News & Events

Why We Periodically Shut Down CalPERS Websites

Image of a girl with tablet in her hands. She presses technical support button on virtual screen. The concept of customer support, interface customization, etc.

While we can sometimes make updates to our websites without taking them offline, there are times we need to shut them down for such purposes. This short period is known as downtime.

We understand this can be inconvenient, but downtime is necessary for members to get the information and services needed as quickly and securely as possible.

Tell Me More About Downtime

Downtimes are scheduled whenever updates are necessary for our websites. Typically, we take down the myCalPERS site about once every six weeks to implement changes.

We aim to take our sites offline with the least impact to our 2.2 million members and are strategic about when we choose to take our sites offline. We typically schedule downtime during weekends when we know members are less likely to conduct business.

There are rare instances that we need to make unplanned upgrades. Like planned downtimes, we try to limit the scope of impact by taking down the site on a weeknight, typically between 8:00 p.m. and 1:00 a.m.

Downtime Means Upgrades

If not for intermittent downtimes, we’d be unable to improve your online experience.

Throughout the years, we’ve made countless upgrades to both the CalPERS website and myCalPERS—upgrades that have earned customer satisfaction survey results in the 80% to 90% range. We’re also updating the CalPERS website with a new look and feel starting April 17.

We also frequently update security features, so your accounts stay protected from the latest cyber threats and trends.

Here’s a quick glance at some of the improvements and features we’ve added in recent years:

  • Responsive web design: This feature allows you to navigate our sites more easily from whichever device you prefer. Whether it’s on a desktop or a mobile device, responsive web design provides a fluid experience no matter your screen size.
  • Electronic Payment Gateway: Since June 2020, members can make CalPERS payments through our website using the Electronic Payment Gateway. Members also have the option to log in and make one-time or recurring payments and view their payment history in myCalPERS.
  • Health Plan Search by ZIP Code: Previously, members exploring health plan options had to search plans individually to determine if they were offered in their area. But thanks to a site upgrade, you can now search for health plans by ZIP code.
  • Two-factor authentication: In 2019 we boosted our security features to include two-factor authentication. Enable the tool today to ensure your sensitive information and benefits stay protected.

Downtimes are essential to providing the best online experience for our members. We promise to have our sites back up and better than ever as quickly as possible, so please bear with us as we work behind the scenes. Thank you for your understanding.