New Tool Manages Orders, Data

agrivaultEast central Ohio-based precision ag consultant Tim Norris has been working hard at developing his consulting business, Ag Info Tech, to the point where he could personally focus on growth opportunities while his employees work on customer service and sales.

One important goal Norris set in this journey was finding a way to make it easier for employees to start and facilitate the sales process, from creating and tracking quotes to setting up the installation to scheduling service.  The two-year project, called AgriVault, is nearly ready to go prime time at Ag Info Tech. And its tools and functionality — which now includes grower data collection and management — has attracted enough attention that Norris began offering AgriVault to ag retailers earlier this month.

In 2011, he began working with a local Web developer, Damian Clem of VivioSoft, to turn his vision into reality. But along the way, the AgriVault project expanded beyond order tracking. The package now includes the ability to collect and manage data in a way that growers can easily access and understand, and that makes it easier for salespeople to share and discuss the particulars of the data with customers.

“The project has evolved to where we are now incorporating yield data analysis,” says Norris. “It has morphed into something a lot greater than we anticipated, and something we can sell and market both to our customers and other dealerships.”

Tracking Orders

Norris is not unlike many small business entrepreneurs who spent years early in his consulting career as a “doer.” To grow the business, he knew he would need to find ways to automate some of the things he was accustomed to doing, or being called on to do by employees.

Being a central point of contact throughout the sales process, among other day to day responsibilities, was taking a tremendous amount of his time. He knew a lot of the information could be automated and made accessible to his employees electronically, reducing time and frustration for everyone.

“One of the things I noticed missing at our company was a good way to track orders, whether sales orders for machine equipment or tracking orders for soil sampling,” says Norris. “I started thinking about an automated solution, and figured that an online solution would be the best medium to use.”
The first goal was to build in the ability to track quotes in a central location. Salespeople can use AgriVault to construct the quote with prepopulated products, services and pricing. Each week, the sales staff can review where quotes stand and advance firm orders through the system, which ensures that products are in inventory and that the service call is scheduled. Payment plans can also be viewed and selected.

The product lookup system is designed so a record can be found either by the name of the unit, the part number, or the account number. This allows easy use by any salesperson, as well as the accounting manager at the office.

Norris, or anyone else in the company, can get a definitive look at where sales and service stands via the AgriVault Dashboard, which includes detailed order and sales status for all open orders and quotes, and a calendar of sales and service activities.

Once a quote is accepted by the grower and becomes a sale, it moves to a “pick list,” which cues the office manager to check to see if needed equipment and parts are in stock or need to be ordered. When everything that’s required is in house, a work order can be printed and is ready for fulfillment.

AgriVault also handles soil sampling orders. “If the grower has fields that must be sampled in the fall, for example, both the grower and the salesperson will get an e-mail listing all the fields ordered for sampling,” says Norris. “The grower can click on a link to AgriVault and click on a field once it is harvested. That moves the field over to a pick list so the salesperson knows that field is ready for sampling.”

Once a field is sampled and results are returned, the field can be moved to “complete” and the grower is billed.

Each AgriVault service will be sold as a module, says Norris. Equipment, fertility and soil sampling will be available together or individually to suit any business.

Managing Data

Getting growers to embrace data and analysis has been a goal of Norris’ for a long time, but spatially reported data has proven confusing and unpopular with the bulk of his clients. To help improve data use and understanding, a premium service of the AgriVault system creates tabular presentations from spatial data. The data is exportable from SMS, the predominant software used by Ag Info Tech and its grower clients.

Norris and Clem have added some useful tools to the data aspect of AgriVault, including the ability to subtract out headlands from yield data, and to incorporate notes about a given season; for example, excessive rain or drought, or other weather event.

One other cool tool being added to the system is the incorporation of historic weather data. Growers and salespeople will be able to incorporate up to seven years of weather information about their fields to help in the analysis and decision making process.

For more information on AgriVault, visit www.agrivault.com.

