Getting Started

Checklist for new employees:

We encourage you to find out about your job and the campus during your first few weeks. Ask your supervisor or Department Benefits Counselor about the items below.

  • Obtain a benefits packet and find out the deadline for signing up for benefits from your Department Benefits Counselor, and make sure you meet the deadline.
  • View the Ethics and Conflict of Interest Briefings for New Employees.
  • Attend the campus New Employee Orientation (for nonacademic staff) or find out how your department orients academic employees.
  • Obtain your Cal 1 Card (UC Berkeley ID card).
  • Get a description of your job, a copy of your classification specifications, and your working title.
  • Find out about your department's organization chart and the mission of your department.
  • With your supervisor: discuss your probationary period, what's expected; performance evaluations during probation and beyond; the department's training plan for you during your probationary period.
  • Find out what Union Contract or University policy covers your position; obtain and read a copy of the contract or policy. Ask about your "fair share contribution" to your union, if applicable.
  • Learn about work schedules, call-in procedures in case of tardiness or absence, use of vacation and sick leave, completing time sheets, pay schedules, and work rules in your department.
  • Get an orientation to safety, emergency procedures, evacuation procedures, location of fire extinguishers, work hazards.
  • Learn about communicating within your department; how to find out information about the University. Discuss appropriate formats and avenues of communication within your unit. Ask where to get your questions answered. For instance, ask your supervisor how to find out about the items on this checklist.
  • Take a campus tour from Visitor Services.

Access & Identification

  • Business Cards: The campus uses UCSF Campus Life Services as the designated printer of campus business cards. You'll need an authorizing signature to complete your order.
  • Employee ID/Cal 1 Card: Your Employee ID number will be assigned as soon as your record is entered into the Human Capital Management system when you are hired. It can take one or two days before the system is able to verify your employment and can issue your ID card, also known as the Cal 1 Card.
    The Cal 1 Card is your permanent Employee ID card, and it is not transferable. This multi-purpose digital photo ID card combines multiple card technologies. In addition to serving as your photo identification card, this card will also permit you to gain access to campus buildings and events and allow you to take advantage of many University services. The card can also be used as a debit card to pay for purchases at selected locations on and around campus.
  • CalNet ID: Once you have your Employee ID number, you can visit this link to customize your CalNet ID (your Employee ID is the default) and change your passphrase. See the section entitled "Manage Your Identity" to make these changes. You will use your CalNet ID to gain online access to a multitude of campus resources and business systems.
  • Library privileges: Staff and faculty employees are entitled to library privileges, and your Cal 1 Card will enable you to use them right away.


Central Human Resources benefits information for new employees

Other campus health, wellness and safety information:

Please note:
Vacation, sick leave, and holidays are determined by personnel policy and bargaining agreements. Please see the personnel policy or bargaining agreement that covers your position for information on these topics. If you are a Visiting or Post-doctoral Scholar, please check with your department for information about your benefits.


Below are links to different kinds of calendars used by HR professionals and campus staff:
  • New Employee Orientation: Find out the dates of New Employee Orientations, and how to enroll.
  • Holidays and other dates: The University provides 13 holidays per year. On the campus calendar, you can search for events by date or event type.
  • Paydays and payroll schedules: You'll either receive your pay on the first of the month for the previous month or on a semi-monthly basis. Your supervisor will know which schedule you are on and when you should turn in your timesheet.


Computers, email, and telephones:

The following links will help you get information on how to set up email, voicemail, and other campus technology services. Many services are arranged for you by your department, so check with your supervisor. Additionally, before setting up your technology services, please read the UC Berkeley Computer Use and Electronic Communications policies.

The following links are from the Information Services and Technology website, in the section entitled Getting Started: Individuals -


In case of an emergency:

  • Ask your supervisor about building emergencies (where to go in the event of a fire alarm, how to check in to let someone know you are out of the building).
  • For information on campus emergency preparedness, go to the Office of Emergency Management website.
  • Read all about the campus WarnMe emergency alert service.
  • If you have an office emergency and need immediate assistance, dial 911 from a campus phone.
  • For more information about the University Police Department, go to the UCPD website.

Ethics & Conflict of Interest

The Office of Ethics, Risk and Compliance Services (OERCS) has recently published two briefings for new employees regarding Ethics and Financial Conflict of Interest. The briefings can be accessed through the UC Learning Center.

New employees are encouraged to view these briefings, which last about 30 minutes each, within the first six months of employment.

To find the briefings in the UC Learning Center:

  1. Visit the blu portal
  2. Sign in using your CalNet ID
  3. Select "UC Learning Center" in the "Self Service" section
  4. Search for the appropriate class code:
    • BE-ERC002 – An Ethics Briefing for New Employees
    • BEERC_004 – A Financial Conflicts of Interest Briefing for New Employees

Personnel Policies

  • Personnel policies and union contracts: If you are a staff employee, your job is covered by either a contract negotiated between the University and a union, or by Personnel Policies for Staff (PPSM). Check with your supervisor to see what you are covered by. If you are covered by PPSM, you are entitled to a copy of the policies. Ask your supervisor how you can obtain one.

    You can read the personnel policies on line. Information about unions and copies of the contracts are posted on this website as well. Some of the contracts state that a copy of the contract is to be provided to each covered employee by the University. Check with your supervisor. You can also look under "Access" in the contract.

    There are also other policies that are unique to the Berkeley campus and apply to all staff employees.

    Academic employees are covered by the Academic Personnel Manual, which is posted on the Academic Personnel Office website.

  • Job classification and pay programs: Your job is placed in a generic classification. For information, please see Compensation: Classification.