Apprenticeship Careers Advice

How To Get A Farm Manager Apprenticeship - Career Advice

James Thornhill

Farm managers oversee the operations of a farm during the production process, providing leadership and organisation.

They perform a wide range of roles in bring the process to a successful completion including contacting suppliers, selecting seeds for the planting season and acquiring new farm machinery. These managers are the people who keep all the cogs in the farm machine working together.

Farm managers of specialise in livestock, crops or horticulture and can often oversee more than one facility.

The work is split between on-site work and administrative office based tasks in the successful management of the farm.

In this role you must satisfy regulations set by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) for safe, high-quality produce farmed in an environmentally sustainable manner.

How Much Can I Earn as a Farm Managing Apprentice? 

The average net wage for an apprentice in the UK is £200 per week.

Salaries from Farm Managers are dependent on the size of the farm and your experience.

According to data from the Farmers Weekly 2015 pay can careers survey, in association with De Lacy Executive, Farm Managers can expect to earn:

  • Assistant or trainee managers may expect to start on salaries of £20,000 to £22,000.

  • Once the position of manager has been achieved, salaries are in the region of £23,000 to £35,000.

  • With significant experience of more than ten to 15 years, farm managers may earn over £50,000. In senior consultancy or advisory roles pay may reach £70,000.

These figures are intended as a guide only.

What Qualifications do I Need to be a Farm Managing Apprentice?

Technical knowledge and previous farming experience are as important in this role as academic qualifications. It has been known for some employers to hire candidates on experience alone.

You’ll have to remain in either full time education or training till the age of 18.

Apprenticeships don’t have fixed academic entry requirements (although GCSEs in English and Maths at Grade D and above are an advantage), but you must fulfil the following criteria:

·        - You must be at least 16 years old.

·        - You must have a suitable work placement with an employer. There is often help to find a placement available from the college or provider.

·       - A good reference.

Often work experience and knowledge of agriculture is also a requirement.

There are specific Level 3 and 4 qualifications that can be obtained via an apprenticeship programme.

To progress to an agriculture based degree at university each institution will have different requirements but many will ask for the following:

·        At least two science-based A-level subjects, and an additional A level or equivalent.

What Skills Do I Need to be a Farm Managing Apprentice?

Farm managers need a number of key skills to succeed:

·        Organisational skills

·        Communication

·        Team work

·        IT skills

·        Technical knowledge of agriculture and the environment

·        Analytical skills

·        Marketing

·        Management skills

·        Ability to work under pressure

·        Knowledge of food production

·        Negotiation skills

A solid understanding of modern farming methods is essential for this role, as well as an understanding of animal welfare and how agriculture impacts the environment.

What Experience Do I Need to Get a Job in Farm Managing Apprenticeship?

It is normal to have obtained a fair amount of work experience before taking on a trainee manager position. It is practical experience that will make you stand out from the crowd.

This experience is usually obtained with a sandwich course, apprenticeship, holiday work or a gap-year placement.

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