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Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions for new Telecommuters and Remote Workers.

Telecommuting Policy and Approval

What approvals do I need to start telecommuting?
With appropriate use of technology and managerial oversight, staff whose roles do not require all work hours to be performed at their Stanford work location may be eligible for some form of flexible work arrangement. All telecommuting and remote work arrangements are at the discretion of the local department. An overview of flexible work arrangements is available on the Cardinal at Work site. Check with your department for approval and additional agreements that might be necessary for ongoing arrangements.  


Are Stanford laptops available for staff who must work from home but don’t currently have a Stanford laptop?
Start by checking with your department to see if it provides loaners configured for department staff. If it does not, your department can check for availability by submitting a Help request to University IT (UIT). Note that UIT has a limited number of Stanford laptops available that are intended to replace broken or failing devices and may not have sufficient stock for those who must telecommute but do not have access to computer at their alternate location. (Loaners for other equipment such as monitors or printers are not available.)
Can I use my personally-owned computing devices to conduct Stanford work while working from home or another location?
Using a Stanford-owned device that has been configured to meet Stanford’s security requirements is always the best alternative for conducting Stanford work, both when at Stanford or at another location. If that option is not possible, the Information Security office strongly recommends that you leverage your department’s computing support staff to make sure your personal machine complies with Stanford requirements.  If you access high-risk data, your device MUST be encrypted. For more information on encryption, check with your department’s computing support staff or visit Encrypt Your Devices.
Will I be reimbursed for using my personal phone when working remotely?
Reimbursement for using a personal phone is determined at the department level. Check with your department administrator for your department’s policy.

You may want to consider Jabber, a Stanford-supported “softphone” application that allows you to receive and place calls on your computing or mobile device using your Stanford telephone number.  For more information about Jabber, see Jabber Softphone.

Can I take other equipment home (e.g., monitor)?
Your local equipment is owned by your department. Check with your department for its policy on taking equipment home.


How do I get the additional software I need on my personal device to work remotely?
Many software applications are available at no charge to Stanford staff to use on Stanford-related work.  You can find and download these applications at Essential Stanford Software. If you have specialized software needs, you should check with your local department for availability.


Applications and services seem slow or choppy when I access them at home. What can I do?
Visit Common Fixes for Home Networking Issues for tips, tricks, and advice.


How do I forward my Stanford phone to my personal phone?
Most Stanford telephones allow you to forward incoming calls to another phone using the Call Forward feature. Procedures vary depending on the telephone model. See How to Use Your Phone Equipment or submit a Help request.

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