Metallurgist, Nickel Processing

First Quantum

Overall Job Purpose

  • To be responsible for providing metallurgical guidance, conducting production support test work where required, metallurgical measurements in the plant, ensuring metallurgical key performance indicators (KPIs) are available, reported and analysed on a daily basis – aimed at improving plant performance.
  • The role will carry out tasks allocated by the Senior Metallurgist in the context of assessing performance of the nickel processing plant with the final objective of effectively contributing to the plant meeting production and performance targets; participating and leading process performance analysis and improvement initiatives.

Specific Job Responsibility

  • Identifying, analysing, troubleshooting, understanding and developing solutions to both emergent problems and opportunities.
  • Lead the identification, detailed planning and high-quality execution of metallurgical projects to optimise the process plant performance.
  • Maintain HSE standards and ensure strict compliance within the nickel plant.
  • Consistently deliver and exceed the main KPI’s of timely (sampling, analysis and reporting) and accurate metallurgical analysis.
  • Developing operating methods and standard operating procedures related to operational, metallurgical and process engineering tasks.
  • Provide technical support and troubleshooting to the operations team to achieve plant production targets.
  • Monitoring and reporting on short term metallurgical events and implement control strategies, including optimizing addition rates, and monitoring the consumption of all concentrator reagents.
  • Identifying and implementing continuous improvement projects.
  • Facilitate data acquisition, warehousing, accessibility, distribution, and analytics.
  • Control and reduce operational costs.
  • Perform any other duties as assigned by the supervisor.

Job Specific Competencies 

  • Excellent literacy and numeracy skills.
  • Strong I.T skills.
  • Strong understanding of complex metallurgical information, process improvement and control strategies.
  • Good cognitive and analytical skills for identifying process shortfalls, bottlenecks and implementing metallurgical testing.
  • Basic health and safety knowledge including job safety analysis.

Key Job Attributes

  • Must be thorough and detail oriented
  • Must be dependable and self-motivated
  • Must have excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to interact with people of different cultures.
  • Must be a fast learner.
  • Flexible towards working in variety of work areas (rigs, sampling handling facility, mineralogy preparation laboratory).
  • Must be bold, smart and driven.
  • Must be able to work under pressure and multi-task.
  • Must be adaptable and a team player.
  • Work safely and to regulations – setting an example for all personnel.
  • Willing to do shift work.

Experience required to perform in this job

  • At least 1 – 2 years’ experience in mineral processing is preferred but not essential.
  • Nickel flotation and talc removal circuit experience is advantageous.


  • Full grade twelve (G12) certificate.
  • A degree in extractive metallurgy, mineral processing or related field.
  • Manual SADC class B driver’s licence preferred.
  • EIZ membership eligibility

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