As a tenant farmer on 134 acres in Carmarthenshire, South West Wales, James Smith faces a lot of challenges: working high conservation value land owned by the National Trust; the rising costs of supplements and feed, medication and machinery; and, of course, the ever-changing weather.
Then there’s the fact that both he and his wife have full-time jobs. It could turn managing 230 ewes and a small herd of pedigree Hereford cattle into something of a nightmare. Thankfully, the burden has been eased considerably by using farm management software.
Saving precious time
Since adopting AgriWebb in November last year, James has found it invaluable, as it allows him to make records on his smartphone, on the go.
“My time on the farm is limited, so when I am there, I don’t want to be worried about paperwork,” he says.
“What I like is, by the time my sheep have gone through the handling system, my records are done, and I can move on to the next job.”
Just as important as getting more time on the farm, is being able to forget about record keeping at the end of the working day.
“One of the biggest benefits is my time with my family in the evening: I’m not sitting around with scraps of paper trying to find information to fill in books. I know I can relax.”
Before AgriWebb, I would have winged it and overspent, overstocked, and had drugs and medication sitting around that I didn’t need… I’ve probably saved £200 – £300.
Saving money with accurate records
James has found that tracking his inventory through AgriWebb has led directly to financial gains.
“I went to dose some ewes the other day. Before AgriWebb, I would have winged it and overspent, overstocked, and had drugs and medication sitting around that I didn’t need,” he explains.
“With AgriWebb, I knew that I had the exact amount to dose that mob of ewes. It saved me going to the vet – I knew I could crack on and do the job –and it was more efficient. I’ve probably saved £200 – £300.”
Information at your fingertips
Using AgriWebb means farm records are never farther away than your phone, as James found when a scanner inspecting his breeding ewes wanted to know when they were joined.
“Instead of having to sift through calendars and diaries, I just looked at my phone, and gave her my joining date,” James says.
“I was also able to book in scanning for my beef cattle at the same time because it had the joining date of the bull right there – little things like that are really satisfying.”
Taking the stress out of record keeping
AgriWebb has become an essential farm tool for James.
“I’m using AgriWebb whenever I’m on the farm. Whether I’m working out dosage rates, working out feed rations or keeping movement records, it saves me so much time,” he says.
If it wasn’t for AgriWebb, the Carmarthenshire farmer fears he’d be drowning in paperwork, particularly with his inspection coming up in March.
James isn’t the only one singing the product’s praises. His wife, who also works on the property, is glad he discovered the farm management software. James jokes that she used to help with record keeping, by writing down details he’d shout across the farm.
Joking or not, it’s no longer a concern thanks to AgriWebb. “My wife has said it makes her less stressed – because I’m less stressed,” James is happy to say. “There’s a knock-on effect.”