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If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it


A farm secretary is vital to any agricultural business but, with an ever-increasing amount of forms to fill in and rules and regulations to abide by, the role has moved on considerably from the time when everything was hand-written in accounts books.


There are still some farms who stick to a paper-based accounts system, which can be time consuming, open to more human errors and uses up a lot of paper. With more industry-specific advanced accounting software available, the work is increasingly moving to computer-based systems.


These range from simple spreadsheetsto the more sophisticated tailor-made accounts packages produced by the likes of Landmark or FarmPlan, to name just a couple. Perhaps it is time for a change?


Gone are the days when farm secretaries would spend most of their time writing cheques or handling large amounts of cash to pay the wages. With internet banking so readily available on smart phones, tablets and computers, it makes paying suppliers and farm workers a much less tedious task.


This frees up more time, time that can be better used to review the cash flow of the business, keep on top of debtors, budgeting and much more.


The duties of a farm secretary now include keeping records of livestock and crops, ensuring the workforce is up to date on the new health and safety laws and latest legislation as well as general administration. Every day is different and can vary considerably between businesses.


Employing a farm secretary is an extra cost for any agricultural business, but forgetting to submit a VAT return during that busy harvest period or failing to comply with a recent piece of legislation could cost a business thousands.


Using a company such as Brown & Co that offers a business administration service using professional and experienced book-keepers is an excellent and cost-effective way to obtain the right person for your needs. These staff can provide a service at your farm office or a remote service,depending on need.


They will have an in-depth knowledge of the main software found in rural businesses including Landmark, FarmPlan and Gatekeeper and the service will improve efficiency and information flow while removing the stress and hassle involved in running a farm office.


* For more information on how Brown & Co’s Business Administration Service can help your business please call Fiona Hirst on 01603 598268 or email fiona.hirst@brown-



Brown & Co are always looking for full-time, part-time and self-employed administrators and bookkeepers to join their existing team. If you would like more information please contact Fiona Hirst on the above details.