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Financial Regulations for the University of Warwick





Reference to Financial Procedures



General Provisions










Status of Financial Regulations










Corporate Governance





The University Calendar





Responsibility for Financial Matters





Risk Management





Conflicts of Interest Policies and Procedures


Financial Procedure 1



Compliance and Whistleblowing







Financial Procedure 2



Fraud and Bribery


Financial Procedure 3








Financial Management and Control





Financial Planning


Financial Procedures 4, 11 and 14



Accounting Arrangements





Departmental Finances and Financial Monitoring


Financial Procedure 4



Journals; Internal Trading; and Reallocation & Reapportionment of Costs


Financial Procedure 6








Income, Commercial Activity and Debtors





Student Fees including Tuition Fee Setting


Financial Procedure 7



Invoicing and Collection of Non-Student Income


Financial Procedure 8



Philanthropic Gifts to the University


Financial Procedure 9



Research Grants and Contracts


Financial Procedure 14



Non-Research Contracts, New Business Ventures or Initiatives


Financial Procedure 11



Private Work and Other Appointments


Financial Procedure 10



Related Companies and Similar Entities


Financial Procedure 12



Exploitation of Intellectual Property


Financial Procedure 13








Taxation and Document Retention





Administration of all Taxes


Financial Procedure 22



Retention of Financial and Associated Legal Documents


Financial Procedure 5








Expenditure and Creditors





Purchasing of Goods and Services


Financial Procedure 15



Employment and Remuneration of Staff


Financial Procedure 17



Employment of Temporary Staff


Financial Procedure 17



Travel, Subsistence, Gifts and Hospitality


Financial Procedure 16



Legal, Employment Tribunal and Severance Costs


Financial Procedure 17



Arrangements for Relocation


Financial Procedure 16 








Banking and Treasury Investments





Treasury Management and Investments


Financial Procedure 23





Financial Procedure 23



Banking Arrangements


Financial Procedure 23








Fixed Assets and Stocks





Fixed Assets – Land and Buildings and Equipment


Financial Procedures 18, 19 and 20



Recording and Disposal of Fixed Assets


Financial Procedure 19



The Use and Control of University Vehicles





Stocks and Stores


Financial Procedure 21


















Use of University Seal





Guarantees and Indemnities










Appendix I - Glossary & Terms





Appendix II - Index of Financial ProceduresLink opens in a new window












I. Background

The University of Warwick (“the University”) is an independent corporation whose legal status derives from a Royal Charter originally granted in March 1965. Its objects, powers and framework of governance are set out in the Charter and supporting University Statutes. The Charter and Statutes may only be amended with the approval of the Privy Council (a copy of the Charter and Statutes can be accessed either through the University Calendar via or from the Secretary to Council).

The University has two separate bodies, each with clearly defined functions and responsibilities, to oversee and manage its activities, these being the Council; and the Senate. Further information on these bodies and on the University’s sub-committees can be found at

The University is an exempt charity and is required to comply with Charity Law. The Office for Students (OfS) has taken on the role of Principal Regulator under the Charities Act 2011 for registered providers of higher education that are charities exempt from registration and direct regulation by the Charity Commission.

The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. The University Council is responsible for ensuring compliance with the OfS conditions of registration, with the accounts direction that is published annually by the OfS, and with the OfS and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) terms and conditions of funding.

The University must apply proper processes that ensure effective accountability and secure value for money. The Financial Regulations and Procedures set out the University’s financial control policy and processes. They form part of the University’s overall system of accountability.

This document sets out the University’s Financial Regulations. It translates into practical guidance the University’s broad policies relating to financial control.

These Financial Regulations must be read in conjunction with the University’s Financial Procedures. The Financial Regulations set down the principles that must be followed (as set out in section A (II) below) and the Procedures detail the way in which the principles must be applied.


II. Status of Financial Regulations

These Financial Regulations are subordinate to the University’s Charter and Statutes, and to the OfS conditions of registration, OfS and UKRI terms and conditions of funding and annual accounts direction.

The purpose of these Financial Regulations is to provide control over the totality of the University’s resources and provide the University with an appropriate financial regulatory framework which ensures that resources are used with due regard to propriety, regularity and value for money in the context of the achievement of the University’s strategic plan.

