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A photo showing MSU's Red Cedar River during the winter.

Photo courtesy of Communication and Brand Strategy

IPF offers tips to remotely access campus phones during inclement weather


March 11, 2014

This month, Michigan State University Provost June Youatt and Executive Vice President for Administrative Services Satish Udpa sent a campus-wide notice reminding everyone to take steps to prepare for potential flooding at MSU. Campus departments are often expected to cover their main telephone numbers remotely when MSU operations are suspended due to inclement weather events.

The most effective approach for covering telephones remotely is for departments to consult with the Telecommunication Systems team at MSU Infrastructure Planning and Facilities well in advance of any potential event. This can be accomplished by submitting a service request. An analyst will review department-specific technical configurations, telephone equipment, and system needs to recommend the appropriate solution. There is no cost associated with this consultation service.

Consultation is necessary to meet each situation because of the following factors:

  • Options for remote calling are dependent on phone type.
  • Bridged appearance (shared) telephone lines need special consideration.
  • Call Center options may include specialized software and training.
  • Security risks related to various solutions varies.

The IPF website provides supporting information for departments that have already implemented the remote-calling solution (EC-500) for Avaya phone users. A PDF user guide can be found on that page.

Telephone user guides are also available to illustrate how to use the basic features for many phone systems.

For more information about this and other topics, consider attending IPF’s Telecom Technology Workshop.

MSU Infrastructure Planning and Facilities builds and maintains the physical environment for Michigan State University’s education, research and outreach missions, and directs the university’s sustainability initiatives and long-term infrastructure planning goals. The unit’s experienced team of professionals keeps MSU running 24/7/365, delivering an immense menu of services and providing expert analysis for university objectives. Call (517) 353-1760 for emergency service.