Standard Email Address for Staff

Introduction and background of the issue

ITSC used to give each new staff member an email address with the format of “”. Staff could also choose a simpler email alias in form of “”. With this policy, any new staff email address and the ones that are changed must use the standard format.

Statement of the problem

Over the years, only 66% of staff have selected an alias and 34% of staff keep using as their email addresses.

Computing ID is hard to remember and it is not easy to recognize another staff by Computing ID.  Email address using Computing ID is also not user friendly.

Among the staff that have selected an alias, there is no consistent format of the email alias.  Some may put their surnames first while others may put their surnames last. Some may even not include their surnames into their aliases at all. The lack of a consistent format affects the image of the University.

To address the above issues, it is necessary to:

  • establish a consistent University-wide email naming standard for staff,
  • streamline the creation and management of standard email address


In Aug 2016, IT Governance Committee (ITGC) setup a policy to:

  • Standardize the creation and format of University official email address
  • Provide appropriate controls and authorization for exemption


The following definition applies to this policy:

Preferred name: It refers to the commonly used name of the staff and that name is not necessarily being printed on HKID / Passport.  Examples are Albert, Joyce, chiming, kahong and etc.

Policy statements

A. University standard email address, aka University Official Email Address, shall be in the format of:

<preferred name><initials*><last name><number*> * Optional, up to three characters

Standard email address for each individual staff will be generated based on a sequence.  If the email address is not being used by others, it will be assigned to the staff.  The email creation sequence is:

  1. <preferred name><last name>
  2. <preferred name><1st initial of first and middle names><last name>
  3. <preferred name><1 to 3 user defined characters><last name><number>

Examples of standard email address: or

B. Staff is not allowed to change the standard email address once decided.

Implementation Strategy

  • New staff members will only be provided with the University Official Email Address.
  • Existing staff who are using a user friendly alias (not Computing ID) will continue to use the existing self-defined alias as the University official email address.
  • Existing staff who is using email address can change to define a new email alias according to the new standard format.

Once rollout in Aug 2017, all new staff will use the standard email address format and no change is then allowed.  Existing staff who have already selected their email alias can keep using the email address.  For existing staff who still haven’t selected their email alias (i.e. still using, they can choose a new email alias that is comply to the standard email address format.


Within this policy, the following individuals have the following responsibilities:

Responsibility Owner
Provide the Preferred Name for email address creation User
Advice on the naming policy.

Create standard email address.

Publish the standard email address to University AD and key public cloud applications (Microsoft Active Directory, Office 365 Mail Global Address List and Office 365 SharePoint Online People Picker)

Consider and approve or refuse for exemptions Director, ITS


This policy will be reviewed by Sub-Committee on IT Policy Development every two years.



Prepared by Information Technology Services Centre on 4 Aug 2016

Updated in Feb 2017