Leave a Reply

Data Management Stories
Soil-Corn-plants-field
Data ManagementRemote Soil-Sensed Management Zones Help Increase Crop Input Efficiency
June 18, 2018
Accurate prescription maps are essential for effective variable rate technology (VRT) fertilizer application. Grid soil sampling is frequently used to Read More
Data ManagementChecking the Box: FBN Garners Ag Data Transparent Certification
May 30, 2018
Farmers Business Network (FBN) recently completed Ag Data Transparent (ADT) third-party certification, affirming that the FBN network’s data and analytics Read More
CAMP3-team
Data ManagementHow AI, Data and Voice Analysis May Transform Farming — And Grow a New Industry in the South
May 22, 2018
In 2015, an estimated $800 million worth of crops in Georgia — a number that amounted to about 13.8% of Read More
Farmer-tablet
Data ManagementWhen It Comes to Farm Data, How Good Is ‘Good Enough’?
May 21, 2018
Ron Farrell, a frequent sounding board for my wacky ideas and a source of ongoing encouragement to stay the course Read More
Trending Articles
JDandPessl
Sensors/IoTJohn Deere, Pessl Instruments Team Up to Create Opportunities
June 18, 2018
John Deere is best known for its line of tractors, combines, sprayers, and implements. However, in an effort to help Read More
Matt-Waits-featured
Decision Support SoftwareSST’s Matt Waits: Innovative Data Solutions Key to Transforming Global Agriculture
May 31, 2018
Proagrica, part of RELX Group, earlier this year acquired U.S.-based precision agriculture solutions company, SST Software, in a move set Read More
InfoAg ConferenceThe InfoAg Conference Offers Early Bird Registration Discount
May 24, 2018
Since 1995, The InfoAg Conference has been the premier event for discussion and advancement of precision agriculture. The event, organized Read More
Ernie-Chappell-Screenshot
EventsEFC Systems Sponsorship Demonstrates Commitment to Continuing Education for Retail Dealerships
May 16, 2018
Enterprise software manufacturer EFC Systems, scholarship sponsor of the inaugural PrecisionAg® Professional Accelerator professional development conference this June in Brookings, Read More
EventsMeister Media Debuts Growing Innovations
May 10, 2018
As a service provider, you and your grower customers probably can agree on this much: While innovation abounds in agriculture, Read More
UCANR_booth_Food_IT_forum
EventsForum Calling All Innovators of Agriculture Technology
May 2, 2018
The challenges that come with feeding the world continue to grow. Luckily, so do advances in information technology that are Read More
Latest News
Industry NewsRaven Launching CR12 Field Computer in Europe this Week
June 19, 2018
Raven Industries announced the release of a new, larger field computer: the CR12. Utilizing the same functionality as the CR7 Read More
dropcopter
DronesNew York Apple Orchard Claims World First in Pollinatio…
June 18, 2018
Beak & Skiff Apple Orchard in LaFayette, NY, is the first orchard in the world to use drones to pollinate Read More
Farmer with iPad
Decision Support SoftwareAgrian Enhances Field Scouting App
June 18, 2018
Agrian has added a new feature to its robust field scouting app – a pest trap counting solution. The new Read More
AmericasMFA Precision Head Talks Precision Ag, Cover Crops at 2…
June 18, 2018
Although implicit to anyone that spends a good chunk of their career in agriculture, the link between advanced precision technology Read More
Iron Man
UncategorizedAgFunder News: Forget Self-Driving Tractors; Agricultur…
June 18, 2018
Marvel’s Iron Man suit might seem an unlikely source of inspiration for growers, writes Joseph Byrum on AgFunderNews.com. Once the Read More
Soil-Corn-plants-field
Data ManagementRemote Soil-Sensed Management Zones Help Increase Crop …
June 18, 2018
Accurate prescription maps are essential for effective variable rate technology (VRT) fertilizer application. Grid soil sampling is frequently used to Read More
JDandPessl
Sensors/IoTJohn Deere, Pessl Instruments Team Up to Create Opportu…
June 18, 2018
John Deere is best known for its line of tractors, combines, sprayers, and implements. However, in an effort to help Read More
computer-in-field
Business Management3 Questions to Ask When Looking for Your First Job in P…
June 18, 2018
Let me begin this column by extending my congratulations to all of my fellow students who have just graduated – Read More
Robotics/Labor SaversStine Seed Plunks Down $5 Million on Smart Ag’s D…
June 14, 2018
Stine Seed Farm has invested $5 million in Smart Ag Inc., an Iowa technology firm that has developed a full Read More
David-Perry-featured-image
AmericasIndigo Touts ‘New Approach to Agricultural R&…
June 13, 2018
Indigo, the Boston-based microbial crop technology startup that has raised more than $400 million, announced it is expanding its research Read More
Ag Drone
EventsAgTech Conference of the South Dedicated to Innovation,…
June 12, 2018
Join current and emerging agtech business leaders and investors at the AgTech Conference of the South, a premiere conference dedicated Read More
Munckhof Machinefabriek equipment
EuropeEurope: Precision Farming at Heart of Munckhof Deal
June 11, 2018
One of Europe’s oldest suppliers of machinery used in fruit production, the Dutch firm Munckhof Machinefabriek, has been purchased by Read More
Australian-Farmers
Australia/New ZealandCrunching the Ag-Tech Numbers Saves Time for Australian…
June 5, 2018
Time management is key on the Walker family’s farm, where a mix between cropping, commercial sheep and two studs means Read More
Drone-exhbitor-at-Drone-Show
AmericasDroneShow Highlights UAV Technology in Latin America
June 4, 2018
Editor’s note: The DroneShow Latin America is an annual trade fair hosted by MundoGEO, a media and communications company founded Read More
Imagery/SensingImagery in Agriculture: Time for a Reality Check
June 4, 2018
Where do I begin….I’ve been dealing with imagery in agriculture since I was 10 when my dad started Satshot. At Read More
AmericasNAAA Issues Drone Pilot Reminder: Watch Out For Aerial …
May 31, 2018
With more than 1 million UAVs registered with the FAA, it is vitally important for UAV operators to be aware Read More
Matt-Waits-featured
Decision Support SoftwareSST’s Matt Waits: Innovative Data Solutions Key t…
May 31, 2018
Proagrica, part of RELX Group, earlier this year acquired U.S.-based precision agriculture solutions company, SST Software, in a move set Read More
CROO Robotics’ automated strawberry harvester
Specialty CropsGrowingProduce.com: Fruit Growers, It’s Time to Mechani…
May 30, 2018
If you’re into conspiracies, you might be interested to know that I have stumbled onto a doozy. And it looks Read More