Remote Work in the Event of University Closure

Remote Work in the Event of University Closure

During disruptive events such as a pandemic or inclement weather, you may be able to use technology tools to help you sustain department operations from home or another remote location. We encourage you to learn how to use these resources before a situation requires you to work off-campus.

Please keep in mind that during a major “disaster,” some of the tools referenced below may not be available until they are recovered.

Need Help?

The NSU IT Service Desk is our main contact point for technology-related questions. Contact them via email at or phone at 918-444-5678. You can check out for technology updates or to find help.

Communicating Remotely

Choose a communication method. Plan how your staff will receive and provide important departmental updates and information, as well as communicate with each other, during an emergency event. You could plan to use one or more of the following methods: 

  • Group email messages. You can send messages to a specific group of people.
  • Telephone hotline. Turn your departmental voicemail into a “telephone hotline.” Simply update the greeting with timely information. 
  • Remote meetings. Conduct ad hoc and scheduled remote meetings using Zoom.
  • Online chat. Google Hangouts is built into Greenmail and has chat functions that can be used from any device, without being connected to the NSU network, and provide an effective way for teams to communicate from remote locations.
  • Video conferencing. Zoom allows you to have online meetings with anyone who has an Internet connection. You will be connected via audio and/or video and can share content from your computer which lets you see the same things at the same time - like PowerPoint files, Word documents or even browse the web together. 
    • You have two options for Zoom audio: use the microphone/speaker in your computer or use a phone to call into the meeting.

Working Remotely

Online tools can help you continue business operations from home or another remote location. Some of these require preparation to set up, so make sure your department is planning ahead.

  • Connect to the NSU network using the AnyConnect VPN. A VPN is an application on your computing device that establishes a secure connection to a network.
    • Please note that most NSU and cloud resources, such as Blackboard, goNSU, and Greenmail don’t require the use of VPN.
    • Services that do require the use of VPN include: Shared drives (M: drive, L: drive, etc.), Banner, Argos.
  • If you need to, make sure you can access NSU administrative systems, such as Banner and Argos, from home or another remote location.
  • Consider storing your work materials online in a secure location, such as on Google Drive or on a remotely accessible shared drive such as your L: Drive or the M: drive.
  • Access your email and productivity platforms. NSU Greenmail is web-based and accessible from most places via the internet. It provides commonly used documents, spreadsheets, and presentation features and facilitates effective collaboration.
  • Export your bookmarks to your home computer or sign into your browser so you can sync them across devices.

Teaching Remotely


  • Using Blackboard you can post key class materials, communicate with your class, and assess your students remotely. If you need assistance or more information for Blackboard or other educational technologies, please email the Center for Teaching and Learning at or call them at 918-555-5855.
  • Provide your course resources online. All courses in person and online already have a site on Blackboard, if you encounter technical issues with your course please contact the IT Service Desk at 918-444-5678 or navigate to to place a ticket and have one added.


  • Record a lecture. Zoom allows you to easily record audio, video, and your computer screen so you can post it to Blackboard.
  • Hold a synchronous class online. Zoom provides a robust platform for online collaboration and meetings, pairing full video and audio conferencing capabilities with content sharing and cloud recording. There are features in Zoom that allow you to replicate the classroom experience including screen sharing, whiteboards, breakout rooms, and sharing videos with sound.


  • Make a plan. Having a plan in place for your department and team is crucial to ensure business continuity in a disaster situation.
  • Document your plan. Agree on what methods you will use in the event of a disaster, and then document that plan in a location that everyone who will be responsible for carrying out the communication plan can access.
  • Assign people responsible and include contact information. Your plan should include clear instructions with the names of people responsible for carrying out the plan. Include the person’s email and contact information, including a personal phone number, in case he or she doesn’t have access to an office phone.
  • Test-run your plan. Make sure everyone is familiar with the plan and that the system you want to use works by running through it together.




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Article ID: 100908
Thu 3/12/20 9:33 AM
Tue 5/26/20 4:05 PM