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Update News for December 2008    


Here is a quick run-down on what you will find in this bulletin:

These topics will be dealt with in more detail throughout this bulletin.


Merry Christmas

Another year is coming to a close which gives us another opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. We hope your holiday celebrations are full of family and friends, and that you experience the joyfulness of the season.

Click Here for Compulife president Bob Barney's personal thoughts this Christmas.


Changes to Product Categories

Work on the new product categories for the U.S. is coming along very well and we have announced that the new categories will be released on December 15th. One of the benefits of the category change for Canada is that we will be changing the Quick Pay Guaranteed Whole Life category and replacing it with two new categories:

Once again, this will replace the Quick Pay category which currently has only 10 and 15 pay products in it. In the event that a company introduces a quick pay payment plan shorter than 10 years, we will re-introduce the quick pay category.


Improvements to Analysis Programs

During October we introduced improvements/changes to the Analysis programs in Compulife. These changes are complete and during November a couple of different bugs were found and those were addressed in midmonth updates.

One of the bigger changes to the Analysis programs is the elimination of the old display year by year windows. We have standardized all the Analysis programs to go from the data entry windows directly to the "Print Preview" window. The advantage of the Print Preview window is that the user determines how large the characters are on the display by zooming in or out on the page. This should address past comments that we have had about the current year-by-year displays being difficult to see because the fonts were too small.

We have also updated the Analysis print-outs to use newer Arial fonts rather than the old fixed pitch Courier fonts. This makes the print-outs more attractive and consistent with the rest of the comparison/quotation print-outs that our system is able to generate.


Video Tutorials Progress

To date Compulife has completed three more video tutorials.

For the U.S. and Canada there are now a total of 5 tutorials.

The first tutorial shows how to request and install a 30 day Free Trials.

The second tutorial shows how to complete the "Dare to Compare Challenge" and, by doing so, how to get 4 free months of Compulife without any obligation to purchase.

The third tutorial shows how to use the Preferred Health Analyzer to determine if you client qualifies for the lower Preferred Plus or Preferred rates offered by life companies.

The fourth tutorial shows how to use the Table rating feature in Compulife in order to add a table rating to Compulife.

The fifth tutorial shows how to use the ROP Analysis feature in Compulife, to determine the effective rate of return being offered in an ROP product. You can view the tutorials by clicking on this link:

U.S. Video Tutorials

The ROP tutorial is not available to Canadian subscribers. Instead the Canadian fifth tutorial shows how to use Compulife new Canadian Critical Illness Comparison software. While we are not offering this software in the U.S., we thought you might like to take a look. If you are selling Critical Illness here in the U.S., let us know and let us know which companies that you are selling for. If we determine that there is sufficient demand, we will give consideration to adding it to the software. Here is that tutorial:

Canadian Critical Illness Tutorial

The next tutorials that we introduce will show you how to use the new Analysis program. While many Canadian customers really make use of these programs, many having benefited from seminars we gave in Canada many years ago, we suspect that most U.S. subscribers do not use these handy tools. We believe the Analysis tutorials will demonstrate why the options are in our software, and how/why they can be used to assist consumers and make your sales presentation much simpler.

Apart from the Analysis tutorials, if you have an area where you would like to see us do a tutorial, drop Bob Barney a note at:

barneyrl@compulife.com


What's Next?

We are now turning our efforts to some maintenance work that is needed to the data entry systems. Those programs have not been updated for quite some time, and some need to be converted to take advantage of the newer programming compilers that we have been using for the Windows software that we already distribute to you.

Having reviewed where we are heading over the next few years, and the changes that we would like to be able to make in the future, we have decided to stop and do a much more extensive overhaul than simply changing our data entry software. We have determine that we would also like to implement a better data storage structure that will make maintenance easier on both a data entry basis, as well as a programming basis.

To achieve our goals in this regard, we will be spending a fair bit of time reviewing our new data storage needs, and then building conversion software that will convert our existing data files into our new data file structure. Once we have done that, we will then introducing new comparison software that does exactly what it does now, but which derives its results from the new data structure. In other words, you will end up with a new program that does exactly what the old program did/does.

Once this first stage is completed, we will have both old program and old data, with new program and new data. Moving forward we will use the old data entry systems to maintain the old version, then converting old data to the new data forms for general distribution.

The next stage is to create the new data entry systems that talk to the new data format. Once we are satisfied that the new data entry system give us everything that we have now, we will then switch to the new data structure alone. We will only do this once we have thoroughly tested the new software to ensure it gives us no problems in maintaining the date. This may take several months. As far as the part you use, by the time we make that transition, you will have been using the new software for several months.

The point of sharing this with you is that the process will be quite lengthy and so from this fall throughout most of 2009, you will not be seeing many changes and improvements to the software that you use, even though the underlying foundation will be going through a massive change. Once the foundation has been reconstructed, and all the tools to work on the foundation have been built, the program will be in a position to make some substantial moves forward.

Think of it as transplant surgery, where you need to keep the patient alive and well, at the same time as you are swapping out the organs.