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Preferred Name: What should we call you?

University of Colorado faculty and staff can now select a preferred first name within the employee portal.

A preferred name differs from a legal name. It may be a nickname, professional name, anglicized name or a name that aligns with their gender identity.

Creating a process for faculty and staff to use their preferred first name contributes to the university’s guiding principle to “provide an outstanding, respectful, and responsive living, learning, teaching and working environment” and is an essential part of inclusion.

To update preferred first name:

  1. Go to
  2. From the CU Resources drop-down menu, select My Info and Pay.
  3. Click the My Info tile.
  4. Click Name on the left-side menu. A pop-up window will populate. Enter your preferred name at Preferred First Name.
  5. Select Save.

Note: CU Denver and CU Anschutz will not participate in preferred name at this time.

An employee’s legal name will still appear on all legal forms such as W-2s, W-4s and paychecks, but preferred first name will now reflect within portal self-service pages as well as in the Human Capital Management (HCM) System – the integrated suite of applications and business processes that enable the university to manage human resources from recruitment to retirement.

Reports within PeopleSoft, the Central Information Warehouse (CIW) and Master Data Management (MDM) and in downstream systems can include an employee’s preferred first name without their legal first name.

Faculty and staff now have the option to update their preferred first name within the employee portal thanks to the coordinated efforts between campus Human Resources offices and Offices of Information Technology (OIT) with Employee Services and University Information Services (UIS) at CU system administration.

Each campus is working to integrate preferred first name information into campus-specific systems and software, and the use of preferred names across the university will continue to evolve.

CU Boulder is providing faculty and staff option to also update preferred first name in the IdentiKey Manager, allowing faculty and staff to have that name reflected in their email, CU People Search and Microsoft Office 365.

UCCS has integrated preferred name information in 15 university systems and records, including active directory, library, rec center and more. 

CU Denver and Anschutz Medical Campus will look at this functionality in the future for campus-specific systems.

For more information or links to campus-specific information, please visit the Preferred First Name project page.

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