Cal Poly Pomona is adopting a new communication tool, Alertus Desktop Alert, that can quickly send safety messages to all campus computers. In an emergency, a full-screen alert will open on active campus-owned computers, including those in classrooms, computer labs and faculty/staff offices.
The university will install the safety software on all faculty and staff computers, classroom computers and labs. The software can be installed remotely by technical staff in most cases and is unlikely to impact users.
A test of the Alertus tool will be in late November along with the campus’s quarterly test of the Safety Alert System. More information about the test will be provided via email and PolyCentric later in the quarter.
WHY THE NEW TOOL?
To help make our campus even safer. Sending timely messages to the entire campus is critical during emergencies. Because people spend significant time in front of a computer, Alertus Desktop Alert allows public safety and communications officials to reach a large audience virtually instantaneously. A pilot study conducted in spring quarter demonstrated that Alertus messages can arrive on computers faster than messages to campus phones or email.
Alertus will be used in conjunction with the campus’ current emergency messaging outlets, including the Safety Alert System (phone, text message and email), university website, electronic marquees and social media.
Alertus will only be used to notify the campus of issues that affect safety, health or wellbeing, such as a nearby violence, fire or building evacuations. In addition, it will be tested just three times a year during the fall, winter and spring quarters.
The Alertus software package, including a lifetime of patches and upgrades, was donated to the university by Alertus Technologies. In the future, faculty, staff and students will have the option to install the Alertus software onto their personal computers.
For more information about the installation of Alertus Desktop Notifications, contact the Help Desk at (909) 869-6776 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.