From education to employment

Agriculture or horticulture professional adviser



K1: Crop husbandry and management of controllable variables and awareness of non-controllable variables (e.g. climate, season and weather) Back to Duty

K2: Current and future research and development related to crop husbandry Back to Duty

K3: Health & Safety and risk analysis, product purpose, label interpretation and application approach Back to Duty

K4: How to minimise the impact of farming operations on water quality & wildlife, protect against soil erosion and understand the necessity to protect field margin habitat for biodiversity in line with policy and legislation from relevant Government departments Back to Duty

K5: Legislation regarding storage and transport of crop protection materials, containers and their disposal in line with policy and legislation from relevant Government departments Back to Duty

K6: The potential impact of changes in political stance (national and international) Back to Duty

K7: How to network and interact with all relevant professional bodies Back to Duty

K8: The current national economic and environmental climate and local area and community influences and demands Back to Duty

K9: Customer & stakeholder needs & expectations and the potential risks associated with the provision of advice Back to Duty

K10: Scope and frequency of advice appropriate to the relationship and role Back to Duty

K11: Internal systems that hold information and data, data filtering processes and GDPR regulations on the storage and use of information Back to Duty

K12: Internal and external customer service standards & complaint management procedures which ensures continued customer engagement Back to Duty

K13: Interpersonal techniques for effective interactions and positive outcomes Back to Duty

K14: Current organisational strategy in relation to customer service, customer loyalty and the legal rights of customers making purchases Back to Duty

K15: Range of communication media (verbal, non-verbal, written, digital) and appropriate interpersonal skills needed for each which meet farmer/grower/colleague preferences or expectations Back to Duty

K16: Outcomes of planning in short, medium- and long-term cycles (strategy) and what is required to implement them (tactics) Back to Duty

K17: The range of organisation, prioritisation, planning and time management techniques available to ensure personal efficiency, including impact of own time management and organisation on others Back to Duty

K18: Own development plan and alignment with company training policy and the changing standards/policy that may occur within the sector Back to Duty

K19: Skills required to be an effective adviser and enhancing own learning style and communication preferences Back to Duty

K20: Mentoring and/or coaching that is available from within the organisation and engaging with all opportunities for personal development Back to Duty

K21: Coaching and mentoring approaches and models to use with others Back to Duty

K22: Business culture, values & standards and the example to be set, their impact on the business and the need to operate to those values Back to Duty

K23: Scope of the potential customer base, the systems available which hold information & data and filtering data according to need Back to Duty

K24: Networking opportunities and the range of influencing factors on customer decision making Back to Duty

K25: Product offer and its measurement against competing products Back to Duty

K26: Chemical and non-chemical intervention methods and application approaches as described in BASIS-FSTS syllabus Back to Duty

K27: Macro and Micro nutritional crop requirements and application approaches as described in BASIS-FACTS syllabus Back to Duty

K28: Farming specific legislation and regulation (e.g. pesticides, product withdrawals, protection zones) and other associated legislation and regulation (e.g. drinking water directive) Back to Duty

K29: Commercial business management requirements for running a typical farming enterprise aligned to Farmer/Grower yield potential and expectations across a range of situations Back to Duty

K30: Precision farming methods, equipment and software tools, their advantages, limitations and suitability for farmer/grower needs Back to Duty

K31: Experimental approaches to evaluate new products, varieties and techniques which may be suitable to local Farmers/Growers Back to Duty

K32: Risk assessment(s) and required action(s) to correct both existing and potential problems or threats Back to Duty

K33: Product manufacture, availability and stock according to seasonal requirements Back to Duty

K34: How to manage personal workload pressures (high:low) associated with a seasonally influenced role Back to Duty

K35: Research & Discovery processes for new active ingredients plus industry stewardship schemes to preserve their efficacy & longevity Back to Duty

K36: Formulation and manufacturing processes of Macro-nutrient fertilisers and Micro-nutrient products/foliar treatments Back to Duty

K37: Weed, insect & disease life cycles of the major pests that threaten UK agricultural or horticultural crops and their management/treatment to minimise yield loss or crop quality reduction Back to Duty

K38: Chemical & physical properties of soil (e.g. pH, cationic exchange, sand/silt/clay fraction) and their impact on nutrient availability to crops Back to Duty

K39: Pesticide resistance mechanisms that arise in weeds, insects & diseases and the techniques/alternative treatments which can be introduced to overcome or alleviate their impact when they occur Back to Duty

K40: Nutrient deficiency symptoms exhibited by crops and their methods of correction using appropriate Macro and/or Micro nutrient treatment Back to Duty


S1: Demonstrate clear communication skills with the ability to convey complex information objectively in both verbal and written forms Back to Duty

S2: Utilise up to date information and evidence to challenge views based on outdated or biased rationale Back to Duty

S3: Undertake critical analysis incorporating environmental knowledge with agronomic data to support decision making which creates solutions that meet farmer/customer needs Back to Duty

S4: Calculate any associated cost implications of husbandry advice Back to Duty

S5: Interpret and advise on implications of policy, legislation and best practice Back to Duty

S6: Carry out appropriate risk analysis and provide necessary reports Back to Duty

S7: Maintain accurate and up to date records setting out information relating to customer contact, advice & recommendations and store records in a manner that complies with GDPR principles Back to Duty

S8: Produce reports in a comprehensible format and timely manner Back to Duty

S9: Facilitate (and chair if necessary) meetings to deliver the required outcomes and decisions, adopting the best choice of media for the content being shared with the participants Back to Duty

