Dairy Systems

Play an essential role in supporting New Zealand's biggest industry

Careers information

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What does it involve?

Dairy Technicians provide the dairy industry with the multidisciplinary engineering skills and knowledge that is needed to work independently while designing and maintaining milk harvesting, farm water and/or farm dairy effluent systems. As a technician your role could include design, installation and maintenance of the entire system.

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Typical day

Normally an 8 hour day; sometime outside normal hours if there is a breakdown. Each day can be quite different; working in a workshop one day and on a farm the next. You will install, maintain, test, diagnose faults and make recommendations for milk harvesting, farm water and/or farm dairy effluent systems to keep them running smoothly.

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How could I get into the industry

A Dairy Technician’s skills are usually gained through an on-job apprenticeship.

Useful experience for dairy systems workers includes working using machinery and computers and some engineering experience.

Does this sound like you?

Study areasAttributesHelpful experiencePreferred work environments
  • English or Media Studies or History
  • Maths or Accounting or Economics 
  • Sciences or Workshop Technologies
  • Agriculture or Horticulture
  • Good literacy and numeracy
  • Good work habits/time management
  • Good at problem solving/creative
  • Customer service or helping people
  • Making or fixing things
  • Working with machinery
  • Inside (workshop or plant)
  • Outside (outdoors)
  • Different places from time to time

How much could I earn?

  • 2 years experience

    $51k- $53k

  • 5 years experience

    $68k- $70k

Career pathway

SchoolEntry level jobsAdvancing jobsSenior jobs
Ideally, NCEA Level 2 passes in:
  • Maths
  • Science (Physics)
  • Technology (Metal Work)
  • English
  • Dairy Systems Engineer
  • Milking Machine System Technician
  • Pump Technician
  • Farm Water System Technician
  • Dairy Effluent System Technician
  • Supervisor
  • Foreman
  • Site Supervisor
  • Business Manager
  • Business Owner
Unit/Achievement standards in schoolsTraineeshipHigher learningHigher learning