When you meet Bhing Maglantay, chances are she already knows who you are, why you’re there, and what your business is.
That’s because, as the Asia region controller for Major Drilling, Maglantay is responsible for accounting every transaction that takes place in Mongolia, the Philippines and Indonesia. Her office in Carmona Cavite, Philippines, is ground zero for the organized, complex work executed by this valued professional. She is the most senior female member of the Major Drilling Asia team.
Being a woman in senior administrative management in the mining industry comes with a unique viewpoint. Maglantay sees many positives, but also challenges in an industry presently working to enhance gender diversity.
“As we know it, it is typically a man’s world,” she said. “However, there has been a tremendous change of pace in the mining industry such as technological advancement, which could serve as a positive catalyst towards diversity.”
Bhing Maglantay, Major Drilling Asia Region Controller
At the Philippines Mining Convention 2019, posing at the Major Drilling booth are (l-r): Reynadlo Ebrada, Safety Manager; Daniel Paradis, Operations Manager; Hernan Caballes, General Manager; Bhing Maglantay, and JR Davies, VP Operations - Asia.
For example, a computerized rig that is crawler mounted, such as the Major Drilling EF-75 multi-mount drill rig, makes it easier for women to operate with push-button technology.
Maglantay says along with technological transformation, the mining industry needs leaders who are encouraging, compassionate, adaptable, and nurturing—attributes commonly seen in women.
“Having these traits in a leader means better employee engagement, which enhances motivation and morale that can positively affect work performance leading to a successful business goal,” she said.
Maglantay recognizes the impact of good leadership and work performance as she interacts with significant Major Drilling projects.
These projects include development of the vast Oyu Tolgoi Mine in Mongolia, in partnership with Rio Tinto, and block cave pre-conditioning work at Freeport Indonesia’s Deep Mill Level Zone underground mine that is part of the Grasberg District, the world’s largest gold mine.
Maglantay worked in one of the “Big Four” auditing firms after passing her CPA licensure exams in 2000. Then she went to work with several multinational companies. In 2007, she became the chief accountant at Bradley Drilling Inc. until the company was acquired by Major Drilling Group International in September 2011.
For Major Drilling Philippines, Maglantay fulfilled simultaneous roles as financial controller and the human resources and administration manager. She appreciates the opportunities to grow her knowledge in new professional spaces and bring about important results.
“In 2017, we created a team where I acted as the company’s Management Representative to successfully obtain an ISO certification for three standards,” Maglantay said.
Maglantay visits a project site with Hernan Caballes, General Manager of the Major Drilling Philippines branch. Maglantay works closely with general managers from each Asia regional office to ensure good financial management and practices are used.
The three standards Maglantay and her team achieved for the first time at Major Drilling Philippines are ISO 9001:2015 Quality Managements Systems; ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Management Systems; and ISO 18001:2007 Occupational Safety and Health Management Systems.
“Up to present, Major Philippines remains the first and only drilling company in the country certified in ISO for three standards. This is where we take so much pride within the branch and as a team,” she said.
After 13 years of working at Major Drilling Philippines, her present role as the Regional Controller – Asia for Major Drilling Group International, allows Maglantay to expand her horizons and learn about different cultures. It also allows her to not only help Major Drilling’s Asia branches, but also to help team members worldwide who require her expertise to be effective controllers and partners of the operational drilling team.
“The work Bhing does in Asia affects the worldwide impact of Major Drilling’s operations and bottom line,” Hernan Caballes, General Manager of Major Drilling Philippines, said. “She’s also a great leader and example among the women and men at Major Drilling.”
Maglantay (left) visits a drilling site in Mongolia with controller Sumiyamaa Enkhbayar.
Maglantay says supporting other women in mining and drilling is an important part of growing female interest and participation in the industry. Pictured (l-r) are Alaine Joy Limson, HR staff, Bhing Maglantay, and Crizelle Varies, HR staff, operating the Major Drilling booth at the 2019 Philippines Mining Convention in Manila.
A Woman in Mining Management
From a management perspective, Maglantay, like many other women in the mining industry, is realistic, yet optimistic when considering how women today have more opportunities than ever to work in the sector.
“Although gender equality moves at a very slow pace in the mining industry, there has been an improvement, although not vast, in the number of women working in the field, such as geologists, mining engineers, safety officers, etcetera,” she said.
Still, Maglantay sees how progress can be made by improving working conditions to make it more family oriented, particularly in the field.
She feels technological advancements would play a key role in encouraging more women to join the industry. Connected with this advancement is greater emphasis on strengthening company policies to enhance more respect for women in the workplace.
Maglantay knows women definitely have an important place in mining and drilling. With some guidance and flexibility, she feels the vastly undertapped female half of the workforce can be more involved in the office, in the field, and at the drill controls, a change which will only better the mining and drilling industry as it moves into the future.
Maglantay oversees Major Drilling - Asia region finances from her office in Carmona Cavite, Philippines.
She states, firmly, “The presence of more women in the mining and drilling sector would allow a more diverse workforce that could offer different business insights that would lead to business successes.” With Maglantay in control of finances at Major Drilling Asia, it’s a great step toward that future.
Five Women at Major Drilling Making Strides to Support the Mining Industry
In 2020, the world marks March 8 as International Women’s Day, a day to celebrate the varied contributions women make to society. Major Drilling is highlighting five women who inspire the industry to support, expand and change minds about women in mining and drilling:
See our full story and features of our other Major Drilling Women in Mining: