The March 2003 Internet monthly update will be posted to our five monthly update websites on Wednesday, February 26th.
Unless you have made arrangements to purchase your diskettes, please return your January disks ONLY AFTER you have successfully installed this February 2003 Update. January disks are your backup in case you should have problems installing the February edition.
We shelved that idea and believed that the best solution for customers who wanted that capability was to go ahead and purchase the Adobe product themselves.
That solution remains good advice for many simply because the Adobe program sits on your computer as a “virtual printer”. This means that ANYTHING you normally print can be re-directed to an Adobe PDF file and then e-mailed to anyone that you want. That is a particularly elegant solution that makes the process of creating Adobe files consistent with ALL programs that you use, not just Compulife.
We have selected a third party product which we think does a good job and the work on integrating this PDF software into Compulife is now complete. Not only can you create PDF files which can be attached to an e-mail, you can also automatically invoke your e-mail system from within Compulife. This second option will create the new e-mail with the PDF file already attached. All you add is the client’s e-mail address and click the send button.
Both of our new PDF options are found under “File” located at the top of your window. These follow the “Print” and “Print Preview” options that you already use.
The first option is “Create PDF file” which opens the “Save As” window. This allows you to name and save the PDF file into any folder that you want.
The second option is “Create and Email PDF file as an attachment”. As noted, this will automatically invoke your e-mail editor, automatically attaching the PDF file as “insurance.pdf”.
This template allows the use of variables. These are:
The name that you entered into the Client Name field on the Enter Client Information screen.
The name that you entered into the Agent Name field on the Enter Client Information screen. (NOTE: The agent name is locked into the software for personal users, it can only be edited for agency users)
The name of licensee that is locked into the software.
Another PDF option, if checked, will automatically open and allow you to view your PDF file immediately after it has been created. This option lets you double check what you have saved into the PDF file, or what you are getting ready to send by e-mail, is in fact the printout that you want.
As always, please advise us of any problems you may encounter using the new features. Given the significant amount of software code that has been added, much of which was written by third party programmers, we cannot be certain how it will work in ALL computer systems. Those who obtained the midmonth update have been using the program without reported problem, and so we are pretty confident that all known bugs have been addressed.
If you don’t want our PDF file options being displayed, go to the top of the Red Master Menu and click on “Options”. Then click on “PDF File Options”. There you can activate either or both the PDF file creation, or the e-mail with PDF attached.
Alternately, those using the Term4Sale – Agent Edition can create PDF files by purchasing Adobe’s Acrobat program. That is the version of Adobe which you must purchase (not the free Acrobat reader). As we mentioned earlier, the purchased version of Adobe Acrobat allows the creation of PDF files from ANY software product, not just Compulife. The Adobe software is excellent and we recommend it.
In its compressed form the new GOWIN.EXE takes up about another 100,000 bytes of disk space. Because of the pressure that this is putting on floppy disk storage, we have decided that we will begin to use a new and different file compression system that permits us to more efficiently compress an EXE file. This cuts the Compulife compressed file by about 250,000 which means that the disk storage requirement has actually been improved. The down side is that the initial start-up of the Compulife program is a bit slower. Because of that performance concern we have decided that we will be distributing the compressed version of the GOWIN.EXE file in all disk released versions of our software. The uncompressed version of the program will be sent in all internet released versions of our software.
Once again, because the uncompressed version of GOWIN.EXE is a faster loading program, this is just one more reason to consider switching from obtaining disk updates to getting your Compulife monthly updates by Internet.
Compulife to introduce “Health Analyzer” option
Early in 2003 Compulife intends to introduce a new option to our insurance comparison software. The option will be provided in the Windows based software which we market to insurance agents. The agent will enter a client’s information as they do now, selecting the existing smoking and preferred status of their client. If the new Health Analyzer option is not used, comparisons will continue to be based upon the basic client information, just as they are now.
To use the new option the agent will click a new button called “Health Analyzer“. This will allow the entry of additional details regarding the client. This additional information will be analyzed during the comparison process and products will be flagged “GO” or “NO GO” based upon the results.
IMPORTANT: The new information will not remove or eliminate products that are currently quoted based upon the smoking and preferred health information. As noted above, products will be flagged as “GO” or “NO GO“.
