Why does having connected silos increase the frequency of measurements?
The silos connected to the cloud allow an optimized management of the different stocks of the companies, thanks in particular to reliable and regular information. Indeed, these storage silos are equipped with sensors installed on the feet of the latter, and thus located at human height. With this installation, the information related to the level of the product present in the silo is automatically sent to the platform available on the cloud, then directly communicated to the customer’s cell phone after analysis.
But then, why monitor your silos with a sensor? Quite simply to receive regular data on the company’s storage, silo by silo, or for the whole park. It must be said that collecting information is a very interesting innovation for managing agricultural products, since it allows, among other things, to know the average consumption of a silo, to check its storage, or to anticipate and trigger a delivery. This complete analysis of silo data is a step forward for the company, which in return can improve its management model through regular readings.
The data transmitted by the silo sensors
The sensors, connected to the internet, regularly send the weight of the products stored at the platform, as well as other useful information for the company, including :
- the name of the product in the silo ;
- medicines and possible treatments ;
- the capacity of the silo ;
- the date of the last delivery.
By continuing the analysis of the silo concerned, it is also possible to obtain a forecast of the consumption of this silo over 4 days, an anticipation that can automatically trigger a purchase of raw materials. There is therefore no longer any risk of a product being out of stock, especially when it comes to feed for the farm’s livestock.
With a simple consultation on his cell phone, the data and storage records are accessible in a single operation. We can therefore see that visual inspection of silos is now giving way to new information technologies.
For several years now, the French agricultural market has understood that this automated management is the future of the sector, both for the automatic watering of fields according to the needs of the plants, and for the supply of moderate fertilizers adapted to the soils and crops. The recent development of connected silo sensors is thus part of this Agriculture 4.0 and represents a great opportunity for evolution for agricultural companies. In this niche, France is also evolving significantly, since the production model of its agriculture is now well organized around these new technologies.
Additional statements and integration into business management software
Monitoring the level of the silos generates very interesting surveys on the different activities of the farm businesses. While the sensors give the weight and the possibility of triggering a purchase of products, other factors and advantages are also taken into account for the management of the business. For example, having connected silos allows their integration into the enterprise resource planning system (ERP), thanks to the platform and APIs.
On arrival, these additional statements allow the different departments to be able to :
- forecast cash flow for future purchases ;
- make accounting reconciliation easier (purchase invoice, VAT, sales ledger, accounts payable, etc.) ;
- notify customers and consumers of the next delivery ;
- adapt the sales policy thanks to the monitoring indicator.
Connected silos and company treasury
Cash flow is one of the pillars of the farm business, since carrying out its analysis and forecasting of expenses is essential for the proper conduct of the economic model. Based on this principle, the internet data collected by the platform allows, for example, to anticipate orders, in addition to helping forecast cash outflows. Indeed, the latter depend, among other things, on the payment deadlines negotiated with suppliers.
In the case of an agricultural cooperative, these elements even participate in the overall monitoring of storage and anticipation of the replenishment of raw materials.
Integration of sensor data into the company’s ERP software package
An ERP software is a data solution in which all the company’s departments are involved: accounting, logistics, management, payroll, customer service, etc. These new ERP technologies allow the company’s various departments to access specific data, which assist them daily in their operations.
The readings provided by the sensors are therefore received directly by the managers concerned, after their integration into the company’s ERP software package. Among them are :
- the purchase order placed by the silo manager ;
- global and unit consumption per product ;
- the storage level ;
- the distribution of livestock medicines and phytosanitary products.
As can be seen, connected silos are not only useful to the silo manager, but to all company departments. They assist the manager of the farm or the agricultural cooperative and allow the best possible automated management of the supplies to these silos.
The integration of the monitoring indicator (KPI) in the performance statements
KPIs are performance indicators, used in each area of the company for the overall measurement of sales and marketing activity. Thus, the readings addressed by the sensors of the connected silos have today a considerable impact in the way these indicators are calculated. Among them, we can for example find :
- the quantity of products stored in the silos and sold over a period of time ;
- the product of the storage area with the highest turnover rate ;
- the number of monthly deliveries or orders.
In the end, these statements provide reliable information on the various products, in addition to integrating them into the company’s dashboards.