BHP silent on more job cuts

BHP Billiton is thought to have made another 60 positions across its WA iron ore division redundant as part of Jimmy Wilson's relentless drive to squeeze costs out of a business that is coming to the end of a defining period of production volume growth.

Ahead of a ceremony in Port Hedland tomorrow to mark the shipment of BHP's billionth tonne of iron ore to Japan, the company is understood to have targeted planning and development roles in its Perth divisional head office as well as in Newman and other Pilbara centres. BHP would not confirm the cuts, which come as the latest in the company's cost reduction efforts and have already led to more than 500 roles axed, and the prospect of hundreds more.

Mr Wilson, who has been in charge of the iron ore division for exactly two years, will front media for the first time since March and will be asked to explain the extent of the job cuts and how many more positions are being targeted.

He told _WestBusiness _in March the focus of the cost-cutting program would be on support functions for the core operational staff, which he described as adding "direct value".

"In providing that facilitation and that help to those that add value we need to be mindful of the effectiveness of that, and the efficiency," Mr Wilson said.

"We are already getting to a process now about elimination of waste and wasteful activities. Some of the stuff that we do, while it's developed with the best of intentions, there's a huge amount of effort involved and no real outcomes or no real change to the essence that the way those fold we are trying to help act."

The West Australian

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