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Pet Shop Assistant

Also known as: 

Pet retail assistant

Job Description: 

Pet Retail Assistants work in retail outlets caring for live animals and selling them as pets and companion animals.

The most common pets on sale are fish (many outlets specialise only in fish) followed by small animals such as mice, rats, guinea pigs, rabbits, hamsters, gerbils and sometimes birds. A few stores offer more exotic pets such as snakes, lizards, large spiders and insects. Although cats and dogs are the most common household pets, only a small percentage of retail outlets actually sell puppies or kittens.

Pet stores also sell cages, aquaria, treatments, equipment, treats and accessories, as well as pet food. Some shops sell live food, such as locusts.

The work of a Pet Retail Assistant may include:

  • dealing with a range of customer enquiries about animal care, welfare and pet selection
  • keeping the store clean and tidy, and helping with unloading deliveries, shelf-filling and pricing
  • feeding and providing water to the animals cleaning out cages: changing substrate and bedding, removing faeces and other soiled material
  • cleaning out fish tanks: scraping algae off the sides, removing dead fish or plants, resetting new plants, siphoning off dirty water and refilling the tanks, changing filter material and unblocking tubes
  • checking the water temperature and chemical balance in fish tanks, including salt water tanks containing marine fish
  • catching one particular fish from a group in a tank and transferring it by net to a plastic bag or other receptacle
  • checking the fish and all of the other animals regularly for signs of disease and, if necessary, take them to a veterinary surgeon
  • catching and handling birds and animals in the correct way and transferring them to carrying boxes (they move very quickly and may bite if frightened)
  • exercising and grooming animals if necessary
  • serving customers and taking payment for goods
Working Conditions: 

Full-time Pet Retail Assistants usually work around 39 hours a week, sometimes including weekends and evenings. Many Pet Retail Assistants work part-time.

They work in shops and other retail outlets. The work is mostly indoors, although coldwater fish, for example, can be kept outdoors. When working with a fish tank the hands and arms may be submerged for long periods. A protective apron or overall is often worn. A uniform is sometimes provided.

Pet Retail Assistants spend a lot of time on their feet. The work may involve some heavy lifting and climbing up on stepladders.

The job could be unsuitable for those allergic to fur or feathers.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary depending on the employer and where people live.

  • the starting salary for a Pet Retail Assistant may be around £11,500 a year
  • an experienced Assistant may earn up to £12,500, or more
  • Assistant Managers of pet shops may earn £16,500 a year, or more
Skills: 
  • Handle payments from clients
  • Assist in the sale of medicines and treatments for animals
  • Provide exercise opportunities for animals
  • Groom animals
  • Assist with maintaining animal accommodation
  • Handle animals
  • Provide feed and water to animals
  • Deliver basic treatments to animals under supervision
  • Unload animals and establish them in their new environment
  • Restrain animals
Personal Qualities: 
  • Team player
  • Conscientious
  • Reliable
  • Good communication skills
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Animal Care Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Animal Care

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Animal Care and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

In the UK there are some 3,200 pet shops. Pet Retail Assistants work in shops on the High Street or in shopping malls, in pet departments within garden centres and in pet superstores. Many retailers are based in towns and cities, or large out-of-town shopping centres. Jobs are available throughout the UK.

Pet ownership is growing and working with animals is a popular choice, so there can be competition for vacancies. However, there is a demand for trained assistants in the growth area of retailing aquatic plants and fish.

No formal academic qualifications are required to work as a Pet Retail Assistant. However, many employers expect applicants to have either paid or unpaid experience in caring for animals. It may therefore be beneficial to gain experience through volunteering.

It may also be possible to enter this career through an Apprenticeship scheme.

Large retailers may advertise jobs on their own websites. Vacancies may be advertised in local newspapers.

Getting On: 

Promotion to supervisory and then managerial roles may be possible. Opportunities for progression may be greater in larger organisations.

Courses relevant to getting into a managerial role include the NPTC Level 3 Advanced Certificate in Pet Store Management. This is available at some colleges, or from the Pet Care Trust which offers a distance learning course.

Some, particularly those who have studied to the level of HNC, HND or degree in areas such as animal care, animal welfare or animal behaviour, may move into specialised areas of working with animals.

Further Information: 

You can find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Publications, Magazines and Journals (Some may be priced):

  • Pet Business World
  • Animal Life
  • Animal Action
  • Dogs Monthly
  • Fur and Feather
  • Cage And Aviary Birds Magazine
  • Koi Magazine
  • Parrots Magazine
  • Careers Working with Animals - Kogan Page
  • Grooming Manual for the Dog and Cat - Blackwell
  • Understanding Animal Welfare - Wiley Blackwell
  • So you want to work: with animals - Trotman
  • Real Life Guides: Working with animals and wildlife - Trotman
  • Practical Fish Keeping
  • Dog World
  • Dog Today
A to Z: 
Industry: 

Parts/Stores Person

Also known as: 

Parts man or junior/senior parts person.

Job Description: 

You may be entering the industry as trainee parts person you will progress to being a Parts Person after gaining experience and skills whilst working under supervision. You will work in stores with full time parts people and carry out some low level jobs whilst learning.

A Parts Person supports the Sales and Service Departments with the supply of resources or parts.

The job involves using computers and often paper manuals. It is beneficial to have a good understanding of engineering parts and some sales and marketing skills, however, training is given. A Parts Person manages stock control and purchasing products for sale

The role involves working with workshop technicians, the sales team and end users/customers. 

