Policy:  Justification is required for the purchase/installation of a non-standard computer system.  (Adopted by TPAC 3/28/2012)

Justification will be considered for non-standard software/hardware that are job-related and will significantly enhance the employee’s effectiveness and productivity.  This includes computer configuration (such as the selection of desktop or laptop), the computer operating system, and peripherals such as dual monitors, mice and keyboards.  Requests for non-standard software/hardware will be reviewed by the requester’s Division Head, who will make a recommendation to the Director of Information Technology.  A final decision will be reached by consensus of the division head, Director of IT, and the Special Assistant to the President.

For a current list of Cornell College standard computer systems please visit http://www.cornellcollege.edu/information-technology/policies/technology-policies/current-computer-standards.shtml.

 Section 1: Laptop vs. Desktop - Selection and Approval

  1. Employees are eligible to request a laptop when their regular turn on the replacement cycle comes around (new employees will enter the replacement cycle based upon their technology needs and their predecessor’s place in the cycle)
  2. Laptop requests will be considered based on demonstrated need to fulfill job duties. This includes:
    1. Frequent travel is part of requester’s job duties.
    2. Mobility is required to perform daily on-campus duties.
      1. All tenure track faculty are eligible for a laptop.
  3. Employees who receive a laptop can choose to retain an external monitor, wired keyboard, and wired mouse.
    1. Employees are allowed to install a wireless mouse purchased with personal funds.  Employees are responsible for maintenance and replacement of these devices, including batteries.
  4. Employees should consider the benefits/limitations of laptop versus desktop environments in their specific work situation when making this decision.
    1. To view a current list of benefits and limitations associated with laptops please visit http://www.cornellcollege.edu/information-technology/policies/technology-policies/limitations-of-laptops.shtml.
  5. All ergonomic requests associated with the end users computing environment must be approved by Human Resources (HR).
    1. Employees are allowed to install a laptop riser purchased with departmental or personal funds without HR approval.  Departmental purchases should be made through your department’s Staples online account.
  6. Laptops are college property, not personal machines. All computer-related policies apply to laptop computers while the computer is off campus. Not adhering to these policies will result in revocation of the user’s ability to install software and modify settings, and possibly the loss of the laptop. These policies include, but are not limited to:
    1. No personal software is allowed to be installed unless it is work related.
    2. Laptops are for Cornell employees only and are not to be used by non-employees, including family members.
    3. Security and management software installed by Information Technology may NOT be removed.
  7. The employee is responsible for any data files generated/collected after receiving a laptop; therefore, files should be backed up regularly (campus network, CD/DVD backup, flash drive). IT may not be able to retrieve damaged or lost files in a timely manner or at all. Personal files will not be retrieved.
  8. Information Technology is not responsible for maintaining or configuring laptops for personal networks.

Section 2: Computer Platform - Selection and Approval

  1. Due to the additional costs associated with the purchase, maintenance, and support of a computer platform other than the college standard, employees currently using the standard platform who are familiar with, productive on, and able to perform their Cornell responsibilities will continue to use the standard platform. 
  2. Justification for a non-standard computer platform will consider the following:
    1. Current employees and new staff
      1. Software/hardware is available only on the requested platform.
      2. Equivalent or compatible software/hardware is not feasible to obtain or maintain for the standard computer system.
      3. Transitioning to equivalent or compatible software/hardware has proven too difficult, thus significantly affecting the employee’s effectiveness and productivity.
      4. Industry standards.
    2. New faculty
      1. New faculty are encouraged to use the standard platform.  Special consideration will be given to new faculty members who are not familiar with the current standard platform and the requested software and hardware will significantly enhance the employee’s effectiveness and productivity.
      2. All labs and technology classrooms are configured with the standard platform.  Any request must account for compatibility with teaching spaces.
      3. Industry standards.
  3. Any current users of non-standard systems, or users who are approved for non-standard systems in the future, will not be required to justify maintaining their platforms unless future compatibility or feasibility issues arise.
  4. Users of a non-standard system who intentionally change the Information Technology provided configuration of their system and interfere with the management of the system will be moved to a standard software/hardware system.  Examples of this include, but are not limited to, uninstalling or disabling virus/malware detection and remote management software.
  5. During the hiring process, questions regarding computer requirements should be directed to the position’s division head and the Director of Information Technology; computing commitments may not be made by others.
  6. Information Technology will provide necessary training and assistance on standard systems as needed.
    1. Approval for non-standard platforms requires user proficiency on the requested platform.  Due to the various non-standard platforms available, and limited and possibly non-existent resources, training and assistance on non-standard platforms will be limited.
  7. Information Technology will continue to monitor and investigate changes in technology and the possible future integration of non-standard systems into the Cornell computing environment.

This policy will be reviewed within three years of its previous review.