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Creating an Employee's OWLS Record



You will need to set up an employee Online Work/Leave System (OWLS) record for a newly hired employee or when an employee moves from another University department without a break in service, or is reclassified. When an employee transfers or is reclassified, much of the information needed to set up a new record may already be populated.

Information Needed to Begin

  1. Prior to setting up an employee’s work/leave record in OWLS, you must make sure that the employee’s appointment is first entered into the UW payroll system (OPUS). OWLS records cannot be set up without first entering the appointment in OPUS.
  2. Ensure that the employee's appointment is leave bearing.
  3. You can set up an employee’s OWLS record using the following types of documentation that confirm appointment information:
    • Professional Staff appointment letters
    • New hire or appointment confirmation email from HR
    • Completed “Request for Credit” forms
    • OPUS PERMs
  4. You will need the following pieces of information to set up the record:
    • Employee ID number
    • Record begin date
    • Anniversary Date
    • UW Hire date
    • FTE
    • Number of months per year the employee works
    • Dates of probationary or trial service period, if applicable**
    • Supervisor’s UW NetID
    • Employee’s work week and schedule
  5. Additionally, you may be prompted to enter the following information. If this information is available at set-up, enter it then. Otherwise, these adjustments can be made at a later date through the Balance Change or Profile tab.
    • Number of months of previous state service credit, if any
    • Number of months where leave without pay exceeded 10 days, if any
    • Annual leave, sick leave and any other accrued balances, if applicable
    • Discretionary leave granted, if applicable
    • FMLA leave used, if applicable
    • Military leave used this year (October 1 – September 30), if applicable
    • Any additional staff to be notified when OWLS records are ready for review - you will need to enter their UW NetIDs

If an employee already has another OWLS record in a different department, please contact prior to setting up the record.

**Note: For Fixed Duration Appointments (FDA) only: Although employees in classified Fixed Duration Appointment (FDA) positions do not serve a probationary period, they are not eligible to use or be paid for accrued annual leave hours until the completion of six months’ of service. In order for OWLS to apply the appropriate leave rules, it will be necessary to enter the dates of the six month period using the Probationary Period field. As with any contract classified leave-bearing appointment, any paid and/or unpaid leave used during the six months will require you to extend the end date of the six-month period.


To set up an employee’s OWLS record, log in to OWLS and follow these steps:

1. Enter the  employee’s EID or name in the appropriate boxes. 2. Select the Payroll Unit  Code (PUC) under which the employee record should be listed. (In most cases, one will already be selected).  3. Select “Set up a new record” from the  Choose an Action section 4. Click “Next”.

If you do not see the new record setup screen, check that the employee’s appointment has been entered in OPUS and verify the appointing department PUC.

In some cases, you may first be presented with a page showing multiple appointments for the employee. When that happens, choose the appointment with the leave plan applicable to your department, and click on the “Next” button.

You will need to  complete this page with the employee’s information gathered prior to setting up  the record. Click “Next” to move to the  second page.

Create new record screen

You will also need  to complete this page with the employee’s work schedule, appropriate leave  balances, and supervisor notification. Click “Submit  & Go To Time Entry” to enter work and leave hours for this employee. Click “Submit & Return to OWLS Home” if  you do not want to work further on the record at this time.

Create New Record Continued screen


Prior Service Credit

Work Week & Schedule


Employee name won’t come up?
Try entering the employee’s EID instead of using the name field.

The employee’s appointment needs to be within your department’s Payroll Unit Code (PUC).

Supervisor email addresses must be associated with the address. It cannot be an internal network email ID.