Tom Lambie

Tom Lambie

Moving to Focus – local seminars really helped

Pleasant Point dairy farmer Tom Lambie says attending three Farm Focus seminars recently held in the district was a great help when he made the switch to Focus.

“I was pleased I attended the seminars because I wouldn’t have the confidence I have now. The information I picked up proved invaluable, although I have to say it took me all day to process my first set of accounts, but I managed to pay everyone which was the most important thing!”

Tom has been farming for 40 years at Totara Valley, near the township of Pleasant Point in South Canterbury. These days he milks 800 Jersey-X cows which are overwintered on winter crops on an adjoining runoff block. He also grows a barley catch crop once the herd is back on the dairy platform.

Tom says he switched to Focus in July and, while is now familiar with the application, he is still keen to learn more and take advantage of the time saving capabilities he’s paid for.

He says having come to terms with the applications new invoice scanning capabilities, he’s joined the trend and his office is now officially paperless!

“Another enjoyable aspect is being able to process invoices as soon as a supplier email arrives. My invoices are named, coded and dated ready to be filed with the bank for payment and these are then easily matched the day after payment with the direct feeds from the bank.”

Tom says he uses the Stock Reconciliation Report as part of his farm budget.

“Stock was recorded as of 1 July, so I just need to keep that updated as part of my original budget which is locked in. The planning tool attached to the budget is now a living document that can be reviewed regularly.”

He has also ticked the box to give his accountant access to the farm account and that’s already proved valuable. “I asked the accountant to have a quick look over my paperwork before filing my first GST Return, through Focus, and she picked up one query.

“Thankfully after further clarification we agreed it was coded correctly. Working on the same platform makes sure everyone is looking at the same item so it’s definitely worth having your accountant on board.”

Tom says he’s extremely pleased he made the switch to Focus, and equally so he attended his local seminars. “I can’t emphasize enough how helpful the seminars have been and I encourage others to take up the opportunity to attend when they next have the opportunity*.

“The reason Rural Cash Manager and now Farm Focus has been my only accounting program is the company’s commitment to continuous improvement, easy user interface and they do happen to have New Zealand’s best support team!”

*The Farm Focus in-person seminar series has now finished, however there are plenty of options for Farm Focus online training - see our webpage for more information.