There is no denying COVID-19 has created a lot of challenges for everyone.
However, for some businesses like RSK Contracting, Goodline and AIE, the global pandemic and Western Australia’s hard border has been a positive opportunity.
RSK Contracting is an earthworks, plumbing/dewatering, concreting and building company based in Newman.
Manager Scott Risk said local work increased in Newman when the pandemic started.
“When BHP began limiting travel to and from the Pilbara, it was a great opportunity for us to step up and complete work at short notice,” Scott said.
“Our team of 16 people all live here in Newman. Being a Newman local, and going through the mining downturn not so long ago was a terrible experience, with a lot of stress and uncertainty for local residents and small companies.
“We have a great sporting community here, and spending locally enables local sponsorship and more people engaging with the local sports clubs. Being so remote, we need to keep these sporting clubs active and vibrant.
“In the past 12 months, I know my family has seen a big increase in the local spend and engagement, and there’s more activity in the town, which is fantastic.”
For AIE Australia Managing Director and Principal Engineer Kale Billet, living in Port Hedland during the pandemic has been great for his young family who have seen their small business grow through BHP’s Local Buying Program.
“We love the climate, the great outdoors, and the community feel here. We’ve lived here for many years and we still enjoy exploring the Pilbara and finding new spots that no one knows about,” Kale said.
“Our company saw an increase in work because of the COVID crisis. And having local people is definitely allowing quick and easy business engagement. We are only a phone call away and can be on site in minutes.”
AIE specialises in remediation engineering, which includes inspections and testing of concrete, steel and rail infrastructure.
Local Buying Program
BHP has spent more than $500 million with over 1,450 local businesses across Australia since The Local Buying Program was launched in 2012.
The Program exists in partnership between BHP and C-Res. It has operated successfully in Queensland since 2012, in New South Wales since 2016, and in South Australia and Western Australia from 2017.
For more information on the Local Buying Program visit www.c-res.com.au