Compliance with the Financial Regulations and Financial Procedures is compulsory for anyone with a contractual relationship with the University (this includes all employees and honorary staff). A member of staff who fails to comply with the Financial Regulations or Financial Procedures may be subject to disciplinary action under the University’s Disciplinary Policy. The Council will be notified of any material breach through the Audit and Risk Committee. It is the responsibility of the Human Resources department to ensure through induction on appointment that all staff are made aware of the need to comply with the Financial Regulations. It is the responsibility of Heads of Departments/Centres/Activities (HODs) to ensure that their staff continue to be made aware of the existence and content of the University’s Financial Regulations.

The Finance & General Purposes Committee (FGPC) oversees the maintenance of the Financial Regulations and advises the Council of any additions or changes.

In exceptional circumstances FGPC, or the Chair of FGPC acting on behalf of that Committee, may authorise a departure from these Financial Regulations. Such a departure would be reported to the Council at the earliest opportunity.

The University’s accompanying Financial Procedures set out how these Financial Regulations must be implemented. In exceptional circumstances, the Group Finance Director (GFD) or Finance Director (FD) may authorise a departure from the Financial Procedures, providing this does not constitute a departure from the underlying principles of the Financial Regulations. Where this represents a significant departure the Vice-Chancellor and Treasurer must be consulted.

The University’s Financial Regulations and Procedures apply to all University subsidiaries and Joint Ventures except where specifically excluded by a formal agreement by FGPC or delegated authority.

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I. The University Calendar

Information on Corporate Governance (including information on the Council; and the overall University Committee Structure) is available at:

University policies are available via the University’s online Policy Zone, or from the Secretary to Council:

II. Responsibility for Financial Matters

The University Council has the overall responsibility for the financial affairs of the University. Under the OfS Conditions of Registration the University Council must nominate to the OfS an 'accountable officer'. The Vice-Chancellor is the University’s designated accountable officer. Day to day responsibility for the financial affairs of the University is delegated to the Group Finance Director.

FGPC oversees and reviews financial matters and makes recommendations to the Council. The Treasurer is chair of FGPC. Full details of membership and terms of reference of FGPC can be accessed on-line via

The University has an Audit and Risk Committee reporting to the Council. The Audit and Risk Committee provides the Council with advice on the effectiveness of financial audit, risk assessment and internal control arrangements. The Audit and Risk Committee also has a number of other objectives which include:

  • Seeking and obtaining satisfactory assurances from senior management on matters relating to risk management, value for money and internal and external audit processes; and
  • Satisfying itself that appropriate and transparent governance arrangements are in place within the University and are subject to review of their effectiveness by the Council at regular intervals.

FGPC recommends to Council the distribution of resources within the University on the basis of the University’s strategic plan.

HODs are responsible for the monitoring of resources within their area of responsibility in line with their agreed five year plan and for taking appropriate and prompt corrective action to control budget variances.


III. Risk Management

The University acknowledges the risks inherent in its operations and is committed to managing those risks that pose a significant threat to the achievement of its objectives and financial health.

Risk management and the identification of new opportunities is undertaken at the University as a positive driver that should encourage innovative and entrepreneurial approaches to the activities undertaken, while assessing and accounting appropriately for the risks that pose a significant threat to the achievement of the business objectives and the financial health of the University.

The University has in place procedures for managing and monitoring identified University risks from which a risk register is produced. The risk register is reported through to the University Executive Board (UEB) and subsequently to the Council. The Audit and Risk Committee advises the Council on the University Risk Management Policy and Procedures and reviews the effectiveness of the arrangements for managing and monitoring identified University risks. The principles of risk management are embedded in the University's operational and approval procedures at all levels. HODs are responsible for risk management within their areas.


IV. Conflicts of Interest Policies and Procedures

Section B IV updated 4 April 2023

The University is committed to the highest standards of openness, integrity and accountability and will conduct its affairs having regard to the principles set out in the Seven Principles of Public Life established by the Nolan Committee.

All members of committees and all staff (both full and part time) must declare an interest which could affect, or which could be perceived to affect, their judgement in making decisions in their work for the University. “Interest” includes financial involvement in an organisation/third party held by a committee member or member of staff and/or by their family members, friends and any other associates.

All members of Council and external members of Council Committees are required to disclose their interests. The Secretary to Council maintains the Register of Interests for Council members. The Register is available for inspection by application to the Secretary to Council.