Working Conditions: 

A Parts Person will be mainly based on site in the particular store. Normal working hours are 37.5 hours per week but as the industry is seasonal can involve out of hours and weekend work. 

Protective clothing is needed, such as overalls and boots.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay as salary levels vary widely depending on experience and on the employing organisation. 

  • Trainees can expect to earn between £12,000- 15,000
  • Trained Parts Persons will earn between £15,000- 25,000.
Skills: 
  • Be able to maintain supplies of resources
  • Preparing proposals and quotations for the supply of products and services
  • Liaising with manufactures on land-based machinery technical issues
  • Presenting proposals and quotations for the supply of products and services
  • Displaying stock to promote sales to customers in a retail environment
  • Solving generic customer problems
  • Storing resources for further use
  • Processing of customer orders
  • Marketing and selling the organisation's products and services.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Good communication skills
  • Able to work on own or as part of a team
  • Able to use initiative.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Land-Based Engineering Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Land-Based Engineering

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Land-Based Engineering and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

There are two routes for people to enter the industry either through an Apprenticeship or and Industry Apprenticeship with a dealer/manufacturer. 

Entry requirements vary but most employers expect 4 GCSEs (A-C) or equivalent, including Maths, English and Science or Technology along with ICT skills. 

Having a clean full driving licence will also improve employment opportunities.

Getting On: 

From this role you can progress to Senior Parts Person or Stores Manager or go into Sales. A Parts Person can also progress and move into other parts of the business, such as sales and marketing.

The Land-based Technician Accreditation (LTA) programme sets out a recognised career path which is related to pay scales. 

Further information can be found on the Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE) web site which also provides information and support on the routes to professional registration. 

Further Information: 

Additional information can be found from the following organisations and publications:

Industry information

Publication

A World of Opportunity (Careertrack).

A to Z: 

Parts/Stores Manager

Job Description: 

The parts managers’ role is very important part of the business. The role includes managing the parts department budget in term of stock, (parts kept on the shelf in store and promotional stock in the shop which may include tools, spare parts and toys).

You will also be responsible for staff involved with the parts department, apprentices, trainees, qualified parts people and senior parts staff.

Parts managers will be required to work with directors or owners of the business to discuss business plans, targets and stocking rates and levels.

Working closely with repair workshops making sure there is good communication between departments when dealing with customer requirements for parts when machines  break down and for machines owned by business which is being made ready for sale.

One of the most important parts of any agricultural dealership is the parts department in terms of profitability.

Parts are sold to the business to repair to new and second hand goods being made ready for sale and to supply customers who need replacement parts for existing machines and sundries such as draw bar pins, spring clips, hydraulic couplings, tolls etc. Therefore the parts department is a very busy and extensive department in terms of turnover and profit.

Keeping the cost down is an important part of the parts managers role.

Managing the flow of stock is paramount to the success of the business. Therefore stock on the shelves need to be turned over as quick as possible, all stock needs to be accounted for and charged out where possible.

Working Conditions: 

Parts/Stores Managers working within a multi branch business may need to travel to all branches to make sure targets and stock control is being managed correctly and meeting agreed target levels.

The parts department is the heart of the dealership business, so working with sales and service management team is an important part of the day to day activity in terms of meeting the needs of each departments’ requirements for spare parts service.

Attending monthly management meetings and carrying out staff appraisals is an important part of the role.

Parts/Stores Managers are responsible for making sure that the stores team work with internal customer (service department and sales team) in all areas of activity. 

A key function of their role is the ordering and supply of products and services to ensure that all customer’s needs for spare parts and products are met on time at the agreed cost.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

Salary levels vary widely depending on experience and on the employing organisation. 

  • Parts/Stores Managers can expect to earn between £35,000-45,000.
Skills: 
  • Managing budgets
  • Managing resources including stock and staff
  • Identify and plan development of staff
  • Liaise with and interpret customer requirements
  • Be able to provide technical support
  • Liaise with manufacturers.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Good communication
  • Able to use initiative
  • Problem solving.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Land-Based Engineering Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Land-Based Engineering

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Land-Based Engineering and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

There are two routes for people to enter the industry either through an Apprenticeship or and Industry Apprenticeship with a dealer/manufacturer. 

Entry requirements vary but most employers expect 4 GCSEs (A-C) or equivalent, including Maths, English and Science or Technology along with ICT skills. 

A Parts/Stores Manger is likely to have progressed from a parts/stores person and have experience within the trade or associated industry or through working experience in workshops or in Sales.

Having a clean full driving licence will also improve employment opportunities. 

Getting On: 

Most opportunities will come from working for all sizes of business, but progress to a Sales Manager or Branch Manager may be possible with further training and experience.

Further Information: 

For further information on careers in the sector you can find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry Information

Publication

A World of Opportunity (Careertrack).

A to Z: 

Herdsperson

Job Description: 

A Herdsperson is responsible for the livestock on a farm. This will include ensuring they are fed and watered and looked after to meet health and welfare requirements as well as growth targets. They may also have some responsibility for staff working on the farm.

 

A livestock farm may have a range of cattle at different ages on the farm. Some farms keep and rear their own replacement animals, whereas other buy animals in to replace those which have reached the end of their production period. 

 

Some farms rear animals for meat and these are fed specific diets to enable them to grow until they reach the correct weight and fatness when they are sold through livestock markets and abattoirs.

