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Could a job in agricultural finance be for you?

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The agricultural industry is varied with many different roles available - bringing in people from all fields of work. The agricultural sector has high employment rates and the setting of your work will be hard to beat in terms of natural beauty and the views on offer. While it may not be widely spoken about beyond the price you pay for your milk in the supermarket, the financial side is a crucial aspect of any agricultural business.

A career in agricultural finance could provide you with the best of two very different worlds; the life that living and working in a rural area can bring, as well as a job that is typically found in big cities. Wanting a job in finance does not have to limit your ability to live a more rural kind of life - agricultural businesses have finances that need managing too! An exploration of agricultural finance will demonstrate that this could be a job filled with variety in what you're doing:

What you'll be doing in agricultural finance

Naturally, it depends on your specific job and the role you're employed to do. Many of the tasks required of this sort of work will overlap with working in finance in a major city. However, working in finance in the agricultural sector is ideal if you have a love for working with money and also have an interest in agriculture. You could be assisting with loans for first-time farmers or even working to sell a service. You'll likely be preparing and examining financial records while also ensuring that all applicable laws and regulations are being met by the business/clients you're working for. The agricultural finance sector is varied and can be a highly rewarding career.

If you decide to work in a crop adjuster role, for example, you could be the person who attends fields where insurance claims have been made. You'll be tasked with analysing crop loss as a result of weather, disease or other issues that many have arisen. You'd also be required to utilise technology to evaluate the claim that's been made - such as aerial photos, maps, drones and other crop technology.

Opportunities in agricultural finance

Whether you decide to become an agricultural finance officer, a senior relationship manager or an equipment finance specialist, you're likely to find something that suits your abilities and interests in finance as well as agriculture. There are many jobs out there in agricultural finance varying from the well-known accountancy work to the aforementioned crop adjuster.

Who you'll be employed by depends on what route you decide to take and you could even work for yourself as an accountant with a focus on agricultural business. You could be employed by a crop insurance company, a loan company who lends to agricultural businesses or perhaps by a farmer who wants an in-house financial team such as an accountant.

Other roles in this business include, but are not limited to: Controller or Auditor; Director of Agricultural Investments or Agricultural Lender.

Qualification requirements

As with any industry, educational requirements will vary depending on the job you're applying for and who's employing you. Some employers will demand higher qualifications than others. However, you can generally expect to need a bachelor's or master's degree in a subject such as accounting, business or agribusiness. Working in rural settings with limited public transport can also present issues, so you may even be required to possess a full UK driving licence depending on the day-to-day requirements of the job for which you're applying.

You'll also be required to have a wider set of skills such as the ability to work effectively as part of a team and may need to have prior experience in sales.

Like you would before applying for any role, do your research about what's required and check that your qualifications and skillset meet or exceed what's being asked. There are also further short courses you can take to specialise your skillset in this field or just out of general interest. For instance, you could take a mathematics course or an agricultural education course.

If your initial work in the agricultural finance sector inspires you to take on a new role within the industry then you can use your existing qualification(s) as a platform to take a masters or other postgraduate course. Courses such as crop science and agricultural technology are on offer, among many others, so the world really is your oyster with this industry and you won't be restricted to purely where you start out.

Agricultural finance salary expectations:

Agricultural related businesses typically report higher salaries than those of workers on farms, but many jobs in the agricultural sector come with additional perks and benefits. You could see your mobile phone being paid for, accommodation offered and potentially a company car. It depends, again, entirely on what your role is and who you're working for as to what you'll actually be earning - but as a finance manager a salary of £40K+ isn't uncommon and as an agricultural financial broker you could be earning upwards of £55k a year depending on who your employer is and where you're working.

As you can see, agricultural finance presents itself as an exciting field of work within the industry with a wide variety of roles on offer. A successful career in agriculture isn't impossible and the sector is known for providing people with life-long opportunities and plenty of opportunities for promotion or moving on to entirely new things within the industry.

Agricultural Recruitment Specialists are a prestigious recruitment consultancy within the agricultural sector. Professional and approachable, we focus on jobs and vacancies within the sector throughout the United Kingdom, Europe and across the rest of the world too. If you're considering your first role within the agricultural finance industry either here in the UK or internationally then get in touch and we can guide you on your journey. Please visit our website here: