- Use your technical skills and knowledge to survey sites for mineral deposits that could be mined or quarried
- Varied work, potentially at many different locations, where you'll need excellent problem-solving and IT skills
- Work for a single company or become a freelance consultant
As a minerals surveyor, you'll look at potential mining, quarrying or landfill sites to see if they can be used commercially. If they can, you'll manage the site, value the assets and deal with ownership rights.
- Carrying out surveys, environmental impact assessments and risk assessments
- Researching land and tax records to establish site ownership and access
- Preparing planning applications
- Valuing deposits and negotiating contracts
- Charting surface areas with global positioning systems (GPS), and building accurate 3-D site models
- Using digital imaging, laser technology and computer-aided design (CAD) software
- Interpreting rock sample data
- Producing site maps, including mine structures and deposit layers
- Using geographic information systems (GIS)
- Investigating rock structures and ground movements for potential hazards
Once a site is exhausted, you'll work with mining engineers, development surveyors and planners to work out the best way to restore the land. This might be by recreating the original habitat or turning over the area to leisure, industry or commercial use.
Your salary may be higher if you work overseas. Early starts, late finishes and weekend work may be required to meet deadlines. You'll work in an office and on-site. Overnight stays may be necessary, depending on the site's location.
For this role you'll need excellent STEM skills (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) a high level of accuracy and attention to detail, the ability to analyse and interpret graphical data, strong communication, negotiating and presentation skills, and the ability to prioritise and plan effectively.
You'll usually need to gain a degree or professional qualification accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).
Relevant subjects are civil engineering, geology, geomatics, mining engineering, or surveying.
If you've a non-accredited degree, you can also move into this career by completing: a RICS accredited postgraduate course in surveying, through an employer's graduate traineeship or full-time study a distance learning postgraduate conversion course with the University College of Estate Management. If you've an HNC, HND or foundation degree in surveying, you could work as a surveying technician while taking further study to fully qualify.
With experience and further training, you could become a chartered minerals surveyor. You could specialise in waste management, contaminated sites, or environmental engineering.