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CRM Systems is a proud supporter of Agriculture in the Classroom [Manitoba]. Our very own David Lapp, shown here teaching on technology in Ag. Children have an inherent interest in plants and food, and this is a great way to bring agriculture professionals directly into the classroom - to teach, inspire and answer questions.
Agriculture in the Classroom–Manitoba (AITC-M) has been operating since 1988. AITC-M delivers curriculum-based programs, activities and resources for teachers and their students to learn more about agriculture and the role it plays in our province. AITC-M is part of Agriculture in the Classroom-Canada, click here to find out more.
AITC-M is a non-profit, charitable organization supported by sponsors and members who share the organization’s goal. Executive Director Sue Clayton works with the Board of Directors, staff, members and volunteers to develop and deliver the programs to Manitoba schools.
AITC-M’s Board of Directors is an elected board that represents a cross section of the industry. There are 15 members who exhibit a commitment and dedication to delivering an accurate, balanced and current message about agriculture. This is AITC-M’s ABC principle and it is on the membership’s behalf that the organization demands accountability to it.
The AITC-M organization will promote the development of critical thinking skills related to the businesses of agriculture, food, bioproducts and life sciences in all Manitoba students. In coordination with commodity and other industry related organizations, AITC-M’s programming, events and services will further develop future decision-makers and entrepreneurs.
Vision: Agriculture in the Classroom-Manitoba Inc. will lead in the development and distribution of accurate, balanced and current information for use as education resources in school curriculum.
AITC-M’s Core Objectives:
• To enhance awareness of agriculture in Manitoba schools
• To develop an appreciation and awareness of the importance of agriculture, socially and economically
• To explain the process of food and fiber production from farm to consumer
• To inspire interest in agriculture and agriculture careers
• To provide a supporting role to Manitoba Education and Literacy in the linkage of accurate agriculture resources to existing course curriculum
• To work collaboratively with industry partners to develop engaging, interactive agricultural experiences for youth
• To develop resources and programs with the guidance and expertise from agriculture and education communities
AITC-M has a variety of programming designed to create links between agriculture and the classroom. All our programming can be customized to meet a particular need, or we’ll work with partners to develop a new program.
Contact CRM Systems if you are interested in having us present to your school, club or troop. CRM Systems supports several different community organizations, and we are always interested in finding more good organizations to partner with.
The agriculture industry is evolving, and big changes are coming. Digital product traceability is increasingly required by government regulators and by large food suppliers who are the customers of agricultural processors, where in the past this was far less pressing. This implies the need to capture and manage more information about inventories and business processes, and to integrate growers, processors and handlers onto a common platform with shared information and communications.
Agricultural processors are getting flooded with information. More and more data is being generated and captured every day. And managing this information for decision making is becoming increasingly important.
But how can almond growers, processors and handlers benefit by upgrading their systems now?
Change Management has impacted many industries and many sectors and has become a fact of life in business. There has been "profound changes to how food is produced, processed, distributed, and marketed" (NATINIT.HTM). People and businesses in the agricultural sector are challenged by the increased risk of business failure as well as increased opportunities for success that could be the results from these changes. To meet the challenges, they will need to develop a broad set of management capabilities.
Changes in technology on the farm ranging from the new seed varieties, to robotic tractors, to the increased use of information systems have helped agriculture. This is a result of changing preferences of the consumer, where the consumer has expressed more diverse quality, and more ethnically diverse food. However, consumers are still wanting food to be affordable and have expectations of minimal impact on their environment. Add in globalization and all these pressures have forced Agriculture to adapt and change.
The good news? Change is nothing new in the agricultural sector. The Ag industry always had to to adapt to changes in weather and market prices. There has been changes on the farm and the farms are getting larger. This has meant Processors had to change out technology to help provide a better quality product faster and ship it all over the world.
The Ag industry had to:
● Grow strategies for adjusting to change.
● Respond more rapidly to global market signals.
● Evaluate and adopt appropriate technologies.
With Farming, especially on smaller farms it is not uncommon for one or more family members to combine farming with off-farm work.As well, farms may diversify into the processing side of the sector to help diversify risk and help in increasing revenue.
A study in Europe, Bewley et al. (2001) surveyed 252 dairy farmers that had expanded and found only small drops in performance and high levels of satisfaction. We have seen a similar process in the processing industry. Still this tends to be a reactive process and even sometimes adhoc which will lead to a reported failure rate of 70% (Balogun and Hope Hailey, 2004).
The transition phase, during change, often gets too little attention during planning and decision-making. This may result in problems of finalizing the change and of post-change performance that do not meet expectations (Balogun and Hope Hailey, 2004).
The ‘classic change curve’ (Elrod and Tippett, 2002) describes a typical period of low performance and despair during the transition.
Successful change management should not only bring performance to a higher level after change, but also minimize the drop in performance during transition. To the best of our knowledge no studies have explored management using a change framework.
When businesses operate without significant investments or change over a long period, the need for large changes increases. Instead of continuous change the process becomes disruptive. In contrast, gradual expansion is change that only requires adjustments of existing working processes. The farmer can apply existing knowledge because the Farmers need more than experience of or knowledge about a change to be able to succeed.
According to By and Dale (2008), motivation is one of eight critical success factors for managing organizational change. Motivated farmers are more proactive and experience more control over problems than less-motivated farmers (Hansen, 2013).
