Farms are multifaceted businesses with the potential to produce vast amounts of data.
From stocking schedules to crop production reporting, there's great potential to learn and build upon your processes. However, you need to be able to pull this information together, and then know what to do with it.
This is where farm management software comes in. But what exactly do these packages do, and how can they make your day-to-day easier?
Farm management software allows you to learn more about your business.
1. Staying on top of compliance regulations
The number of compliance regulations that farmers have to meet is only going up. From workplace health and safety through to financial obligations, there are a lot of boxes to tick.
Effective farm management software can help you stay on top of these compliances by streamlining processes, and ensuring that you're up-to-date with the latest changes.
For example, significant changes to the way that Australian companies do payroll are currently been phased in. Single Touch Payroll (STP) is putting a stop to end of year payment summaries, with business owners instead supplying details of wages, super contributions and Pay As You Go (PAYG) withholdings to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) at the end of each pay cycle.
This is a requirement that is forecast to be in place for businesses with fewer than 20 employees by July 1, 2019, and can only be achieved through software that has been endorsed by the ATO. One of the benefits of efficient farm management software is that it is constantly updated to meet these changes, meaning that your business never falls behind.
AGDATA's farm management software can provide insights on everything from livestock to cropping, and beyond.
2. Making informed decisions
Farm management software exists to help with planning. It allows you to review the status quo and from there establish what's working well, and which areas of your business require more attention. As we've mentioned, farms have the potential to create vast quantities of data. However, this is only useful if the data is harvested and used constructively.
Here's an example of how AGDATA's production modules can be used to do just this:
Effective resource planning starts with thorough property planning. Our software allows you to easily build extensive maps of your property to keep an eye on all of your assets at once. As well as customising maps with your own paddock names, you can update the layout as your business grows, and even add 3D topographical features. This means, for example, if you were planning to install new irrigation systems, the software can take into account hills that might require additional materials.
Circumstances change rapidly in the world of buying and selling livestock. However, with powerful farm management software behind you, you'll never be caught out. AGDATA's Livestock module speeds up the process of collecting data on your livestock and convert this into information that can inform how you respond to market fluctuations.
You can drill down into specific animal histories, with the ability of lifetime traceability for individual stock. For example, you can receive withholding period notifications for cattle treated with chemical products telling you when you can legally take them to market. Furthermore, you can use the evidence to show that your animal husbandry practices meet public expectations.
Our Cropping module is designed to simplify the processes of your cropping season from start to finish. It takes the time and complexity out of gathering the data you need for accurate season forecasting, allowing you to make informed projections.
After the season is underway, Cropping's task management functionality allows you to take control over every aspect of the work carried out on your farm. With the ability to print out daily worksheets for your employees you can specify details such as tank mixes for spraying, making you confident that everything is being done to the standards you expect. Having the capacity to integrate all of this information into Phoenix Financial means you can also attribute true costings for each task.
Finally, when the season is over, Cropping's powerful analytical tools allow you to gain key insights to inform your decision making in the future.
While humanity is yet to develop a software package powerful enough to control the weather, we can do the next best thing - plan for it. Not only is AGDATA's Weather module designed to put historical weather data at your fingertips, it can also be integrated with our Livestock product, to give insights on how changing conditions affect grazing performance.
By selecting the whole package, or the modules most relevant to your business, you can build your farm management software into an invaluable tool for learning more about your business, and the opportunities for growth.
You can integrate modules to see which areas of your business are most profitable, and which need work.
5. Streamlining your processes
Functional farm management products should automate many previously manual processes and take legwork away from you - integration, therefore, is a must.
This is why we've designed all of our production modules so they can integrate with our Phoenix Financial management program. This means that you have clear oversight over how the physical operations on your farm are affecting your bottom line, what's working well, and which areas could be improved.
Our products come with the support of our experienced team, who can help you navigate it, and show you how to make the most of farm management software. For more information, or to trial one of AGDATA's modules, get in touch.