The average age of the American farmer is continuing to climb, as is the average age of those working in agribusiness to support these farmers. The idea of succession planning has become inevitable for both farming families and agribusinesses, both with their own challenges.

From an agribusiness standpoint, recruiting young talent to work in rural America is difficult enough. Retaining this young talent is a different problem entirely.

Digital Transformation’s Role in Succession Planning

The way we use digital technologies in our work, personal lives, and across society has always changed the face of business and will continue to do so. In the past, it was the business that drove the rate of adoption for new digital technologies, but now it’s the customers who are demanding that businesses transform with support for digital interactions.

Tim Hammerich—noted agribusiness recruiter, founder of AgGrad, and guest speaker at our 2019 customer conference—shared the following graphic from in a presentation about managing talent in agriculture across generations:

succession planning in agriculture

From Greenstone’s perspective, people representing Generation X, Y, and Z are increasingly replacing our customers’ long-tenured employees, and they can struggle with utilizing traditional ERP solutions instead of the intuitive, modern web and mobile applications they are accustomed to.

This generation of workforce (especially Gen Y and X) expects 24/7 real-time digital interactions to be the norm. They are fast thinkers and fast movers that prefer both collaborative and technology-centric options.

Our Response

Greenstone understands and is responding to the need to digitally transform to attract and/or retain this new generation of farmer customer and disengaged employees. Succession planning for our agribusiness customers is in front of mind as we continue to improve our existing products and innovate to create new ones.

Digital innovations on the forefront include:

  • Our new suite of mobile apps that connect all employees to our long-trusted ERP systems, AGRIS and CINCH
  • MyGrower, the only grower-facing mobile platform on the market with real-time integration into AGRIS and CINCH
  • Enhanced training and consulting services that enable our customers to ramp up new teams in an efficient and effective manner
  • A new wave of functionality and usability improvements to AGRIS, the industry-leading grain accounting system that is celebrating 40 years of innovation and growth in 2019