More superintendents looking to assist their fellow superintendents: OnLink comes with some influential people behind it, namely co-founder Matt Shaffer, director of grounds at Merion GC, and Shawn Emerson, director of grounds at Desert Mountain and chairman of OnLink’s advisory board. Walt Norley, the former CEO of UgMo technologies, is the CEO.
OnLink is a cloud-based data collection system that is meant to help superintendents store all their information in one place for easy access and easier decision making. The platform originated in the agriculture industry in the form of OnFarm. Norley was introduced to OnFarm and shared the system with his old friends Shaffer and Emerson to get their take.
“When Walt brought this software to Shawn and me, we said, ‘Hey, this was made for us,’” Shaffer says.
Matt Shaffer and Walt Norley sit down at the Golfdom booth to discuss OnLink.
Norley and Shaffer cut an agreement with OnFarm last July to own the system for the golf, sports turf and commercial/residential markets. OnLink is currently being tested in five different golf markets, and will become commercially available this month. An early-adopter discount rate will be offered, the company says.
OnLink has five modules to help superintendents track information, according to Norley. They are:
Turf health indicators
Water and energy monitoring
Playing conditions (speed and firmness)
Fertilizer budget management
And it’s all available on your phone.
Emerson says his hope is that the system will help turf pros cut their hours worked by 10 percent.
“Time may be our No. 1 focus. Superintendents and assistants are leaving the industry because they don’t have enough time, they don’t have a balance of life,” Emerson says. “I’ve told my superintendents and assistants, if you normally work 55 hours, with the information you’re getting, see if you can cut it down to 50 hours.”