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That’s an ag job – but what does an Agribusiness Analyst DO?

There are so many jobs available in the food and fibre industries, we have heaps listed on this site. But what are these jobs? What do people actually do on a daily basis? We have contacted some recent grads to talk about studying and finding their first jobs and ask them what it is they do all day.

Henry Noble knew he wanted to be involved in agriculture but like so many of us had no idea what he wanted to do after high school. Henry grew up on a farming property at Cowra in central west NSW and jackerooed at a merino sheep stud for two years after leaving school. At 19 he knew his future would be in ag but he didn’t know how to make this happen. He enrolled in the Bachelor of Agribusiness at UNE in Armidale.

CBA Noble H 01‘It was a very good decision in that I opened myself up to a wealth of opportunities within agriculture,’ Henry said.

‘I loved meeting like-minded people who had a passion for agriculture.’

He said it was initially tough transitioning back into education after two years working, but he soon got back into the swing of things.

‘Uni is also quite different to school in that it is all on your own back. No one forces you to do work, it’s up to you to get organised, go to class, do assignments, study etc. You can put in as little or as much as you like.’

Henry started as an Agribusiness Analyst with the Commonwealth Bank in February 2013 and has recently been made Relationship Manager. Upon graduation he applied for a number of grad programs in order to get a grounding across all facets of the business and he was happiest with the CommBank program.

‘What interested me in agribusiness banking is that I get to do a challenging and rewarding job but I still have day-to-day contact with farmers and get to drive around their farms and sit down and chat about their business, which is something farmers love doing,’ he said.

‘As a Relationship Manager I manage a portfolio of corporate agribusiness clients located in Moree and the greater region.’

‘My role is to service existing clients, as well as generate new opportunities within our market. Day-to-day I liaise with clients to help meet their banking needs whether it be buying a new property, purchasing equipment  etc,’ he said.

Henry is motivated to help businesses grow and thrive and achieve their goals.

‘The relationship with your bank can be pivotal to the success of your business and we pride ourselves on having a close relationship with our clients,’ he said.

Henry is passionate about the many ways ag grads can make a difference.

‘There has been a big shift in the last 20-30 years in agriculture where, coming off the wool boom in the 20th century, it is becoming harder and harder to run a profitable farming business. Input costs continue to rise whilst the price received for goods remains much the same.’

‘I read a great stat the other day (DISCLAIMER – not my stat!). In 1975, one tonne of wheat could buy you 2,000 litres of diesel, seven tonnes of fertiliser and 64 hours of casual labour. In 2013, one tonne of wheat could get you 173 litres of diesel, 2.3 tonnes of fertiliser and 10 hours of casual labour.

‘Nowadays you have to be a businessman/woman first and a farmer second. You must have your finger on the pulse at all times in terms of what everything is costing you and at the same time try and receive the best price possible whether it be forward selling, contracts etc.’

‘I think this is where ag grads can help by up skilling and helping agriculture become a more progressive, and hopefully successful industry.’

He also encouraged students who may be considering enrolling in an ag degree to have an open mind.

‘There are so many opportunities in so many areas of agriculture we’re all incredibly lucky. Agriculture is crying out for young men and women and we have a great opportunity to make Australian agriculture integral to not only Australia but the world.

‘I think there is also a propensity for Gen Y  to want everything and want it now! I’ve certainly been guilty of that at times. Don’t be afraid to start at the bottom and work your way up. People respect that. Our mums and dads did it, as did theirs. Be patient and don’t expect to be CEO in your first year out of uni.’

Does the CommBank grad program sound like something you may be interested in? Applications for the graduate program open in late February and close in late March for commencement in February the next year. There is also a Summer Intern program with applications opening in July and the program starting in the first week of December.

Visit the website here.

Thanks so much Henry for taking the time to chat to Career Harvest!