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Building a self-serve community platform for Fonterra dairy farmers

Dairy cows in a field

This project was completed by Trineo before our teams became one; but regardless of which name is attached to it, all of our customers can count on receiving the same level of support, dedication, and expertise.

Fonterra is a world-leading dairy exporter – shaping the industry in quality and innovation. They share the goodness of dairy nutrition with the world through their brands, farming, and processing operations across four continents. The company comprises more than 20,000 employees and 10,000 farmers contributing to a global portfolio of brands with annual revenue of ~$15B NZD.

Revolutionising data collection and reporting for dairy farmers

Every year farmers are required to provide data about their farming practices via the Farm Dairy Record (FDR) survey for the purpose of supporting Fonterra’s market claims, providing insights back to farmers and meeting industry and government requirements.

In 2019, Fonterra took a new approach to the insights provided to farmers by including a risk assessment of their farm management practices, creating the Nitrogen Risk Scorecard. In addition to providing more actionable insights, the Nitrogen Risk scorecard simplified the data capture process thus reducing the time to complete the FDR survey for farmers.

This season, Fonterra rebuilt the FDR survey on the Salesforce Lightning Community Cloud, resulting in less time spent managing the vast amounts of data across multiple platforms, maintenance, upkeep and enhancements.

Simplifying the experience using Salesforce Lightning Communities

Longtime clients of Trineo, Fonterra engaged the team to re-platform the FDR survey onto Salesforce Lightning Communities.

This not only automated components of the data collection and data processing for both the farmers and Fonterra, but it also brought the data directly into Salesforce where it is accessible by field teams, able to seamlessly synchronise with Fonterra’s Salesforce CRM organisation.

A seamless platform built for the future

By re-platforming the FDR survey onto Salesforce Lightning Communities, Fonterra greatly simplified the survey process for both farmers and Fonterra. Additionally, they now have a foundational platform to continue building new applications, integrate with other third-party data providers and provide actionable insights for Fonterra dairy farmer shareholders.

Benefits to Dairy Farmers:

  • Seamlessly pass data from Fonterra’s data recording app (Dairy Diary) to the FDR survey to automate data entry for review
  • Pre-population of appropriate sections of the FDR survey from previous submissions for review
  • Farmer self-manage submissions, ability to re-open and modify FDR survey to correct information with history of changes
  • Provide access to past seasons' submissions
  • Enhance overall user experience with seamless connections across other farmer applications

Benefits to Fonterra:

  • Operational efficiencies by bringing front and back end maintenance and data onto a single platform
  • Reduce development and support costs to enable Farmers to re-open and update historical FDR survey submissions themselves
  • Reduce overhead for enhancements to the FDR survey by enabling multiple survey versions to be opened for submissions simultaneously
  • Ability to integrate more data with multiple internal and external data sources
  • Engrain customers further into the Farm Source application stack
  • The simplified FDR survey halved the number of manual paper submissions from last year

As Matt Randal, Environment Programme Lead Farm Source for Fonterra explains, the value of the FDR survey will only increase over time, enabling Fonterra to take the FDR survey, and subsequent insights, to the next level. Farmers use numerous third-party applications to capture on-farm data and this solution enables easier integration with third parties. It's a simpler solution to maintain with development no longer requiring API changes. The lightning version of the FDR survey has set up a great foundational base for Fonterra to efficiently build on.

For the first time FDR data is accessible through Salesforce enabling Fonterra to focus on insights to support farmers, work with customers on new requirements, and improve forecasting. Matt Randal Environment Programme Lead Farm Source, Fonterra

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