Many farmers take pride in producing a quality animal to high welfare standards to go into the food chain and a good Herdsperson is key to achieving this. A Herdsperson would be responsible for:

 

  • Feeding correct diet rations to the cattle
  • Monitoring their health and condition and reporting any problems
  • Weighing the cattle to monitor performance
  • Moving cattle to different fields and buildings
  • Ensuring cattle are tagged and identified correctly.
Working Conditions: 

A Herdsperson generally works as least 39 hours per week but it may be necessary to work paid overtime during busy periods. Early mornings, evenings and weekend work can be necessary, for example during the calving or lambing season to ensure help is at hand with any difficulties during birth.

 

The working conditions will depend on the farm. Some livestock are kept indoors and fed on silage, straw, or hay with grain, whereas other farms leave the livestock to graze on grass outside for most of the year, bringing them in for the winter months.

 

Many farmers do a mixture of both production systems depending on their grass growth, soil conditions, location and cattle breeds. A Herdsperson would be expected to work both outside and in livestock buildings.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These salaries can vary according to the responsibility. Individual employers may pay more according to the Herdsperson’s skills and experience.

 

  • Starting salaries for a Herdsperson are at least £16,000- £18,000 a year
  • With experience, a Herdsperson may earn up to £25,000- £30,000 a year.
 

Many Herdspersons will be provided with rent-free accommodation and a vehicle. There may also be other benefits such as free farm produce and a pension scheme and a vehicle.

Skills: 
  • Control the movement of livestock from one location to another
  • Promote and maintain the health and well-being of Livestock
  • Monitor the provision of feed and water to Livestock
  • Enable livestock to initiate pregnancy
  • Monitor and maintain livestock on outdoor sites
  • Manage forage production to support livestock
  • Manage grassland to support livestock
  • Manage grazing of livestock
  • Plan and implement breeding programme
  • Plan and manage health plans.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Problem-solving
  • Work in a team/with others
  • Work on your own
  • Self-motivated
  • Flexible.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Agriculture Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Agriculture

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Agriculture and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

It is important to enjoy work outdoors and working with livestock. To progress to a Herdsperson you may have started as a General Farm Worker or basic stock person gaining experience in working with livestock and undertaken further training.

 

A Herdsperson will need to have an interest in farming and in using agricultural machinery. Experience of working on a farm, either through work experience or a weekend or holiday job is valued by employers. 

 

It may be possible to enter this career through an appropriate Apprenticeship scheme.

On large farms there are likely to be specific Herdsperson vacancies. On smaller mixed farms, a Herdsperson is likely to be involved in other farm enterprises such as arable crops.

Getting On: 

With the right qualifications and experience, a Herdsperson can gain promotion to a Unit Manager on a large farm, or expand their skills to work across a range of businesses on the farm as a General Farm Manager.

 

For those wishing to progress into farm management, a degree in subjects such as agriculture and animal or farm management may be an option.

There may also be opportunities to work abroad.

Further Information: 

You can find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry information

Publications, Magazines and Journals (some may be priced):

  • A Life on the Land
  • Scientific Farm Animal Production – Pearson Education
  • Farmers Weekly
  • Farmers Guardian
  • Dairy Farmer
  • Beef Farmer
  • Sheep Farmer
  • Poultry Farmer
A to Z: 
Industry: 

Riding Instructor/Coach

Also known as: 

Trainee Instructor/Level 1 Coach; Assistant Instructor/Level 2 Coach; Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach; or Level 4 Coach.

Job Description: 

They will work with riders of all ages, levels of ability and experience ranging form the complete beginner to the more experienced competitors dependent on your own abilities. 

The Instructor/Coach will plan, deliver and review safe and competent lessons.  Each level of instructor will be competent to work with different levels of students as follows:

  • Trainee Instructor/Level 1 Coach will support senior qualified coaches and instructors to teach students
  • Assistant Instructor/Level 2 Coach will run coaching sessions for riders from beginners to Novice level, lunging of horse and rider to show improvement, and jumping to Stage 2 Level.
  • Intermediate Instructor/level 3 Coach should be able to show genuine improvement of horse and rider, demonstrate sound practical business knowledge and be conversant with running a commercial yard.
  • Instructor/Level 4 Coach is qualified to teach riders up to the level of Advanced Medium Dressage, Intermediate Horse Trials and Foxhunter level show jumping.

Planning, conducting and reviewing coaching sessions is common at all levels of coaching.  The different levels of Instructor/Coach will be trained to coach in their specialist area and will prepare, deliver and review sessions in activities such as Dressage, Showjumping, Eventing, Horseball, Reining, Endurance, Driving, Riding for the Disabled, Vaulting, Polo cross and Western. For more information go to www.bef.co.uk.

The role is varied at the different levels but you will need to be able to:

 

Trainee Instructor/Level 1 Coach

At this level you would be expected to:

  • Assist other instructors/coaches with lessons
  • Check the correct tack is being used
  • Assist riders where necessary
  • Lead novice riders. 

Assistant Instructor/Level 2 Coach

At this level you would be expected to also:

  • Work with individuals or groups who want to ride for leisure, prepare for competitions or achieve equestrian qualifications
  • Provide practical demonstrations to support others
  • Teach classroom theory sessions to support others.

Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach

At this level you would be expected to also be able to:

  • Work with individuals or groups who want to ride for leisure, prepare for competitions or achieve equestrian qualifications
  • Provide practical demonstrations to support others
  • Teach classroom theory sessions to support others
  • Attend events and be a role model at county/regional level
  • Prepare, deliver and evaluating annual programmes for rider development
  • Supervise others, such as Trainee Instructors/Level 1 Coach and Assistant Instructors/Level 2 Coach
  • Train horses, riding and schooling them from the ground. 

