What is in this article?:
- New FSA technology improves information availability
- Easy reading on small screen
• The improvements will allow FSA information users to gain access to easy-to-read data, including key features such as loan deficiency payment rates, posted county prices, FSA news releases and AskFSA, the agency’s online self-help knowledge base.
Easy reading on small screen
The mobile site organizes the information on the website in a way that makes for easy reading on a small, hand-held screen. It does not require screen adjustments or constant scrolling and panning across the information.
A 2011 study conducted by the Pew Research Center indicated mobile Internet access is growing rapidly. From May 2010 to July 2011, the number of adults with mobile applications jumped from 43 percent to 50 percent. The trend is expected to continue.
In addition, USDA’s Economic Research Service found that 57 percent of all rural households use broadband Internet at home, but some 6 percent of all rural households (or more than 1 million rural households) access the Internet at home solely through wireless broadband services. The new FSA site makes the information available to these households.
In addition to the mobile website, FSA now is offering farmers and ranchers a more efficient and timely option for receiving critical program information. Such things as eligibility requirements, deadlines and related information can be accessed through an electronic news service hosted by GovDelivery.
By signing up for free online communications through GovDelivery, farmers and ranchers can receive news, via e-mail, directly to their home or farm office or to their mobile devices — allowing them to receive immediate notification of farm program news that is pertinent to their agricultural operation.
Through GovDelivery, producers can establish subscriber preferences by choosing to receive federal farm program and farm loan information by topic, by state and/or by county.
Producers also can select as many subscriber options as they want, which allows producers in multiple counties or across state lines to receive updates from each county in which they operate or have an interest.
FSA also offers AskFSA and AskFSAmobile, an easy-to-use knowledge database with automated answers to website visitor questions. In 2011, AskFSA received 351,119 visitors — 99.7 percent of whom found their answer online without the need for additional assistance.
To access FSA’s mobile website visit www.fsa.usda.gov/mobile. To sign up for FSA’s GovDelivery electronic news service, visit www.fsa.usda.gov/subscribe. For information on USDA’s Blueprint for Stronger Service, visit www.usda.gov/strongerservice.