All other members of staff are required to disclose any interests which could result in or could be perceived to result in a conflict, in their department’s register of interests maintained by the HOD and to ensure entries relating to them are kept up to date. This information is solely for the use of the University and remains confidential within the University unless it is legally required to be disclosed. Interests must be disclosed as soon as a member of staff becomes aware of them. In addition, all staff employed on framework agreement level 6 (spinal point 27 to 36) and above and any staff employed on framework agreement levels 1a (spinal point 3 to 4) to 5 (spinal point 22 to 26) who are involved in purchasing goods or services or in a finance role are also required to complete an “annual return”. Nil returns are required.

Examples of interests which could cause a conflict would be the acceptance of gifts from University suppliers; situations where the duty of a member of staff as a University employee conflicts with their duty as a director of a spin-out company; situations where an employee undertakes private outside work for an organisation with which the University also has an interest; and where any goods or services are to be purchased from or sold to a business in which an employee is known to have an interest (for example holds shares or is a Director).

Members of staff should not accept any gifts or rewards (or have them given to members of their families) from any organisation or individual with whom they have contact in the course of their work that would cause them to be in a position whereby they might be, or might be deemed by others to have been, influenced in making a business decision as a consequence of accepting such hospitality. Where a member of staff has been offered, or received unexpectedly, gifts or benefits, the HOD in consultation with the GFD, if necessary, will inform the member of staff as to what action they should take.

If staff have any doubts about whether an offer of a gift should be refused (it is accepted that refusal of a gift may sometimes cause offence) they should consult their HOD, who in turn should, if necessary, discuss the matter with the GFD if it is considered that the gift should be accepted.

All gifts, rewards or hospitality offered or received must be recorded in a departmental register kept by the HOD. Minor gifts made primarily for the purpose of advertising and including a company logo may be excluded for this purpose. Due regard should be given to the provisions of the Anti-Bribery Policy when reporting or accepting gifts/hospitality.

The University’s conflicts of interest procedures are included within Financial Procedure 1.


V. Compliance and Whistleblowing

When staff or students raise concerns about any reasonable suspicions they may have concerning irregularities in the running of the University or of activities of colleagues or others with a contractual relationship with the University, this will be handled within the policy and guidance set down by the University in its whistleblowing code of practice which can be found:


VI. Audit

The University’s Internal Audit function is responsible for providing an objective and independent appraisal of all the University's activities, financial and otherwise. It provides a service to the whole organisation, including the Audit and Risk Committee and all levels of management. It is not an extension of, nor a substitute for, good management, although it can have a role in advising management. Internal Audit is responsible for providing assurance to the Vice-Chancellor and to the University’s Audit and Risk Committee on the arrangements for risk management, control and (some aspects of) governance and Value For Money. It remains the duty of management, not Internal Audit, to operate these arrangements.

External auditors are appointed by the University Council on the recommendation of Audit and Risk Committee. The Audit and Risk Committee discusses as required with the external auditors the nature and scope of their proposed work and also the outcome of the audit (including review of the annual external audit management letter).

Where the University wishes the external auditors to undertake other work (including tax advisory, merger and acquisition support and other advisory and consultancy work) specific guidelines including authorisation limits apply. Reference must be made to Financial Procedure 2 for further information.


VII. Fraud and Bribery

The University's management is responsible for the prevention and detection of fraud and other irregularities. HODs and other staff responsible for financial administration must devise and implement internal controls for this purpose. Internal Audit and Finance Office can advise on suitable controls.

All employees have a responsibility to inform management if they have a suspicion of a fraud, act of bribery or other irregularity. The process which must be followed is set out within Financial Procedure 3.

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I. Financial Planning

The University is currently required by the OfS to prepare each year a five year consolidated Financial Plan (including cash flow forecasts and projected year-end balance sheets). This Financial Plan comprises various sub-components each of which are subject to rigorous challenge processes before being consolidated and presented to FGPC and the Council for approval and subsequent submission to the OfS.

The Financial Plan must be consistent with the University Strategy and Financial Strategy approved by the Council.

HODs are responsible for the effective and efficient use of resources included in their five year plan and for budgetary control.

During the year, using the information provided by HODs, the GFD and Finance Director are responsible for submitting revised budgets for the current year to the Financial Control and Compliance Group and University Executive Board (Finance) for consideration before submission to FGPC and the Council for approval.

