Forestry technologists and technicians may work independently or perform technical and supervisory functions in support of forestry research, forest management, forest harvesting, forest resource conservation and environmental protection.
People in this group:
Estimated median employment income based on 2021 Job Bank median hourly wage rate (median annual salary = hourly wage rate x 40 (hours per week) x 52.14 (weeks per year))
Note:Estimated median employment income based on 2021 Job Bank median hourly wage rate (median annual salary = hourly wage rate x 40 (hours per week) x 52.14 (weeks per year))
Source: 2021 Job Bank Wage Report
Source: B.C. Labour Market Outlook
10 year expected job openings: 380
Forestry technologists and technicians:
Most forestry technologists and technicians work at least part of the time outdoors in remote forested areas or log-sorting yards. They are often required to work in remote field camps away from home for extended periods, but other work may also take place in offices and laboratories.
Workers must be able to walk long distances in heavily forested areas, sometimes on steep and difficult terrain and often in extreme weather (heat, rain, snow).
While work occasionally requires the use of dangerous equipment, such as chain saws and brush saws, safety is the most important aspect of every job in the forest industry and mandated safety procedures must be followed. Workers may also encounter wildlife when working in isolated backcountry areas.
Extended work hours are common during peak seasons. Workers may also experience periods of seasonal unemployment.
Workers must be comfortable operating 4x4 motor vehicles, all-terrain vehicles (also known as quads) and snowmobiles, and working around airplanes or helicopters.
Source: 2016 Census
Forestry technologists and technicians are required to have completed a two-year college program in forestry technology, renewable resource program or forest ranger program in B.C.
There are two paths of certification and registration for forestry technologists:
The Association of BC Forest Professionals (ABCFP) certifies the occupation of forest technologists. An individual with a two-year forest technology diploma from an institute recognized by the ABCFP can enrol as a Trainee Forest Technologist (TFT). Once enrolled as a TFT, individuals are required to complete 24 months of acceptable work experience and must write part A and part B of the Registered Forest Technologist (RFT) exam. On passing, they can then become an official RFT.
For more information, see the ABCFP website at www.abcfp.ca.
The Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of British Columbia (ASTTBC) organization certifies the occupation of forest engineering technologists. An individual who has completed a college program in forest technology can register with the ASTTBC as a graduate technologist or technician. After completing a minimum of two years of work experience, individuals can then apply to become a certified member. Certification under ASTTBC is transferable among provinces.
For more information, see the ASTTBC website at www.asttbc.org.
Those who are certified for an occupation by a regulator elsewhere in Canada can apply for the same certification from the regulator in B.C. Under the terms of the Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA), most applicants who are transferring their credentials from elsewhere in Canada will not be required to complete additional training or testing. However, the B.C. regulator may ask applicants to provide further information such as a letter of good standing, references, or criminal record check.
For those who trained outside of Canada and never received certification from any Canadian jurisdiction, a full assessment is likely needed. Most occupational regulators have a process for assessment and recognize internationally trained applicants.
For details on how to apply for certification in B.C., contact the Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of BC and/or the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development: Forest Policy and Indigenous Relations Division, Timber Pricing Branch.
For information about labour mobility in Canada, visit www.workersmobility.ca.
View a list of B.C. occupational regulators.
For more information about programs offered specifically for this career, visit EducationPlannerBC.
Every job calls for a certain set of skills. Knowing those skills is the first step in finding a good career fit.
Here, you will find the 35 most relevant workplace skills. Some are more important to achieving success in a certain career than others. These skills may come naturally to you or you may need to gain them through education, training and experience.
See the list of work-related skills below, ranked in order of importance for this career. You’ll also find the skill strength needed, letting you know how capable you must be in that skill.
Check out the list and see if this career matches your skills—take that first step!
There will be a significant number of job openings as a result of both new job creation and the need to replace experienced workers who retire.
Employers have found it difficult to attract young skilled people to the Forestry and Logging industry and retain them. This problem may become worse as older workers retire. In recent years, the number of graduates in this field has also been decreasing.
Demand for forestry-related employment services are expected to be constrained by the limited growth in related activity in government agencies and forestry companies. As well, there has been increased consolidation of companies and greater use of technology to remain globally competitive, which will continue to limit job creation. These trends are expected to result in limited employment growth for forestry technologist and technicians.
Forestry technologists and technicians typically work for government, forest companies or research facilities or they are self-employed. Progression to supervisory and management positions is possible with experience.