Birthday Lists

Did a search and didn't come up with anything so thought I'd check with the gurus at large.

Somewhat basic questions but I really don't know what I can and cannot do. I maintain a birthday list for our employees and have shared dates with managers when asked ("When is my employee's Bill's b-day - I want to take him to lunch"). However, we haven't "published" the list. I use month/date without the year. Do others make this accessible to staff? I also know in the past we've had one or two employees who really don't want to do anything for their b-days so publishing this seems to go against their wishes. If I can't "publish" it on a shared network drive, how does this work for things like monthly b-day cakes? Am I supposed to check with each employee who's b-day it is before sharing that its "Jane, Ed's and Bill's birthday this month"?

Any answers appreciated. This stuff gets so time consuming sometimes!



  • 10 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • As employee records are confidential, an option would be to suggest to the managers that they check with their department's employees to see whether or not they would prefer to participate in the celebration of birthdays - and let them know that it's completely optional.  Those who would like to may share their own birth date.

    Our office has a monthly birthday celebration, so during the orientation of newly hired employees we ask whether or not they would like to be included on the list.  We also stress that it's completely optional and only employees who choose to be included are added to the list. (Only the month really needs to be used.)

    This helps ensures employees that their records are confidential and eliminates potentially uncomfortable situations for your employees as well.

     Hope this is helpful to you.

  • At a former employer, we published a list of employee names each month with no other information.  Where I am now we share month and date information company-wide.  There haven't been any problems with current system, but I think the month-only information accomplished the same goal without giving out as much info.
  • I send out an email to all employees saying Happy Birthday to the employee on the day of his/her birthday. I also get a card and some sort of treat (cake, cupcakes, ice cream cake, ice cream sundaes, banana splits, etc).  We have been doing this for many years and I haven't had anyone complain about me doing this.  If I did then I would respect that persons wishes and not send it out for that person.  All of my employees enjoy this because even though it is not their birthday, they get to join in for the treat.  It is a little break for them and something small that we can do for our employees. 

    If you have had employees in the past that didn't like what was done at your company then I would do the following - I would send out an email to all employees stating that you would like to celebrate employee birthdays and anyone who does not wish to participate can contact you directly to let you know.  This way you can still do something for the majority of the employees and still honor the wishes of the few who do not want to participate. 

  • We have a company-wide acknowledgement of that month's birhdays once a month at our company meeting. The President reads off the names and everyone sings happy burthday. No one seems offened by this.

     You certainly wouldn't want the year of birth to be made public.

  • We do birthdays here.  Company cake, vegetable tray, beverages.  We never talk about age or birth year.  We've never had anybody look upset or make a complaint or even a negative comment. 
  • We do birthdays and we simply have the month and the day. Our program managers ask if their employees want to be on the list, those that do not are not included. Our executive administrator sends out cards to all of employees and each division does their own celebration. I do not send out happy birthday emails.



  • I do a list of months and days for the Exec. Dir. for him to send out birthday cards.  Also, I'll let managers know when they request the information.


  • As of a part of our New Employee Paperwork, we ask for each employees birthday and then have a check box that states "I do not wish to have my birthday month and date shared with the company." We explain that only month and date are shared, not the year. This allows us to publish our employees birthdays with their full consent. When we started this we had an "opt out" period where we let everyone know that due to many requests we were going to publish a list of birthdays and if they did not want their birthday shared to let HR know. This is critical for us as we have employees that do not celebrate birthdays as a part of their religion. 

    We currently publish everyone's birthdays and company anniversaries on our intranet as well as celebrate them at a monthly all team meeting. As a company the only other thing we do is to give birthday cards and a small giftcard (we use Blockbuster Video). This way every employee gets equal treatment from the company and individual departments/groups still can celebrate birthdays on thier own.





  • I would certainly ask whether someone is adverse to having their birthday mentioned (even if it's only month and day).  Some people truly do not want any mention made of their birth date for many reasons.  At the company that I work for there is a mention made of the people who have a birthday that month at a company gathering.  I'm sure if a person did not want his/her name mentioned it would not be.
  • Every month we publish the birthday list.  Employees are told this when they start and are told that if they do not want their name/birthdate published who to contact to get removed. 
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