A career in land-based engineering

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Land-based Engineering


No Two Days the Same scotland.lantra.co.uk

Why work in Land-based Engineering? With the world’s population growing and our resources being put under increasing pressure from climate change, we’re looking for new ways to meet these challenges and help us to produce what we need.

New technologies like robotics and GPS can make our industries more productive and efficient, but behind it all they need ‘green engineers’ (or land-based engineers) to help make sure everything runs smoothly. Whether it’s in agricultural engineering, aquaculture or forestry machine operations, the same basic engineering principles and technology apply. Regardless of whether they are operating, selling, or servicing the machines, our land-based engineers need to be able to use their technical and scientific knowledge to solve problems. There are thousands of dealers in the UK supplying equipment for agriculture, turfcare, dairy and forestry, often through manufacturers franchises, and the majority of land-based engineers work there. They sell, service and repair, tractors, combines and farm machinery, dairy equipment, chainsaws and forestry vehicles, ATVs and the grass care machines that are used in parks or sports grounds.

As equipment in this sector becomes more and more advanced, we are increasingly reliant on recruiting trained engineers to keep it all working. We need green engineers to help our sectors improve global sustainability, from the development and proper use of innovative machinery to the latest application of digital farming solutions. Green engineering plays an essential role in developing new approaches for harvesting, reducing use of and correctly applying pesticides and fertilizers, and for the management and protection of soil, water, and environmental resources.

Be part of the solution!

How do I get started?

Careers in this area are rewarding if you like solving problems, want to have lots of variety in your job and like working outdoors. There are lots of opportunities to progress and work in different environments and industries, including food and drink, agriculture and forestry.

There is always a demand for new entrants into the sector, and there are several different pathways available. You could specialise in agricultural machinery, forestry, ground care, marketing and demonstrations or in research and development.

Parts staff maintain the supply of resources or parts through stock control, working with workshop technicians, sales team and customers. Technicians and engineers service and repair equipment in the workshop and at customer businesses. Sales staff sell machinery, deal with new and existing customers, meet targets and often travel a lot, doing demonstrations and attending industry shows.

New entrants to the land-based engineering industry are needed to help create new technologies and address the problems of an increasing world population and global food shortage

You’ll need to be good at solving problems and enjoy working as part of a team or alone. With so much of the engineering being high-tech nowadays, you should be comfortable working on computers and using diagnostics equipment. Many dealers work with manufacturers abroad, so you might end up travelling to other countries for factory visits or training courses. Some people choose to study engineering at college or university, whilst others find a job and do an apprenticeship in the workplace. Have a look at some examples of jobs on the next page for inspiration.

You need a whole variety of skills for this industry, including science, technology, geography, mathematics, and good communication skills

A fully qualified technician can earn up to £40,000 and there are plenty of opportunities to develop your skills throughout your career

Land-based Engineering Career Options Here are some of the jobs you could be doing in our industry.



Field Service Engineer Sales Executive

Development Engineer Field Service Engineer Forestry Machine Operator

// GROUND CARE Parts Manager Golf Course Service Manager

Routes into a Career in Land-based Engineering Depending on your current skills and experience, you could enter at different levels.










Masters | Graduate Apprenticeship


Honours Degree | Graduate Apprenticeship


Degree | Graduate Apprenticeship


HND | Graduate Apprenticeship


Advanced Higher | HNC


NC in Land-based Engineering | Land-based Technology Extended Diploma Higher | Modern Apprenticeship | Foundation Apprenticeship Scottish Vocational Qualification | Land-based Workplace Skills Award


National 5 | NPA Rural Skills | Land-based Workplace Skills Award Modern Apprenticeship | Scottish Vocational Qualification


NC Land-based Engineering: An Introduction | National 4 Skills for Work: Rural Skills | Land-based Workplace Skills Award Land-based Studies Certificate

Robbie Gray:

William Muir

I love working with machinery and electronics, so it’s pretty exciting to be learning about the latest technology all the time as a land-based engineer. I think precision farming is definitely the way forward, as GPS makes working on the land much more cost effective and environmentally friendly too.

Growing up on a farm and being fascinated by the ways in which mechanics managed to fix things gave me a driving passion to get into agricultural engineering.

Land-based Engineer

A lot of my job is figuring out what’s broken so I can fix the problem and get the equipment working again. Sometimes it’s obvious what’s wrong, but for electronics, you need to plug in the laptop and have a look round inside, seeing what’s OK and what’s not.

Land-Based Engineer

One of the most rewarding things about my work now is being able to arrive at a job in my own van, suitably prepared and equipped to carry out a successful repair and then producing a happy customer. “The possibilities are endless and extremely rewarding professionally and personally.”

“What makes this job so rewarding is that I’m outdoors in the countryside finding solutions to difficult challenges every day”

A highlight was completing my first clutch job on a tractor, as I had to really push my technical skills to the limit.

The main things I do are pre-delivery inspections, servicing equipment and fixing electronic or mechanical faults and if I’m not in the workshop I’m heading out to a customer’s farm.

There are lots of paths open to you in this industry, so I’d encourage people to try as many things as possible. Photo Credits:

Now that I’ve got more experience, I’m able to take a van out myself, which to me is the best of both worlds. The weather’s sometimes pretty awful when I’m on site, but it’s worth it to get the machine up and running again.

Forestry and Land Scotland

There’s a huge variation in the kinds of things I do throughout the week, but what makes this job so rewarding is that I’m outdoors in the countryside finding solutions to difficult challenges every day

Find out more For information on training and qualifications available, email scotland@lantra.co.uk or call 01738 310 164. www.scotland.lantra.co.uk www.myworldofwork.co.uk @lantrascotland @lantrascotland @lantra.scotland


Lantra in Scotland is supported by the Scottish Government

October 2021