Wireless Handheld and Data Services (AP-05-201)

UW-River Falls Administrative Policy
Policy ID: AP-05-201
Effective: December 29, 2005
Revision: January 10, 2013 (Reviewed)
Review: Annual

Wireless Handheld and Data Services Policy

Maintained by: Division of Technology Services
Approved by: Chancellor
Next Review Date: December 2015

Printable PDF version


The Wisconsin Department of Administration (DOA) has issued an Enterprise Policy: Cellular Telephone Services and Equipment effective January 18, 2005; revised August 15, 2008, and renamed to Wireless Handheld Voice and Data Services and Equipment Policy (Wireless Services). This policy applies to all State employees and all State-owned wireless devices including telephones and “air cards” used in mobile computers. This policy also supersedes any existing local agency or campus policies.

The UW-River Falls Wireless Handheld and Data Services Policy identifies and establishes the local procedures we will utilize to comply with the DOA policy.


The UW-River Falls Chancellor issues this policy in accordance with the Administrative Policy process.
The Division of Technology Services is responsible for the administration of this policy.
Request an exception to this policy by writing to

Sanctions and Appeals Process

Failure to adhere to the provisions of this policy may result in appropriate disciplinary action as provided under existing procedures applicable to students, faculty, and staff, and/or civil or criminal prosecution.

Individual Responsibilities

Wireless cellular and smart telephones, like any other State-owned equipment, assigned to an employee are done so for valid, job-related reasons. No equipment so assigned should be considered as part of a State benefit program. All individuals using a wireless handheld device while in the capacity of the State (whether State provided or not) shall be responsible for complying with this policy.

University Responsibilities

The Assistant Chancellor for Business and Finance is responsible for ensuring compliance with this policy. The Division of Technology Services will assist the Assistant Chancellor by providing information concerning equipment and service assignments, usage patterns and rate plans. The Division of Technology Services will be coordinating all auditing of services as required by this policy.

Department/Unit Responsibilities

Colleges, units and departments are responsible for complying with this policy.

Cellular Telephone Assignment Must be Cost Justified

The DOA policy requires that the additional operating costs of a cellular telephone must be cost justified and approved by an appropriate University official. Valid justification for an employee having a State-owned cellular telephone include: frequent travel; job responsibilities that require the employee to be out of the office for extended periods of time and require mobile communication in order to perform their job duties; employees who are continuously on call.

In October of each year, each supervisor of a University employee who is assigned cellular services will receive a listing of those employees from the Division of Technology Services. It is the supervisor's responsibility to review each assignment of wireless services to determine if there is an on-going need for the service. An appropriate indication must be entered on the listing for each employee, the listing signed by the supervisor and then returned to the Division of Technology Services.

DOA Acknowledgement of Receipt Form:

Any employee assigned a State-owned wireless telephone must sign a DOA issued form DOA-5800 (available at the above DOA website in PDF format) which the supervisor must retain the original form on file for the duration of such assignment plus three years. The Division of Technology Services shall require that a copy of this form is submitted to them prior to placing any orders for new services. When an employee leaves their position or is no longer authorized for the assignment of a wireless telephone, the device must be returned to the Division of Technology Services. If a department wishes to repurpose the phone to a replacement employee, they shall return the phone for reprogramming of a new telephone number. “Pool” phones will be assigned to a responsible individual and the phone’s use by the pool users will be the responsibility of that registered individual.

Monthly Bill Review

The Division of Technology Services will email copies of the invoices as they are received from each of the wireless companies. Invoices will be provided to the supervisor (or their designated authority) to ensure that a review is completed on a monthly basis per employee.

The "Cell Phone Monthly Invoice Review Certification" form must be signed by the employee and supervisor, attached to the monthly bill, and kept on file by the supervisor for a period of three years. Employees are responsible for keeping track of and identifying their personal calls. Any personal use of a State cell phone, including essential personal calls and calls permitted under a collective bargaining agreement or the Compensation Plan, should be identified by the employee and discussed with his/her supervisor or designee on a monthly basis.

Use for Personal Calls

Only essential personal calls should be made with a State-owned cellular telephone. Essential personal calls are defined as calls of a minimum duration and frequency that are urgent in nature and cannot be made at another time or from a different telephone. Examples of essential personal calls are to arrange for care of a child or other family emergency, to alert a family member of an unexpected delay due to a change in work schedule, or to arrange for transportation or service in the event of car trouble, etc.

Although the DOA policy does allow for employees to make non-essential personal calls on their State-owned cellular telephones and to then reimburse the State for those calls, UW-River Falls administration would prefer to avoid the administrative overhead required by such transactions and, therefore, request that no non-essential personal calls be made at any time. In the event there is an emergency which requires personal use of the Sate phone, the user is to notify their supervisor and reimburse the University for the calls at the State contract rate plus a $.06 per minute surcharge and any additional amounts for applicable toll or roaming charges, miscellaneous fees and taxes. Reimbursement for any personal calls should be deposited with the Accounts Payable office by departments along with a copy of the annotated bill noting the personal call(s) and their cost.

The standard State wireless service plans have per minute rates assigned to their usage. There is a break-even point when the State plan is no longer cost affordable, the employee will be place on a more cost effective plan by the Division of Technology Services in cooperation with the supervisor. Most of these more cost effective plans have a pool of minutes to be used between phones on the account (like a family plan) or at minimum a pool of minutes to be used by a single individual. The method used to determine the cost per minute is to divide the monthly cost into the number of pool minutes. For example, a phone user has 1000 minutes per month for $38.00 per month, the cost per minute would be $38.00 / 1000 = $0.04 (rounded up) per minute. Any minutes over the pool amount will be indicated as well as their cost.

Use of a State cellular telephone in violation of this policy or the DOA policy may result in revocation of the assigned phone and possibly disciplinary action against the employee.

Reimbursement of Personal Calls

See the section above “Use for Personal Calls” to determine the appropriate amount to be reimbursed. When possible, the individual will write a check to the University of Wisconsin-River Falls for the amount to be reimbursed and give it to their supervisor. If a check is not possible, cash/currency will be collected from the employee.

The supervisor shall paper clip the check to the Cell Phone Monthly Invoice Review Certification and a copy of the telephone bill. The supervisor will then deposit this with the Accounting department into the appropriate UDDS account from which the bill was originally paid. The supervisor shall maintain the original documents in their file.

Employee Safety in Using a Wireless Device While Operating a Motor Vehicle

Employees are responsible for operating a motor vehicle while conducting State business in a safe and prudent manner. Employees are discouraged from using their wireless devices while operating a motor vehicle. Employees who must use their devices are to utilize hands-free accessories whenever possible in order to maximize their attentiveness while driving.

Many municipalities and state have restrictive distracted driving laws; those laws supersede this policy.

Document Retention

All documents related to compliance of this policy shall be retained in a departmental file for at least three years from the receipt or generation of the document.

Related Documents 


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