Instructor/Level 4 Coach

At this level you would be expected to also be able to:

  • Manage and assess staff/trainees
  • Show that you are competent and confident in all aspects of horse care and management
  • Undertake practical handling skills
  • Offer sound theoretical knowledge to other coaches/instructors
  • Manage the business aspects of an equestrian establishment
  • Train a variety of horses using sound training principles both on the flat and over fences
  • Work with horses on the ground
  • Actively compete horses in affiliated competitions. 
Working Conditions: 

An Instructor/Coach will have vast knowledge and skills of handling and riding horses.  They will also have lots of experience in different aspects of equine theory and management.  The hours of work may vary but usually will include evenings and weekends. The work can also be seasonal depending on the place of work.

Equestrian businesses are often a long way from towns; sometimes in quite remote areas.  Therefore a driving licence may be useful.  Due to location some instructors work away from home or live in at the riding school.

The work can take place outside on grass, all weather arenas or in indoor arenas. 

An Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach should be smartly dressed the usual attire includes; jodhpurs, riding boots/half chaps, and suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including waterproofs, suitable outdoor clothing, a body protector and a hard hat. 

There is a risk of injury when working around horses as they may bite, kick or stand on your feet. 

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary depending on the employer and where people live and your level of competence.

  • Trainee Instructor/Level 1 Coach may be paid a basic wage with training and lessons they may also be on an apprentice programme. All employed apprentices must receive the appropriate national minimum wage (£2.65 for under 19 and first year apprentices, £4.68 for 19 and 20 year olds and £6.19 for those aged 21 and over).
  • Assistant Instructor/Level 2 Coach may earn £12-£20 per hour freelance or £12,000 to £17,000 a year in employment. A more experienced, successful, Assistant Instructor/ Level 2 Coach who is a well known competitor in their chosen discipline, may earn £20 - £30 per hour
  • Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach may earn £15 - £25 per hour freelance or £14,000 - £20,000 a year in employment.  A more experienced, successful, Intermediate Instructor/Level 3 Coach who is a well known competitor in their chosen discipline, may earn £25 - £35 per hour
  • Instructor/Level 4 Coach may earn £20-30 per hour freelance or £18,000 to £25,000 a year in employment.  A more experienced, successful, Instructor/ Level 4 Coach who is a well known competitor in their chosen discipline, may earn £30 - £40 per hour
  • The rate of pay in employment depends on the size of the employer’s establishment, experience and whether accommodation, meals and further training is included.

Freelance earnings would depend on experience, success in attracting business and the number of hours worked

Skills: 
  • Carry out stable yard duties
  • Complete any administration required at your level of competence
  • Establish and maintain good customer service and working relationships with others
  • Monitor personal skills for instructing/coaching practice
  • Ensure that all coaching is carried out safely, fairly and in a suitable environment
  • Provide classroom and stable management lectures
  • Advise on safe and appropriate clothing and conduct
  • Prepare and deliver theory and practical lessons for individuals or groups at different levels of your own competence
  • Assess riders at your own level of competence
  • Give practical demonstrations to others.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Have a real desire to help people improve
  • Have a genuine interest in horses and their welfare
  • Good communication skills
  • Able  to work in a team.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Equine Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Equine

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Equine and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

Although there are different ways to enter the industry you may enter this role being a groom within a stable and progress to Instructor after gaining experience and qualifications. 

There are opportunities to gain employment as a trainee instructor/Level 1 Coach, Assistant Instructor/Level 2 Coach or apprentice within a range or riding establishments. 

These could be members of Association of British Riding Schools (ABRS). The British Horse Society (BHS) riding schools have to be registered with the local authority but do not have to be members of any organisation. Riding schools can range in size from those with only one instructor to those employing a dozen or more.

Other routes to becoming an Instructor include; college, through competing in a specific discipline such as show jumping or dressage and training with the affiliate body.

Getting On: 

A fully qualified Instructor/Coach could progress to become a Senior Instructor/Coach at a riding school, freelance or within their chosen discipline.

There may also be opportunities to work abroad and qualified Instructor/Coaches can apply for an International Equestrian Trainers Passport which is recognised in 32 countries.

Further Information: 

You can also find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry Information

Publications, magazines and journals (some may be priced):

  • The Riding Instructor’s Handbook – BHS
  • Coaching Skills for Riding Teachers
  • The Principles of Teaching Riding - ABRS
  • Magazines/journals:
  • Horse and Hound
  • Horse
  • Horse and Rider.
A to Z: 
Industry: 

Riding Centre Manager

Also known as: 

Equine Tourism Manger; Horse Riding Holiday Centre Manager; Trekking Centre Manager.

Job Description: 

Riding Centre Managers oversee the running of horse riding centres that offer riding and trekking holidays.  Some Riding Centre Managers also own the riding and trekking establishments.

Riding Centre Managers are also responsible for the organisation, operation and marketing of the centre, and for supervising the care of the horses.

An Riding Centre Manager job varies depending on the employer but the main tasks include:

  • Balance the organisation of the riding centre and welfare and care of the animals with the marketing and operation of a holiday centre
  • Liaise with local tour operators to enhance business opportunities
  • Ordering of all supplies including horse food, supplements etc.
  • Ensuring that the business meets health and safety requirements
  • Planning and organising all business aspects of the centre, including marketing, administration, customer care, finances and insurances
  • Overseeing the management of the horses and ensuring the treks are suitably planned
  • Arranging daily routines for horse care and stable management
  • Handling queries, problems and complaints
  • Recruiting and managing staff, organising work rotas and arranging training.
Working Conditions: 

Riding Centre Managers usually work long hours that include evenings and weekends. The hours of work depend on the type and size of the centre. Riding Centre Managers spend some time working indoors in an office but also work outdoors in all weather conditions.

