Field trials officers are responsible for designing, conducting and monitoring the effects of experiments/trials on animals and plants in the field, glasshouses and laboratories.
Trials officers work closely with scientists to match their requirements with the trial site or laboratory and play a key role in making large-scale scientific research happen.
The results of research trials are used to inform development decisions in agriculture, as well as to determine product safety and inform sales information. Analysis of these results may be communicated in a detailed report or presentation.
Employers of Field Trials Officer
- Commercial agrochemical, pharmaceutical and animal health companies
- setting research aims and objectives
- liaising with clients, research personnel and technical development staff
- producing project plans and budgets
- collecting, recording, analyzing and interpreting data
- observing field conditions
- following strict test guidelines
- assessing the prevalence of diseases and/or pests
- considering selections for breeding purposes
- communicating unfavourable results from tests, including trials failures
- writing technical publications and reports
- keeping up to date with current developments
- making presentations
- attending trade shows and demonstrations
- using specialist computer applications for recording and analyzing data.
A degree is typically required for entry into the career of field trials officer. Relevant subjects which may be helpful include:
- biology or biological science
- botany and plant science
- crop science
- environmental sciences
- a knowledge of the science-based agronomy of major UK crops
- generic business knowledge and principles
- strong written and communication skills
- a good level of IT literacy because statistical information plays a key role in decision making
- physical and mental stamina
- good organizational skills
- time management skills
- enthusiasm for the work.