Internal mass email requirements, guidelines and best practices

Email is an efficient, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly way to communicate with large groups of people. However, non-strategic use of mass email can reduce employee productivity and hinder the University’s ability to deliver critical messages. It is critical that mass email communications be conducted effectively and efficiently.

Recognizing these expectations and concerns, the university has created these requirements, guidelines, and best practices to ensure email remains an effective form of communication.

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Email is the University of Nevada, Reno’s official means of communicating information to faculty, staff, and students. Mass email is any email message sent to the entire campus or large subset (e.g., all students, all undergraduates, all graduate students, all faculty, all staff, etc.).


Appropriate use of internal mass email

Mass email is appropriate for information that pertains to the majority of the recipients, is critical and/or time-sensitive, and meets one or more of the following standards:

  • Alerts the campus community to situations about health and safety risks;
  • Provides information essential to the operation or execution of business;
  • Notifies the campus community about changes in governance, policy, and practice; and
  • Communicates important information from the president, provost, or other university senior leadership.


Inappropriate use of internal mass email

Inappropriate use of internal mass email includes, but is not limited to:

  • Messages that are not in line with the University’s mission of teaching, research, and service;
  • Messages that are commercial in nature with the exception of those messages that are in support of University business;
  • Political activities that advocate for or against a ballot measure or candidate;
  • Messages for job postings or research recruitment;
  • Marketing or advertising of programs, majors, classes, products, or events offered or sponsored by the University;
  • Solicitations for contributions, charities, or participation in personal activities not related to University purposes or not sponsored by the University;
  • Solicitations for non-University businesses operated by University faculty or staff; and
  • Messages that are discriminatory or infringe on privacy.

Announcements that do not meet the outlined standards or are inappropriate for mass email should use other communication channels as listed below.


Required approval and authorization

Authorization to send mass email is automatically granted in the following three cases:

  1. Official University announcements
    Requests to send out mass emails to the following University populations must be approved by the designated authorized approver. If none is listed, please email
  2. Emergency communications
    In an emergency, approval may be bypassed.

  3. Local authority
    Schools, colleges, departments, units, and administrative offices are authorized to send messages to their students, faculty, or staff, in accordance with department or school guidelines and procedures. Units are encouraged to use the best practices detailed below. Contact your dean or marketing and communications specialist for direction and/or approval.


Required content

Mass emails must include the following:

  1. Approved University logo at the top or prominently placed within the email
  2. “University of Nevada, Reno” clearly identified in plain text messages
  3. The intended audience for the message clearly addressed toward the beginning of the email (e.g., "Dear faculty and staff,", "Dear students,", "I am writing to you today to...").
    • If this is not possible, please clearly identify the intended audience for the message in a note in the footer of the email (e.g., "This message was sent to all faculty, staff, and students.")
  4. Name of the sending unit and signatory or signatories of the message


Best practices guidelines

To promote operational efficiency and network security, the following guidelines govern internal mass email:

  1. A mass email message should be brief, self-explanatory, clear, and concise. If there is a need to convey more information, the sender should link to a webpage or seek other communication channels such as Nevada Today.
  2. Include a succinct subject line that conveys the email’s purpose.
  3. Provide a link or contact details through which people may ask questions or get more information.
  4. Avoid sending frequent or repeated messages. Follow-up messages or reminders should seek other communication channels, with the exception of emergency communications.
  5. Collaborate with others at the University to avoid redundancy and reduce the number of messages sent.
  6. Attachments are not allowed in mass email. A link to a webpage is recommended.
  7. Avoid acronyms and jargon. Do not use acronyms on first reference in the body of a message.
  8. Check spelling and grammar.
  9. Avoid sending emails at the end of the day or on Friday afternoons to prevent messages from getting “lost” during non-work hours.


Additional internal communication channels

Before deciding on mass email as the choice for any communication, units are strongly encouraged to use: