Employment Verification

If you need proof of employment or proof of income for financial institutions and other agencies, Columbia offers The Work Number, a convenient, 24-hour service that protects your privacy while providing control of information released.

The Work Number

Phone: 1-800-367-5690
Website: theworknumber.com 
Columbia University Employer Code: 12529


The Work Number is an automated service that protects your personal information during the verification process. Columbia employees have access 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to information for leasing agencies, lenders, potential employers, social service agencies and any other individual or organization requiring verification of employment or income.

The Work Number provides the following information to the entity requesting proof (the verifier):

  • Your name
  • Your Social Security Number
  • Your most recent start or termination date (if no longer employed)
  • Your total time with Columbia University
  • Your current or last job title
  • Your current year-to-date earnings and, optionally, your earnings for the past two years (only if you have provided a salary key)
  • A reference number

Customer Service

If you need assistance or have any questions about The Work Number, contact their customer service department at 1-800-367-2884 or visit the online Frequently Asked Questions.

Give the following information to the entity requesting proof of employment (the verifier):

  • Your Social Security Number
  • The Work Number phone: 1-800-367-5690
  • The Work Number website: theworknumber.com
  • Columbia University Employer Code: 12529

To release income information, you must first create a unique authorization number, called a salary key, with The Work Number. A salary key is a 6-digit number that expires after 30 days and can only be used once by the entity requesting proof (the verifier).

After the salary key is created, you will be able to give the company or verifier access to your income information.

If the verifier identifies a salary discrepancy, you should contact The Work Number. You are not able to access your own salary information.

To create a salary key online:

  1. Log in to The Work Number through MyColumbia using your UNI and password
  2. On the left-hand side of the Faculty & Staff tab, click on “Verify Your Employment at Columbia”.
  3. Select “Prove Employment/Income” from the main menu, then click on “Prove Income Instructions”
  4. A salary key will be automatically generated. You will then be able to print the salary key number or email it to yourself with directions to provide the verifier

To create a salary key by phone:

  • Call 800-367-2884
  • You will need to key-in the following information, following the phone prompts:
    • Columbia University Employer Code: 12529
    • Your CU Employee ID Number. This can be found at the top of your pay stub.
    • Your PIN; the first time you access The Work Number, you will use the last four digits of your Social Security Number and the four-digit year of your birth as your default PIN. For example, for a person whose last four digits are 0000 and who was born in 1889, the default PIN would be 00001889
    • You will be prompted to change your PIN immediately. Once you have done this, please remember your new PIN so you can use it in the future
    • Follow the prompts to create your salary key
    • Write down the salary key, so that you can provide it to the individual needing to verify your income and employment

Once you have created a salary key, give the entity requesting proof (the verifier) the following information:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • The Work Number phone: 1-800-367-5690
  • The Work Number website: theworknumber.com 
  • Columbia University Employer Code: 12529
  • The salary key

If your employment at Columbia ended within the last three calendar years, you can use The Work Number to verify employment history.

If it has been more than three years, contact the Human Resources Service Center.