AAA Western & Central New York


Project: Real time Downgrade & Cancel
Date: August 2013 - March 2014
URL: Requires member login

Business Need

From the earliest version of membership transaction pages, we have only facilitated "positive" changes. Join but not cancel, upgrade but not downgrade and add a family member but not remove one. It was thought difficult to build a business case to invest in making it easy for people to spend less money.

Some time ago to satisfy member demand, we developed "Downgrade and Cancel" pages that made it easy for members to request these changes. However the pages merely sent an email to club counselors who contacted the member to discuss their request.

Later we learned that there were a significant number of people who wanted to renew their membership, but at a lower level, or with fewer associates. These people completed a downgrade or associate cancel form and then went to the renew page to pay their balance. Because the downgrade and cancel forms didn't update their membership in real time, they were frustrated that they couldn't renew the changed membership and inevitably for some people this was enough that they didn't renew at all.

This information was enough to build the business case to develop a real time downgrade and cancel web application.


While this appears simple at first sight because with all changes taking place on the membership anniversary date there should be no money involved, things are much more complex.  The web application must function very differently depending on whether it's invoked mid-year or when the membership is up for renewal. In the latter case we combined the downgrade & cancel with renewal to simplify the user's steps through the process.

It became apparent that this project was utilizing features in Axis APIs that had never been used before. Newland worked with Campana to resolve some issues that arose during our development.

Testing was a particular challenge for this project as there were so many use cases that needed to be run through in both test and live environments.


Newland developed a comprehensive web application that used a suite of Axis APIs to perform all the required functions. The only function that remains manual is to cancel the entire membership. Members can downgrade their entire membership (WCNY requires everyone on the same membership to be at the same level) or remove individual associates. If the change is performed mid year, it acts as a "Cancel Upon Expiry" (CUE) and the My Account function was upgraded to report this situation. Members who are CUE cannot be upgraded but new associates can be added. If the change is performed when the member is in renewal, the site displays a combined downgrade/cancel and renewal form and completely integrates the two functions.

Technology & Tools
  1. Struts 2
  2. SOAP
  3. Eclipse
  4. JSP
  5. JQuery
  6. JavaScript