Tractor DriverJob Description:
Tractor drivers operate farm machinery to plough fields, plant seeds, and spray and harvest crops.Job Category:
What you will do:
In this role, you could:
- discuss work with the farm manager
- plough fields, sow seeds and harvest crops
- spray crops with fertilisers and pesticides
- use tractor attachments to cut hedges and make hay bales
- maintain equipment and carry out basic repairs
- knowledge of food production methods
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
As well as:
- the ability to work on your own (ambition/drive)
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail (organisation skills)
- physical skills like movement, coordination and dexterity
- concentration skills
- analytical thinking skills
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
To become a Tractor Driver, you don’t typically need specific subjects, but having a good basic education can be helpful. Tractor Drivers are responsible for operating tractors and other agricultural machinery for various farming tasks. Here’s a list of subjects and skills that can be beneficial for pursuing a career as a Tractor Driver:
- Mathematics: Basic math skills are important for tasks such as calculating quantities, measuring land, and working with equipment specifications.
- English: Clear communication skills are essential for understanding instructions, filling out forms, and communicating with other workers on the farm.
- Science (e.g., Biology or Chemistry): A basic understanding of science, particularly related to agriculture, can be beneficial for understanding soil composition, crop types, and basic plant biology.
- Design and Technology: This subject can provide a foundation for understanding machinery, tools, and equipment, which is useful for operating tractors and other farm machinery.
- Physical Education (PE): Physical fitness is important for safely operating agricultural machinery and performing various farm tasks.
- Environmental Science or Geography: Familiarity with environmental issues and geographical features can be helpful, especially if the farm implements sustainable or eco-friendly practices.
- ICT (Information and Communication Technology): Basic computer skills can be useful for using technology associated with modern farming equipment.
You can get into this job through:
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- applying directly
You could do a college course to get some of the skills you need to become a tractor driver.
You could do a course in tractor driving and related occupations or in safe working in agriculture and production horticulture.
You could do a general farm worker intermediate apprenticeship.
This apprenticeship usually takes 18 months to complete.
There is no set route to become a tractor driver so you could apply directly.
It might be useful if you have some experience in farming and a knowledge of basic mechanics.
Working Hours and Environment:
Typical working hours are 60-62 hours a week but these may depend on the season.
You may be expected to work on the weekend, public holidays and in the evenings.
You could work on a farm.
Your working environment may be outdoors in all weathers, cramped, noisy, physically demanding and dusty.
You may need to wear safety clothing and use safety equipment.
Career Path & Progression:
With experience you could:
- become a supervisor or farm manager,
- agricultural contractor, or agricultural engineer
- be a tractor driver in different sectors such as maintaining outdoor spaces for local government
- take further training to operate different machinery