HR Self-Service FAQs

Below you will find further information about the different areas of HR Self-Service. If you are having issues accessing or using HR Self-Service visit the Troubleshooting page instead.

General and access

University employees and casual staff will normally be given HR Self-Service access within the first week of employment, once their University Card, Single Sign-On (SSO) and employment record (in our HR system) have been created. If you don't receive a 'Welcome' email after two weeks, contact your departmental HR.

Line managers can also access the 'Manager Dashboard' to view certain information about their team members. If you haven't got this option, contact your departmental HR. Managers in departments/faculties using the leave, absence and timesheet functions are assigned as 'approvers', for these requests/submissions.

Rehires who had an HR Self-Service account previously will regain access once SSO details are re-activated and an appointment is created in the University's HR system. In such cases, there will be no email notification.

As a line manager, you can access your team members' records via the Manager Dashboard in HR Self-Service. If you don't see this option when logged in, contact your HR team, and they'll arrange access for you.

Managers in departments/units/faculties participating in the pilot for leave, absence, and timesheets in HR Self-Service will also be assigned as 'approvers'. This enables them to approve leave and absence requests, or timesheet submissions.

Academic Teaching Qualifications

Starting 1 November 2023, if you have academic teaching duties, you should have received an email request to complete your Academic Teaching Qualification(s) via HR Self-Service, irrespective of your appointment start date. The email may incorrectly mention a new appointment. Kindly provide the details of your latest Academic Teaching Qualification(s), as we are required to collect this data for the statutory annual staff data return to HESA.


Emails concerning HR Self-Service will always direct you to the University URL link:, expanding to: You will be prompted to log into your account using your Single Sign-On (SSO) details. You will typically receive an email in the following instances:

  • 'Welcome' email: When your account is created, you will receive an email from an '' email address.
  • New starter details completion: System-generated email reminders prompting you to complete your new starter details in HR Self-Service. These are sent from an email address representing our HR system supplier. You will be directed to log into your account via the University website using your SSO details. We will never ask you to disclose personal details via a generic email.
  • Leaver email: Before your leaving date, a system-generated email will be sent to remind you to log in and save your payslips and P60s, as needed.

Never disclose personal information, such as your bank details, in response to an unexpected email and/or before you are able to verify the authenticity of the request. Further advice on how to avoid email/phishing scams is provided by the Information Security team.

Protecting your personal information is a shared responsibility. Stay vigilant and follow best practices to maintain the security of your HR Self-Service account.

Single Sign-On (SSO) account details will be provided to you by your department. If you haven't received your SSO, please contact your manager or HR contact for assistance.

Your SSO gives you access to many web-based services at Oxford. Visit the IT Help page to find out more information about SSO, including what to do if you have forgotten yours.

Once your University card and SSO account are deactivated (usually on or shortly after your end date) you will also lose access to HR Self-Service. Download and save your payslips and P60s before your employment ends, if you want to retain a copy of these documents.

Your final payslip and P45 will be issued in paper form and sent to your home address (or alternative address where specified).

HR Self-Service can be accessed via most devices with an internet connection. You will be required to connect via VPN, if accessing off-site.

If you have no access, either at home or work, to a standard PC or other device with an internet connection you may need to receive a paper payslip and P60. If you have any concerns about accessing your payslips and P60s online, please speak to your HR contact (or equivalent). Your HR contact will also be able to help with any queries about your HR record, including updating your details. 

Some departments have ‘hub’ PCs that are open for use to all staff; please contact your department for further details.

Employee Self-Service

  1. Check if you can update this yourself in HR Self-Service. Please follow the Employee Self-Service How-To Guide for step-by-step guidance.
  2. If you can't update it yourself, contact your local HR and ask them to amend it.

Yes, it is possible to update some of your personal details and any of your diversity information in ESS. Please follow the Employee Self-Service How-To Guide for step-by-step guidance.

Bank details

Please note that you cannot update your existing bank details in HR Self-Service. Please contact your local HR team to request this update.



You can access online payslips dating back to May 2013, and P60s dating back to the tax year 2014/2015 (or your start date, whichever is more recent). These documents will be available via HR Self-Service for the duration of your employment with the University.

To ensure you have access to your payslips and P60s beyond the end of your University employment, you should download and save your electronic payslips and P60s. Refer to the Employee Self-Service How-To Guide for instructions on how to do this.

