Diploma of Drilling Operations

This qualification reflects the role of employees such as senior drillers or field supervisors. They perform tasks involving a broad range of varied activities most of which are complex and non-routine. They are responsible for the quantity and quality of the output of others and contribute to the development of technical solutions to non-routine problems.


Requirements for completion of the qualification

The following table provides the packaging rules for this qualification, followed by the list of relevant units of competency.

Successful completion of eleven (11) units of competency made up of:

ten (10) Core units, and

one (1) Group A elective unit from the list below

Units of competency chosen must be relevant to the competency requirements for the job function.

Care must be taken to ensure that all prerequisites specified within imported units, or units chosen as electives, are complied with.

Core units of competency

Unit code

Unit title

add topic BSBCUS501A

Manage quality customer service

add topic BSBMGT515A

Manage operational plan

add topic BSBWOR502A

Ensure team effectiveness

add topic BSBOHS509A

Ensure a safe workplace

add topic RIIENV501A

Implement and maintain environmental management plan

add topic RIIGOV501A

Identify, implement and maintain legal compliance requirements

add topic RIINHB501A

Plan drilling

add topic RIIRIS501A

Implement and maintain management systems to control risk

add topic RIIPRM501A

Implement, monitor, rectify and report on contracts

add topic RIISAM502B

Manage general drilling equipment maintenance

Group A electives

Unit code

Unit title

add topic RIINHB401A

Plan and supervise the mobilisation of equipment, crew and materials

add topic RIINHB402A

Supervise mineral exploration drilling operations

add topic RIINHB403A

Supervise geotechnical drilling operations

add topic RIINHB404A

Supervise seismic drilling operations

add topic RIINHB405A

Supervise water well drilling operations

add topic RIINHB406A

Supervise foundation drilling operations

add topic RIINHB407A

Supervise horizontal directional drilling operations

add topic RIINHB408A

Supervise environmental drilling operations

add topic RIINHB409A

Supervise mineral production and development drilling operations

add topic RIINHB410A

Supervise surface directional drilling operations

add topic RIINHB411A

Construct artesian (flowing) aquifer production bores

add topic RIINHB412B

Construct geothermal wells

add topic RIINHB413A

Supervise underground in-seam directional drilling operations


    Not applicable.

Entry Requirements

Not applicable.

Licensing Information

Not applicable.

Employability Skills

The following table includes a summary of the employability skills as identified by the resources and infrastructure industry for this qualification. The table should be interpreted in conjunction with the detailed requirements of each unit of competency packaged in this qualification. The outcomes required here are broad industry requirements that may vary depending on packaging options.

Employability Skill

Industry/enterprise requirements for this qualification include:


provide clear and direct feedback

listen carefully to instructions and information

read and interpret project plans and safety signs

calculate basic weights, distances and volumes

complete accurate work plans, technical reports, risk assessments, etc

negotiate solutions to customer and workplace based issues

negotiate project details with clients

network with other professionals working in the same field


plan and lead team performance and operations

coordinate project activities and timelines with clients

work cooperatively with people of different ages, gender, race, religion or political persuasion

provide feedback and advice to staff

lead site-wide planning and coordination activities


re-allocate staff and resources in response to changing weather, site conditions and priorities

manage staff to solve problems and coordinate individual responsibilities and activities

work cooperatively with clients to resolve contract and operational issues

manage the ongoing review and adjustment of operations against performance indicators and project milestones

Initiative and enterprise

act independently to identify potential improvements to working practice and conditions

identify and take steps to resolve risks in the workplace

encourage the exploration and application of innovative approaches to improve on operational performance

Planning and organising

manage and coordinate time and priorities for self and team

identify and obtain appropriate personnel and resources for work

ensure that risks are assessed and appropriate emergency plans are in place

ensure that project planning incorporates the possibility of adapting to future changes


take responsibility for ensuring team targets and goals are achieved

understand the standard of work expected at the work site

proactively manage team performance

develop trust and confidence in staff and customers


be willing to learn new ways of working

seek information to improve performance from people and workplace documents like policies, procedures etc

understand equipment characteristics, technical capabilities, limitations and procedures

lead change and continuous improvement processes

manage learning and development plans

prepare and lead formal or informal training sessions


apply a range of basic IT skills in monitoring and reporting on systems

operate equipment safely and according to manufacturer and workplace guidelines

use communications technology appropriate to the workplace (email, mobile, radio, etc)

use computer technology to monitor and communicate project status

use IT to create documents and maintain records of work activities