The initial health analysis areas will be:
Hazardous Sports and Occupations (including pilot)
When the Health Analyzer button is selected the agent will be able to check any OR all of the above areas. The agent will then move on to the related questionnaires that will examine each area that was selected. Only those areas selected will be considered in the final “GO” or “NO GO” decision.
For example, if the agent wishes to locate policies that permit cigars, then they would simply invoke the “Smoking/Tobacco Use” option and answer just questions related to cigars.
Once the the selected questionnaires have been completed, the client entry screen will reappear. Providing that the client’s age, sex, smoking and preferred status are not altered after the client entry window is closed, the results of the questionnaire will be retained. Quotes run for that client will be the subject of the Health Analyzer option.
If Health Analyzer is selected, comparisons will display a new column next to the premium results. The new column will display one of three indicators:
1. A Green shaded circle with a check mark. This is a “GO“.
2. A Red shaded circle with an X. This is a “NO GO“.
3. Nothing. This indicates that we lack the company information needed to make a decision.
Green for “GO” – Premium and health categories that meet the additional criteria which was entered by the agent will be flagged green for “GO”. Based upon the information that was entered by the agent, and based upon the information on file for the company’s product and health category, the premium (for that health category) will be flagged green indicating the premium should be available for the client.
Red for “NO GO“. A red dot will indicate that one or more of the client’s health criteria were outside the company’s tables. The agent will be able to click on the red dot to discover what criteria caused the red dot to appear. If the agent has any questions they can contact the Home Office or General Agent.
No indication means that we do not have the company’s product and health category information. Because of that we cannot make a decision.
We do not expect that every company will cooperate in the provision of this health criteria information. For that reason we do not wish to eliminate a company’s result from the agent’s view. That is why premiums will still be quoted even though we cannot give a green or red indication.
Please understand that there has been a growing demand for a feature like this in our software. With the completion of many of the new options planned for our Windows software, we are in a position to tackle a significant new project like “Health Analyzer”.
Having given the issue significant consideration, we believe that this approach is the best way to meet the demand. Given that this demand does exist, we would encourage life companies to give serious consideration to providing us with their health (including smoking) criteria so that we can properly include the corresponding tables in our Health Analyzer database.
We believe that agents will appreciate having this additional information about your products. If an agent’s client has a health related issue that is less than perfect, we believe that products with green dots will attract the agent’s attention. For that reason, giving us your health requirement criteria will be a tangible way to attract an agent’s attention to your term products.
Please e-mail me your current health criteria / health category information at email@example.com. Alternately you can fax the material to me at (859) 885-3988.
If you should have any questions, comments or suggestions, I would appreciate hearing from you. Feel free to call me toll-free at (800) 798-3488.
Compulife Software, Inc.
Having had an opportunity to review over a dozen examples, we have decided to break the Health Analyzer development into two stages. The first stage will analyze the following areas:
The second stage of the development will add the following areas:
Hazardous Sports and Occupations (including pilot)
This will allow us to introduce the feature much more quickly. The reason is that the first four areas of analysis are handled much more consistently by life companies. I am referring to the way that companies table and define that information. Building a data storage model for the first four areas is a relatively simple task and we can complete it quickly.
By contrast the information related to the second group is handled less consistently. Some companies have complex information and criteria while others have simple information and criteria. In each case the challenge is to come up with a comprehensive questionnaire and database to encompass all possibilities. With respect to the second group of categories, we will need a much larger sample of different companies’ data before we finalize the design. That means we will need time for more companies to become involved which adds a natural delay to the process. By leaving this to the second stage, it allow us to get you the first stage more quickly.
Many will recall that it was not long ago that we introduced the product family improvement to our Windows program. Product family means that all premium categories can be accessed from a single product display window. To view the other categories you can double-click on a product line within a comparison which will display a single product window. Next you click on the “Rate Category” button found in the top right hand corner of the single product window. All categories and premium are displayed for that product and clicking on any of the choices will redisplay the single product window with that category and its premiums.
