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We understand that your first days, weeks, and months can be a mix of excitement, information overload, and loads of questions. We're here to support your transition and set you up for success. The following is a guide to help you navigate onboarding, whether remote or in person, and to ensure you feel welcome and connected to Stanford.

Getting Started

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Download your onboarding checklist

If you'd like a printable version of the onboarding checklist on this page, access the document here.

Pre-Day 1

Before you officially start working at Stanford, there are a few steps you can take to make your transition smoother and more comfortable.

Pre-Day 1 checklist

Set up your SUNet ID (5 mins)
  1. Create your SUNetID and password on the Stanford Accounts website and enable two-step authentication. Please have your employee ID number available from your Welcome Center email.
  2. Email your new SUNet ID to your manager and HR point of contact.

Note: Your SUNet ID stays with you regardless of your role at the university. If you already have a SUNet ID, please skip this step.

Upload Stanford ID photo (5 mins)

Upload your photo for your Stanford ID on the Campus Card Services website. This photo will be used for your virtual badge and any physical badge you might order. (If you order a physical badge, refer to “Month 1” information.) 

Notes: 1) Approval for photos can take 24–72 business hours. 2) If you are not commonly known by your full legal name, you can enter a preferred name into the university data systems by visiting the Campus Card instruction page. Follow the instructions for Faculty/Staff. 3.) For any questions, submit a HelpSU request or call 650-498-CARD (650-498-2273) during business hours.

Check-in with your manager (5 mins)

Please confirm with your manager where and when you should meet on your first day and if you need to provide any information for ordering your laptop. Note: you may not need a laptop depending on your role.

Set up your I-9 appointment (5 mins)

You must complete your I-9 appointment within your first three days of working at Stanford. You can sign up on the Stanford I-9 website, which also has additional I-9 resources and information.

For those working at SLAC and R&DE, please note that a team member will reach out to you directly to complete your I-9. For fully remote employees working outside of the Bay Area, please contact your local HR to provide options for completing your I-9.

Note: Some departments and schools do not utilize the Central I-9 appointment locations to complete the verification process. Please check with your local HR point of contact to see if an appointment is needed.

Tip: Unsure who your local HR point of contact is? You can usually find their name on your offer letter.

Reserve transportation for your first day (5-10 mins)

If you plan to drive: If you need to park on your first day of work and are not yet able to access the Online Ordering Portal, please complete the Parking Registration Form linked in your Welcome Center email to purchase a ‘C’ Daily permit using your credit card. After your first day, you can access the system to purchase a parking permit using pre-tax payroll deduction.

If you’re using transit: If you plan to take transit your first day of work and would like to receive your Stanford-issued transit passes in the mail as close as possible to your first day, complete this form to submit your transit pass request. If you would like your Stanford-issued transit pass(es) but don’t need them your first week of work, request them through our Transit Pass Request Form, which you can access two business days after your first day of employment.

If you need additional support, check out our Stanford Transportation site.

Day 1

Welcome to Stanford. These are the essential tasks we recommend you complete on day 1.

Laptop appointment (1 hr, virtual or in-person)

Laptop setup varies by department; please check in with your manager to ensure your laptop setup is planned for Day 1.

Attend the Welcome Center session online on your first day or week (90 mins, virtual)

Sessions are held every Monday at 10:30 am (PST). Search for an email from "" to get the Zoom link and additional tips to help you get started.

Download the Stanford mobile app (5 mins)

Stanford Mobile can be downloaded from the Apple Store or Google Play. The app includes a campus map, a trackable shuttle map, schedules, and a virtual ID card. Learn more about Stanford Mobile.

Day 2

Attend benefits session online (60 mins, virtual)

Sessions are held every Tuesday at 11:00 am (PST). Search for an email from "" to get the Zoom link and some tips to help you get started. Learn more about your benefits.

Download Your Team’s Messaging Tool (5 mins)

Download your team's preferred messaging tool and ensure you can access team channels. Many teams use Slack, a messaging app that offers a platform for live chats for individuals and groups. It keeps conversations organized and available from anywhere, at any time. If your team uses a different tool, ensure you have that downloaded and set up.

Explore Axess (5 mins)

Explore Axess, a site where you will complete your compliance and required trainings, set up direct deposit, select your tax withholdings, view annual tax statements, and more.