New business opportunities must be discussed with the relevant HOD and with the Finance Office at an early stage. In liaison with relevant colleagues the GFD and Finance Director will determine whether approval from the Campus and Commercial Services Group (CCSG), UEB and/or FGPC is required and the information that is required for a recommendation to be made to the relevant Group/Committee. Any establishment of a company or joint venture must comply with Financial Procedure 12 - Related Companies and Similar Entities.

Reference must be made to Financial Procedures 14 Research Grants and Contracts; 11 Non-Research Contracts, Commercial and Other Trading and 18 Capital Expenditure for the specific authorisation process which must be followed for these different types of opportunity.

Financial Procedure 11 – Non-Research Contracts, Commercial and Other Trading will be appropriate for most new initiatives to enable them to be considered for approval by FGPC or other relevant Committee.

In planning and undertaking overseas activity, additional advice re tax, employment and legal contracts must be sought from the Finance Office and Human Resources and advice on ways of undertaking business from International Strategy & Relations.


II. Accounting Arrangements

The University’s financial year runs from 1 August until 31 July the following year.

The consolidated financial statements are prepared in accordance with the 2015 Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP): Accounting for Further and Higher Education and in accordance with Financial Reporting Standard (FRS) 102, and subject to any specific requirements set out in the OfS annual accounts direction.

The University is a public benefit entity and therefore applies the relevant public benefit requirement of the FRS102.

The financial statements are prepared in accordance with the historical cost convention modified by the revaluation of derivative financial instruments.

The University’s Financial Statements are available online at

III. Departmental Finances and Financial Monitoring

Guidance relating to the accounts and other financial arrangements for Departments/Centres/Activities is set out within Financial Procedure 4. Specific queries on Financial Procedures and the use of the University’s Finance System must be referred to the relevant Central Finance Manager.

Each Department/Centre/Activity is responsible for completing a five year plan which forms part of the overall consolidated University Financial Plan (see section C.I above).

The HOD is responsible (with assistance from the Finance Contact Officer) for ensuring quarterly accounts and financial forecasts are completed in accordance with the approved format issued by the Finance Office and for ensuring that the figures and variances against predictions and prior year are explained for presentation to the relevant financial monitoring committee.

Departments/Centres/Activities are required to ensure all goods received are recorded promptly, all invoices are processed and all accruals and prepayments are accounted for appropriately.

The use of past surpluses (reserves) is subject to the planning and approval process which forms part of the University’s five year plan and is subject to all Financial Regulations.

HODs must take all reasonable steps to ensure that their overall budget is not exceeded. If a HOD anticipates that their budget may be exceeded they must discuss with their Central Finance Manager who will determine whether it is appropriate for this to be referred to the GFD or Finance Director or the relevant University Committee.

If a HOD appears not to be taking steps to avoid overspending the GFD or FD, after consulting the relevant Central Finance Manager, may give notice that the HOD must not incur or authorise further expenditure until adequate evidence has been given that appropriate action is being taken to protect the University’s financial position.

HODs must ensure that resources earmarked for specific initiatives and projects are utilised only for those initiatives and projects in accordance with the specific conditions attached to the grant or award (both internal and external).


IV. Journals; Internal Trading; and Reallocation & Reapportionment of Costs


The University uses an automated process for raising and approving non-salary journals which all Departments/Centres/Activities should use. This process uses the SAP workflow system.

In order to provide a suitable audit trail for VAT, Corporation Tax and Audit purposes sufficient detail must be provided with every journal raised to ensure that someone independent of the person who has raised the journal can understand the purpose of the document.

Internal trading is when a Department/Centre/Activity makes a sale to another University Department/Centre/Activity or entity. The University’s Internal Trading SAP process must be used for all intra and inter-company trading transactions without exception.

Further information on journals (salary and non-salary), internal trading, the recharge of directly attributable costs and the reallocation and reapportionment of costs is contained within Financial Procedure 6.


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I. Student Fees including Tuition Fee Setting

All fee income must be collected in accordance with Regulation 45 on the Payment of Annual fees, Residential Charges and Other Debts. Students in debt to the University are subject to a formal debt collection process including referral to the University’s solicitors for legal action in appropriate cases.

Recommendations on the level of all standard tuition fees are made by the Fees Working Group to Steering Committee (having delegated authority from FGPC) on an annual basis for approval by the Council via the Senate.

