Business Continuity Planning for Canvas


One of the things that is often not front of mind for many institutions is creating a Business Continuity Plan (BCP) in relation to Canvas. As you can imagine, when a key person leaves a business (or even just goes on leave), there can be holes that need to be filled either temporarily or permanently by those who remain in the business. Consciously creating a BCP will help your institution to overcome the challenges that arise in these situations.

In this post, we will look at some things that you may want to consider to be a part of your BCP.


  • Identify one or more backup admin users who are familiar with the Admin tools in Canvas and how you use them for your organisation
  • Ensure that current staff have completed or are up to speed with the training from your Canvas implementation
  • Make sure you know how to access your Canvas Implementation Course or training recordings (if applicable/available)
  • Ensure that you have multiple staff trained on building your Canvas courses and how to use the tools in Canvas to deliver teaching and learning (depending on the type of institution you are, this will often be all of your teaching staff!)

Field Admin

  • Update your Field Admin so that the correct person has access to the Field Admin Console to communicate with our Support team
  • Consider having a “generic” field admin user so that a new field admin user does not need to be set up when someone leaves (distribution list email)

Identifying knowledge gaps and have backups for tasks

  • Identify the tasks that are regularly performed by your Canvas Admins so you know what your backup admin needs to do or needs training on how to do
  • Don’t wait till someone leaves before making sure your backup person/people perform those tasks to ensure they know “how to do things”
  • Consider having a rotating roster for tasks so that you aren’t reliant on one single person to perform any task in the organisation
  • Consider having more than one person involved in the design and development of your courses


Lastly, one of the most important aspects of the points above is to make sure that any alternate/backup admins are connected to your Canvas CSM team. That way, they will know who to reach out to in order for any strategic conversations with the use of Canvas at your organisation.

We know that if you implement the points above that success with Canvas at your institution will be much higher. The principles behind the tips above are great for implementing processes for other systems you use, too. Make sure to document your processes and who owns each task (as well as who is the backup). If you have any questions about any of the above, please reach out to your CSM team and we will be happy to discuss this further.