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Company Downloads Overview


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Overview  |  Outline of Procedures  |  The WinAA Download Manager  |  IVANS.NET Transfer Manager  |  Retrieving Files  |  Viewing Downloads  |  Handling Discrepancies  |  Supported Companies  |  Download Programs 


The Agency Advantage Download Manager is a stand alone program that merges company download files into the the Agency Advantage management system. The program accepts files in ACORD AL3 format. Most carrier files use the popular AFW format. Compressed files are automatically handled by the system with no user intervention required.

The IVANS transfer manager is fully integrated in this product. IVANS files should be routed to your network \aa\download folder. Support is available for company download files not transmitted through IVANS. These files should also be stored in the network \aa\download folder.

After selecting a file, it is digested into a temporary work file and moved to an archive folder. A work file is displayed giving the operator an opportunity to print a listing of the file’s contents and to manually handle any errors. Some common tasks include assigning a CSR code to new business transactions and verifying the commission plan assigned to policies.

The system makes use of colors to aid the operator. Items in RED require attention, YELLOW indicates the absence of a perfect match on customer name and address, or policy number effective date combinations. This also indicates that a customer or policy may be created.

Customers are matched using the first eight characters of the name and address. Policies are matched using the full policy number (less any suffix preceded by a dash) and effective date plus or minus three days. Results of matching are displayed in the work file along with a description of the action to be preformed for each item.

The system has two posting methods. Individual posting is used to handle errors. The individual item posting screen allows the operator to match the download transaction to any customer’s folder and/or policy. Batch posting processes all remaining items in the work file. Batch posting cannot be run until all error items are handled.

The posting process updates policy and customer information and transfers the entire ACORD AL3 transaction into the agency management system. A summary view and a detail view of the download transaction are available on the ‘Downloads’ tab in the customer folder and on the policy detail screen.

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Understanding The Agency Advantage Download Manager

As mentioned before, the download manager is a stand alone program. It must be downloaded, installed, and updated separately. You can download and install the download manager here and choosing "Run".

Press Start, Program Files, Agency Advantage, WinAA Download Manager to start the program. The download manager will relink to your database the first time it is opened. Log in to the program in the same way you log in to the Agency Advantage. The opening screen shows any company download files waiting to be processed.

There are several items on this screen you need to be familiar with. First, let's look at the toolbar at the top.

"Ivans Mailbox" - We will discuss this in detail below.

  "Retrieve Archives" - You use this button when you need to reprocess a file or look up a file you processed previously. The button accesses the Archive folder that is in your aa/download folder on the server.

  "NAIC Codes" - You really don't need to access the NAIC codes unless you accidentally assign the wrong company to a download. We will discuss NAIC codes in detail at a later time.

  Prints a screenshot of the download manager.

"Email Session.log" - This button will email us a copy of your session.log file. If you are having trouble retrieving files from Ivans, then this file would contain information that would help us troubleshoot the situation.

"Update the Download Manager" - When you click on this button it will close the Download Manager and start the process for updating it. After clicking on this button, you need to choose "Run" when prompted.

"What's New in the Download Manager" - This lists the recently added companies and new features. This box will pop up after you do an update. However, you can always click on the box that says "Don't show what's new at login," and this will simply allow you to look at the features by clicking on this button

A little further down the screen, you'll find the list of Download Files to be Processed. Right below it is a path. In this case, my file path is F:\aa\download. Yours may be different! It always depends on your network and how you have your server drive mapped. This is a very important part of receiving downloads. If for some reason you aren't getting any files in this list. It is because the path on the Ivans or third party software is incorrect. Since you are just beginning, the box will be empty. This is just an example of what some of the files can look like.

Below the Download Files to be Processed there are three options that you can select. You may select all or none and it is completely up to you.

Automatically Print Work File Listing prints all of the information within the workfile.
Automatically Print Memos prints the memos automatically without prompting you.
Proper Case Names and Addresses in WinAA means that you would be using "Proper Case" such as John Smith instead of JOHN SMITH.

Finally we get to the bottom where you will find the Ivans Transfer Manager and Exit buttons.

The IVANS Transfer Manager button cannot be used until you have set up your mailboxes. You will need to contact a company and they must assign you an Ivans Yaccount and UserID.

If you click on the "Exit" button you will close the program. It's not too big of a deal if you click on it while still looking at the Download Files to be processed, however, if you try and close the program after you've already processed some downloads and they are waiting to be posted to the database, then you may lose your work.

Let's move on to the next section, Understanding IVANS.NET Transfer Manager.

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Understanding IVANS.NET Transfer Manager

If you haven't already, you need to download and install IVANS.NET. You can do this by clicking here and then choosing "Run". After installation, it may ask you to restart your computer.

After you have the IVANS.NET installed, open up your WinAA Download Manager, login, and select the mailbox  icon on the tool bar.

You should have an Ivans Yaccount and UserID. If you do not, please contact one of your companies and request one.

Fill in the Mailbox Creator like the one on the right. You just need to substitute your information in the Account and User ID fields. The Mailbox Password is always the User ID. Make sure you have Other and BOTH ECS Mailbox and IE Mailbox selected. Click on Save, then click Save AGAIN. The form will be blank at this time, so click Exit.

You will only need to do this one time. When you begin to download with additional carriers, simply provide them with your existing mailbox information. 

Now its time to configure the Transfer Manager .NET. Click on Start, Programs, Transfer Manager .NET. When the Transfer Manager .NET opens, on the toolbar, click on Configuration, Support Mode. Then click on Configuration, Site Settings. Configure this window as shown below. They both need to be on the Internet setting. When you're finished, click OK.

Next go to Configuration, Mailboxes. Here you will see the list of mailboxes currently in your Transfer Manager. There should be two. If you double-click on the mailbox it will open up. You need to configure your mailboxes to look like the screenshots below.


You must configure or at least check BOTH of the mailboxes on the list. If the ECS mailbox is already correct, click OK and then double-click on the IE mailbox. Configure the IE mailbox and then click OK. You can now close the Transfer Manager .NET. You are now ready to move on to Retrieving Files.

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Retrieving Files

There are two different ways files are retrieved:

  1. Through the IVANS Transfer Manager

  2. Through the companies' own download software. Progressive, Mercury, and Hartford-Omni have their own software.

After you log into the WinAA Download manager, click on the in the lower left hand corner of your screen. This will initialize Ivans and check your mailboxes. If you are using the .NET it will look a little different.

When the session finishes, it will return you back to the Download Manager. If there were any files to be processed, you'll see them in the Download Files to be Processed list.

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Viewing Downloads

Once you have run Transfer Manager a list of unprocessed download files is displayed. If you are expecting downloads from companies that use their own software then as soon as you open up your Download Manager more than likely the files will already be there.  When you select a company download file it is digested then moved to the archive folder. Company download files have many different naming schemes and file extensions. This varies widely from company to company.

Are you expecting an initial download file? They are handled differently than everyday daily downloads and are used for populating an empty database. In order to process a daily download file, you double-click on it, however, when processing an initial download file, you right-click on it instead, and then choose Process as initial load file..

After you select the file, whether it be an initial download or daily download, it will begin processing.

Next, you will be prompted to identify the NAIC Codes. If an unidentified NAIC code is detected the system prompts you to choose a company in the Agency Advantage that corresponds with the code found in the download file. On the list to the left is what is contained in the download file, on the list to the right, initially blank, is where you need to match it up to companies in your database.

After you have matched up each company in the download file, click on 'Continue'.

If you are processing an Initial Load the next window that comes up will prompt you to click on 'Load'.

Then you will see the progress of the initial load.

When it is finished it will take you back to the Download Files to be Processed.


