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NetID Assignment

When do new employees receive a NetID?

A Northwestern NetID and email address is automatically created for a new employee once the hire is processed by HR.  Hires may be submitted in one of three ways:

Within three hours after the hire is processed by HR Operations, the hiring department's NetID Coordinator will receive an email that must be forwarded to the employee; this email contains an activation code and instructions for setting up the NetID.

NetIDs are assigned regardless of the employee's start date, which may lead to a future employee receiving their NetID, email address, Wildcard, and associated system access prior to their start on campus.  If this is not desirable, the hire paperwork should be submitted closer to the start date of the employee, or the department's NetID Coordinator should wait to forward the activation email.

Note: Individuals paid only via a Special Pay Request Form are not assigned NetIDs.

Who is your NetID Coordinator?

To see your department's current NetID Coordinator, ask a myHR administrator in your department or review the latest Department List online.

Your NetID Coordinator can be updated directly by any myHR administrator.  For more information, contact myHR Help at 847-467-4800 or

How do I avoid an employee receiving two NetIDs?

If you submit paperwork for an enrolled student or active employee, a new NetID will not be created; the student or employee should continue using their current NetID.

If the individual already has a manually-created affiliate NetID, a second employee NetID will be created.  Typically, the unit that assigned the affiliate NetID should deactivate it, and the employee should begin using their new account.  If the employee must keep their original NetID and email address, they should complete these steps:

  1. Do not activate or use the new NetID
  2. Email Northwestern IT at and request to "merge" the two NetIDs.  In the message, clearly indicate which NetID to keep, and which to delete.
  3. Upon receiving confirmation of the merged NetIDs, email and indicate which NetID was retained, and which was discontinued.  This will ensure that myHR Self Service access is linked to the correct NetID.

As a proactive measure, do not manually request or create an affiliate NetID if the individual will ultimately be hired as an employee. If NetID access is required before an official hire date, work with your unit's HR representative to create an unpaid appointment or simply submit the hire paperwork for processing early.

Where can I learn more?

For more information about NetIDs, see the Northwestern IT website.