In an industry typically dominated by men, women are becoming an increasingly visible part of the supply chain. With a rise in female quotas in the fuel and transport sectors, gender diversity is being recognised for providing broader skills, innovation and work- life balance. In this feature, IOR Petroleum stands out with six of its nine Queensland depots operated by women who have been helping fuel regional and outback Australia since 1984.
“Fuel in my veins”
For Tammy Andrews, IOR Petroleum’s rural site supervisor in Roma and Injune, there is no such thing as a “typical” day at work. During her daily tasks you will find her working closely with fellow frontliners Wendy Farndon and Christie Kelly, both part-time depot administrators at Injune. No two days are the same for this lady from Charleville who says, in her words, “I have fuel in my veins”.
“Women have been in the background of the industry for many years, but these days there are more women on the frontline, driving the trucks and being part-owners,” she said.
Kellie Athorn from IOR’s Cloncurry depot agrees. “A lot of husband and wife teams don’t need to be separated anymore,” she said. “Women are now amongst it. I have been with IOR for six years now with my husband, and we couldn’t ask for a better workplace. We love what we do and it’s great to see so many women in the industry.”
A role like no other
For Melissa Leadbetter at IOR’s Goondiwindi depot, a sense of teamwork and support is what encourages her in her day-to-day role with marketers, drivers and sales personnel. “We have a real community spirit here,” she said. “In IOR, we support one another, work together as a team and enjoy the company we work with.”
The importance of family
Like many IOR frontline team members, Jo Mildon from IOR’s Chinchilla and Miles depots also works alongside her husband and values the benefits a family-oriented workplace like IOR can offer. “Working with my husband in the same team allows us versatility, so we are able to juggle our family schedules together,” she said. “The growth of visible, female roles in frontline services like ours can offer a broader range of skill sets and improve the work-life balance for the whole team, which is absolutely a benefit that is passed on to all our customers.”