Improve Your Soil Sampling Process and Positively Impact 5 Job Roles at Your Agribusiness
29 Oct 2021
Soil sampling helps agribusinesses assist customers to understand their soil and reach top yields each year. Not only the person pulling the sample but numerous job roles and ultimately the customer benefit when soil sampling is a part of an enterprise-wide system. Josh Marten, Precision Agronomy Specialist with SSI suggests that ag retailers “leverage the Agvance system from the time the salesperson has that initial conversation with the grower. It starts with the soil sampling process in the fall, all the way through to the operations team getting the new samples dispatched and pulled, and back to the salesperson or the precision team to make that variable rate recommendation, and finally back to the applicators to finish that task in the spring when the fertilizer is applied.”
Soil sample work orders should be accessible and useable for the sales team, mapping users, dispatchers, soil sampling team, and applicators. With a robust software solution like Agvance, multiple apps work together to provide accessible information specific to each job role.
While making customer connections and determining sampling needs, the salesperson views the specific customer’s account and field boundaries in SKY Customer. Soil sample work orders can be entered by the salesperson for one field or batched for multiple fields from a mobile device or desktop. Using the Inform App, sales staff can view or change the status of an order and set a priority level viewable by the dispatcher. “As a salesperson, you are constantly on the move and need to have access to your orders that you have placed ahead of the busy season. Set them to the ready status so the operations team can get your fields applied or, in this case, soil sampled,” says Marten.
Typical users of mapping tools including agronomists, crop specialists, or possibly sales staff at some companies, use SKY Mapping to identify soil sample pull points manually or auto placed by grid or zone on field maps. To prepare for the sampling, unique identifiers are assigned to soil sampling events and soil sample bag labels and lab submission forms can be created for the soil sampling team. After the soil pull, results can be automatically imported into Agvance from compatible soil testing labs. Soil test values can then be turned into equation-based variable rate fertilizer maps and recommendations using SKY Mapping. Once a rec is created, it can become a new Plan or Blend.
Dispatchers have a view of your company’s blend and delivery tickets in SKY Dispatch. Those soil sample work orders set to “ready” status by the sales team can be dispatched to soil sampling crews in the field.
Soil Sampling Team
Using Apply, the soil sampling team receives a notification of a work order from the dispatcher. With the pre-created sample bag labels in hand, the app directs the team to the field. From there, the SKY Mapping mobile app provides the GPS directions to each pull point previously designated in the Mapping web application. Spencer Hammer, Sales Account Manager says, “there are several settings to assist pullers while in the field such as auto collection of points. This feature allows for hands-free collection of points so the user can focus on pulling the soil cores and less time interacting with the iPad.”
Soil sample results in SKY Mapping eventually become Blends and the dispatcher notifies the applicator. Applicators use the Apply app, receive turn-by-turn directions, product totals, and acre information to complete the job.
From soil sampling to application and every step in between, multiple staff access the same information to ultimately help the customer achieve a top yield. If you would like more information on how Agvance can assist you with your soil sampling process, please complete the form below.