No, HR Self-Service does not display any information related to the pension schemes offered by the University.

To check the length of membership for your pension scheme (which may depend on a number of factors, and is not always the same as your length of employment with the University of Oxford) by referring to your annual pension benefits statement. Alternatively, contact your specific pension provider:

HR Self-Service will only display details about your current contract. For information about previous appointments held at the University, please contact your local HR administrator.

It is not currently possible to view your fixed-term contract end date in HR Self-Service, please contact your HR administrator for this information.

Your ‘Continuous Service’ is defined as the period of service as an employee on a Chancellor, Master and Scholars of the University of Oxford contract of employment, also referred to as 'CMS contracts' (with no breaks). Your continuous service is used to identify your entitlement to certain employment benefits, such as sick pay. It does not include casual service or any service with colleges, subsidiaries, or other higher education institutions. See also: Continuous Service Policy.

If you have a query about your continuous service, contact your local HR team (or equivalent).

Please note that ‘Continuous Service’ and long service leave are different. Find out about long service leave here.

The Payroll team record deductions for the Childcare Voucher Scheme (Computershare) and the University’s Nursery Salary Sacrifice Scheme as 'negative' allowances. If you are or were part of these schemes, you can find the history of the annualised figures (recorded as a negative) on this screen. For example, if you receive/d £243 in childcare vouchers per month, your record will show an annual value of -£2,916.00.

Some participating departments are now using HR Self-Service to submit and approve timesheets. Casual workers in non-participating departments will now have a £0.01 hourly rate displayed under the ‘Current Salary’ screen. This will calculate a current salary of £18.98 (36.5 hours x 52 weeks x £0.01 per hour = £18.98). Please be assured that this will not impact your pay. If you wish to confirm your hourly rate, please contact your HR administrator.

If you submit timesheets in HR Self-Service and your salary details are not as expected, please contact your HR administrator.

If your employment at the University is due to end, you should log into HR Self-Service and download copies of your payslips and P60s, before your end date. Your final payslip and P45 will be issued in paper form and sent to your home address (or another address, as per your request). 

If you need payslips or P60s once your employment has ended, please email your request to Payroll will verify that your request is authentic before providing copies. 

For visa applications, the Home Office will accept printed digital versions of your payslips with an accompanying letter signed by a ‘senior official’. You can request this letter from Payroll directly. Please email, and allow five working days for your request. For queries relating to visa applications, contact the Staff Immigration Team.

Internal job board

Only designated HR staff can access submitted applications. For further details about how your information is used, please read the Terms of use & privacy policy found here.

Your application won’t be visible to your manager (and/or your Self-Service Manager) in HR Self-Service. Your submitted application will be stored in the same way as job applications submitted through the University’s Jobs website.

When you apply for a role through the internal job board, your work email address is automatically linked to your internal applicant account and cannot be amended.

Unfortunately, it is not currently possible to track the progress of your application in ESS.

In some cases, an existing account set up via the University's Job site won’t be linked to your internal account in ESS. This is because of how your record was set up in the University’s HR system. In such cases, you can access the details of previous applications in the normal way, via the University’s Jobs website (the Applicant log-in page).

Please note that if you have multiple Recruitment accounts, they can’t all be linked to your HR record in the system. This may be the reason why you cannot find all of your previous applications.

In most cases, when you apply for a role through ESS, your previous Recruitment account (created via the University’s Jobs website) will be transferred to your internal account. The email address held on your previous account will be overwritten with your work email address and you will no longer be able to access your account and previous applications via the University’s Jobs website.

Yes, you can create a new account on the University’s Jobs website using a personal email address. However, you will not be able to apply for internal-only jobs through this external account.

If you are appointed to the vacancy, your newly created applicant account will then be linked to your internal job board account via your staff record.

College employees do not have access to HR Self-Service, but are eligible to apply for internal-only vacancies. College employees can access these vacancies via the Conference of Colleges website.

Leave, sickness and other absence (participating departments only)

A pilot is underway to manage annual leave and other absences in HR Self-Service. The current participants are: 

  • Assurance Directorate (UAS)
  • Faculty of Classics (Humanities) - excluding Examiners
  • Nuffield Department of Medicine (Medical Sciences)
  • University HR (UAS)

If your department/faculty/unit is not listed above (or you are a TSS worker), please continue to follow your current process for booking annual leave and recording other absence.

