Due to changes in Endangered Species information, Enlist One and Enlist Duo cannot be used in 12 Ohio counties.Read More
The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the No. 1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*
It’s a trend in American agriculture: the big are getting bigger. Recent U.S. Department of Agriculture data show farms with at least $1 million in annual revenue account for 4% of the nation’s farms, but 66% of the commodities produced in the nation.
As farm workforces and asset bases grow and change, farmers today are increasingly adapting farm management strategies to integrate things like human relations and employee management.
Changing farm management priorities
As farms and acres grow, so do workforces. That causes changes in farm management priorities, added Nationwide Agribusiness Senior Underwriting Director Doug Becker.
“Large farmers are investing in bigger facilities and truck fleets. You may need to start adding HR resources so you can manage new tasks like vetting truck drivers so you know your fleet is well-maintained and safe,” Becker said. “That’s not an easy transition for farmers who are wired to put ROI first. It’s hard to put a price on adding people and resources to make sure you’re not becoming more exposed to risk.”
Consider these factors for larger farms
Mitigating that risk on large farms happens in different ways. Managing a large farm today accounts for risk mitigation in several ways. Consider devoting resources to these priorities as your farm grows:
- Workforce training and education. Just like training drivers to meet certain safety standards when growing your truck fleet, for example, add educational programs to ensure every worker knows the hazards of each job on the farm and is prepared to mitigate those hazards.
- Health care and compensation. Provide good benefits and competitive pay to not only retain workers but make your farm an attractive workplace for qualified candidates as you grow.
- Specific liability coverage. As you grow, your farm faces new hazards. Account for managing larger grain storage facilities and machinery fleets, for example, in your risk management plan to ensure you’re covered and not exposed to increased liability.
ROI isn’t always immediate
While ROI is a major factor in many changes as your farm grows, it’s often difficult to measure for things like workforce training and education. That doesn’t mean they’re without value. “Since these aren’t really tangible, they’re not necessarily going to show a direct ROI,” Becker said. “It’s important to see the value of these things when you’re growing your operation.”
For these types of specific farm management components, Owens recommends thinking in the context of both ROI and general competitiveness.
“There has to be a return on the investment,” he said. “Investing in these types of things will help make you more competitive, which will provide ROI in the long run.”
*A.M. Best Market Share Report 2019. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. © 2021 Nationwide.
Through its policies it brings together people in the agricultural community and invests in building vibrant communities that support agriculture.Future employees, leaders
As a member of Farm Bureau, I am glad that this organization takes action when necessary to protect and advance agriculture.Policy Development
If you have issues with local planning or have legal questions, someone at the Farm Bureau has the answer for you, or they’ll connect you with someone who does.Hansen's Greenhouse
Farm Bureau is an incredible organization that has given me countless professional development opportunities in addition to advocating for all sizes and types of farmers.
We go to a lot of Farm Bureau events, and there’s a lot of camaraderie built because you’re meeting with people who have similar interests and goals.Event Calendar
Thanks to generous support from Nationwide, the Ag Foundation opened applications for education grants that will empower educators with more accurate information about agriculture. Apply by Feb. 28.Read More
Farmers are gathering in Atlanta, and participating virtually across the country, for the 103rd American Farm Bureau Annual Convention.Read More