures.
Update 31 March 2020
We are seeking to understand what qualifies as an essential business or service at this time. The Federal Government has said that the resources industry is vital in Australia’s response to the global pandemic in supporting jobs and, in time, to aid in the recovery process. We are working directly with Government, and with industry colleagues through the Minerals Council of Australia, to articulate that suppliers, large and small, play a critical role in supporting our operations.
We are focused on the safety of our people, their families and communities at this crucial time. We ask all our supply partners to play their role in helping to stop the spread of COVID-19 by implementing appropriate social distancing measures, hygiene and other necessary controls within their teams, workshops and on site at all times. If you have questions on this, or require support, please contact your Contract Owner or our Vendor Queries team on:
We’re also aware a number of suppliers have questions about the changes to domestic travel, border closures and how this may impact the movement of people, goods and services in our supply chain and to our operations. This is an area we are currently working through with the State and Federal Governments and we will provide an update as soon as we have greater clarity.
Health and safety of our workforce and supply partners
We are taking action to reduce the risk of transmission at our sites, in our offices and in our communities.
In line with the Australian Government’s advice, all BHP sites and offices require:
- Anyone who has arrived in Australia from international travel (including travel from NZ) must adhere to the Federal Government requirements and self-isolate for 14 days and consequently MUST NOT be mobilised to any BHP operation during this period.
- All non-essential travel to BHP Operations is to cease. Please contact your site contact or contract owner to confirm if your site travel is essential or otherwise.
- There will be no visitors permitted to our corporate offices – please utilise technology wherever available, including conducting meetings via Webex or phone.
- Any BHP employees or contractors displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or feeling unwell must self-isolate and MUST NOT mobilise to any BHP operation.
We are also increasing services available on sites to support the health and wellbeing of our BHP employees and contractors, including additional nursing and security services as well as organising for the safe transportation of people back to our major cities when required.
Emergency measures to support cash flow to businesses
Small, local and Indigenous Businesses
We have implemented emergency measures to support our small, local and Indigenous businesses. These include:
- Accelerating payments of outstanding invoices
- Moving to seven day payment terms for the next six months
This is a reduction from the current 30-day terms, and covers more than 1,000 suppliers with whom we spend approximately $1.5b per annum. A small business is defined as generating less than $10 million revenue, with restrictions on FTE numbers have been removed.
The revised payment terms will take effect in the week commencing Monday, 23 March 2020.
Labour hire partners
BHP has created a $6 million fund to support our labour hire companies and their employees. The fund will be used for:
- one-off payments for people quarantined after entering Australia
- paying for labour hire employees not entitled to sick leave but affected by COVID-19.
Currently the Labour Hire providers able to access this support fund for their employees are:
1) Chandler MacLeod
6) One Key
9) Vimba Warta
Staying safe from cyber crime
Unfortunately, cyber criminals have been quick to take advantage of public concern and questions about COVID-19. As a result, there has been a significant increase in the volume of cyber threats and phishing emails.
Many threats are posing as legitimate agencies, such as government health organisations or news networks, to take advantage of people who are searching for information around COVID-19.
To help our suppliers remain vigilant around phishing, here are some simple ways to spot a phish:
- Sense of urgency: the email creates a sense of urgency, demanding “immediate action” or asks you to “read now” before something bad happens.
- Unsolicited attachments or links: if you begin receiving emails from organisations that are unsolicited and contain attachments or links, be wary. COVID-19 themed phishing emails come with attachments that claim to contain advice on how to prevent infection – but this attachment may in fact be malware that can cause serious harm, such as ransomware.
- Grammar and spelling: read the email carefully as legitimate messages usually do not have major spelling mistakes or poor grammar.
- Text messages: some groups will send “smishing”, or text phishing, posing as the government providing information. Government agencies will NEVER include web links in a text alert.
- Report it, don’t forward it: never forward a suspicious email. If you believe it’s suspicious, be safe and send the suspicious email to firstname.lastname@example.org as an attachment.
The BHP Cyber team collaborates with our peers in the industry around the world on cyber topics. So if your Cyber teams, or those looking after your security, have any questions or would like to connect with the BHP Cyber team to collaborate and deal with this problem, please reach out to us on email@example.com. Our operations centre monitors this address 24/7.
1500 new roles
To ensure we remain a sustainable contributor to the world, BHP will be offering 1,500 jobs for a six-month period. These will cover a range of skills needed by BHP operations in the short term and will support and bolster our existing workforce during this difficult time.
The roles will include machinery and production operators, truck and ancillary equipment drivers, excavator operators, diesel mechanics boilermakers, trades assistants, electricians, cleaners and warehousing roles across our coal, iron ore and copper operations in WA, QLD, NSW and SA.
They will be offered through existing labour hire partners and BHP contracts.
More information on these roles will be provided on bhp.com/careers – so please check there regularly for updates.
We are continuing to look at further measures that we can take to provide support to our vendors and community partners and will communicate these shortly.
Additional steps we have taken to maintain the safety of our workforce and the continuity of our operations can be found on www.bhp.com/covid-19/.
We understand there are likely to be a number of questions at this time so have established a central team for all global vendor enquiries. You can contact us on:
Our teams are working hard to support our vendors however due to the scale and constantly evolving nature of this situation, we ask for your patience as we work through large numbers of enquiries as compassionately and efficiently as possible.
Alternatively, if you require further information on the specific arrangements, requirements and operating conditions specific to a site or project that you are operating; on or the contracted scope (offsite services) you are delivering for BHP, please contact your regular operational channels or Contract Owners at Operation in the first instance.