Gerard and Emily Eder on farm

Case Study: Why Eder Agriculture rely on AgriSmart on farm

Emily and her husband Gerard are busy farmers 50/50 sharemilking 1000 cows near Mangatainoka as well as leasing the 536 hectare block next door to run beefEmily leads most of the farm’s workforce admin. 

Before AgriSmart 

To begin with, Emily used paper systems and traditional whiteboards-in-the-shed to manage her team, chasing down timesheets and sweating about whether the right jobs were getting done at the right time. 

“I was getting overwhelmed and the system I first tried was desktop based and was super expensive.  A friend at the Dairy Women’s Network recommended AgriSmart because it’s made specifically for farmers.” 

“That mattered to me – the average payroll system doesn’t cater for the uniqueness of dairy farming, we don’t work nine till five and rosters can be a bit all over the show,” she says. 

Saving time and keeping things simple 

At one point, Emily had 3 rosters running at once.  As well as saving her time in scheduling, the system had an unexpected efficiency benefit – if a staff member needs help, they know where the other people are and can go get help from them. 

There’s another feature which saves her time and keeps things simple. The team enters their own timesheet information, which shifts some of the responsibility from the employer to the employee; “We remind them – no hours, no pay!” 

“It keeps communication clear and open so there is no confusion,” she says. 

Peace of mind in their large-scale operation is now possible.  By checking the dashboards on our phones, Gerard and Emily always know what their staff are doing.   

“You should see how many tasks we have in the app!  They’re awesome, you can flick them on to staff easily and you don’t have to ring or text them on their day off to tell them what they’re doing in the morning.”  

Gerard and Emily employ several staff from their Philippines and, although their English is reasonably good, they understand things better when they’re written down, so the tasks are helpful.  

“And if they finish a task early, they can see what the rest of the team are doing and find someone to help, which is great because our farm is so big you don’t always know where everyone is.” 

There’s a lot of things on farm that DON’T have your back, but AgriSmart absolutely does.” 

Like all farmers, they keep a close eye on employment law, regulations and expectations of them as employers.  But it’s a lot to keep up with and knowing that AgriSmart is regularly and automatically updated to keep them compliant when rules change is a huge benefit.  

“A personal grievance is going to cost you a whole heap more than what you’re paying for compliance with AgriSmart!!” 

The automatic minimum wage top ups, and the compliance with migrant worker laws are some of their favourite features.  But the one that stands out the most is the dashboard: 

“We have it up on our computers all the time, come home and refresh it, and check everyone’s put their hours in. We have it on our phones too, so we can check any time.  If we hear a motorbike go past, we can think, hmmmm that’s a bit early to go for lunch so my husband can flick them another task and bump up their hours!” 

And the dashboard meant holidays are now possible! Emily and Gerard finally got off farm last year for a holiday in Taupo.  But although their team was out of sight, they weren’t out of mind – they could check in on the dashboard and keep an eye on things.  “At one point we could see people were taking longer lunches and breakfasts, so we just made a quick phone call to chat with them about it and explain it wasn’t the time to slow down!” 

AgriSmart is the one stop shop, tailor made for dairy farmers 

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