Holding a senior position with Deloitte, Colin Sheldon is an experienced Engineer and Asset Management Specialist with a history of working in the mining and metals industry. In 2021, Mr Sheldon was elected leader of the IEC Young Professional cohort by his peers—his influence on his industry through Standards Australia spans across past, present, and future generations.
Colin Sheldon is a Senior Specialist Lead at Deloitte with experience across the mining, rail and heavy industry sectors. As a Chartered Professional Engineer and Registered Professional Engineer of Queensland (RPEQ), he has significant experience and strength in the areas of mining compliance, maintenance execution, and project management.
Mr Sheldon is an influential contributor to Standards Australia, specifically in shaping standards around mining equipment, bulk handling equipment, earthmoving equipment, fire protection of mobile and transportable equipment, asset management, and dependability.
He began contributing to Australian Standards in 2016 when he joined Standards Australia’s ME-018 Mining Equipment committee, and, in 2017, was selected to participate in the Young Leaders Program (now known as NEXTgen).
“The program really opened my eyes and helped me build some valuable networks. It set me up with a mentor and propelled me to join other technical committees both nationally and internationally, including working groups of ISO TC 127, Earth-moving machinery and ISO TC-251, Asset management,” Mr Sheldon said.
He is also heavily involved with the International Electrotechnical Commission’s (IEC) Young Professionals Programme (YPP). Australia has a strong history of contributing to the IEC program, with past participants quickly becoming leaders in national and international standards work. In 2021, Mr Sheldon was elected as one of those leaders by his Young Professional peers.
“To be elected as a Leader at the IEC Young Professionals Programme, out of over 100 exceptional young technical experts from all over the world, was a really special and proud moment and definitely a career highlight,” said Mr Sheldon.
During his term, he is setting up a project to connect alumni of the IEC YP Programme with IEC leaders, Chairs of technical committees, members of the management board, and senior staff at National Standards Bodies.
“This allows for the professional development to continue past the programme as it springboards young professionals and accelerates their involvement within the IEC and its National Committees, addressing the diversity of age challenge, of which both international and national standards bodies are acutely aware of,” Mr Sheldon said.
Mr Sheldon participated in the YP Programme virtually, due to COVID-19 related restrictions, but says despite this, it was an incredible experience.
“I was really impressed. Having flexibility for hybrid meetings has broken down barriers for many young people who may not have the financial resources to attend in-person meetings, often held overseas. If we can make standards contributions easier and more flexible, I feel it will greatly increase the number of young technical experts able to participate.”
Over the next 12 months, Mr Sheldon will have the opportunity to work closely with the IEC in the development of standards for his industry and attend the IEC general meeting in San Francisco.
As a specialist in asset management, Mr Sheldon focuses on efficiency—finding ways to improve asset performance, reduce cost of ownership and increase quality without compromising safety. During his involvement with Standards Australia Mr Sheldon has contributed to many standards at a national and international level but speaks of two with pride; ISO 55001, Asset management – Management systems – Requirements, and AS 5062, Fire protection for mobile and transportable equipment.
Being part of the ISO Secretarial support team to ISO/ TC 251/ WG 6 , Mr Sheldon is actively involved in the current revision of the international standard ISO 55001. For the current revision of AS 5062, Mr Sheldon is the deputy drafting leader and had the opportunity to support the drafting leader by taking on their responsibilities when they needed to focus on the COVID-19 response.
His work, along with the many other committed stakeholders involved in standards development, is vital to supporting users of standards and those who benefit from them.
“Standards are incredibly important to the mining industry in that they support safety and compliance. Standards give end users confidence when working in hazardous areas, and the confidence that we can use standard compliant machinery in our environment safely,” he said.
Mr Sheldon offered some advice for young professionals entering the workforce now and who may have an interest in standards development.
“If you want to contribute to your industry through standards, then Standards Australia makes it easy enough at any level, whether you want to be an active committee member or simply provide feedback on new standards out for public comment, or join a program like Standards Australia’s NEXTgen,” he said.
“Getting involved will not only give you an understanding and appreciation of standards and those who develop them, but it will also open up a network of professionals who can help you with your career,” Mr Sheldon concluded.
“Mr Sheldon continues to support forward-thinking around standards in his field of asset management, and we look forward to our ongoing work with this incredibly talented up and coming standards leader,” said Adam Stingemore, Standards Australia’s General Manager, Engagement and Communications.