The following leave types are recorded in HR Self-Service:

  • Annual leave
  • Compassionate leave
  • Dependants leave
  • Jury Service
  • Other leave
  • Study leave
  • TOIL (time off in lieu)

The manager is responsible for recording all of the above types of leave, apart from annual leave, which the manager should only ever record where it needs to be logged retrospectively.

In exceptional circumstances, line managers can submit an annual leave request on behalf of an employee, where they are unable to do so themselves. In order to do this, the employee must be part of the manager's team (ie 'work group') in the system. 

Employees on grades 1-5 can use HR Self-Service to book TOIL (time off in lieu) where this has been agreed in advance, with your manager. Refer to the 'Request annual leave' How-To guide.

The University policy on claiming TOIL can be found in the Support Staff Handbook.

It is not currently possible to view your team members' annual leave bookings / your team's leave calendar in HR Self-Service.

As a manager, if a member of your team (ie 'work group' in the system) also manages a team, you’ll be able to view details about their team members in your Manager dashboard. However, you will not be able to view or approve requests for these individuals unless the approver role has been assigned/delegated to you.

Yes, the employee will receive a notification in HR Self-Service and an email.

If you are also designated as a Staff Request approver, pending Staff Requests will also appear in the Approval tab. These will be counted in the total number displayed. 

Fit notes are not currently recorded in HR Self-Service. Please continue to follow your current department process for recording fit notes.

Please note that NDM sickness records continue to be managed by the HR team.

Timesheets (participating departments only)

A pilot is underway to manage timesheets in HR Self-Service. The current participants are:

  • Faculty of Classics (Humanities) - excludes Examiners
  • Department of Physics (MPLS) - Casual Lab Demonstrators only

If you are not part of the pilot (or are a TSS worker), please continue to follow your current process for submitting the hours worked or to claim holiday hours.

Timesheets can only be submitted for appointments held in the departments/faculties/units participating in the pilot.

Follow your usual process for submitting timesheets for appointments held elsewhere in the University.

In exceptional circumstances, a manager can submit a timesheet or claim holiday hours on behalf of a staff member. In order to do this, the individual must be part of that manager's team (ie 'work group' in the system). 

Managers: for guidance on how to complete a timesheet for a staff member, refer to the How-To Guide.

Please note that 'Backup Timesheet Approvers' are unable to complete timesheets or holiday claims.

Holiday entitlement for casual workers and variable hours employees is calculated in hours. Staff can find information about their holiday accrual/calculation in their letter of engagement (casual workers) or employment contract (variable hours employees). Visit also the University's HR website

Managers can view the number of accrued hours in the Workforce Management screen, or by viewing the staff member's profile.

If you are a Self-Service Manager, it is possible for a colleague to approve timesheets and holiday claims on your behalf. This can be set up using one of the options below. 

1. Assign an additional Self-Service Manager to your team

Self-Service Managers can view information about their direct reports in Manager Self-Service such as:

  • Basic personal details (eg name, title and emergency phone numbers);
  • Employee Personnel Number;
  • Contractual details (eg job title, FTE, length of service, salary and allowances);
  • Team structure (eg who reports to whom).

Where it is appropriate for a colleague to have access to the information listed above, they can be designated as an additional Self-Service Manager for your team. In doing so, this individual would also be able to approve timesheets and holiday claims where needed.

To set up an additional Self-Service Manager for your team, please contact your HR administrator.

2. Assign 'Shared Responsibility' to a colleague
This option is not available to NDM staff.

Shared Responsibility is where time approval permissions are shared permanently with another colleague. This can be assigned to specific work groups (teams) as appropriate.

The colleague who has been assigned Shared Responsibility will be able to perform the same time approver tasks as the manager. However, they will not have access to the additional information available to the Self-Service Manager (listed above). 

To set up Shared Responsibility, please contact your HR administrator.

If a member of your team (ie 'work group' in the system) also manages a team, you’ll be able to view details about their team members in your Manager Self-Service dashboard. However, you will not be able to view or approve requests for these individuals unless you have been delegated as an approver for that team.

When a submission is rejected, it is returned to the staff member to amend. They will receive an email notification that the status of their timesheet has changed to 'Rejected'.

Team members cannot currently see each other's holiday claims. The team calendar is visible only to the time approver.

Log into HR Self-Service

You must be on the University's network or VPN to access HR Self-Service; for example, if you are working from home, log into VPN first.



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