The DOS program functions the way it always has. The preferred plus premiums are stored in a separate product entry from the preferred premiums. Because of this the DOS “rate category” option can only access premiums within a specific product entry and this is a key shortcoming of the DOS version of the software.
The fact that we use multiple product entries to include all product categories also created a limitation when doing multi-life quotes. If you attempted to combine a preferred plus non-smoking male with a standard smoking female, the DOS program could not mix the two because the best rates for the two individuals were in two different product entries. Instead of getting a preferred plus rate for the male, the best that the program could quote was a preferred rate.
This limitation has been removed from the next Windows version. That version will allow you to run a comparison which will then “cherry pick” the best possible rate for each person and their category. Then, when the combined results are displayed in the comparison, you will be able to further fine-tune categories by double-clicking on a product line. This will display that product in the single product window and show you the total premium or premiums for each individual. With the premiums for one individual , you will be able to use the “Rate Category” button to fine-tune the premium category for that person. Once that is re-selected, a new total premium schedule will be displayed in the single product window. You can then print the multi- life quotation for that product and you will get the exact premiums, for each life, that you want.
These features will appear in the Windows version of the program. We have no intention of implementing this feature into the DOS program.
Compulife has introduced a new Internet-based quotation system for agents. The system is currently marketed through two of our authorized Internet providers. For full details about the service and fees, please visit the www.compulife.com website. Details are in the September 2002 monthly bulletin.
One of the things that we have been hearing from agencies, who want to provide quotation and comparison services on-line, is that they would also like to have a library of life company applications and forms. One of Compulife’s authorized web providers, “Insurance Squared”, is anxious to provide that “forms” service. Unfortunately initial requests to life companies have met with less than an enthusiastic response. That’s where this special offer can help you if you can help Insurance Squared.
We believe that MGA’s have more power of persuasion when it comes to this issue. Therefore, if your agency is the first to assist Insurance Squared in obtaining the applications and forms for 6 life companies, your agency will receive a free year of the new Internet comparison service for your agents.
A second agency can also qualify for a free year of service. If the second agency can provide forms for an additional 6 life companies, that agency will also receive a free year of the new Internet comparison service for agents. (NOTE: If the first agency is first to provide 12, it will receive a 2 year free subscription to the on-line system).
A third free year of service will also be awarded to the third agency which can add 6 more unique companies to the forms library. (NOTE: If the first agency is first to provide 18, it will receive a three year free subscription to the on-line agent system. If the second agency is first to provide 12, it will receive a two year free subscription to the on-line agent system).
To qualify Insurance Squared needs more than just the .PDF forms. Insurance Squared needs the forms provided by the Home Office with the understanding that the Home Office will keep Insurance Squared updated with new forms when they change. Alternately, the Home Office can provide Insurance Squared with access to the life companies forms library with the understanding that the forms can be downloaded and saved to the Insurance Squared website.
While this may entail some effort by the Home Office, we believe that the benefits are clear for the life company, the agency and the agent. We believe it will take a pro-active MGA to get that message across.
If you would like to see Compulife’s new on-line quotation system for agents, give Bob Barney a call at (800) 798-3488. If you would like to discuss providing forms and qualifying, please call Glenn Cooke at Insurance Squared, (866) 662-5433.
For those doing monthly updates by Internet, we rely on three other websites to supply monthly updates. These are automatically checked and used by our automatic Internet update software.
1. Switch to obtaining monthly updates by Internet.
Not only will you eliminate the expense and hassle of returning disks, you will save $80 per year in subscription fees.
To switch to Internet monthly updates, go to our webpage www.compulife.com and select the last menu choice “Forms, applications, instruction tutorials, etc.” Under the section “License Agreements”, the third license is the “Internet Update Endorsement”. Print the endorsement. Once you have it, please read it carefully, especially the part where you agree that you have successfully downloaded and processed our “mid-month updates”. If you haven’t done that before, call us and we’ll be happy to take you through the procedure. It’s easy.
2. Disk Purchase Program
The other way to avoid returning the disks and the disk box each month is to pre-purchase them for $21 per year ($1.75 per month). Once you do that you can keep them for future reference, throw them away or return them for a credit (once each year) when you are invoiced for the following year. $21 costs you less than mailing back disks each month.