Farm Worker / Farm Assistant
There are no set requirements, but experience and knowledge of farm work, or an agricultural qualification, will be helpful.
To work on a dairy farm you may need training or experience in handling a herd and operating milking machinery, or you could learn on the job.
You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.
- practical skills
- a willingness to work flexibly
- Computer skills
Your day-to-day tasks will vary depending on the type of farm and the time of year, but may include:
- working with animals (transporting, milking, feeding, mucking out and caring for sick or newborn livestock)
- ploughing fields, sowing seeds, spreading fertiliser, crop spraying and harvesting
- operating farm machinery
- operating computers on farm machinery and databases
- maintaining and cleaning farm buildings and machinery
- laying and trimming hedges
- digging and maintaining ditches
- erecting and mending fences
You'll be supervised by the farm owner or manager, and you may supervise casual staff.
Working Hours, Patterns and Environment
Farming is seasonal and the workload varies. You'll usually work at least 39 hours a week and be expected to work paid overtime when necessary.
Early morning, evening and weekend work are all common. This is a physically active role, so you'll need a reasonable level of fitness.
You'll usually need a driving licence.
Farm work can be dirty and dusty. It may not suit you if you suffer from allergies like hay fever.
With qualifications and experience, you could progress to supervisor or unit manager on a large farm. You may have to move between farms to gain experience and promotion.
You could also become an agricultural contractor, supplying services to several farms, servicing machinery or working in agricultural equipment and supplies.