Trekking centres are situated throughout the UK but are more common in rural parts of the country, such as the National Parks of Dartmoor, Exmoor and the Lake District, and in coastal areas that are popular with tourists.

Before working with children, applicants must undergo checks through the Criminal Records Bureau.

There is a risk of injury when working around horses as they may bite, kick or stand on your feet so it important to ensure you are protected therefore all personnel working with equines should wear suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including riding boots, waterproofs, suitable outdoor clothing, a body protector and a hard hat when exercising or riding.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

There figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary depending on the employer and where people live.

  • Starting salaries are usually around £16,000 per year
  • Experienced Riding Centre Managers can earn around £20,000 per year.

Some employers provide accommodation, food, free stabling for their employees’ horses and riding instruction. Individual salaries may vary to take this into account.

Skills: 
  • Leadership and decision making
  • A good riding ability
  • Thorough knowledge and understanding of stable management
  • Customer-care
  • Business administration and management skills and or qualifications
  • Sound knowledge of horse breeds which are suitable for recreational riding
  • Maintain your own and others health and safety and appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) required for the work
  • Be responsible under relevant animal health and welfare legislations and codes of practice
  • Knowledge, experience and training in equestrian work.
  • Maintenance of grasslands for equines
  • Map reading skills for planning and taking rides.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Good communications skills
  • Genuine interest in horses and their welfare
  • Flexible with regards to working hours and location
  • Self motivated
  • Willing to undertake routine and practical tasks.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Equine Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Equine

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Equine and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

People usually start in related jobs, such as an Assistant Ride Leader, Trainee Instructor/Level 1 Coach or Groom, and work their way up to a management role.

Academic qualifications are often required as well as a real interest and enthusiasm for working with horses. 

If you are working in the equestrian tourism industry, you can complete equestrian tourism qualifications. These are especially suitable if you take out treks, trail rides or hacks (for more experienced riders).

Getting On: 

Riding Centre Managers may also have the opportunity to expand their skills and qualifications.  This would depend on the size and type of equestrian establishment they work in.

Other roles could include:

  • Equine Tourism Examiner
  • Instructor/Coach
  • Yard Manager
  • Horse Transporter
  • Business Yard Manager. 
Further Information: 

Additional information can be found from the following organisations and publications:

Industry information

Publications, magazines and journals (some may be priced):

  • ABRS Handbook - ABRS
  • BHS Guide to Careers with Horses
  • British Grooms Association Magazine
  • Equine Industry Welfare Guidelines Compendium
  • Horse and Hound
  • Horse
  • Your Horse
  • Horse and Rider.
A to Z: 
Industry: 

Head Greenkeeper

Job Description: 

A Head Greenkeeper is responsible for the management, maintenance, care and overall appearance of a golf course. It is their job to maintain a good and safe playing surface and make sure the course offers a consistent challenge and an enjoyable experience to golfers.

There are four key areas on a golf course - tees, fairways, greens and areas of rough - each of which requires a different type of maintenance. Greenkeepers are often also responsible for the maintenance and planting of trees, shrubs and flower beds.

They tour the course at the start of the day in order to prepare the course for play. This can require very early starts to ensure the best playing surfaces are available on a daily basis. Greenkeepers also need to be constantly aware of golfers on the course, making sure their work does not interfere with play, and must keep health and safety at the forefront of all their activities.

Their work will include:

  • Managing and maintaining a healthy and safe work place
  • Conducting Risk Assessments
  • Managing meetings
  • Communicating to staff, colleagues, other managers, golfers and the public
  • Managing budgets, finance and resources
  • Managing recruitment, selection and training of staff
  • Motivating and enthuse staff
  • Plan and monitor the maintenance regime for the course
  • Manage the environmental policy
  • Manage projects and events.
Working Conditions: 

The hours worked by Head Greenkeepers can be longer in the spring and summer months. In summer, work may start at around 6am in order to complete various tasks before the course is open to golfers. As golf courses usually open seven days a week, weekend work is common.

Head Greenkeepers spend their time between outdoors on the course and dealing with all the management aspects of the golf course.

Greenkeeping is physically active work requiring bending. Allergies, such as hay fever, could make this job difficult. Uniforms, including overalls and safety boots, are usually provided by the employer.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary, depending on the employer and where people live.

  • The starting salary for a trainee may be between £14,690 and £16,500 a year
  • With experience, greenkeeper can earn from £18,336 to £22,400
  • Golf Course Managers working for a prestigious course may earn in excess of £44,000 a year
  • The top positions do earn in excess of £50,000.
Skills: 
  • Give customers a positive impression of yourself and your organisation
  • Support individuals to develop and maintain their performance
  • Co-ordinate the management of planted areas
  • Co-ordinate the establishment of planted areas
  • Implement plans for the management of sports turf areas
  • Plan, run and evaluate projects.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Flexibility
  • Likes working outdoors
  • People person
  • Safety aware.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Horticulture Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Horticulture

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Horticulture and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

It is important to be interested in:

  • Sports turf
  • Working outdoors
  • Golf, and the challenges that players expect from a course.
 

There are around 15,000 greenkeepers working in the UK. Employers include:

 

  • Private golf clubs
  • Local authority leisure departments that operate public golf courses
  • Hotels with golf facilities
  • Ground maintenance contractors.

There are many golf courses and driving ranges located around the country. They may be found on the outskirts of towns, in the countryside and on the coast. Although entry to this career is competitive, opportunities are available throughout the country and overseas.

