Bulk Upload Tool Guide for Internal Connections FRNs

February 3, 2021

Attached: Category-Two-Internal-Connections-Version-21.0 EXAMPLE

Attached: Bulk Upload Guide – Internal Connections – FY 2021

~ Great Time Saver ~

~ Much Easier This Year Due to C2 Changes! ~
~ Helpful (Essential) Guide Attached ~

When applying for E-rate funding for Internal Connections, the Form 471 requires every component to be listed on its own FRN Line Item.  Although you no longer have to list the entities receiving the equipment or the associated costs, creating these FRNs can be time consuming, as many of you have discovered over the last five years.  To ease this burden, USAC has created off-line Templates that can be completed and then uploaded into the Funding Request instead of manually creating/adding FRN Line Items.  While Templates are available for all C1 and C2 service types, the Internal Connections Template is the one I believe will save PA applicants the most time and will be most-used.  The Internal Connections template has modified for FY 2021 to make 2 tabs optional(!), and the correct version to use is V21.0 and is available at:  https://www.usac.org/wp-content/uploads/e-rate/documents/Forms/bulk_upload_templates/Category-Two-Internal-Connections-Version-21.0.xlsm.

Bulk Upload/Template Guide

To assist applicants with completing the Internal Connections Template and Bulk Upload process, I’ve created the attached Guide which I strongly encourage you follow as you complete your first Template.  Also attached is a completed Example Template so you can see what yours should look like.

What Are the Basic Steps for Using the IC Bulk Upload Process?

Applicants will create the off-line Template, validate for errors, then save to their computer when no errors are showing.  Then they will create the Form 471 and funding request in EPC.  At the ‘FRN Line Item’ screen, click “Bulk Upload” instead of Add FRN Line Item, and upload the Template.  EPC will then create a task within 1 minute with the Bulk Upload results.  Applicants should review all of the FRN Line Item data that was imported to ensure accuracy.  All data can be revised at this point, or applicants can delete the FRN Line Item information, and upload a revised Template if they so choose.

Advantages to the Using IC Bulk Upload Template?

  • Allows you to doublecheck your calculations
  • Copy/paste from another spreadsheet
  • Saves time
  • Can create the template after bids have been opened but before the contract is signed

Challenges to Using the IC Bulk Upload Template? – Minor

  • Template contains sensitive macros that restricts choices
  • Must be sure to “validate” for errors prior to uploading
  • HINT:  When making a modification to a line, the Column A “reference number” will reset.  But it’s easy to fix.  Simply highlight the column, right click, then “Clear Contents” and the numbers will return to normal.

What Information is Required on the Template?

The Template has 4 tabs – Equipment/Pricing Tab, Recipients of Service Tab, Budgeted Entities Tab and List of Errors Tab.  The first tab is the only one that must be completed, because of the changes to the Category 2 budget program, and is the exact same information you would have to enter in the Form 471 online application, screen by screen.  Here is a list of what will be required:

  • Category (Wireless data distribution, data protection, cabling, etc.)
  • Manufacturer
  • Model #
  • Unit price (eligible and ineligible)
  • Quantity

The Bulk Upload process is very simple if your Template has been completed accurately.  Follow the attached Guide and you shouldn’t have any problems completing and validating the Template.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me!

Happy Templating!

– Julie

Julie Tritt Schell

Pennsylvania E-rate Coordinator
717-730-7133 – o

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