Non-standard tuition fees relate to fees for specific courses of study; must be based on sound business planning; and are recommended to the Fees Working Group by the Departments in which the courses are taught.

The Academic Registrar is responsible for ensuring that all student fees due to the University on accredited courses are received. Fee collection on non-accredited courses may take place either within the Academic Registrar’s team or within the department. The arrangements for collection of non-accredited fees must be approved by the Academic Registrar in consultation with the GFD or FD .

Where departments’ arrange for the collection of fees on non-accredited courses themselves, these arrangements must also be approved with the Academic Registrar in consultation with the GFD or FD.

Further information on the arrangements for collection of student fees is set out within Financial Procedure 7.


II. Invoicing and Collection of Non-Student Income

The Finance Office is responsible for the prompt collection, security and banking of all income received. Where Departments/Centres/Activities receive any cash or cheque payments, the Department/Centre/Activity should hand the payment in to the Accounts Receivable department for banking, without delay.

It is the responsibility of all staff to ensure that revenue to the University is maximised by the efficient application of agreed procedures for the identification, collection and banking of income. In particular, this requires the prompt notification to the Finance Office and Research and Impact Services (RIS) of sums due so that collection can be initiated.

The Accounts Receivable Department deal with credit control matters. Monthly statements and letters are sent to customers as necessary to facilitate prompt clearance of debts. When requested, Departments/Centres/Activities must give information to help speed up collection of overdue debts, and must inform the Accounts Receivable Department at once of any circumstances which might result in a delay in receiving payment. The University’s standard payment terms are 14 days. Sales contracts may include alternative payment terms which must have prior approval from RIS (for Research Contracts up to 60 days) or the Finance Office (GFD or Finance Director) as part of the contract approval process set out within Financial Procedures 14 and 11.

Credit references for all new customers must be sought where the proposed debt exceeds £5,000 excluding VAT (for both research and non-research income). The Accounts Receivable Department will carry out these credit references following a request by the Department/Centre/Activity. Where a contract is required and the value of the contract is above the existing credit limit, the credit reference must be sought before a Department/Centre/Activity enters into the contract with the customer. In all cases, the credit check must be carried out before the customer receives the associated goods or services.

The Accounts Receivable Department of the Finance Office has a standard procedure for dealing with overdue and difficult debts. Once the Finance Office has agreed that a debt is doubtful a provision will be raised with the charge to the Department/Centre/Activity to which the associated invoice(s) relates. Once a debt has been agreed by the Finance Office to be irrecoverable, it must be written off in accordance with the authority limits set by FGPC as set out in Financial Procedure 8.

The University has a standard procedure for dealing credit notes which must be approved in line with the release strategy set out in Financial Procedure 8.


III. Fund-raising and Gifts Received

Fund-raising campaigns must only be undertaken with the approval of and under the guidance of the Director of the Development and Alumni Engagement who will consult the GFD or FD on the appropriate accounting treatment for the income.

The Development Office is responsible for maintaining financial records of gifts, benefactions and donations, advising on the conditions of their use and initiating claims for recovery of tax where appropriate, in consultation with the GFD/ FD.

Gifts (monetary and non-monetary) offered to members of staff, for University use, must be treated in accordance with Financial Procedure 9 – Philanthropic Gifts to the University.

Gifts, rewards or hospitality offered to members of staff in a private capacity are covered in Financial Regulation B (IV) and the associated Financial Procedure 1.

The University does not permit donations to be made from its own funds to other charities.


IV. Research Grants and Contracts

All bids for research grants and contracts must be prepared in accordance with the University’s set procedure (see Financial Procedure 14). No submission will be made or commitment entered into before the completion of this approval procedure.

All applications for research grants and all research contract proposals are made on behalf of and in the name of the University. They must accordingly be forwarded by the principal investigator to RIS for submission by the University to the funder. Before submission, RIS will check the costings in the proposal, ensure compliance with the funder’s and University’s rules and criteria, and ensure University authorisation and signature(s) for the proposal are obtained and that research governance and regulatory issues have been considered.

Funders often have their own rules on the administration of awards, including financial management and reporting requirements. It is the responsibility of the principal investigator to ensure compliance with all of the funders’ rules; advice can be sought from RSS.

All University Financial Regulations and Procedures apply to research grants and contracts and it is the responsibility of the principal investigator to ensure compliance with these rules.