It may also be possible to enter this career through completion of an appropriate Apprenticeship scheme.

Employment opportunities can be found in the following places:

 

Websites

 

 

Magazines and Journals (some may be priced)

 

  • Horticulture Week
  • The Groundsman
  • Sports Turf Amenity and Leisure.
Getting On: 

Some Head Greenkeepers may progress to manage several courses by becoming estate managers.

An understanding of the techniques and science of different playing surfaces can lead to employment opportunities in other sports. It may also be possible to move into agronomy or golf course design.

There may be opportunities to work overseas.

A to Z: 

Ranger/Countryside Officer

Also known as: 

Park Ranger.

Job Description: 

Rangers are responsible for a range of activities that benefit both the natural environment and associated public access and recreation. Their role is to encourage visitors to the countryside, promote awareness of the natural environment and protect and preserve the countryside for future enjoyment.

The tasks can vary and can be broken down into practical and management

The practical element of this role includes:

  • Patrolling sites to encourage responsible enjoyment, reduce crime and protect the public and wildlife
  • Managing habitats to maintain favourable conditions for wildlife
  • Managing exhibitions and visitor centres
  • Ensuring footpaths, bridleways and other public access areas are safe 
  • Making minor repairs to gates, fences, stiles, walls, footpaths and picnic tables
  • Raising awareness of environmental conservation through education and interpretation
  • Devising and implementing surveys to monitor wildlife
  • Nature conservation, including the implementation of projects at a local level for the protection and creation of habitats
  • Landscape conservation, including the creation of schemes to protect existing features or restore landscapes
  • Environmental assessments and field surveys.

The management of the countryside involves:

  • Planning and implementing a variety of environmental and conservation projects, education activities, fundraising, working partnerships and policy development
  • Increasing community involvement and participation, for example, by organising activities and projects
  • Recruiting and supervising staff and volunteers
  • Developing business plan, site or conservation management plans, marketing and controlling budgets
  • Looking at the future of the countryside and the action that needs to be undertaken in order to protect the natural environment around us
  • Implementing solutions
  • Preparing applications for funding.
Working Conditions: 

Rangers typically work full-time. The hours vary depending on the season, with early starts common in the summer months. Weekend and Bank Holiday work, late evenings and overtime is often required. There are part-time, voluntary and flexible opportunities available.

The work can be physically demanding. Regardless of the season, work can be inside or outdoors in all weathers. Depending on the area covered, there may be a significant amount of travelling between different sites, for meetings and to co-ordinate education or community projects.

A driving licence is often an essential requirement for many positions.

Officers may be provided with protective clothing or a uniform, and are expected to take responsibility for their health and safety and to work with limited direct supervision.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary, depending on the employer and where people live:

  • Starting salaries may be around £19,000 to £22,000
  • With experience, officers may earn around £25,000 to £30,000 a year
  • Officers in senior positions may earn in excess of £30,000.
Skills: 
  • Establish and manage habitats
  • Assist with the control of pests, diseases and disorders
  • Identify species
  • Monitor and report on environmental change
  • Construct paths and surface
  • Maintain and repair paths or surfaces
  • Construct boundaries and access points
  • Maintain and repair boundaries and access points
  • Deliver activities (educational, adventure etc)
  • Promote responsible use of the site.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Flexible
  • Team player
  • Work on own
  • Energetic
  • Able to communicate with the variety of people.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Environmental Conservation Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Environmental Conservation

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Environmental Conservation and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

It is important to be interested in:

  • The natural world and conservation issues
  • Public access to, and understanding of, the natural environment.

There are over 5,700 Rangers/Countryside Officers within the UK. In addition there are many people working as volunteers in this area. The amount of people working in this is expected to grow each year and opportunities can be found in both urban and rural areas all over the UK. However, competition for paid work is intense and experience is essential.

Although there are no specific entry requirements for this job your chances of employment will be greatly enhanced if you have an appropriate qualification and gained some experience, through volunteering or taking seasonal/temporary work.

This will provide you with an opportunity to:

  • Gain experience (confirming your expectations and therefore ensuring it is what you want to do)
  • Gain some of the skills required
  • Show the employer what you can do (an employer is more likely to take on someone they know they can trust and able to do the job) 
  • Show the employer that you have a desire to work in the industry (one of the most important aspects an employer will look for in an applicant)
  • A chance for you to network with other potential employers.

It may also help if you have undertaken some relevant training courses and/or gained some certificates in the use of some of the specialist equipment, such as chainsaw, sprayers, strimmers and tractor driving.

Some organisations have their own entry and training / bursary schemes, such as the Lemur (Heritage Lottery Fund) initiative. The suite of Heritage Lottery Fund ‘Skills for the Future’ projects is also likely to be of interest

Apprenticeships are available in Environmental Conservation, throughout the UK. There are no set entry requirements for these Apprenticeships, you just need to be living in the country and not taking part in full-time education. Apprenticeships are open to all age groups (above 16yrs) whether you are just leaving school, have been working for years or are seeking to start a new career. Check out the National Apprenticeship Service website which includes a vacancy service.

Jobs can be found with local government and national agencies, including Natural England, and local authorities including National Park Authorities. Charitable trusts, such as The Woodland Trust and The National Trust also have paid and voluntary positions.

Vacancies are advertised directly through the local or national press and on company websites. There are also a number of countryside careers' websites that list job vacancies.

