How to Promote Efficiency in Dairy Cooperatives in Kenya
The dairy industry in Kenya plays an important economic role in the lives of about 6 million people; that is, if we consider the almost 1 million households with about 6 members directly involved with dairy farming, and have 1-2 dairy cows. Kenyan dairy farmers depend largely on selling milk for their incomes, which must not only be protected, but must also enhanced. Over the years, there has been a shift from household-based dairy milk production to small-scale producers, constituted mainly by cooperative societies. Most of these dairy cooperatives collect dairy milk and sell in bulk to dairy processors, but a few others, which have grown stronger financially, have the means of processing their dairy milk before selling the processed milk to the retail markets.
However, in the face of increasing competition in the market, there is the need for dairy cooperatives in Kenya to streamline their operations by embracing automation of their processes and also improve their management procedures by incorporating mobility solutions, usually delivered through handheld mobile devices.
Automation of basic processes will help dairy cooperatives improve their profitability and pay dividends to their members. Integrating proven mobility technology solutions will help them counter the effects of cheaper imported milk by making the prices of their own products compete favourably with imported products if not cheaper. These dual measures are the innovations needed by Kenya dairy cooperatives for their continued economic survival.
Why Automation and Mobility Solutions Are Important for Dairy Cooperatives
Generally, manual processes like accounting operations and purchase transaction recordings for a cooperative with many members, takes much time and are easily prone to manipulations. Sometimes, it may be difficult to trace transactions conducted with pen and paper, particularly if it takes long before such transactions are revisited. Effects of inefficiencies of manual operations are seen in cooperatives where complaints are rife and feelings of being cheated are widespread in the mind of many members. Where misgivings are common, erosion of trust can take root, which may invariably lead to the overall ineffectiveness of a cooperative or its eventual collapse.
Benefits of Process Automation and Mobility Solutions for Dairy Cooperatives
Automation of key processes of a dairy cooperative will preserve the integrity of its operations because every operation will be linked to the account of each member and delivered in text format, to the handheld mobile devices of every member, for confirmation and self-assessment. Also, daily activities such as quantity of milk delivered, total quantity collected, storage and any other analysis will be done digitally and preserved from alteration. Key information may be sent to members on a regular basis through their mobile devices for easy access to their dairy cooperative operations and for the sake of accountability.
An effective automation and mobility solutions such as Virtual City’s Agrimanagr is able to track members’ activities – which includes production records, loans, loans repayment details, source of milk -on a daily, weekly and even monthly basis and issue receipts electronically.
Automation of a dairy cooperative makes it a lot better and more efficient than a manually managed one. It is, therefore, imperative that you seek to have your dairy cooperative automated and secured with mobility solutions as soon as it is possible – it’s important because it will bring you more wealth.