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Creating consistency in our email signatures

1 December 2021

It's really important that we have a consistent style when it comes to email signatures so that it's as easy as possible for other colleagues and service users to find out who we are and how to contact us.

Our standard format for signatures was updated early in the COVID-19 pandemic to reflect that fact that many of us were working from home without telephone access. Now that Teams telephony is being rolled out and many of us can receive calls to our laptop, it's important to include your direct dial number again.

If you're working from home then it's no longer necessary to include reference to that in your signature. Under our Modern Ways of Working approach, what we do and how we do it is more important than where we are working.

Your signature should be in Arial font size 11 and shouldn't include any images. Here's an example of how an email signature should look and what information needs to be included:

Other information which your signature could contain includes:

  • preferred pronouns - pronouns are words we use to refer to people's gender in conversation, for example, 'he' or 'she'. Some people however may prefer others to refer to them in gender neutral language and use pronouns such as they/them/theirs. It's good practice for us all to normalise sharing our pronouns, rather than expecting people to assume them correctly. If you'd like to include preferred pronouns in your signature you can add them in brackets after your name, for example: (pronouns: he/him)
  • your working pattern or hours - this can be particularly useful if you work shifts or part-time
  • your work mobile number if you have one
  • a link to contact you on Teams - to do this, include the words 'Chat to me in teams' and add the following hyperlink (edited to include your email address)
  • if you have EA/PA support include their contact details, for example 'executive assistant/personal assistant - name, tel: 01629 ****** or via Teams, email:'

To update your signature, open Outlook, go to the file tab in the top left-hand corner of your screen. Then click on options, mail, signatures. Edit as appropriate and click OK.

If you use a work mobile phone please check that your signature has also been added when sending emails from that device. You can do this by going to the Outlook app, clicking on your profile icon, selecting settings then signature. You may not be able to change the font and layout but you can include all of the information.

Out of office

It's also important that you set automatic replies when you are unavailable including when you are attending training or on annual leave.

Please ensure your automatic reply includes details of when you'll be available again and a name and email address of someone who can be contacted in your absence.

Shared mailboxes

If you manage any shared mailboxes, please ensure you check to make sure any signatures or automatic replies are up to date and contain the correct contact details.

More guidance on the use of email is available.