Growers were asking Ririe for access to their scale tickets and settlements. Andersen said he preferred that farmers have self-serve access to their data, rather than push them daily or weekly reports via email. “If you’re constantly pushing it, it becomes noise,” he said.
Andersen also says that farmers were missing opportunities to sell grain because they couldn’t simply remember or easily reference their contracts to see what they had sold. Many times, farmers would call Ririe with account-related questions, starting with “I know this is a dumb question….” While they knew they had the account information they needed somewhere, their paper-based record keeping was cumbersome, resulting in inefficiencies for the farmer and Ririe alike. From a compliance standpoint, Ririe was also concerned about their paper-based contract process, noting that they didn’t have a good way to keep track of what contracts had been signed and what contract signatures were outstanding.
Today, nearly all of Ririe’s growers are using the mobile app. Andersen said growers particularly love the easy access to their scale tickets, contracts and commodity balances. Andersen also sees a return on investment related to the risk mitigation eSign provides. “If it saves us from one contract problem, it’s paid for itself for a year,” he said.
Andersen said that instead of fielding calls about transactional account data, the co-op is taking the initiative and calling their farmers to talk about grain marketing. “This now gives us a chance to initiate conversations [with farmers] about the markets, their grain positions and the best opportunities to sell. If you call them, it encourages them to make a decision, and they are looking forward to that call,” he said.
“If you don’t have it, you’re just kind of behind the times and don’t have what the farmers want. The farmers want the ability to have all that information at their fingertips. If you don’t have it, you’re missing out.”
– Lee Andersen, Manager