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Computer Training for Farm Businesses Jenny Rhodes Shannon Dill University of Maryland Extension Educators Agriculture & Natural Resources. University of Maryland Extension. TEAM. Jenny Rhodes Queen Anne’s County Shannon Dill Talbot County Nan Stenzel

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University of maryland extension

Computer Training for

Farm Businesses

Jenny Rhodes

Shannon Dill

University of Maryland

Extension Educators

Agriculture & Natural Resources

University of Maryland Extension

University of maryland extension1


Jenny Rhodes

Queen Anne’s County

Shannon Dill

Talbot County

Nan Stenzel

UME Regional IT Coordinator

Local Community College

Local Accounting Firm

University of Maryland Extension

University of maryland extension


  • Computers are an important tool for farm business management.

  • In a recent survey from the USDA farm computer use continues to rise (USDA NASS 2011).

  • In Maryland about 60% of farms have access to computers but only 34% use computers for farm business.

University of maryland extension


  • Target audience -Farm Businesses

    • Owners

    • Farmers

    • Land Owners

    • Young Farmers

University of maryland extension


January 2008 – November 2011

  • First trainings – Annie’s Project

University of maryland extension


Classes offered

Classes Offered

  • Using Computers for Your Farm

  • Excel

  • QuickBooks for Beginners

  • Advanced QuickBooks

Using computers for your farm

Using Computers for your Farm

  • 3 hour training

  • hands on workshop – each attendee had their own computer

  • Learned how to:

    • manage your files

    • set up folders

    • back up important files

    • look at software that could be beneficial to your farming operation

Excel spreadsheets for your farm business

Excel Spreadsheets for your Farm Business

  • 3 hour training

  • Hands on application with Microsoft Excel

    • each attendee had their own computer

  • Learned how to:

    • navigating the software

    • set up a spreadsheet

    • insert formulas and calculations.

  • Participants practiced with spreadsheet templates

  • Each received a USB with farm based spreadsheets

University of maryland extension

  • USB Flashdrive Contents

  • Excel Spreadsheets

  • Budgets:

  • 2011 Field Crop Budgets with Cover Crops - spreadsheet

  • 2011 Field Crop Budgets – PDF

  • 2011 Field Crop Budgets – spreadsheet

  • 201 November Field Crop Budgets- spreadsheet

  • Custom Rates

  • Input Prices Fall 2011

  • ONVC Spreadsheet - A calculator to estimate the value of manure when compared to commercial fertilizer

  • -Personal Monthly Budget – spreadsheet

  • -Very important to have a household budget when making financialdecisions

  • -Personal Budget - spreadsheet

  • -Vegetable Enterprise Budgets - spreadsheet

Usb flashdrive contents

USB Flashdrive Contents

  • Farm Business Planning:

  • Business Planning Resources

  • Includes various business planning templates, information and a case study to see how a business plan should be written

  • Financial Statements:

  • Blank Worksheets

  • Includes cash flow, balance sheet and income statement

  • Crop Worksheet

  • Fixed Cost Allocation

  • Spreadsheet to help determine actual fixed costs instead of using custom rates

Usb flashdrive contents1

USB Flashdrive Contents

  • Grain Marketing:

  • Basis Charts

  • Grain Marketing

  • Spreadsheet showing how to keep marketing records.

  • Maryland Corn Basis

  • Misc:

  • Fax Cover Letter

  • Hormel Card -Remember these livestock judgers – Excel will place classes with cuts in no time

  • Invoice

  • MCE Address Book

  • Keep important addresses and contact names in an excel spreadsheet i.e. – landlords, employees etc.

  • Purchase order

  • Sales Receipt

  • Weekly Time Sheet

Usb flashdrive contents2

USB Flashdrive Contents

  • Production Info:

  • Corn Calculation

  • This spreadsheet dries corn bushels to 15.5%

  • Nutrient Management Manure Record Keeping Sheet

  • Nutrient Management Sample Fertilizer-Manure Application Records

  • Nutrient Management Yield Record Summary

  • Nutrient Management Poultry Removal Record

  • Pesticide Application Records

  • Production Records

University of maryland extension

  • Agriculture Websites to Bookmark and Applications


  • This is the UMD, College of Ag website. This is the portal to find Extension Fact Sheets, meetings, workshops and the home and garden information center (


  • Website listing budgeting, marketing, lease agreements and more. Go here to download spreadsheets and farm management documents.


  • This site is a one-stop-shop for the latest and most successful business development innovations and support for Maryland's agriculture and natural resources enterprises. If you are currently, or would like to be, an agricultural/ natural resources entrepreneur, we invite you to explore this site.


Quickbooks for farm businesses

QuickBooks For Farm Businesses

Shannon Dill

University of Maryland Extension

University of maryland extension

QuickBooks Reports

  • Grain Farmer

    • Balance Sheet

    • Transaction Detail by Account

    • Income Statement

    • Account Listing

    • Profit & Loss

    • Profit & Loss by Class

    • Statement of Cash Flows

Quickbooks for farm businesses1

QuickBooks For Farm Businesses

  • Beginners

    • Worked through tutorial setting up QuickBooks – hands on – each had their own computer – 3 hour training

      • Setting up Vendors

      • Setting up Accounts

      • Writing Checks

      • Entering Deposits

Quickbooks for farm businesses2

QuickBooks For Farm Businesses

  • Advanced

    • Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

      • Local Account Firm

    • Creating Reports

    • Creating Invoices

    • Reconcile bank statement

    • Changing Preferences

    • Tips of the trade

    • Discussion

Class participation totals

Class Participation Totals

  • 12 Using Computers for Your Farm

  • 165 Excel

  • 148 QuickBooks – Beginners

  • 20 QuickBooks – Advanced

  • 324 Individuals participated in the program



  • Using Computers for your Farm

    • 92% report understanding file management

    • 100% will use websites suggested

    • 83% will use the USB

    • 92% will back up their files

Evaluations after classes

Evaluations After Classes

  • Excel for Farm Businesses

    • 100% of participants plan to incorporate Excel Spreadsheets into their farm for recordkeeping system.

  • QuickBooks for Farm Businesses

    • 100% report implementing QuickBooks on their farm, tracking enterprise expenses and creating end of the year financial reports

Follow up survey from all classes taught

Follow up Survey from all Classes taught


University of maryland extension

Follow Up Survey








3 Instructors

Continuation of Classes



Contact information:

Jenny Rhodes –

Shannon Dill –

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