By John Johnson
A groundbreaking new program was created and introduced by PCCA 15 years ago, and it has become one of the most popular services among the co-op’s grower-owners and gin personnel. Member Access was created based on increased use of the Internet in agriculture and to provide grower-owners daily access to all of their PCCA accounts when making pivotal business decisions.
At that time, the service also provided information regarding their gin accounts, scale tickets and ginning summaries as well as USDA classing data. In the ensuing 15 years, a number of enhancements were added, some at the suggestion of grower-owners.
In the beginning, Member Access was only available from 5:00 a.m. to midnight Central Time by accessing PCCA’s website from a home computer. Today it is available 24-7 and on mobile devices, too, making it more efficient and easier to navigate. Mobile Member Access was designed to respond to a variety of screen sizes no matter the device on which it is viewed.
In late 2017, PCCA launched its first mobile Member Access app for Apple iPhone and Android phones. The mobile app continues to evolve and allows PCCA to develop solutions for grower-owners not available otherwise. The app can be downloaded from the Apple store or Google play store. Currently, 1,134 grower-owners are using the app.
Marketing text alerts now make information available for futures prices (cotton, corn, feeder cattle, Kansas City wheat, live cattle, soybeans, Chicago wheat and crude oil), classing data, scale tickets and USDA reports such as export sales and shipments and supply/demand estimates. Member Access also gives grower-owners a chance to sign PCCA documents electronically, if initiated by their gin, and provides direct deposit for checks if there are no lienholders.
“We currently have 6,079 Member Access users,” said Debbie Bolding, PCCA’s AP Systems/Analyst Manager. “From July 1, 2018, through March 18, 2019, we sent 640,790 text messages to those users, so it is obvious they like receiving the information we provide.”
PCCA grower-owners also can use Member Access to retrieve production data for their crop insurance agents, for filing Farm Service Agency reports and to apply for Market Facilitation Payments. The service also is helpful during tax filing season.
“If their gin uses PCCA’s Module Tracking service, our grower-owners can turn in modules even in the middle of the night,” said PCCA’s Director of Cotton Services and Gin Accounting Steven White, “therefore, harvest and tax seasons are when Member Access is used most. It is one of the most popular innovations PCCA has introduced.” Other information available via the service includes current news and sports scores.
Grower-owners not currently signed up for Member Access can do so by visiting the Member Access page under the Member Services tab on PCCA’s website or by downloading the app. Once signed up, they can use the same login on their mobile device. All information regarding their PCCA accounts is secure and confidential.