Any loss to the University resulting from a failure to meet conditions of funding, tax legislation or arising from exchange rate differences is the responsibility of the HOD acting through the Principal Investigator and will be charged to the associated departmental budget.

Authorisation limits for the acceptance of research contracts are set out in Financial Procedure 14.


V. Non-Research Contracts, New Business Ventures or Initiatives

All proposals for non-research work and new business ventures or initiatives are governed by the University’s Financial Procedure 11. No bids will be made or commitment entered into before the completion of this approval procedure.

The HOD in conjunction with their relevant Central Finance Manager has responsibility for ensuring proper financial control, monitoring of expenditure, preparing claims and compliance with the terms of the grant or contract, but may delegate authority to the named grant/contract holder. The Department/Centre/Activity administrator or Central Finance Manager will provide pricing, costing, and accounting support and the Department/Centre/Activity will raise all invoices and grant claims. Legal support including contract drafting and negotiation will be provided by the University’s Legal and Compliance Office.

Any loss to the University resulting from a failure to meet conditions of funding, tax legislation or arising from exchange rate differences is the responsibility of the HOD and will be charged to the associated departmental budgets.

Authorisation procedures for the acceptance of non-research contracts are set out in the relevant Financial Procedure 11.

Reference must be made to Financial Procedure 11 which sets out the procedure to be followed for new activities, including but not limited to:

  • All courses
  • Seminars and conferences with funding from external organisations (not attendance fees)
  • University consultancy and Expert Witness agreements
  • Major new business activities
  • Other independently funded activities
  • Other specific grants
  • Commercial Activities
  • Documents / letter which bind the University to a set of terms and conditions


VI. Private Work and Other Appointments

Members of staff must comply with Financial Procedure 10 when carrying out private work and other appointments. The requirements of this procedure include the need to obtain appropriate approval to carry out the work; consideration of any associated conflicts of interests; and recording of the work in a departmental register of private work.


VII. Related Companies & Similar Entities

A related undertaking is “any undertaking, including companies and other corporate entities, over which the University has control or exercises a substantial degree of influence in relation to that company’s activities” and which is consolidated in the University accounts.

Authorisation for the creation of a related undertaking or any entity in which the University has stake can only be given by FGPC. This will be given only on evidence of compliance with the Financial Procedure 12. For spin-out companies Financial Procedure 13 must be followed.

Good financial and managerial control of related undertakings is vital, and arrangements made must conform to the requirements of the control structure set out in the Financial Procedures. Procedural advice must in the first instance be sought from the GFD or FD.

All appointments of directors and company secretaries of related companies and similar entities will require the approval of FGPC.


VIII. Exploitation of Intellectual Property

The University’s position regarding intellectual property ownership and commercial exploitation of work undertaken by staff (including through licensing and the spin-out companies) is outlined in University Regulation 28 and Financial Procedure 13.

A spin-out company is a company which has been set up to exploit Intellectual Property which, under the provisions of University Regulation 28, is owned by the University. Where a spin-out company is established the following will apply:

  • The investment of the University is held for the short-term; and
  • The intention of the University is to divest its interest in the company at an appropriate time.

Members of staff holding shares in a spin-out company are responsible for taking independent advice (including investment and taxation) and for making their own insurance arrangements.


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I. Administration of all Taxes

The GFD (taxes other than employment taxes) and Director of Human Resources (employment taxes) are responsible for the management of the University’s tax affairs and the nominated staff in the Finance and Human Resources Offices will be the only staff authorised to communicate with tax authorities on behalf of the University. This includes, but is not limited to, income tax, national insurance, VAT, corporation tax, the construction industry scheme, gift aid and overseas taxes. The only exception is business rates, where the Estates Director has responsibility. Departmental Administrators are permitted to deal with routine import duty queries from HMRC but should not enter into significant negotiations on behalf of the University.


II. Retention of Financial and Associated Legal Documents

The University has a legal requirement to retain certain documentation. The University’s detailed policies relating to the retention of financial documents are contained within Financial Procedure 5 and must be complied with.

The Registrar is responsible for the safekeeping of official and legal documents relating to the University with the exception of those listed below. All such documents will be held in an appropriately secure location and copies held at a separate location. Contract files (including costing information and signed internal documents) should be retained in line with the University Records Retention Schedule (URRS). Original signed contracts must not be retained on these contract files. Before any documents are destroyed it is the responsibility of the current holder to check that either the documents are not required to be retained or that complete alternative copies are securely held elsewhere.

