Disclaimer: This news item was originally posted on Thursday, Mar 26, 2020. Its content may no longer be timely or accurate.

ITS Update: Recommendations for communicating via phone

Posted: 15:33:51, Thursday, Mar 26, 2020   Expiration: 15:33:51, Friday, Apr 10, 2020  

As we gear up to welcome students back to academic life on Monday, communication will be key—between employees and between employees and students. ITS is prepared for an uptick of service requests. We have staff working on campus and remotely to field calls and emails in order to assist the campus community. However, these are unprecedented times and unprecedented conditions where nearly everyone will be communicating from home. This may impact the campus phone system.

As we have mentioned previously, campus has a limited number of phone circuits to service the entire campus community. On a normal day, this is not an issue. With more incoming calls expected, it is possible we will experience overload. When the system reaches that point, calls will not go to voicemail. The caller will receive a message stating “all circuits are busy”. The only option is to call back.

To alleviate congestion on the campus phone system, ITS recommends the following:

To contact the ITS Help Desk

Please EMAIL helpdesk@uwplatt.edu unless you need immediate assistance, i.e. something isn’t working. This will keep the phone lines open for the most urgent callers.

To call other employees from your campus (i.e. PVL to PVL, RLN to RLN, BRB to BRB)

Use Jabber.
  • If you call a co-worker from your personal phone, this will use ONE (1) CIRCUIT.
  • A Jabber to Jabber connection uses ZERO (0) CIRCUITS, leaving those free for students, parents, and community members who need to contact faculty and staff.
  • Jabber can be installed on University-issued laptops or personal cell phones. NOTES:
  • Jabber provides instant messaging with other Jabber users.
  • Jabber is capable of conference calls, just like our VoIP phones (Limit: 6 participants on laptop, 4 on smartphone).
  • Jabber uses less bandwidth than Zoom for a voice-only call

To call employees on a different UW-Platteville campus

Use Jabber.
  • All the same benefits apply; but campus-to-campus uses ONE (1) CIRCUIT because branch phones are still under CITS purview

To communicate with students

  • Post general notices in Canvas, Teams and other areas
  • Email when real-time interaction is not necessary
  • When real-time interaction is necessary, please encourage students to participate in this order
    • Via Zoom video conferencing when offered
    • Call into a Zoom meeting, if the student does not have good internet or a microphone
  • Phone call to campus extension being answered VIA JABBER, i.e. your office number; this uses TWO (2) CIRCUITS

In other words, any call from off campus to a campus phone that has been set up in Jabber (EX: student to advisor or instructor) will take TWO (2) CIRCUITS. At that rate, we can hit our limit quickly; callers will get the “circuits full” message, and they will not be able to leave a voice message.
Students will receive a similar heads-up before classes start.

Remember you can also check the Guide for Using Campus Resources Remotely and other documentation in the ITS Knowledge Base.

ITS is “all hands on deck” and ready to serve. We appreciate your continued patience and flexibility as we work to ensure the best experience for everyone.

Stay well! IT WILL BE FINE!

-- UW Platteville: Deb Meyer

Created: 15:41:27, Thursday, Mar 26, 2020 (by Deb M.)
Updated: 15:41:27, Thursday, Mar 26, 2020 (by Deb M.)