Flexible Work Arrangements: Best Practices, Tips, & Tools for Employees, Managers, and Departments

TO: UC Santa Barbara Campus Community
FR: Matthew Hall, Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for Information Technology
       and CIO
RE: Flexible Work Arrangements: Best Practices, Tips, & Tools for Employees, Managers, and Departments

In light of the circumstances and many departments shifting to remote or alternative work arrangements, we’ve partnered with Human Resources to compile best practices and the tools necessary to enable remote work for your department at it.ucsb.edu/best-practices-flexible-work-arrangements.

Employees have also brought to our attention several items that may make it easier for staff to participate in alternative work arrangements:

Campus Virtual Private Network (VPN)

Campus VPN is required to access any file shares or applications protected by network access control lists. You do not need to use VPN to access any Google service. We suggest that you first attempt to access your work resources without using the VPN, and only use the VPN if necessary. For a list of top-tier applications that require a VPN, please see the appendix at the bottom of this page. 

To connect to the VPN, follow the instructions on the Get Connected to VPN web pages at it.ucsb.edu. Remember that you must use your UCSBNetID (your sign on/login for all UCSB applications) to access the files to download. 

Zoom 

Zoom is UCSB’s main video and web conferencing tool. To download Zoom, sign in, or join or host a Zoom meeting, visit it.ucsb.edu/zoom

Remember the following tips for using Zoom: 

  • You can set preferences for Zoom meetings on your Zoom profile: https://zoom.us/profile/
  • Do not join audio automatically; you can turn it on when you join a Zoom meeting. 
  • Turn off your webcam by default. You can, and should, enable it after the meeting starts.
    • One of the benefits of Zoom and similar tools is a virtual presence. Your interactions with your colleagues are enhanced if they can see you. 
  • Only share your screen when necessary. 
  • Stop sharing when the topic has moved on.
  • This provides a better experience for others in your meeting and prevents the “if you stop sharing, then I can share” dialog that slows down and interrupts the flow of the meeting.
  • Update your Zoom security settings for more control over your meetings. 

Google Hangouts Meet

Hangouts Meet is another video and web conferencing application, available within our Connect G Suite for Education. To use Meet as an alternative to Zoom, visit the UCSB IT Google Hangouts Meet web page. 

Google Hangouts Chat

Hangouts Chat is the instant messaging tool from Connect G Suite for Education. It allows users to ask quick questions and collaborate in group chats. Read more and learn the basics at the UCSB IT Google Hangouts Chat web page. 

If you have questions about any of these applications, submit a support ticket to ithelp.ucsb.edu. 

Automatic Call Distribution

Automatic Call Distribution (ACD) is a telephone service by which people calling a single telephone number are routed to an available call-taker (agent). A typical use would be in an office that receives multiple calls per day and requires several people to concurrently answer those calls. 

Departments may request or modify ACD services by submitting a service request

  • To convert an existing on-campus ACD for use by off-campus agents, please select “Manage Existing Service” and include the primary telephone number in the “Service Number” field. 
  • To request a new ACD service, select “Request New Service” and include the number of planned agents in the description.
  • Communications Services will respond to the requester for additional information. 

Telephone

If you need to forward your campus phone to your home or cell phone, visit the link on the IT Services Catalog website.

  • Select Telephones & Telephone Lines under “Service to Manage.” 
  • In the Description field, type “Forward campus line to the following number: (xxx) xxx-xxxx.”
  • Service Number: Your campus telephone line, the one you want forwarding.
  • Submit a ticket.

For security issues, please only make requests for your phone line. We will typically have this change done in one business day. 

If you are an MSO or Department Chair and need to make a bulk request, please use the same process only for people within your department. You can make the description above a list of campus phones with corresponding off-campus numbers.

Voicemail Notification via Email

You can also register to receive voicemail notifications via email. Visit the VoiceMail Message Waiting Email Notification Service activation page and log in with your UCSBNetID. 

Where the form says “Add New Subscription,” enter your mailbox (the last four digits of your campus phone number) and your email address. Click “Add.” 

You will receive a verification email: “to activate your service, please click the following link.” You can cancel the message-waiting notification by visiting the UCSB Communication Services link. For more information, visit the VoiceMail Message Waiting Email Notification web page on the Commserv website

Internet Connectivity and Video Conferencing

If you have trouble with smooth video conferencing due to a lack of Internet connectivity or bandwidth of home wifi networks, review the following ideas: 

What to do if you have Internet problems trying to watch the live meetings or webinars with Zoom:

  • Turn off your own laptop camera
  • See if there is competing activity on your home's network that could be postponed to another time (e.g., streaming TV, online video games)
  • Where feasible, try connecting directly to your home router with an Ethernet cable instead of relying on wifi
  • Wait for the presenter to post in Google Shared Drives the recorded version of the meeting or webinar and watch it at a less congested time of the day

What happens if the presenter has technical problems and can't reliably get online for a meeting or presentation at the appointed time?

  • If a meeting is canceled or interrupted because the presenter can't get online, they should record the meeting or presentation and post it on Google Drive or reschedule the meeting. 
  • The presenter should announce alternative plans via email or Google Calendar.

Appendix

Top-Tier Applications that Require VPN, Remote Desktop Gateway, or Client Access:

Application VPN Required Support Contact 
BARC VPN ETS - (805) 893-5000 or ithelp.ucsb.edu
CBORD Food Service Suite VPN or remote desktop gateway ARIT - (805) 893-5555 or http://isdesk.arit.ucsb.edu/
PeopleSoft Financial Management (CFS) VPN ETS - (805) 893-5000 or ithelp.ucsb.edu
Data Warehouse VPN ETS - (805) 893-5000 or ithelp.ucsb.edu
Facilities Data Entry Program (DEP) VPN or remote desktop gateway ARIT - (805) 893-5555 or http://isdesk.arit.ucsb.edu/
GUS Client + VPN ETS - (805) 893-5000 or ithelp.ucsb.edu
InsideSA Document Management Client + VPN SIS&T - (805) 893-7963 or support@sa.ucsb.edu
Lenel Residential Services VPN or remote desktop gateway ARIT - (805) 893-5555 or http://isdesk.arit.ucsb.edu/
Lenel (Campus) Non-Residential Services VPN ETS - (805) 893-5000 or ithelp.ucsb.edu
MetaSys Building Automation System VPN or remote desktop gateway ARIT - (805) 893-5555 or http://isdesk.arit.ucsb.edu/
Point N Click (PNC) Electronic Medical Records System VPN SIS&T - (805) 893-7963 or support@sa.ucsb.edu
RMS Mercury 3 (Resident Management System) VPN or remote desktop gateway ARIT - (805) 893-5555 or http://isdesk.arit.ucsb.edu/
Transcript Tracking System Client + VPN SIS&T - (805) 893-7963 or support@sa.ucsb.edu
Transfer Evaluation and Articulation System (TEAS) Client + VPN SIS&T - (805) 893-7963 or support@sa.ucsb.edu