Attend your I-9 appointment within 3 days of hire (15 mins, in-person)

Haven’t set up or attended your I-9 appointment yet? Be sure to finish this action item by tomorrow, as your I-9 appointment must be completed within your first three days of working at Stanford. You can sign up on the Stanford I-9 site. Note: See the Pre-day 1 checklist items for more details.

Week 1

Complete Patent Agreement SU-18 (5 mins)

Please complete this agreement, which you can find by going to Axess > Employee Center tab > Patent Agreement SU-18.

Set up your direct deposit (5 mins)

Sign up for direct deposit by going to Axess > Employee Center tab > View/Edit Direct Deposit; otherwise, you will receive a physical check in the mail each pay cycle.

Enter directory profiles (15 mins)

Enter Directory, AlertSU, and Emergency Contacts, as well as manage the visibility settings for your directory profile by going to Axess > Footer > StanfordYou > Login > HomePage.

Review time card procedures for time/leave and the university holiday list (15 mins)

Your supervisor or department will help you, or view the online tutorial in the Financial Gateway. You can also view the University holiday schedule

Review transportation policies and perks (15 mins)

Bike, carpool, or transit - the transportation team can help you find the best way to get to, from, and around campus.

Review dining options (optional, 15 mins)

Explore Stanford’s dining program and learn what food options are available, regardless of which campus you work from.

Complete self-identification status (optional, 5 mins)

Provide your race/ethnicity, veteran status, and disability status by going to Axess > Employee Center > Personal Information.

Complete tax withholding allowances

Complete tax withholding allowances (W-4 & DE-4) by going to Axess > Employee Center > Pay.

Purchase a Stanford-branded item with discount code (optional)

Review the email you received within your first week of starting at Stanford from Vice President for Human Resources Elizabeth Zacharias. That email includes a $25 gift code that allows you to purchase a Stanford-branded item on the GoStanford website supported by Fanatics (please note the code expires after 30 days).

Employee Information Security Awareness Video (12 mins)

To complete this training, navigate to the Stanford Account site > Manage > Watch Employee Information Security Awareness Video.

Apply for campus child care (optional if you have a child 8 weeks to 5 years old)

Stanford has six on-site early childhood education programs that serve children in the Stanford community ranging in age from infants to five years old. Our programs offer families peace of mind that their children are cared for by early childhood professionals close to their place of work. Explore your child care options.

Month 1

Enroll in health and life benefits (Enroll within the first 31 days of your employment, 30 mins)

You must enroll in or decline your benefits within 31 days of starting at Stanford.

Visit campus or take a virtual tour

Watch a virtual tour of Stanford's campus on the Stanford Visitor Information site.

Complete training needs assessment (optional, 15 mins)

Complete your training needs assessment by going to Axess > STARS > Visit STARS Home Page > Training Needs Assessment.

Attend a retirement planning session (1 hr, virtual)

Sign up for our monthly retirement planning session to learn more about plan eligibility, contributions, and enrollment. Explore retirement options on Cardinal at Work.

Complete W2 electronic consent (optional after your first paycheck, 5 mins)

Complete W-2 electronic consent after your first paycheck; otherwise, your W-2 will be mailed to your mailing address. To do this, go to Axess > Employee Center > Taxes.

Start saving for retirement (optional after your first paycheck)

After your first paycheck, you can begin saving for retirement by going to Axess > Employee Center > Retirement Savings. Learn more on Cardinal at Work.

Sign up for BeWell (15 mins)

To encourage you to prioritize your well-being and provide you with practical wellness tools and resources, Stanford offers BeWell, a wellness program that is available to all benefits-eligible university employees.

Learn about staff recreation (optional, 5 mins)

Recreation and Wellness provides world-class recreation and wellness programming for the student, staff, faculty, and community of Stanford University and partners with organizations that embody and enhance experiences for lifelong wellness. 

Get your physical ID card (optional, 30 mins)

If you’d like to obtain a physical ID card in addition to your virtual badge, you can set up an appointment with the badging office and then pick up your badge on campus.

Review STAP funds and policies (15 mins)

The Stanford Training Assistant Program (STAP) provides reimbursement for tuition, registration fees, and required textbooks for any training activity directly related to your job or a career development effort. Review the STAP website to learn more about what is covered under STAP as well as to find answers to the most common questions relating to STAP.

Explore Stanford Federal Credit Union (optional, 15 mins)

Explore Stanford Federal Credit Union’s resources, including loan rates, mortgage rates, seminars, and events.

