IT's response to supporting remote work

March 17, 2020

To support the Yale community during a period of remote teaching, learning, and working, Information Technology (IT) has taken measures to amplify its support:

  • Webpages, with remote working resources, were developed for students, faculty, clinical faculty and staff, clinical faculty and staff working in the covered entity (recently added), and staff—including contractors. The pages include tips, a list of frequently used services and Knowledge Base (KB) articles, as well as information about where to receive additional support. Visit the IT at Yale homepage to view or share these pages, which are regularly updated. 
  • The Help Desk is now operating remotely and Help Desk staff are fielding an unusually high number of calls and chat requests—around 300 calls per hour compared to 25-30 per hour on a typical day. Priority of response is given to individuals whose jobs involve direct patient care, followed by faculty and all other callers. IT encourages the community to take advantage of online resources for 24/7 support, and appreciates the community’s patience during this shift in operations.
  • Answers to trending topics are available on the Get Help page on the IT website. Locate helpful guidance on topics, from remote desktop connection to enrolling or managing a device in MFA-Duo.
  • Cisco AnyConnect VPN software was automatically updated on all ITS managed Windows computers on Monday, March 16. This ensures that staff can stay connected to restricted services on the University or Yale-New Haven Health System (YNHHS) networks from a non-Yale internet source. View a complete listing of applications requiring VPN access (requires login).
  • IT and Purchasing are experiencing a significant uptick in requests for IT equipment. With appropriate departmental approval, iPads, Wacom tablets, or other peripherals may now be purchased directly on P-cards, as a short term exception to normal restrictions. Please be advised that tablets do not require Yale-specific configuration. Alternatively, desktops and laptops cannot be purchased directly. However, Yale is working with multiple vendors to secure inventory that may not otherwise be available, and has a process in place to assure that these come with the necessary software pre-loaded and that they meet compliance requirements and University security standards. Please contact the ITS Help Desk if you have desktop or laptop needs, so that we can help source equipment from existing inventory or place expedited orders. Equipment will be delivered to one of three shipping docks:135 College Street for Medical Campus, 55 Whitney Avenue for Central Campus, and 100 West Campus Drive, building #750 for West Campus.
  • IT is advising the community to check their local connections, if they are having connectivity issues, which may be caused by infrastructure at the neighborhood level. If services are operational (per the System Status page), and individuals are still experiencing connectivity issues, they should contact their internet service provider.

Every day, IT is optimizing its online content and is working with Help Desk staff and Distributed Support Providers (DSPs) to deliver community support as quickly as possible.