Personal Name Usage Guidelines


These guidelines apply to personal name usage of all members of the University community whether at the University or elsewhere.


To provide guidance for how the names of University community members should be used and presented. Following this guidance will enable the University to:

  • Communicate with customers in a person-centric way
  • Increase internal data quality and administrative efficiency.


Name formatting

  • A person’s full legal name must be entered into the Enterprise Person Registry (EPR), this includes all middle names.
  • Do not change a name to an initial.
  • Preferred names are defined by the end user and can be anything they want to be known by as long as it is not offensive and does not use numbers, punctuation or accents
  • End users should be encouraged to provide all of their names, including legal, preferred and previous names. By storing all of this information the University is more likely to be able to match against this data with a higher degree of certainty about uniqueness and ensure subsequent registrations by end users do not create duplicate records.
  • All names must be in the correct case format - upper and lower case letters in the correct place so that names are in the normal mix of case
  • If a user only has a single name this must be entered into the EPR in both the legal first and last name field
  • The names should only contain:
    • Letters in the English alphabet
    • Apostrophes - these can be at the beginning or end of the name, or between letters but there should be no extra spaces
    • Spaces – between names as appropriate
    • Hyphens - these must be between names and have no space between the name and the hyphen
    • Accents (e.g. ó, ò, ñ)
  • When entering the name into the EPR the name should not contain any of the following:
    • Numbers
    • Punctuation: (e.g. &, ©, §)
    • Non-English letters (e.g. ç, ¿, ß, ø)

Usage and consumption

  • The University's digital record of source for names is the central identity system EPR.
  • There are different name types available for consumption by other systems, services and applications but only the name type needed should be consumed
  • We recommend that systems are enabled to consume names with accents to allow the display of names correctly and the production of official documents with a correctly formatted name
  • We recommend that systems consume the preferred name and format for should be first and last (no middle names)
  • People are entitled to be referred to in correspondence and verbally by the name of their choice. This supports their own sense of identity and enables the provision of good customer service.


The following definitions apply to this document:

Enterprise Person Registry (EPR) is the University’s central identity-management system.

Legal name is the name that identifies a person for legal, and administrative purposes. In University systems the legal name of a New Zealand citizen and permanent resident is the name that can be validated against a NZ authoritative identity data source such as a NZ identity document (birth certificates, citizenship certificates and passports). For those with an international residency status the legal name is in most cases the anglicised version of the persons name on their overseas passports (birth certificate or citizenship certificate can be used if the document is in English).

Preferred name is a name that a person commonly uses, this can be different to their legal name.

Previous name is a legal name a person used to be known by but no longer uses. This could be a maiden name before marriage or a birth name before adoption etc.

University means the University of Auckland and includes all subsidiaries.

University community includes all staff (whether permanent, temporary or part time), honorary staff, students (whether full time or part time), contractors, subcontractors, consultants, alumni, associates, business partners or official visitors or guests of members of the University or UniServices.

Key relevant documents

Document management and control

Owner: Chief Digital Officer (CDO)
Content manager: Manager, Identity and Access Management
Approved by: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Operations) and Registrar
Date approved: July 2019
Review date: July 2021