Problem-solving in unstructured contexts such as farm expansion involves unique challenges, and farmers must be motivated to develop additional cognitive and behavioral skills in order to succeed
Changes that involve expansion, growth, technology and organization simultaneously are challenging. Entering cooperative farming is a fundamental organizational change, as it increases the complexity of the organization and the potential for conflicts in decision-making as well as in day-to-day work. However, our findings show that even such a radical change in farm management can be handled successfully, given that the participants spent enough time on planning. Schei et al. (2012).
Continuous gradual changes, former change experience, inner motivation, deliberate use of consultants and careful planning of joint farming operations have a positive impact on performance during and after change.
Consider engaging an expert to help you understand the Change Management process and its benefits. You may be surprised at how large the impact can be when you take your team to the next level.
Businesses have divisions between departments. There are sometimes problems between divisions and people don’t work in a harmony for the better purpose of the company.Most businesses must solve serious communication problems between departments to establish new processes. When the new processes are established divisions run smoothly between departments. The same holds true for data flows. When an IT process links data between departments, that link is usually stable until a change is needed.
Interdepartmental competition is usually strong between sales and manufacturing. Both departments are linked in their processes. Sales department is the basis for what is produced and sold. The products are what can be sold. The rivalries between these departments are also about the preferred enterprise application. Sales departments rely on their CRM system for daily operations and processes in businesses. Manufacturing departments operate with an ERP systems and nothing else. If the companies decide to integrate two enterprise applications, that has to be done by a professional and experienced vendor. It has to be taken seriously. There are many ways and potential benefits to integrating data. Here are the main benefits of CRM and ERP integration in manufacturing.
Companies have to deliver the products they produce for customers on a timely basis. Customers don’t want to hear that the items they had ordered won’t be available for delivery. Linking the CRM system to the ERP system allows businesses interchange data to optimize their near-term production planning. A CRM system will provide a real time sales forecast. Based on this data manufacturing departments can schedule production earlier rather than just producing when the orders are placed by customers. Better production planning place the orders ahead of time and any problems with production won’t be reflected on customers who are waiting for the items.
There are many different ways to calculate cost of production. Different numbers has different meaning to management. Overhead and indirect costs sometimes factor into costing calculations—sometimes not even within the same company. Often times the cost information is stored in both the Customer Relations Management system and the ERP system. Using a single version of costing means that manufacturing department will able to utilize the information and prioritize production scheduling to minimize the value of stored inventory.
Planning production for the future is critical for optimizing equipment, labor and raw material budgets. As product mixes change over time, those changes directly affect plans for equipment, warehouse space, vendor relations, and so on.The Customer Relations Management system functions as the early warning system. Sales professionals put clients’ preferred products into the CRM system for future sales. Data insights provided by CRM will identify changes in customer preferences. Manufacturing department will able to use this information for the prediction of future revenues.
Managing where to keep inventory is a constant battle. Missing product in one-location results in either multiple shipments or backordering, both of which can be costly to the company in terms of client relations or the added cost of extra shipment. Knowing the orders about to come in allows manufacturing to transfer finished items between locations in time to make combined shipments. This way your business saves money in shipments which will eventually increase the bottom line.
As the CRM provides data insights and the data is shared between sales and manufacturing management start to use this information to improve the operations of the company. Data analysis leads to improvements in manufacturing. The ideas above are just a starting point that applies to any manufacturing company that runs a Customer Relations Management application. The hardest part is making sense of the two systems’ data. That is where your business has to choose an experienced vendor that has the qualified technology staff and project manager to integrate both systems with no hurdle.
For more information please contact us.
Agriculture is rapidly changing, with more change anticipated. Government policies and regulations are demanding more of food distributors, who in turn are requiring more of agricultural growers and processors in the form of transparency of information and improved communications between parties, and higher product quality and greater accountability and traceability.
What does this mean for growers and processors today?
By beginning to adopt greater integration and communications between systems across organizations along with new, smarter methodologies, it is possible to automate processes, improve accuracy, reduce costs, eliminate redundancies and duplicated data entry, and reallocate human resources to higher and better functions. The result of this is significantly improved quality, productivity and profitability.
An example includes the ability to automate the scheduling of deliveries from the farm to the processor, to auto detect the physical location of incoming vehicles and auto-generate load tickets.
The global food chain is complex, bringing together farmers, warehousing, shipping companies, distributors, and retailers. And currently these types of organizations are using outmoded methods of record keeping and are only loosely tied together using inefficient manual processes and communications.
More and more information is being captured every day, and this information must be properly integrated and managed for analysis and real-time decision making. And systems and communications across organizations need to be integrated.
Food industry leaders are poised to revolutionize utilizing blockchain technology. This will bring about higher standards of food quality and greater health and safety for the public at large.
The agriculture blockchain will bring great value to consumers by improving the accuracy of their purchase decisions, and by potentially halting the spread of illness. By reading a QR code on a smart phone it will be possible to ascertain the entire supply chain of food products, including identification of the source farm and all parties involved in processing and distribution, and anything affecting the quality and safety of these food products.
“The World Health Organization estimates that nearly 1 in 10 people become ill every year from eating contaminated food, with 420,000 dying as a result. Food crime is a rising trend, and Arc-net points to national reports claiming 30 – 40 percent of the food we eat is either adulterated or mislabeled… and according to the TÜV SÜD Safety Gauge Food Segment Report, only 64 percent of companies say they can trace every component of their products through the supply chain. In a time dubbed the “era of transparency,” this is disconcerting to say the least...”*
*Blockchain Lures the Food Industry, by Ramy Caspi, radarZero, Mar 6, 2018
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Goudy Bookletter 1911