How to efficiently collect data for farm analytics

Posted by Molly Haub on 7/2/20 8:15 AM
Molly Haub

There are a lot of data points that need to be collected, verified, and entered to get a full-scope picture of your operation for analytics purposes. To collect data efficiently, it’s important to first have a good plan, keep notes as you go, collect in a timely manner, and verify that data matches what happened.

IMG_3769 (1)

First, I just want to take a brief moment to reiterate how important it is to have a good plan and be on the same page as your trusted advisor before the season even begins. If everything goes according to plan, then you both know where seed/chemical/fertilizer goes. However, we know that even those most well-laid plans don’t always happen as we anticipate, and, in that case, it is very important to take diligent notes.

Taking notes when plans change while it is fresh in your mind, is one of the best things you can do for yourself. It’s easy to remember something as it happens but after a few weeks, we may not remember it exactly as we thought it did. One of the easiest things you can do for you and your advisor is to print off the field information sheets that we offer with each field. Or, a simple notebook or text to your advisor also works if you don’t have these handy. Once you have these notes, it is very important to collect the corresponding data files as soon after you’ve finished as possible.


While collecting data quickly after application occurs, it is not possible to stop the planter after each field to send the new file to your advisor. However, if you use a cloud-based data management tool, such as John Deere Operations Center, Climate FieldView Plus, or Agfiniti, you can share your operation or username with your trusted advisor who can download files as you go. If those options are not in your arsenal, then exporting your files from the monitor and sending them to your advisor as soon as you are done with planting, spraying, or fertilizing is the next best alternative. If data is collected in a timely manner, it is much easier to verify that data is correct.

Verifying and validating data is a critical step for data analysis. Good data in = good analysis out. Validating is easiest to do when things are fresh in our minds, as long as you have created a game plan with your advisor, kept notes, and collected data in a timely manner, the validation part should be an easy and painless process. Our Premier Crop Advisors are here to help you through any of this process. If you don’t have a Premier Crop Advisor reach out to us to see how we can get you on the path of doing more with your data.

Topics: farm analytics


Premier Crop Systems, based out of Des Moines, IA, started in 1999 to deliver better agronomic decisions through data analysis that lead to higher yields, increased profits and more sustainable practices for customers. 


Recent Posts