Employment and volunteering opportunities:

Websites:

* The Countryside Jobs Service can be viewed on-line, however it is recommended that you use the subscription service for a full list of employment opportunities

Magazines and Journals:

  • Environment Post
  • The Guardian (Wednesday).
Getting On: 

With experience and relevant qualifications it is possible to progress to management positions, such as Senior Ranger or Countryside/Property Manager. The career structure will vary depending on the size of the organisation.

It may be necessary to seek opportunities with an alternative employer in order to progress.

There is also the possibility of specialising in key conservation areas, or perhaps into environmental policy or management.

Progression usually involves taking an increasingly office-based role, often moving from a 'hands-on' job to an advisory/managerial role. Senior posts are likely to mean greater involvement with planning, budgets, people management, and the administrative aspects of environmental management, while less time is spent in the field.

Further Information: 

You can find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry information:

Publications, Magazines and Journals:

Jobs

Countryside jobs

A to Z: 

Ranger

Job Description: 

Rangers manage areas of countryside such as woods, wetlands, common land and National Parks. The main focus is on environmental conservation, wildlife management, education, advice, access and maintenance.

Rangers consider themselves part of a national service despite working for a range of employees in different environments. Environmental education is at the core of their work to support the conservation of landscapes within which they operate.

Rangers require a deep-seated interest in the natural environment, an ability to work both alone and as part of team as well as the capacity to work well and engage with the general public.

Tasks include:

  • Patrolling to assist visitors
  • Taking part in a variety of environmental projects
  • Providing information to visitors
  • Delivering educational talks to groups as well as administration and management related to maintenance
  • Health and safety
  • Pest control
  • Land-owner liaison. 

There is scope for specialisation as a career develops.

In the UK there are many employers, from both public and private sectors, who employ countryside rangers or officers. Rangers have been active since the 1950s throughout Scotland with the role now widespread throughout all landscapes and environments.

A variety of organisations employ rangers with key employers such as National Parks, Forestry Commission, local authorities and the National Trust providing the bulk of opportunities.

Working Conditions: 

Rangers operate mainly outdoors in all weather conditions although a number of functions take place in an office or visitor centre. Facilities may operate seven days a week at all times of the year with the intensity and timing of work related to the visitor seasons.In larger countryside organisations, rangers are likely to work on a rota system with other members of staff, including early mornings, evenings and weekends. Rangers should be fit and prepared to do a good deal of walking.There may be opportunities for both full-time and part-time working with the norm for full-time being a 37 hour week.The work is an essential part of land management and conservation, benefiting both lowland and upland landscape sites as well as other habitats. Candidates need to be comfortable working alone in remote locations.The work itself is varied and demands flexibility, diligence and enthusiasm for education and conservation. Rangers combine excellent local knowledge and the skills of an experienced manager with a deep understanding of the countryside and a willingness to develop and communicate those skills.A full driving licence is desirable and usually essential. Individuals must be motivated, adaptable and approachable.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

A Countryside Ranger might expect to have a salary of around £18,000 to £25,000 with a Head Ranger earning in excess of £30,000 per annum. These figures are only a guide, actual rates of pay may vary considerably depending on the employer and where people live and work.

Similarly variations occur according to the employer and on occasion, if the position comes with accommodation. Some countryside locations are remote and isolated with limited housing in the vicinity.

Skills: 
  • Manage habitats such as woods, wetlands, parks
  • Communicate with others
  • Work and liaise with local communities and agencies
  • Manage budgets
  • Plan and maintain resources
  • Monitor pest and predator populations
  • Stalk and cull deer
  • Maintain and improve game and wildlife habitats.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Good communication skills 
  • Able to work in teams and on own
  • Able to use initiative
  • Flexible and adaptable
  • Able to prioritise work.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Game and Wildlife Management Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Game and Wildlife Management

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Game and Wildlife Management and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

It is important to:

  • Have an enthusiasm and interest in natural heritage, conservation, education and countryside habitats.
  • Enjoy working mainly outdoors carrying out a variety of tasks
  • Have a capacity to engage positively with the general public.

Work experience on a countryside site is very useful not only as an introduction to ranger work but also for gaining a position as a trainee ranger. There is a variety of routes to gaining a position and it is possible to work up through an organisation by gaining experience and taking educational courses. Nonetheless many candidates come to the service having undertaken full-time study in subjects such as Environmental management, Geography, Ecology and Conservation.

Ranger positions are usually advertised in local press or via the internet on the websites of key employers so this could be a good place to start your job search.

Getting On: 

If you are conscientious, dedicated and demonstrate an affinity for the countryside there may be opportunities for promotion to a more senior position, especially if you work for one of the bigger organisations. 

If you are with a smaller organisation working as a Ranger, you may have to move to find a promoted position such as Head Ranger. This position involves managing all aspects of the countryside management programme including project planning, budget control and land owner liaison.

Further Information: 

You can also find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry Information

Publications, Magazines and Journals (Some may be priced):

  • Ranger Magazine
  • Countryside Magazine

Jobs

A to Z: 

Stud Manager

Job Description: 

Stud Managers are employed by equestrian business owners to make sure the yard runs efficiently. A Stud Manager is responsible for the day to day running of the yard including managing staff, care of the horses, all aspects of health and safety and dealing with clients.

As a Stud Manager, you could work on various types of yards, such as competition, breeding, training, riding schools, racing and trekking. Your work would depend partly on the type and size of the yard but you may be required to:

  • Plan the running of the equestrian yard
  • Plan the horses’ exercise routine
  • Plan horses’ routine care and keep appropriate records for vaccinations, farrier, teeth and worming
  • Purchase and maintenance of feed and equipment
  • Keep appropriate records such as financial, insurance, accident reporting
  • Conduct risk assessments
  • Maintenance of grassland
  • Select, purchase and sell horses
  • Recruit, train and supervise staff.

