Transactions Overview

General Information | Preparation | Substantiation | References


PIMS transactions are used to establish a PIMS database record for all employees and to initiate changes to their existing database record. Each transaction is identified by a unique 3-character code and is recorded in chronological order for each employee position sequence. The particular type of data that must be provided in order to process the transaction is determined by the nature of the transaction, the employee’s status, and the employee’s employment category. A complete list of transactions along with a brief description is available under Transaction Codes.   


The PIMS history screen reflects accumulated transaction history for an employee in a particular position. Transactions are recorded in chronological order, the most recent transaction at the top. The earliest transaction history for an employee on the PIMS database begins with their appointment or the date the campus was converted to the PIMS system. On employment history, the conversion date is identified by the conversion record.


Questions concerning transaction history and the use of transaction codes should be directed to CSU Audits or Systemwide Human Resources.

General Information

  1. Transactions are grouped into two categories:

    • Major transactions are used to reflect major changes in the employee's official employment status. They are identified by codes beginning with an A or S. Only one major transaction code is permitted per PIMS transaction.

    • Miscellaneous transactions are used to change only one specific data element on the employee's record, or to affect a 'minor' change to the employee’s status. They are identified by codes that are either all numeric or all alphabetic. Depending on the nature of the actions, up to four miscellaneous transaction codes can be processed as one PIMS transaction.

  1. Transactions keyed at the campus may be documented on any campus-generated form or report as long as there is an authorized signature on the document.

  2. Transactions submitted to CSU Audits for processing must be submitted on a Form 456A, or a simulated Form 456A document produced via CIRS. For more information, refer to CSU Personnel/Payroll Documents.

  3. CSU-Audits is an SCO department whose services are fully dedicated to the CSU. Their role is to audit and correct as appropriate, transactional information received from the campuses and the Chancellor’s Office. Transactional information that is contrary to Trustee policy, Collective Bargaining Agreement (including technical letter instructions), federal or state regulations, in addition to documentation that is incomplete or contains errors are rejected. The campus is notified via a Form PSDC40 when:

    • Items (data elements) are coded incorrectly or left blank

    • Transaction should be keyed by the campus or is not necessary

    • Transaction code is not valid

    • Transaction requires Chancellor’s Office or other appropriate approval

    • Supporting documentation is not attached

    • Transaction submitted is not legal or outside CSU policy

    • Transaction package is incomplete or incorrect

    • Appointing Power or Concurring Appointment Power signature is missing

    • Reason for submission (e.g., audit error number or printout) to CSU Audits is missing

Preparation Requirements

  1. To process a transaction, determine the appropriate code and refer to its coding matrix to identify the required and/or conditional data element entries.

  2. Refer to the specific data elements for definitions, coding values and coding structure.

  3. If a transaction must be submitted to CSU Audits for processing, enter the appropriate required and conditional items on a PPT (Form 456A). If the transaction requires manual entry for processing at the SCO, it is important that the print is legible.

Substantiation Requirements

In some instances, transactions may require additional substantiation or certification by the Appointing Power.  The Remarks section (Line H) on the Form 456A is used for this purpose. Although entries in Line H are not keyed into PIMS, they become part of the permanent employment record when the PIMS transaction document is microfilmed. In case of a dispute, copies of the microfilmed documents are available to the campus.


Transactions Submitted To CSU Audits

The following substantiation or certification is required when a PIMS transaction is submitted to CSU Audits for processing:

  1. Concurring Appointing Power Signature is required when an employee is appointed to a concurrent (additional) position at a different campus, in the Chancellor’s Office, or in another State agency, or when an employee of another State agency accepts a concurrent appointment with the CSU. Each appointing power must certify that regardless of the time base there is no conflict between the two (or more) work schedules. The concurring appointing power signatures must be entered on the appointing transaction document. If the appointment is keyed without the concurring signature in error, submit Transaction 215 to CSU Audits. Complete as follows:  





Transaction Code



Effective Date

Effective same day as appointment, OR, effective with the last transaction entered. If the employee is already hired at a campus and then is appointed at a civil service agency or CSU campus, and the effective date of the new appointment to the additional position is effective mid month, the 215 transaction should be effective the first day of the next pay period (academic, first day of the academic pay period).


Employment History Remarks


Line H


Different campus or state agency's concurring signature.


  1. When specific payroll code deductions are to be withheld from an employee’s separation pay, enter ’CODE 999 - SEE BELOW’ on Line G of the PIMS transaction. In Line H - Remarks, enter the type of deduction to be withheld and the payroll deduction code, if any (i.e., Garnishment, Order to Withhold, Federal Tax Levy or Tax Shelter Annuity).  In all cases, also enter the document that established the deduction, the code number and the dollar amount.

  2. Identify dates of dock or unusual shift schedule in Line H - Remarks, when:

    • The entry in Time to be Paid, Item 606/607 does not agree with the number of possible work days for the pay period based on the effective date of the action.

    • For shift employees, when the effective date is a Saturday or Sunday and the employee actually worked on that day.

  1. For corrections and voids to previously processed transactions, enter the reason in Line H – Remarks and if the transaction received an audit message attach or write the number of the audit message received.

  2. Identify the status of payroll warrants on retroactive transactions when it is obvious an overpayment may have occurred. Indicate in Line H - Remarks whether warrants were released or returned and whether warrants were released or returned and whether an Accounts Receivable is being established. (Refer to Items 210, 621 and 810.)

  3. Account for differences between the Effective Date (Item 210) and Last Day Physically Worked (Item 640), when the employee has been on sick leave, vacation or dock. (This is not necessary for hourly intermittent employees).

  4. On all A54 Transactions, certify dates worked and the basis for the pay rate.

  5. Additional conditions may require submission of the transaction to CSU Audits for processing.  When required, those conditions are noted in the data element item or the transaction.  

  6. Retain copies of all actions sent to CSU Audits for processing.


Transactions Keyed At The Campus

The following substantiation or certification is required when a transaction is keyed at the campus:

  1. When the employee is accepting a voluntary demotion (A65 Transaction), the employee must sign the PIMS transaction document. Enter the following on the PIMS transaction in Line H: "I accept this demotion voluntarily (Signature and Date)".

  2. On IDL, Temporary Disability and NDI Transactions, indicate in Line H – Remarks, when the waiting period has been waived.

  3. On all A54 Transactions, certify dates worked and the basis for the pay rate.


Appointments Overview

CSU Personnel/Payroll Documents

Employee Action Request

Item 205 - Transaction Code

SCO Personnel Letter #02-006

Separations Overview



Last Updated: November 17, 2008