Careers

Company Description:

With a total of 200 years of combined experience, Wheat Tech is among the oldest and largest independent agronomic consulting firms in the Southeast. "Independent" means that we do not sell any products, nor are we affiliated with any crop protection, fertilizer or seed companies. Our commitment to providing growers with the most current and cutting edge advice, backed by our own, on-site, Research and Development division is what has kept Wheat Tech growing rapidly over the past 20 years.

Wheat Tech impacts approximately half a million acres spanning over 6 states in the Southeast. This large area of operation is supported by 5 brick and mortar locations staffed with consultants that specialize in their own respective regions.

Summary of Position:

Positions are full time starting immediately. First year will be assisting experienced crop consultants while at the same time undergoing intensive training in scouting multiple crops. After the initial 12 to 18 months, applicant will be assigned an area to develop.

Areas of responsibility:

Consulting:

Consultant will be required to train with an experienced consultant for 12 to 18 months. During this period the consultant will be responsible for being on time, observant, be willing to learn and become acclimated to the region where they are working. Once training has completed, the consultant will be responsible for the management of their own acres. They must stay up to date in all aspects of the assigned crop(s).

Prior to planting the crop, the consultant will spend most of their time planning. Planning will consist of establishing fertilizer, planting and burndown recommendations. Once conditions are adequate for planting, the consultant will be setting planters and/or drills. The consultant will be trained on how to set planters and drills and also the use of precision technology used to plant and harvest.

Once planting is completed, the consultant will transition into scouting. Taking detailed notes, communicating their observations with the grower and coworkers, as well as saving them in an organized fashion is another key to success. They must be comfortable with operating an ATV for use of scouting fields. Scouting fields will entail, but not limited to recognizing weeds, insects, diseases, nutrient deficiencies and stand issues. Pesticide recommendations will be written throughout the growing season based on pest pressures found while scouting.  

When the crop is ready to harvest, the consultant will calibrate their growers combines and collect the data multiple times until harvest is completed. After the consultant has reviewed the data, it will be analyzed and a meeting will be organized to present the grower’s data in an organized, professional manner. Into the fall months, the consultant will also be responsible for collecting soil samples and sending them off to a lab for analyzing. This is also the time that growers confide in their consultants for variety recommendations. So, while soil sampling takes place consultants are also reviewing research data to generate variety recommendations. Once the results are received the consultant will host a final meeting with the grower to review the results and variety recommendations.

Qualities that make a successful consultant:

  • Excellent communication
  • Attention to detail
  • Prompt and on time
  • Professional and respectful
  • Organization
  • Problem solving
  • Adaptability
  • Willingness to learn
  • Flexibility in working hours
  • Basic knowledge of geospatial software
  • Elevated math skills
  • Tolerance of working in different weather conditions
  • Basic knowledge of operating Word, Excel and PowerPoint

 

Research:

The research and development team is a very valuable sector to Wheat Tech. Our consultants rely heavily on the data produced from the plots. The research director and senior research associate orchestrate most of the plot planning such as plot entries, protocols, plot layouts and the data distribution. The role of a research associate is very diverse.

Upon employment, the associate is required to become a certified pesticide applicator. There are certain chemicals that require a certification and those associates who attain their pesticide applicator certification will have the ability to spray them. In addition to the applicator license, Wheat Tech highly encourages all employees to become a Certified Crop Advisor within two years of employment. Although it is not a requirement for an associate to obtain, it will benefit them in many ways.

In the off seasons, companies will begin sending in desired varieties to be entered in the variety trial in our plots. At these times, seed and chemical companies will also be sending in products for trials they ask the research team to execute for them. The associate will be responsible for checking in the seed, using the company’s seed counter to count the appropriate amount of seed for each plot, packaging and organizing the seed for planting.

When it is time to plant the plots, the associate will help facilitate by loading seed into the plot planter, adding plot stakes and flags in the appropriate places and applying any additional treatments based on protocols. This is done for all three crops. Throughout the growing season of each crop associate will be liable for reporting observations in various trials and tests that are being done. Detailed notes on products’ performance will allow for accurately evaluating the efficacy of products for cooperating companies, as well as our consultants, to make future recommendations.

As harvest time approaches, associate will assist in the harvest of each plot location. Whether it is operating the closed cab research combine, collecting the data from the monitor or hauling the seed to the grain elevator, each role is an important part of harvest. The person who is in the operator’s seat must be focused, cognizant of their current plot location and alert if anything were to malfunction in the plot or with the combine.

Associate will also be responsible for the maintenance to equipment, the calibration of all spray, planting and harvest equipment. This will allow the associate to become more familiar and comfortable with the equipment used in the production and maintenance of the plots.

Qualities that make a successful research associate:

  • Timely and prompt
  • Excellent communication skills 
  • Organized
  • Attention to detail/can take detailed notes
  • Respectful and professional
  • Operate as a team
  • Ability to take instruction
  • Willingness to evaluate practices and learn
  • Adaptability
  • Problem solving
  • Flexibility in working hours – overnight trips to other plot locations
  • Basic knowledge of running farm equipment
  • Tolerance of working in different weather extremes
  • Elevated math skills
  • Basic knowledge of Word, Excel and PowerPoint

 

Education/Skills required:

B.S. in Agronomy, Entomology, Ag business, Plant and Soil Science, Plant Pathology or other related technical agricultural field. Preference will be given to candidates with a higher percentage of agronomy and precision ag courses. Basic computer skills (Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint). Previous field research, agricultural internship, crop consulting or precision ag experience would be a definite advantage. Farm background would also be beneficial. Valid driver’s license and good driving record.

Benefits:

Company provides full individual health insurance, simple retirement plan (matching at 100% up to 3% of salary), and also provides a company truck (after initial training period).

Contact:

Scott VanSickle

Call (270) 586-1776 or 
Email: scottvansickle@wheattech.com