Before You Arrive

There are important steps to take before your first day on the job!


You've signed your offer letter -- now what?


#1: Activate Your NetID

Watch for an email or letter that contains your NetID and activation instructions. Your NetID gives you access to Cornell resources, and must be activated before you can proceed with the onboarding and orientation process.

  • If you haven't received your NetID email or letter, contact the HR Services & Transitions Center: 607-255-3936 (TTY: 711),
  • If you have a prior affiliation with Cornell and are already using your NetID, you can continue to use your current password; or click here to reset your password.

#2: Set up Two-Step Login

Two-Step Login protects your personal and professional information at Cornell. You'll need it to access Workday in the next step. 

Set up Two-Step Login


#3: Login to Workday & Begin Your Onboarding To-Do List

Workday is the Cornell employee system where information such as your pay, benefits, contact, time off, and other data is maintained. When you login, your personal dashboard will direct you to important onboarding steps, including scheduling your onboarding appointment  (if eligible). 

  • It may take up to 24 hours for your NetID to integrate with Workday (keep an eye out for the "Welcome to Cornell -- Important Next Steps" email).


#4: Review the Faculty and Staff Health and Safety Protocols

 As a member of the Cornell community, we expect you to take active steps to stay informed as new information and governmental guidance becomes available regarding working during COVID-19.


Onboarding Appointment

mature woman smiling at deskEligible employees are strongly encouraged to schedule an onboarding appointment in advance of, and no later than, your first day of work. A link to schedule this appointment will appear on your to-do list in your Workday inbox.

At your appointment, a counselor from the HR Services and Transitions Center (HRSTC) will provide you with:

  • information on how to receive your Cornell photo ID card,
  • information about the completion of the Form I-9
  • answers to your questions and assistance in completing your new hire tasks including benefits enrollment
  • information about contacting our Transportation Office regarding your parking and/or bus options.


If your position is benefits-eligible, we recommend that you review your benefits options before your onboarding appointment, so that your HRSTC counselor can answer any questions and help you enroll if you're ready.  If you like, you can  go into Workday to begin your enrollment (just click SAVE and EXIT in Workday), and then review with your HRSTC counselor before submitting.  Note: You do not need to enroll in benefits before your first day at work; however there is a time limit for enrollment.

Check your offer letter or contact the HR Services & Transitions Center: 607-255-3936 (TTY: 711), if you're not sure whether your benefits are endowed or contract college.



Form I-9:

Please be prepared to present original, unexpired documents to verify your identity and employment eligibility.  List of acceptable documents  (see page 3)

Benefits Enrollment:

Bring identification for yourself and any other documentation needed to enroll dependents in health and dental plans.



If you won't be working in Ithaca, you will have the option to schedule a virtual appointment.


Onboarding at the HR Services & Transitions Center


If you're coming from elsewhere on campus or the Ithaca area, check out the convenient  TCAT bus trip planner.  Visitor parking is also available.

HR Services & Transitions
East Hill Office Building
395 Pine Tree Rd.
Ithaca, NY 14850


What to Expect


This is a general guideline; there may be variations to this outline depending on your job.

  • Formal Offer Letter:  after you've accepted a verbal or informal written offer, you will be sent a formal letter or email detailing the terms and conditions of the job offer, and information about the next steps to take. If you are eligible for benefits, this letter will state what kind of benefits you have (Endowed or Contract College). We recommend that you print and save this document for your records.
  • NetID Email: You'll receive an email with instructions on how to activate your  NetID.
  • Welcome to Cornell - Important Next Steps Email: You’ll receive an email with information outlining the next steps, including beginning your onboarding process in Workday and scheduling an onboarding appointment (for eligible employees). If you have questions, please contact the HR Services & Transitions Center: 607-255-3936 (TTY: 711), hrservices@cornell.eduYou'll receive an email with instructions on how to begin your onboarding  process in Workday. Login as soon as possible to see an important to-do list that will get you set up as a Cornell employee!

Important: If you haven't received any of these emails or letters,  contact your hiring manager or the  HR Services & Transitions Center: 607-255-3936 (TTY: 711), ​