If you are processing a Daily Download, the next screen shows the content of the files. First let's take a look at the buttons at the bottom.

Edit Item - While a record selector is highlighted you can click this button and it will take you into the error handling screen.

Summary view - It shows the summary of the download file.

Detail View - This is a more detailed look at the download file.

REC'D - This posts the data to the database. At this screen it is posted as a batch. You can do this as long as there are no errors.

Print Screen - This prints off whatever is on your screen at the time.

Print Memos - This prints the memos included in the download file.

Exit - Clicking on this button while in this screen will close your download file and it will be sent to archives.


A CSR needs to be assigned to the new business transactions. Also note the transaction where the customer is in yellow. No match was found on this name and address, so a new customer folder will be created in WinAA. Click on the drop down list and select the CSR to whom the policy belongs to. After you have done this, you are ready to post the batch. Click on the REC'D button at the bottom of the screen.

This next example shows two different kinds of errors: CUSTOMER NOT FOUND and POLICY NOT FOUND. You must correct these errors before posting the database. There are also two different types of downloads: Renewal Image and Policy Change. These are handled in different ways. Double-click on the record selector on the left to open up the customer download file.

After double-clicking on the record selector you will be taken to error handling screen. There are a few items at the bottom that we need to look at first.

REC'D - This posts the data to the database.

Delete - It deletes the download record and does not post it to the database.

Summary view - It shows the summary of the download file.

Detail View - This is a more detailed look at the download file

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Handling Discrepancies

Let's look at this download file list again. The download renewal image failed to match an existing customer folder. You need to double click on the record selector next to the customer name that has the error. We'll start with the first person on the list.

On the screenshot below, look at the upper left hand corner at 'Purpose'. This example is a Renewal Image. Pay special attention to the policy number, effective date and expiration dates of this policy contained in the download (top portion of screen). Under WinAA Data (middle of the screen), select a customer from the drop down to ensure it downloads into the correct customer folder, next take a look at the policies this customer has in the drop down list. Most of the time, the ONLY thing you need to do is click on Customer under WinAA Data and select the correct customer from the drop down list. Do NOT match this up to a policy. Remember this is a Renewal IMAGE. It is a complete policy and will overwrite data if you select a policy from the drop down list. There is an exception. What if that renewal already exists in your system? It could have gotten there through manual entry or through a quote import from a rater. It will be your discretion whether or not you want to select a policy from this list. If you leave it blank, it will create a new policy in the customer folder. If you select a policy, then it will overwrite the existing policy with data from the download.

If the person in the download is not in your WinAA Data customer drop down list, then you just need to click on the REC'D button at the bottom. The download manager will create a new customer folder in the database. Next, the download manager will return you to the download list.

The next example is a Policy Change or endorsement. Under WinAA Data, click on the customer drop down list and select the correct customer, under the policy drop down list, select the correct policy. After you have the information matched, you can select the REC'D button. Cancellations or any other Purpose where you would need to replace the data or update the data you would handle it in this way.

It will take you back to your list, which is now blank, you can now click on the exit button safely.

*A few tips...*

* If you want to replace the data, match up the customer name AND customer policy number - it will overwrite all data in the current policy.
* If the Download Manager doesn't detect an existing customer folder or if they aren't in the drop down list, the Download Manager will create a new one for you.
* If the customer has been detected, but the policy number isn't in there, leave it blank, the Download Manager will create a new policy for you.

Also see:
Prevent Duplicate Files When Processing Downloads

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Print Memos

Company correspondence in the form of Print Memos may be contained in the download file. These memos are automatically displayed when the file is processed.

Print the memos by clicking on the Print Memo Button at the bottom of the screen.

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Download Program Files

You will need the latest version of the WinAA software to begin downloading from your companies. You should also have read this overview and checked the list of supported companies.

For information on obtaining and installing the required files click here.

Copyright 2006 Advantage Information Systems, Inc.