Human Resources Guidelines

HRG20 Separation and Transfer Protocol

Policy Status: 


Subject Matter Expert: 

Valerie Henne-Hallman, 814-863-6083,

Policy Steward: 

Vice President for Human Resources






This guideline establishes University expectations for processing separations and transfers of covered individuals. The intent of the guideline is to ensure that all University property is retrieved and that access to University facilities and systems are appropriately restricted at the time of separation or transfer of a covered individual. Whenever possible, managers/University contacts and covered individuals will work together in a collaborative effort to ensure a smooth transition in the event of a separation or transfer. However, managers/University contacts bear ultimate responsibility for ensuring compliance with this policy. 


Affiliates: Individuals who are engaged in work and activities that are paid or unpaid, which are fully or partially controlled or managed by the University not classified as an employee. This includes, but is not limited to, unpaid affiliations; volunteers , consultants, and contractors who conduct work on the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) premises, or who represent Penn State at non-Penn State locations; graduate assistants; or other similar positions. 

Checklist: A separation/transfer checklist in a form that will be completed by the responsible individual to ensure that the policy obligations listed below have been satisfied. 

Covered Individuals: Any individual listed above that is employed or engaged by Penn State in any capacity, that has been given key, card, or electronic access to University systems or facilities. 

Manager: Any employee charged with supervision of the employment or engagement of any covered individual. 

Separation: Any voluntary or involuntary cessation of the employment or engagement of the covered individual with the University. Examples of separation include, but are not limited to, resignation, retirement, dismissal, end of appointment, completion of third-party contracts for services, discontinuation of services by a temporary employee, or layoff. 

Transfer: Any move from one position to another, either within an established work unit or from one work unit to another work unit in the University, without a break in service. 

University Contact: Any University employee, which may include the departing individual's manager, who serve as the primary point of contact for all transfer and separation security tasks within a specific unit/office. While the University Contact may not have authority to complete every task, they shall be responsible for identifying and notifying the response parties to ensure that all items on the appropriate check list are completed. 

Unpaid Affiliations: Individuals who are not employed or paid by the University. This includes, but is not limited to, interns, temporary staffing agency employees, visiting scholars as defined by University Policy AC01, and non-employees who manage Penn State employees. 


Any individual currently employed or engaged by Penn State in any capacity including, but not limited to, the following positions:

  • Executives
  • Administrators
  • Academic Administrators
  • Faculty (including Adjunct Faculty)
  • Staff
  • Technical Service
  • Part-time and Temporary Employees not sponsored by a staff agency (wage payroll)
  • Graduate and Undergraduate Student Employees
  • Post-Doctoral Appointments
  • Work Study Students 
  • Affiliates
  • Unpaid Affiliations
  • Interns (both paid or unpaid*)
  • Volunteers*
  • Third-party employees, such as Consultants, Contractors and Temporary Staffing Agency Employees who conduct their work on Penn State premises and are given key or card access to University systems or facilities*
  • Any individual not mentioned above, that is given key, card, or electronic access to University systems or facilities*

*These individuals may not have a record in Workday, and a PDF Separation/Transfer Checklist form will need to be completed, a link is provided at the end of the policy.*


As soon as a manager/University contact becomes aware of a covered individual's impending separation or transfer, whether voluntary or involuntary, the manager shall notify Unit Human Resources of the impending separation and include the covered individual's projected last day. 

Prior to the covered individual's last day or employment/engagement or transfer, the manager/University contact is responsible for ensuring that the following have been completed, as applicable (not an all-inclusive list):

  • All time sheets and/or attendance records are complete and accurate, 
  • Purchasing cards are terminated and collected, 
  • Outstanding travel reports are settled,
  • Any advances, such as payroll advances, are collected,
  • All University-issued property has been collected, and
  • Appropriate changes to relevant approval paths have been completed. 

The manager/University contacts shall coordinate with Information Technology (IT) and Unit Human Resources to ensure that all access to area-specific and University-wide electronic systems and/or databases are appropriately restricted and/or terminated. Examples of such systems include, but are not limited to:

  • Shared email accounts,
  • Shared drives,
  • User-Managed Groups (UMGs), and
  • Unit-Administered Local System Accounts. 

In addition, the manager/University contact shall request that the covered individual take reasonable steps to remove any information belong to the University which may be housed in third party applications with which the University holds no contract (i.e. document repositories). The manager/University contact shall also request that the covered individual take reasonable steps to surrender access to University information to which they are no longer entitled, (i.e. listservs, wikis, etc.). 

The manager/University contact is also responsible for coordinating with Enterprise Networking and Communication Services to ensure that all telephone and voicemail access is appropriately restricted and reassigned, along with IT to create an "out of office" response for the covered individual's Penn State email account. 

The manager/University contact will be responsible for completing a checklist (electronic or paper format depending on situation), providing a status of the actions taken as a result of the employee's separation/transfer. The manager/University contact must execute the checklist in a timely manner at the time of all separations and transfers. 

In addition to the checklist, Department Heads, or their designee, should review the Checklist for Departing Researchers: Offboarding Departing Faculty prior to the departure of a research-active faculty member. 


When separating from the University, or transferring within the University, it is the responsibility of the covered individual to review information provided by their manager/University contact and Unit Human Resources, and to complete any required tasks prior to the separation/transfer effective date. 


Questions regarding the information contained in this policy should be directed to HR Shared Services. 


Former: HR102 Separation/Transfer Checklist

Checklist for Departing Researchers: Offboarding Departing Faculty 


AC25 - Emeritus Rank

HR06- Types of Appointments

HR29 - Voluntary Phased Retirement 

HR34 - Employment Conditions for Full-Time Staff Employees 

HR57 - How to Determine Effective Dates of Employment or Termination for Employees Paid Monthly (Except Academic) 

HR97 - Layoff and Severance Provisions for Staff Employees

HR103 - Employment Conditions for Part-Time Employees 



Date Approved: 

June 26, 2023

Date Published: 

June 26, 2023

Effective Date: 

June 26, 2023