On smaller equestrian establishments, you may have sole charge of a yard and do more practical work, such as looking after the horses, riding horses and yard maintenance.

In competition, hunting or racing yards, Yard Managers may also prepare horses for events and may accompany them. In smaller studs and breeding yards, duties may also include working with stallions, mares and foals, assisting with foaling and handling young stock.

Depending on your skills and qualifications, you may also have responsibility for other activities, for example running competitions, instructing, transporting horses, promoting and marketing the establishment and liaising with owners/clients.

Working Conditions: 

Stud Managers work around 40 hours a week but may work longer on occasions. Early mornings, late nights and weekend working is common practice for Stud Managers. Work can involve lifting, carrying, bending, climbing and standing for long periods.

As a Stud Manager work is mainly outdoors, in all weather conditions. You would wear suitable footwear and outdoor wear and when handling horses and a hard hat, riding boots and preferably a body protector when riding. There is a risk of injury if a horse bites or kicks you or you fall off.

Equestrian businesses are often a long way from towns; sometimes in quite remote areas. Therefore a driving licence may be useful.

Due to location and the nature of the job role, some positions are live-in where, with overall responsibility of the Yard, you may be on call to respond to any emergencies or issues on the yard.

Salary & Other Benefits: 

These figures are only a guide, as actual rates of pay may vary depending on the employer and where people live.

  • Salaries for Stud Managers may be around £14,000 - £20,000 a year.

Some employers provide accommodation, food, free stabling for their employees; horses and riding instruction. Individual salaries may vary to take this into account.

Skills: 
  • Care for visitors
  • Purchase products or services for the land-based organisation
  • Establish hygiene and biosecurity arrangements
  • Ensure a healthy and safe workplace
  • Define and meet personnel requirements
  • Establish and implement a horse care policy
  • Inspect horses for specific requirements
  • Establish critical pre-inspection requirements
  • Establish basic training
  • Control and organise the breeding of horses
  • Establish and implement a breeding policy
  • Control and organise the rearing of young stock
  • Control and organise foaling and care of the foal
  • Oversee the sales preparation procedures.
Personal Qualities: 
  • Have a genuine interest in horses and their welfare
  • Good communications skills
  • Good organisation skills
  • Flexible and adaptable
  • Self-motivated
  • Have the ability to work alone and also as part of a team.
Qualifications and training: 

There are a variety of qualifications and training opportunities that can help you:

  • Learn more about your chosen area
  • find employment
  • improve your current skills
  • gain promotion
  • enhance job satisfaction

This a link to the Register of Regulated Qualification held by Ofqual and has been set up to search for a range qualifications in Equine Qualifications.  As this search includes all qualifications at different levels and different kinds, you may need to seek further assistance with your tutor or a local college as to the best ones to suit your needs. The qualifications listed on this website are suited if you are resident in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

For those of you living in Scotland you need to search for qualifications with the Scottish Qualifications Authority. You will need to choose the type of qualification you are looking for and then search for qualifications available in Equine

You may also wish to find out about apprenticeships available in Equine and further information can be found on the National Apprenticeship Service website http://www.apprenticeships.org.uk/ for England.

If you are living in Wales follow this link to the Welsh Government website for more information about apprenticeships http://wales.gov.uk/topics/educationandskills/skillsandtraining/apprenticeships/?lang=en

If you are living in Northern Ireland this is the link to Department for Education and Learning for more information on apprenticeships http://www.delni.gov.uk/apprenticeshipsni

If you are living Scotland following this link for more information on modern apprenticeship available http://www.skillsdevelopmentscotland.co.uk/our-services/modern-apprenticeships/

Getting In: 

To become a Stud Manager it is important to:

  • Have a genuine interest, knowledge and experience of working with horses and their welfare
  • Enjoy working outdoors
  • Have good organisational and leadership skills.

Stud Managers work throughout the UK and abroad. Employers include riding schools, private stables, competition yards, college equine units, polo yards, livery stables, producers, stud yards, hunting yards, trekking centres, horse rehabilitation centres and the Armed Forces.

Job opportunities for Stud Managers are reasonably good. However, to improve employment opportunities it is recommended that you gain experience working on a yard as a Groom or Yard Assistant for a number of years to:

  • Improve your skills and experience of working with horses.
  • Meet other potential employers
  • Gain relevant qualifications
  • Confirm if you would like to continue to work in this environment.
Getting On: 

With experience and relevant qualifications it is possible to further develop your skills in a number of directions.This may provide you with more responsibilities with an existing employer depending on the size of the organisation. It may be necessary to seek opportunities with an alternative employer in order to progress.

Experienced Stud Managers may also become:

  • Instructor/Coach
  • HGV Driver
  • Rider
  • Event Co-ordinator
  • Trainer (Racing)
  • Stud Manager
  • Business Manager.

Stud Managers wanting to also become riding instructors can take BHS or ABRS teaching qualifications.

There are opportunities to work and train abroad.

Further Information: 

You can also find additional information from the following organisations and publications:

Industry Information

Publications, magazines and journals (some may be priced)

  • ABRS Handbook - ABRS
  • BHS Guide to Careers with Horses
  • British Grooms Association Magazine
  • Equine Industry Welfare Guidelines Compendium
  • Horse and Hound
  • Horse
  • Your Horse
  • Horse and Rider
  • Horse and Pony.
A to Z: 
Industry: 

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