Articles by James DeGraff

Compatibility Conversation: Setting Aside Competitive Differences to Achieve Plug & Play Outcomes

Tech engineering veterans trade cautionary tales and share optimism that the transition to high-speed ISOBUS connectivity can improve applied prescriptions, data logging and cost-effective controls on farm machinery.
Taking a break from the rigors of round-robin compatibility testing at the Agricultural Electronics Foundation (AEF) Plugfest in Lincoln, Neb., this spring (also referred to fondly as “speed dating for ag nerds” by one attendee), AGCO software engineer Mike Schmidt and Dave Smart, staff systems engineer for John Deere and team leader for AEF’s high-speed ISOBUS Project, discussed the progression of compatibility over the years through AEF conformance testing, the simplification of equipment connectivity for farmers of all brands and expectations for ag functionality with high-speed ISOBUS network capabilities on the horizon.
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[Technology Corner] High Speed ISOBUS to Expedite ‘Plug & Play’ Compatibility

Last month, I traveled to Lincoln, Neb., to cover the Agricultural Electronics Foundation Plugfest event. For hours on end, developers from around the world tested their platforms for compatibility in a round-robin format, hoping to fix any underlying issues en route to eventually achieving ISOBUS certification.
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PFD Summit: Clearly Defined Culture Breeds a Commitment to Precision Performance

3 diverse dealers dissect the dynamics of a productive employee-manager relationship, along with the detriments of poor communication.
The shifting nature of precision farming demands a foundation for employee commitment, yet the unique structure of any given dealership eliminates the possibility for any universal blueprint. Rarely does the perfect formula come from direct replication or an unhinged maverick move, but the best plans often fall somewhere in between.
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[Technology Corner] EDA Compensation Report Reflects Expansion of Precision-Focused Positions

Every two years, the Equipment Dealers Assn. (or EDA) releases their Compensation & Benefits Report, a comparison of salaries, benefits and unique components of compensation plans from 1,500 dealership responses throughout North America. Included in the most recent report, released and compiled in 2016, is a widened scope on precision farming-related positions, both at the corporate and dealership level.
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Compensation Collective, Precision Edition: How Does Your Dealership Stack Up?

The Equipment Dealers Assn.’s bi-annual report on salary, benefits and total compensation for precision-focused positions provides managers with a benchmark resource.
In 2016, the Equipment Dealers Assn. (EDA) released a revised Compensation & Benefits Report to include wage data pertaining to office staff, parts, service and sales departments. Included are descriptions for over 30 jobs and bonus structures, data categorized by dealer revenues and more.
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Billing Platforms, Data Reliability Points of Emphasis at InfoAg 2017

Service fee optimization and data incentive programs headline hot topics for dealers in precision farming management.
At InfoAg 2017 in St. Louis, finding effective and lucrative avenues for billing precision support and streamlining delivery of data management services, were among the trending topics discussed by dealer attendees and speakers during the 3-day event.
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InfoAg Gears Up for 20th Anniversary Event

2015 conference to highlight agronomic and data management practices for dealers and their farm customers.
Coming off its most successful year in 2014, this year's InfoAg conference aims to provide a platform for the industry's marquee retailers, researchers and farmers to share ideas and expand their knowledge on agricultural business tactics and innovations.
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