Put the power of herd management in your hands

Find new herd management efficiencies with VAS mobile solutions. By reimagining your workflows, you can save time and increase cow comfort.

Time is a precious resource on the farm. Streamlining your workflows using VAS mobile herd management solutions is an easy way to gain time and efficiency. 

Going mobile provides rapid cowside entry and quick access to your herd’s data. It allows you to make decisions instantly – instead of later when entering the data into your herd management software. And it is a great way to find new efficiencies by combining tasks or approaching them differently.

There are many ways mobile solutions can deliver more efficiency on your dairy.

Making a CASE for mobile herd management

Compliance. Mobile herd management records a timestamp when the animal was checked off and who performed the task. This data provides transparency and accountability while keeping your team connected.

Accuracy. How many times have you written a number down wrong? For example, cow 654 instead of 645. A cowside mobile solution would tell you 654 was dry and you would have figured out you entered the wrong cow ID.

Speed. You don’t have to worry about flipping through papers, writing information down then entering back into your software. Mobile allows for a single-entry process and quick access at any time.

Efficiency. Take tasks requiring two to three passes through a pen down to one. Combining tasks, using audio prompts and an RFID reader (wand) are all ways to reduce lockup time and make your workflow more efficient.

Already using mobile? Discover new efficiencies

If you already use mobile solutions on your dairy, consider revisiting your workflows to find more efficiencies. Perhaps you don’t use an RFID reader but have RFID tags and facilities to safely secure animals, such as headlocks, palpation rails or parlor stalls. Pairing mobile herd management with an RFID reader can make vet checks and worklists easier, faster and more accurate.

Many dairies find even more efficiencies by tailoring their herd management software to automatically assign processes on the back end – called post-process or undone commands in DairyComp. For example, automatically enrolling cows into an Ovsynch protocol during vet check for eligible animals. This step removes extra data input, shaving off time when working animals.

Think about the tasks you perform repetitively. Is there a way to combine them for more efficiency? Often, this means tackling various tasks in one pass through a pen – such as herd health protocols, move day, dry-off, hoof trimming and vaccinations. 

For example, one dairy doing weekly herd check with 900 cows combined all their tasks into one trip and completed them in three hours – which previously took nine hours over three days. These tasks included: 

  • LUT and GnRH shots
  • Three different pregnancy checks
  • Four different vaccinations
  • Marking cows for dry-off and pen moves
  • Marking cows for hoof trimming the next day
  • Moving cows marked for pen moves

Get the most out of mobile herd management

There are also opportunities to find efficiencies with other technologies you’re using, such as an activity monitoring system. The activity monitoring system can flag cows that need to be bred for that day and automatically add them to your mobile app breeding list. Find out if your herd management software integrates with the other technologies or tools you already use. A growing list of VAS’ integration partners can be found here

Ask the VAS customer support team or your farm performance consultant to help you uncover new possibilities using mobile herd management on your farm.

Find more time in your day

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What routine tasks take the most time from my employees and cows?
  • How many times are we making a pass through a pen before completing all tasks? Could we combine tasks? 
  • How long are we locking up cows? Can we reduce that time?
  • Can we start using or find more efficiency with our existing mobile solution?
  • Can we incorporate another technology to streamline workflows? Would an RFID reader make sense for our farm?
  • Are we taking advantage of the herd management system integrations available to us?
 
Interested in learning more about VAS’ mobile herd solutions? Check out this recent webinar for more information: Making the Most of DairyComp Mobile Solutions.

Written by Craig Walter, VAS senior educator, and William Avila, VAS mobile solutions product manager, for Progressive Dairy

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