Jason Kaeb Director of Business Development, KSi

A Kansas State University graduate, Jason Kaeb earned a degree in management information systems and operations management. After graduation, he worked for Sprint Nextel before joining KSi, a family-owned startup that has seen double-digit growth in the production and service of bulk seed handling and treatment equipment and automation systems. Kaeb has served in various positions including operations, automation/controls, service and sales. Today, as director of business development, he leverages his broad understanding of the seed handling and treatment industry to provide solutions to end customers, and maintains relationships with some of the largest and most influential companies in the seed industry.

What are the fundamental principles of a successful business? Increase profits while minimizing risk — sound familiar? What good is it to increase profits only have it negated by unmitigated risk, such as operator error during the seed treatment season?

Risk is defined as the probability an event will occur and its consequences. Here’s what we know: First, the seed treatment business is and will continue to be scrutinized by policymakers and the general public. Second, the position of a seed treatment operator is often seen as an entry-level position. Furthermore, the season is only eight to 10 weeks out of the year. Coupled with the fact that there’s not a good way to practice or get a feel for it —the treating season hits like a ton of bricks — and you’ve got a recipe for trouble.

How do we change the recipe and set seed treatment operators, and your company, up for success? By integrating seed treatment suppliers with those on the ground treating seed, we can minimize errors. As an equipment provider, our systems can leverage our software technology to push out formulated recipes and product information from seed and seed treatment providers to operators on the ground.

This alone prevents operators, who are in a hurry this time of year, from making manual mistakes when entering data on the control panel. Meanwhile, it saves time from double entry. It also prevents mistakes that can be easily made, such as over- or under-applying a treatment, both of which can hurt your business and come back to the operator.

If a product is under-applied, the efficacy might not be what it should, leaving customers (farmers) dissatisfied with performance and you vulnerable to nearby competitors. However, if a product is over-applied, you’re not only potentially affecting the efficacy of the product, but also hurting your bottom line.

This type of integration eases the burden of the operator. It helps to ensure proper application rates. The end result: improved product quality, enhanced stewardship, a boost to confidence that you’re in compliance with the label and the law, and increased profitability.

Remember: Your seed treatment business depends on the operator. Help set them up for success by mitigating what risk you can.