Getting Started

There will be a lot of things to learn when you start your career here at the U. Below are suggested “to-dos” for your first day, your first week, and your first month of employment. Many of these may already be a part of an onboarding plan developed by your supervisor or department. If you have questions, make sure to check with your supervisor.

Before you start

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Before You Start—Get Ready for Day One at the U!

Congratulations on joining the University of Minnesota! As you get ready for your first day, remember that all new faculty, staff, and students must complete the I-9 form by their first day of work.

I-9 Verification

New employees must provide the needed original documents on or before their first day of work for pay. You should receive information on this requirement in the written offer for your position.

You can start some of the forms before your first day of work for pay by filling out your portion of the online I-9 form. The Employee Guide to Completing the I-9 Form (pdf) is available to help you through the process. This government web page shows what documents you may need to bring to your first day of work. Your employer will also work with you to explain the I-9 process. The federal government requires original documents; photocopies cannot be accepted for the I-9.

If you have any questions, email or call the Office of Human Resources Contact Center (, 612-624-8647 or 800-756-2363).

New Employee Conversation Guide

It’s hard to know what to ask about and to know what you don’t know. This guide (pdf) provides questions you can use with your new supervisor and team members. Also, check out these online campus resources to help you get acquainted with the U.

Suggested to-dos

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First Day

  • Check that you have your documents to complete the I-9. You will not be allowed to begin work if you cannot complete the I-9.
  • Meet your supervisor and co-workers: Get to know the people you will be working with. Try to learn the names of at least four of your co-workers by the end of the day.
  • Tour your work area and building: Get to know your workspace. This includes the mailroom, break room, emergency exits, restrooms, and parking locations.
  • Fill out employment forms: W-4 form, etc. Your human resources professional will help with this, but you can start some of the forms before starting work by filling out your portion of the I-9 form. The Employee Guide to Completing the I-9 Form (pdf) is available to help you through the process.
  • Get your employee identification: You will be assigned an Internet ID once you are entered into the University's payroll system. The Office of Information Technology can help you set up your email account and password.

First Week

  • Get a U Card: The U Card is your official University of Minnesota photo ID. Your U Card will give you access to many campus facilities and services such as secure work locations, librariescomputer labs, and the Recreation and Wellness Center. You must bring a government-issued photo ID with you when you get your U Card.
  • Sign up for direct deposit: Direct deposit allows payroll to deposit your pay directly to your bank account. You must have your Internet ID and password to do this. To sign up, go to MyU and look at My Pay, and then Direct Deposit Set-Up.
  • Parking and transportation services: Visit the Parking and Transportation Services website for information about parking, bus, and light rail schedules.
  • Review training and development plan: Talk to your supervisor about which training courses you will need and be sure you get them scheduled. 
  • Sign up for benefits: New employees must enroll in benefits within 30 days from the start of their employment. University benefits include medical, dental, pharmacy, life insurance, financial counseling, and more. Be sure to read through the 2024 New Employees Guide for Benefits Enrollment (pdf) for information about all University of Minnesota benefits.
  • Enroll in the Wellbeing Program: You can participate in the Wellbeing Program to earn points toward a potential annual savings of $500 or $750 on your University medical rates.
  • Explore the campus: Visit the many beautiful campus sites and buildings. Campus maps for the Twin CitiesCrookstonDuluthMorris, and Rochester will help you find your way around your campus.


First Month