Review Stanford Sweeteners (15 mins)

Review Stanford’s “sweeteners,” a list of perks and rewards that you can access as a Stanford employee, from discounts and incentives to facilities access to professional development resources. Some of our favorites include 10% off the Stanford bookstore; spouses, domestic partners, and dependents up to age 26 being able to access our 17+ gyms; the ability to audit academic courses; and library privileges for our 24 libraries!

Sign up for an upcoming new hire event (optional, 5 mins)

Our Welcome Center team offers several exclusive events for new hires, including tours of our historic Palo Alto campus and new hire social events. Sign up for events on the “Session and Events” tab of our Welcome Center website.

Administrative Guide Acknowledgement (HRC-3161, due 14 days)

To complete this training, navigate to Axess > STARS > All Learning > Enroll: Course HRC-3161- AGA.

General Safety, Injury Prevention, and Emergency Preparedness (EHS-4200, due 30 days)

To complete this training, navigate to Axess > STARS > All Learning > Enroll: Course EHS-4200- WEB. 

Acknowledgment of Mandated Reporter (assigned by dept; OGC-0001, due 30 days)

To complete this training, navigate to Axess > STARS > All Learning > Enroll: Course OGC-0001- WEB.

For supervisors: Sexual Harassment Prevention (SHP-1023, due 30 days, 2+ hours)

To complete this training, watch for an email invitation within a few days of your start date. If you do not receive the STARS notification, contact your department’s Human Resources Manager or Faculty Affairs Officer to assign you the harassment prevention training.

For non-supervisors: Addressing Sexual Misconduct (SHP-2024, due 30 days, 2+ hours)

To complete this training, watch for an email invitation within a few days of your start date. If you do not receive the STARS notification, contact your department’s Human Resources Manager or Faculty Affairs Officer to assign you the harassment prevention training.

IDEAL Learning Journey (Start within the first month; confirm the completion date with manager)

The IDEAL Learning Journey is a shared experience to help us build awareness, strengthen skills, and apply positive approaches in our daily interactions so we feel respected and have a sense of belonging. To complete this training, watch for an email invitation or search for IDEAL in Axess. *Note: The IDEAL Learning Journey consists of completing virtual, self-paced learnings as well as an optional workshop.

Stanford Code of Conduct (COC-1000, 30 mins)

To complete this training, navigate to Axess > STARS > All Learning > Enroll: COC-1000-WEB.

Submit Work Agreement (Hybrid, Remote, or Onsite; 15 mins)

To comply with university policy, employees – excluding global staff, faculty, postdocs, and students – in a hybrid or remote work arrangement must have an agreement in Axess. Learn more on the Cardinal at Work Flexible Work page.

Review WorkLife Programs and Services (15 mins)

The WorkLife Office delivers programs and services for every stage of life to support you in managing the competing demands of work, school, family and personal responsibilities.

Month 2

Join one of our collaborative communities

Join other professionals and coworkers in one or more of our Communities of Practice or staff groups.

Review Faculty Staff Help Center (15 mins)

The Faculty Staff Help Center offers professional and confidential counseling for individuals, couples, and families to address both work and personal issues as well as offers workshops, consultations, departmental trainings, and more. Explore all of their offerings on their website.

Review Cardinal at Work website

Cardinal at Work is our one-stop shop for all things relating to the Stanford employee experience. Explore employee events, health & wellness resources, and more on the Cardinal at Work site.

Review Cardinal at Work Cares

At Stanford, we recognize the importance of giving back to the community. Cardinal at Work Cares, Stanford’s employee give-back program, allows you to connect with your colleagues and contribute to a meaningful cause while enhancing your sense of purpose, well-being, and the wellness of our community.

Month 3

Attend a Stanford event

Connect with your fellow Stanford community members by attending one of our many virtual or in-person events! Whether you choose to cheer for Stanford at a football game, sing along at a Frost Amphitheater concert, or explore an exhibition at the Cantor Arts Center, we can guarantee there’s an upcoming event that will pique your interest. Check out the Stanford Events Calendar, Stanford Athletics site, and Stanford Live  for more information.

Explore additional benefits (15 mins)

Explore more of our many Stanford resources and perks, including: My Cardinal Green, Recreation & Wellness Resources, Tuition Grant Program, Gartner Access, and Career Counseling Network.