S10: Comply with Health & Safety regulations and follow farmer/customer protocols and conduct own activities in a manner that protects self, others and the environment from potential harm Back to Duty

S11: Recognise their own working style and the preferred working style/approach of the farmer/customer, adapting own approach to match their needs with the requirements of the activity involved Back to Duty

S12: Build internal and external relationships that are durable, ethically sound, trust-based and where information & advice is shared in a professional and appropriate manner Back to Duty

S13: Build a network of grower contacts and industry stakeholders to gather information and knowledge to enhance own professional development Back to Duty

S14: Utilise time management techniques to organise self, others and activities to maximise personal efficiency and enhance timely delivery of services to the farmer/customer Back to Duty

S15: Evaluate changes to legislation and policy, calculating risks and impacts for Farmers/Growers including logistical & financial implications Back to Duty

S16: Be solutions-focused by recognising the expectations of Farmers/Growers and their key decision-makers and aspire to exceed expectations when opportunities arise Back to Duty

S17: Create and maintain a CPD plan to support learning and development both for themselves (and colleagues for whom they may be managing) Back to Duty

S18: Share good practice/best practice in a way that empowers colleagues and Farmers/Growers to succeed Back to Duty

S19: Analyse, record and present information to produce customer advisory recommendations or to provide customer analysis and business insight Back to Duty

S20: Use data (from own notes/records, Precision Farming sources or 3rd party sources) to analyse and solve farmer/grower problems Back to Duty

S21: Implement and comply with complaints procedures and protocols as stipulated by the business or the farmer/grower Back to Duty

S22: Employ active listening, questioning, summarising and influencing techniques to ensure relevant information and views are understood in order to determine an optimal solution for the farmer/grower Back to Duty

S23: Deal effectively with client, customers and colleagues at every level of the organisation as required by the role Back to Duty

S24: Engage and network proactively with farmer/grower decision-makers and colleagues, including senior management as required, to deliver business outcomes in appropriate time-frames Back to Duty

S25: Conduct effective communication using the best match of style and medium (face-to-face, phone, email, report) when seeking to meet the farmer/grower needs Back to Duty

S26: Align activities against expected outcomes after objectively assessing own capability Back to Duty

S27: Effectively coach and/or mentor others in their personal development and use of effective methods Back to Duty

S28: Review own progress against targets and re-prioritise when required, to ensure service delivery is on target and own short- and long-term goals are being achieved Back to Duty

S29: Effectively manage demands/pressures that could distract from the priorities of the business, the customer or the individuals own personal health & well being Back to Duty

S30: Use a balanced and objective approach with Farmers/Growers when providing advice and through negotiations, by understanding their needs and the value they assign to agronomy and nutrition services, support and advice Back to Duty

S31: Assess fields and crops in a programmed approach, complying with all necessary legislation and crop protocols to provide accurate input recommendations to the Farmer/Grower in a timely and precise manner Back to Duty

S32: Apply an Integrated Pest Management/Integrated Farm Management approach when determining how best to control the weeds, insects and diseases which occur on a Farmer/Growers crops or land Back to Duty

S33: Conduct in-field assessments of soil structure, composition & condition, and collect representative soil sample(s) for laboratory analysis (e.g. nutrient status, organic matter level, presence of contaminant) Back to Duty

S34: Assess the application of a Farmer/Growers crop protection treatment(s) through a hydraulic sprayer to confirm even & accurate application and provide subsequent calibration support/nozzle choice advice to the sprayer operator as may be required Back to Duty

S35: Assess the application of a Farmer/Growers crop nutrition treatment(s) through a granular spreader to confirm even & accurate application and provide subsequent calibration support to the operator as may be required Back to Duty

S36: Engage with the sprayer operator of each Farmer/Grower client (as part of NPTC’s operator training requirement to earn CPD points) and share the rationale about the recommendations & inputs made which the sprayer operator subsequently applied to the crops Back to Duty


B1: Maintain a professional approach to all business dealings and sets an example Back to Duty

B2: Understand the principles, culture and values of associated businesses/organisations – as well as their own – and adjust personal behaviours in line with them Back to Duty

B3: Have considered and understand the impact of the decisions made and factored these in to their own approach Back to Duty

B4: Take an evaluative stance, seeking out a range of relevant information to inform decisions and formulate recommendations Back to Duty

B5: Take responsibility for self and actions, understand own levels of authority and recognise when appropriate to escalate or seek support and assistance Back to Duty

B6: Are open to new developments, research and breakthroughs and are proactive in seeking out information Back to Duty

B7: Endeavour to always share good practice amongst colleagues Back to Duty

B8: Utilise wider knowledge from within the organisation and from outside sources to enhance business relationships Back to Duty

B9: Self-reflect, analyse successes and evaluate areas for improvement and take corrective action where appropriate Back to Duty

B10: Embrace diversity and always demonstrate a fair and ethical approach Back to Duty

B11: Seek feedback as part of continuous personal development and the desire to improve outcomes for customers and are prepared to flex approaches when appropriate Back to Duty

B12: Understand the role of both internal and external relationships, recognise boundaries and follow protocol in order to maintain strong, trusted relationships Back to Duty

B13: Demonstrate punctuality, reliability, trustworthiness and personal responsibility Back to Duty

B14: Personally commit to and take ownership of problems in order to resolve customer issues, bringing satisfaction to the customer and the organisation Back to Duty

B15: Are conscientious and continually seek to deliver on commitments made, managing any expectations of others where service/delivery is in question Back to Duty

B16: Demonstrate objectivity in the provision of advice, input and support to ensure they always deliver a benefit to the farmer/grower/client Back to Duty

Related Articles