Agricultural Technicians perform tests and experiments, and provide technical support to assist Agricultural Scientists in areas such as research, production, servicing and marketing.

An Associate Degree, Advanced Diploma or Diploma, or at least 3 years of relevant experience is usually needed. Around one in three workers have a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification. Even with a qualification, experience or on-the-job training is usually needed.

Tasks

  • examining topographical, physical and soil characteristics of farmland to determine its most effective use and identify nutrient deficiencies
  • assisting in developing new methods of planting, fertilising, harvesting and processing crops to achieve optimum land usage
  • identifying pathogenic micro-organisms and insects, parasites, fungi and weeds harmful to crops and livestock, and assisting in devising methods of control
  • analysing produce to set and maintain standards of quality
  • inspecting livestock to gauge the effectiveness of feed formulae
  • assisting in controlled breeding experiments to develop improved crop and livestock strains
  • arranging the supply of drugs, vaccines and other chemicals to Farmers and Farm Managers, and giving advice on their use
  • collecting and collating data for research
  • planning slaughtering, harvesting and other aspects of production processes
  • may advise producers on farming techniques and management

Job Titles

  • Agricultural Technician
  • Agricultural Technician (also called Agricultural Technical Officer)

    Specialisations: Agriculture Laboratory Technician, Artificial Insemination Technical Officer, Dairy Technician, Field Crop Technical Officer, Herd Tester, Horticultural Technical Officer

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    Unavailable
  • Future Growth

    moderate
  • Skill Level

    Associate Degree or Diploma
  • Employment Size

    2,000
  • Unemployment

    below average
  • Male Share

    63.6%
  • Female Share

    36.4%
  • Full-Time Share

    93.8%

Find Vacancies

This is a very small occupation employing 2000 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has grown strongly.
Moderate growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create up to 5,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • Agricultural Technicians work in most parts of Australia.
  • They mainly work in: Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing; Public Administration and Safety; and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
  • Almost all work full-time. Full-time workers, on average, work 37.1 hours per week (compared to the all jobs average of 40 hours).
  • The average age is 43 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years) and around 5 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • Around 6 in 10 workers are male.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was below average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearNumber of Workers
20052400
20062300
20072500
20083500
20092200
20101800
20111100
20122900
20131200
20142200
20152000
20202100

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Jobs Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Hours actually worked by people who usually work full-time, and share of employment by full-time and part-time status, for this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryAgricultural TechniciansAll Jobs Average
Full-time93.868.4
Part-time6.231.6
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)37.140.0

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing40.1
Public Administration and Safety26.4
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services22.6
Financial and Insurance Services3.7
Other Industries7.2

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateAgricultural TechniciansAll Jobs Average
NSW28.931.8
VIC22.225.5
QLD23.619.8
SA5.16.8
WA14.111.2
TAS6.02.0
NT0.01.1
ACT0.01.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketAgricultural TechniciansAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.0-5.45.4
20-2411.9-9.99.9
25-3423.3-23.423.4
35-4417.1-21.721.7
45-5421.2-21.121.1
55-5923.6-8.78.7
60-642.9-5.95.9
65 and Over0.0-3.83.8

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Male and female share of employment in this job compared to the all jobs average.
CategoryAgricultural TechniciansCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males63.6Males53.6
Females36.4Females46.4

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

An Associate Degree, Advanced Diploma or Diploma, or at least 3 years of relevant experience is usually needed.
Around one in three workers have a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification. Even with a qualification, experience or on-the-job training is usually needed.

If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Agricultural Technicians who have strong interpersonal skills, are flexible and can provide good customer service.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Mathematics

    83% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  2. Biology

    82% Important

    Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.

  3. Chemistry

    77% Important

    Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change. Danger signs and disposal methods.

  4. Administration and Management

    76% Important

    Planning and coordination of people and resources.

  5. English Language

    73% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

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Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Documenting/Recording Information

    90% Important

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  2. Getting Information

    89% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  3. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

    87% Important

    Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

  4. Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings

    83% Important

    Checking objects, actions, or events, keeping an eye out for problems.

  5. Processing Information

    82% Important

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

Occupational Information Network Agricultural and Food Science Technicians Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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