EDA University Center for
Regional Economic Innovation

Exploring the Use of Virtual Human Resource Services to Improve Farm Profitability (2016)

Project Details

Co-Learning Plan - 2016

Authors: Kristine Ranger, The Learning Connection; Bill Knapp, Michigan Virtual University; Jodi Schafer, Human Resource Management Services, LLC

Summary

Progressive farm managers often find themselves managing people as much or more than they manage animals and equipment. This dramatic change for farm owner/managers is very challenging because most have little experience and no education in the management of critical human resources. Rural economic development and the future success of Michigan farms depends on the availability of resources and technical assistance that is readily available to these operations. This Co-Learning Plan will explore the use of Virtual Human Resources Services for dairy farmers, including the use of phone coaching, virtual farm orientation or onboarding courses, the use of employee and employer handbooks and templates, improved hiring practices, and the need for Spanish versions of HR material.

Author

Kristine RangerKristine Ranger, The Learning Connection

Kristine is a "self contained innovation team". She led the implementation of the first "Buy Local" campaign in Michigan, a Farmers Market at the Capital and Henry Ford Hospital, and several Farm to School programs. She consulted in the development of the MSU Product Center and advised numerous "agri-preneurs" in business and marketing initiatives as an Ag Innovation Counselor. Currently, she coaches farm families in farm transition planning; conducts workshops and performance coaching for teams and organizations; and provides consulting services to a variety of agri-food clientele volunteer to be honored four times from AFBF for outstanding educational programs in agriculture.