“Keeping up with technology is important to help grow your business and be a great service for customers,” Nelson said. She saw the value in using FMH Precision Solutions, which help agents leverage a farmer’s precision technology to simplify the crop insurance process for both the agent and customer.
After talking with FMH District Sales Manager Landon Shafer and Field Claims Supervisor Tucker Boss about the possibility of using Precision Solutions for their agency, Nelson and two of her team members took the opportunity to meet with one of their interested growers about it. Customer Curtis Tisthammer was already using MyJohnDeere to collect precision farming data for his family operation.
When they met with him, FMH Precision Technology Specialist Branden Plummer was there to help with the process. Plummer said, “Curt was originally interested in using his precision acres over FSA 578’s and precision claims. He also had John Deere’s new ActiveYield™ self-calibrating combine technology.”
To get started, Cornerstone had to establish a MyJohnDeere account and partner with Tisthammer’s account to transfer precision data.
I was surprised to learn how easy it is to transfer the data from the farmer to their policy in FMHA. - Connie Nelson, FMH agent
One challenge Tisthammer had was being able to separate out his irrigated and non-irrigated acres. Plummer explained, “We set those boundaries in his farm management software (FMS) and the data comes to FMH already split out for each practice. This allows the agency and adjuster to accurately and efficiently report or process a claim.”
Working out kinks like this is part of the process of ensuring accurate precision data to use not only for crop insurance reporting, but precision claims and APH reviews too. The USDA Risk Management Agency requires calibration records to validate production for crop insurance.
Nelson said how working with FMH’s precision team helped her learn how to handle more complex data, especially for farmers who have irrigation separating the non-irrigated corners on pivot circles: “The precision specialists were great in helping get it completed.”
The support doesn’t end with the planting season though. Throughout the year, FMH’s precision technology specialists (PTS) help agents navigate using precision in the FMH Agent Center, provide training as needed, and keep in touch to provide answers to customer questions or needs.
To prepare for planting season, PTS’s are meeting with agents and their growers to get them up to speed. This means helping to educate growers in what needs to be set up within their monitors for crop insurance. For planting, this includes the Client, Farms, Field, and Crop layers. If they are using an FMS like MyJohnDeere or Climate FieldView™, they will also need to allow shared access (FieldView connects using the FMH Policyholder Center).
While setting up FMH Precision Solutions took some extra planning and coordination, it ultimately has made Nelson’s job easier by simplifying the reporting process for her customers. She reflected, “It is a learning process for them, but overall it has been good.”