Dairy System Monitoring (DSM) is a benchmarking system that harnesses advanced farm modelling tools and custom-built database software to deliver a true and accurate analysis of the performance of your dairy farm.
DSM and in-house benchmarking is able to produce a variety of detailed information in response to the needs of its different users: farm owner, sharemilker, salaried manager, consultant and associated agribusiness people.
Measuring farm performance and modelling future opportunities
Benchmarking is a powerful tool, giving you the ability to get specific feedback about your dairy business’s performance. Perhaps the common benefit of benchmarking is that it motivates the user: because you can test your ideas by modelling them, you will be more confident to take up opportunities as they arise.
When you see what you have achieved and can compare this with the achievements of your peers, your perception of what is possible will change.
Clients use this service to determine a possible outcome, to measure progress towards its achievement and to determine the best response to shortfalls and opportunities.
How dairy farmers use benchmarking
DPSL uses UDDER software as part of its benchmarking system. UDDER is a very powerful modelling tool. In the hands of an experienced user, it can unlock opportunities to extend your dairy farm’s performance.
Bryan McKay is an expert in the use and interpretation of UDDER, able to read the accumulated information to form practical strategies for you to implement on your farm.
At the start of each season we generate a scenario using the UDDER software. This brings together the management system, cow numbers and resources of a particular farm in order to predict milk production and the economic consequences of management decisions. This is a predictive mechanistic model of physical and financial outcomes.
At the start of each month, the “manager” completes an activity sheet from the previous month.
The information is entered and validated through the UDDER software. In New Zealand, the Fencepost website, or equivalent, is used to download monthly milk production. When we are happy that the updated model fairly represents the farm system, we print the outcome (graphs) and download the data into a custom-built (DSM) database.
The database then enables the calculation of efficiency measures (KPIs), comparative reports (previous year and current season predictions) and benchmarking with farms in a similar geographic area or with a similar customised business description.
Farmers and their management teams receive a monthly report on progress and the updated predictions for the season. At any time the UDDER model can be run to determine a response to management decisions to optimise outcomes. Many clients use this as part of their one-on-one consultancy service.
The advantages of DPSL benchmarking systems
The benchmarking programs DPSL consultants implement on your farm give you the tools to make effective and successful decisions for your dairy business.
- Monthly updates of the management system.
- Computer model for scenario planning.
- Benchmarking to compare performance with others.
- Networking meetings to meet your consultant or other users and discuss the results.
- Annual report that gathers the data in one document. This document becomes the “annual report card” of the individual business’s strengths and weaknesses.
- Over the years a database develops for each individual farm, effectively becoming an interactive diary.
- Workshops are now being run to extend the general use of the DSM tool, raising the skill level of the user and encouraging greater interaction.
We will continue to refine benchmarking, listening to our clients and developing simple but effective advancements. Our goal is to report on trends and to predict opportunities that improve the dairy farming business.
D.S.M. is not an end result but a tool. It uses accurate information and smart computer software to expedite your decision-making process.