My notifications always start with a statement in bold that the network (or a portion of) will be unavailable between xx and xx. The title of the email is identical to this.
I then include the technical information, but as many staff won't be expected to understand this It's not too long, 50 words maximum!
We don't have any of those questions any more, but we do get the aforementioned 'it's too technical' comments in the corridor.
Mr.Ben (30th January 2014)
I tend to go for the scatter gun approach for planned work: emailed, put on staff portal, written on staff message board, brought up by Head in staff briefing, word of mouth, sign language, smoke signals etc. If they don't get the message then they are trying really hard to miss it. If needs be (eg one staff member who *never* closes SIMS for a update) then a message is sent by LanSchool, don't really like to interrupt lessons though.
Unplanned outages are usually communicated via the staff message board in staff room and word of mouth (eg 'Internet down and no I don't know when it will be back ').
Could start using LanSchool to get the message out I guess. I keep meaning to write some kind of status app that sits in the taskbar and turns red it there is an issue, if the staff hover over it it could say 'Internet down' or something....but never have the time.
I was thinking more along the lines of a status indicator. So if everything was ok it was green. If something, say Internet was down, I could change colour to red and add a message that popped up if they hover the mouse over.
That way if a teacher found the Internet was working they could check the indicator to see if there was a known issue before reporting it. When it was fixed I could change it back to green.
Major Service Interruption : Thursday 9th January 4:30pm-6:30pm.
Investigations have led to us identifying a new strain of fungal growth in of our servers, which, as it looks not only edible but possibly even tasty, will involve a short interruption to some services while we, err, send someone in. We plan to do this on Thursday 9th January at 4:30pm and the expedition is expected to take two hours, during which a number of services will be unavailable (Please do peruse the list below).
We urge you should your favourite (see list below) software companions be unavailable during this time, to luxuriate in a moment of Zen like peace and tranquillity, transcending all earthly cares except perhaps for a really nice cup of tea. Mmmmm.
<list of things impacted>
Obviously if you are planning some specific activity in which the entire future of the human race at a critrical moment during that time, rests somewhat improbably on the availability of one of those services, do let us know.We can probably find a way to work around it.
Kindest Ever Regards,
Mmmm. Mushroom Omlette!
So kick me.
Last edited by pcstru; 30th January 2014 at 09:41 PM.
Tallwood_6 (30th January 2014)
but from experience, I have added the other stuff to attempt to head off the deluge of 'but can I do x-thing?' questions that used to follow the brief message above that I used to give out.Code:Dear All, Due to software changes, CMIS and Eportal for all sites will be unavailable on Thursday 9th January for approximately 2 hours from 16:30. Please do not attempt to access CMIS or ePortal before 18:30 as functionality may be unpredictable. Any questions, please contact the helpdesk.
Damned if I do, Damned if I don't.
IWDave (11th February 2014)
For general staff, mail, for more critical a mail following briefing announcement.
I got told by a teacher that they couldn't be expected to read the mails because they were too busy...the same teacher who, incidentally, somehow found time to send out endless mails advertising things they had for sale!!
Some will not bother to reads the mails at all, some will scan and miss the crucial part, some will read, delete and dismiss from their minds entirely, some will read and ask something either already covered or entirely missing the point...a few, if you're lucky, will read, comprehend, file away in memory banks and react accordingly.
Great one recently: been building up to some changes, and did a countdown reminder: x...will be starting Wednesday...x will be starting tomorrow...x...starts TODAY!! and then later that day had a mail to say 'Sorry, hadn't realised you meant today, and am not quite prepared...'
Simple twitter feed used here for any planned outages or unplanned problems, especially at the weekend so staff can just click on our multi-feed page and see if there are any issues before emailing me
A lot of schools use something called Teachers2Parents to send parents text messages to their phones when things like school closures come up. Is there not something similar you can do for teachers?
I have created an App that we can autostart when staff login and fills the screen we also have some software that can sort of imitate login so where staff are logged in we just sort of resend the login process and the App loads full screen over everything used the same process for a while when certain staff were really annoying me and not taking registers .
I am looking to implement a traffic light system. Green for everything is good to go, amber for issues that we are aware of with an ETA of a fix, red for something isn't working as is bust. It will probably a manual exercise to change the colours, add the updates etc, but shouldn't take that long to update.
At the moment planned downtime for staff and students are posted on our Facebook / Twitter. If it affects just staff it's sent via e-mail.
I have often pondered making a HTML page and setting it as everyone member of staff's homepage. A kind of network / systems status page they are forced to see which would be perfect for planned downtime messages....
The one fly in the ointment of this is I honestly have staff who, if there homepage is not set to the school's website, they honestly don't know how to get it unless it is a favourite. Maybe you are more lucky with your staff's IQ?
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