University Life prioritizes the importance of helping new employees acclimate to their new work environments as part of our guiding principles. These resources are for hiring managers and new employees. 

University Life Onboarding Process

July 2023

The process outlined gives University Life hiring managers a high-level reference guide to the onboarding process. 

Human Resources Process

Post Vacant Position

Recruiting Phase

Offer Accepted by Candidate

  • Candidate is “Ready for Hire” after background check.
  • New hire will create a Pennkey in Workday.
  • Workday will generate the Penn ID number.
  • Reference Penn HR Onboarding website.
  • Ask new hire for Pennkey and Penn ID.
  • Initiate the UL Tech Services Process.

University Life Process

Onboarding | New Hire Pre-Arrival

Notify UL Technology Services

This process will take up to 4 days to complete.

  • Email Address activation.
  • Access to software and applications.
  • Access to group email accounts and listservs.
  • Workstation and technology set-up.

Notify UL Strategic Planning Team

  • Remove the job post from the UL Career webpage.
  • Assign onboarding buddy to new hire.
  • Create a welcome kit for the new hire (divisional swag and VP welcome note)
  • Send out a monthly email to all staff introducing new hires.

Welcome to University Life

New Hire Arrival | [optional] Share the Transition Plan Document

Continue Internal Department-specific Onboarding

  • Connect new hire with UL Strategic Team to review Design/Brand, Tech, and Space/Events procedures and protocol.

New Employees

As Philadelphia’s largest employer, Penn is a diverse, inclusive learning community at the forefront of groundbreaking research and academic achievements. Our student population is exceptionally bright and committed to local and global change. When you join University Life, you are joining the greater Penn professional community.


Employee Resources

Employees are encouraged to visit the links below for additional resources provided by campus and community partners. Your manager, team, and onboarding buddy can also be valuable resources as you navigate the start of your University Life journey.

Onboarding Buddy Program

The goal of University Life’s Buddy Program is to grow a new hire’s circle of colleagues early into their tenure at Penn. Within the first weeks of your new role, you will be contacted by email by your assigned Onboarding Buddy so you can schedule a time to meet over coffee or lunch. Our aim is to provide you with a point of contact outside of your day-to-day team that will help you navigate the student affairs community at Penn and give insight into our division by:

  • Scheduling a (complimentary) lunch date
  • Providing context on university culture and campus norms
  • Serving as a connector with colleagues across the institution
  • Pointing out the best coffee shops and restaurants around campus
  • Sharing opportunities and resources such as campus traditions or recommended list-servs for you to join
  • Providing a tour around campus

Campus Tours

Did you know the University of Pennsylvania campus is a designated arboretum? Learn interesting facts and familiarize yourself with campus beyond Locust Walk on a tour! All employees, not just those who are new, are encouraged to join these tours as a wellness break and community builder. Tours offer you an opportunity to socialize with colleagues while learning about campus beyond the buildings that make up University Life.

Contact Laurie McCaffrey for details on the next University Life campus tour.