Employee Guide: Remote Working Technology

Prepare yourself for effective and efficient remote work.

Learn about the technology and information Colgate employees may utilize to create a successful remote work environment.

Using a Colgate laptop is the best option for working remotely. If you don’t have a Colgate-issued laptop you may use a personal computer, preparing it according to the guidance found on this page.

Colgate Equipment in your Home Office Survey

All employees working remotely must fill out the following survey, allowing Colgate to keep track of which Colgate-owned equipment employees have borrowed for use at home.

Colgate Equipment in your Home Office Survey

Security & Privacy

Working remotely can create a new set of security and privacy concerns of which you should be mindful.

  • Ensure your computer has been updated with the latest Operating System updates.
  • Don't use public WiFi, instead use a secure, password-protected WiFi network.
  • Find more security information at colgate.edu/infosec


Take inventory of the equipment you currently have and need to be successful at working remotely. 

  • Computer:  You may use your Colgate-issued laptop.  If you do not have a Colgate-issued laptop, contact ITS at itshelp@colgate.edu to discuss options, or browse hardware available from the Service Desk.
  • Phone: Your work line can be forwarded to your home phone or mobile number.  
  • Headset:  If you anticipate making Google Meet or Zoom calls with audio,  it may be beneficial to use a headset with a microphone to improve call quality.  ITS has a limited supply of headsets available.  Contact ITS for more information.


Colgate has licensing available for an array of software that staff may install on their Colgate-issued computers:

Supported software: employee computers

Most licensed software that can be installed on University owned machines is either pre-installed or can be found in the Software Center (found in the start menu of a Windows computer).  

Remotely Access the Campus Network (VPN)

If you need to access any of the resources that require a VPN connection, you will need to first make a VPN connection for cyber security reasons.

Set up your VPN connection


  • Your Desk Phone:
    • You can forward your line to your home phone or mobile number.  Follow our call forwarding instructions, or contact ITS if you are not able to physically visit your desk phone to turn on/off call forwarding.
  • Voicemail:
    • To access voicemail from off campus, dial 315-228-7840 and follow the instructions.
    • It is possible to have voicemail recordings forwarded to your email account. To set this up, contact the Service Desk at itshelp@colgate.edu.
  • Virtual Phone:
    • ITS now offers a virtual phone option, called Cisco Jabber. Jabber is available for Windows,  Mac, or mobile devices. It allows your computer to function as an extension of your desktop phone on campus. Visit our Cisco Jabber page to see if this may be an option for you.
  • Web Conferencing:
    • Google Meet: Works with your Google account and can be added to calendar invites or on-demand. Use on your web browser or on the Hangouts Meet app on your mobile device. Communicate with video and voice, or just voice, and share computer screens remotely.
    • Zoom: Sign in with your Colgate network username and password to get started. Schedule meetings in advance, or use the Zoom service on-demand. Zoom is available via web browser or on the Zoom App on your mobile device.  Zoom allows users to communicate with video and voice, or just voice. Advanced features allow for computer screen sharing, group polling, and more.

Visit our Video Conferencing page for more information.

Home Internet Troubleshooting

If you are experiencing poor internet or connection speeds, below are a few tips, but we also recommend you contact your internet service provider for more advanced troubleshooting.

Home Wireless

  • Check your internet connection by going to speedtest.net.
  • If you determine you have a poor connection, restart your cable modem and/or router.
  • Close unnecessary apps on your computer.
  • Try to manage the timing of others in your household using large amounts of bandwidth, like streaming video.
  • Use a wired Ethernet cable if possible.
  • Please remember that public Wi-Fi hotspots should not be considered safe and secure.

Wireless Cell Phone Carriers

Depending on your cell phone plan, you may be able to make your phone a hotspot and connect your laptop wirelessly to your phone.  If your plan includes a hotspot option, place your phone in a location where it can receive the best signal from the nearest cell phone tower, and connect your laptop to its wireless network.  Perform a connection test by going to speedtest.net  - the wireless connection from your cell carrier at your home may or may not be faster than your home cable or DSL connection. 

Home Internet Service Providers (ISP)

If you are experiencing connection issues, you may want to consider the following:

  • Reboot your router or modem.
  • Contact your ISP to:
    • conduct advanced troubleshooting.
    • discuss options for a home service visit to check your exterior and interior cables/lines, and discuss options to upgrade your equipment (modem) or service plan.

Since 2015, New York State has granted over $500 million to local ISPs to increase the availability and upgrade existing networks in rural areas of the state.  The availability of service or the connection speeds at your home address may have changed.  Contact your ISP to find out more:


For training on an array of systems, software, and more, consider:

  • Virtual Training from ITS: Training for employees to begin using key platforms and services such as Zoom, offered virtually by Colgate's own technologists.
  • LinkedIn Learning: Online learning resource covering a vast array of content.

Ask for Help

If you are unable to find the information you need in the documentation available online, the ITS Service Desk is available to assist.