Responsibility for safe custody of the following documents is as indicated:

  • Deeds of Title and Property Leases and Licences - The GFD and Estates Director
  • Finance Records – the GFD and Finance Director
  • Employment Records - the Director of Human Resources
  • Research Contracts and documentation to support claims – the Director of Research and Impact Services
  • Non-Research Contracts (under FP11 and FP13) – Director of Legal and Compliance Services

These documents will be held in an appropriately secure location and copies held at a separate location.


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I. Purchasing of Goods and Services

All expenditure must be incurred solely in support of the objects of the University as specified in its Charter and Statutes.

The HOD is responsible for purchases within their Department/Centre/Activity. Authority to sign certain types of document, or to release purchase order transactions up to a certain value, may be delegated by the HOD to a nominated individual.

The forms required to delegate such authority may be found on the Finance Office website at

A list of University approved suppliers can be found on the Procurement Office website.

The University group is able to supply a range of goods and services to internal customers (see FP15 for a list of internal providers). Departments/Centres/Activities must use internal providers where they exist, unless there is a justifiable reason not to.

Where approved suppliers are available these must be used for all relevant purchases. These suppliers cover a wide range of goods and services and have been selected through a competitive process and as such in using them Departments/Centres/Activities will only need to obtain a quote from the approved supplier (unless required to do otherwise by specific grant terms). All purchases should follow financial procedures and the use of approved suppliers may require further permission from FinRegs email resource account ( ) where additional restrictions exist (e.g. off-campus conferences and entertaining, use of executive cars and taxis, non-economy travel rules etc.).

The acquisition of IT systems and equipment whether by purchase, donation or transfer is subject to approval under arrangements to be agreed by the University’s Chief Information and Digital Officer (CIDO).

The University requires all Heads of Department/Centre/Activity (HODs), irrespective of the source of funds, to obtain supplies, equipment and services at the lowest possible cost consistent with quality; health, safety and environmental requirements; delivery requirements; and sustainability; and in accordance with other Financial Regulations and Procedures, the Bribery Act 2010, the Modern Slavery Act, additional relevant statutory obligations, sound business practice and achievement of value for money.

The University is not a Contracting Authority for the purposes of Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (as amended) and its procurement activities are not subject to the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 or the obligations under the European Public Procurement Directives, including the European Remedies Directive.

The University is however still required to achieve and demonstrate value for money in its procurement activities in compliance with its obligations to funders and must conduct robust, effective and auditable procurement processes in compliance with Financial Procedure 15.

Where an approved supplier is not available HODs must comply with the University’s procedures for obtaining tenders and quotations. Please note that the quoted values apply to the total contract value and are net of VAT:

  • Up to (and including) £10,000 - one quotation must be obtained (it is advised that this is a written quotation)
  • Over £10,000 and up to £35,000 - at least two written quotations to be obtained.
  • Over £35,000 - competitive tender via a University formal competitive tendering procedure.
  • Procurement and Insurance Services will undertake all University competitive tenders in collaboration with Principal Investigators / key stakeholders. Competitive tenders will be undertaken in accordance with the guiding principles of Transparency, Equal Treatment, Non Discrimination, Proportionality and Competition.

Departments should notify Procurement and Insurance Services in good time in order to initiate a competitive tender procedure.

Where the University is receiving external funding towards the purchase of goods or services there may be specific purchasing requirements which must be followed. These may be stricter than the procedures set out within this Financial Procedure (for example mandatory compliance with the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (as amended), the limit for carrying out competitive tenders may be lower). If these requirements are not adhered to, the University may not receive the funding or may be subject to legal challenge and financial penalties and clawback. Reference must be made to the Purchasing & Insurance Office where the value of the goods or services being purchased exceeds £20,000 or a lower figure where a lower tender limit is notified by the funder.

Approval must be sought from the Procurement Office prior to placing the Purchase Order with the Supplier

Where the external funder is ERDF or other EU funding regime such as Horizon 2020 reference must be made to RIS and the Procurement and Insurance Services before purchasing any goods or services (irrespective of the value).[MP1] In such instances, the EU Public Procurement Directives will followed.

In all cases, reference must be made to the terms and conditions of the funding. These will be available from RIS.

Official University orders must be placed for the purchase of all goods or services. The exception to this is when goods or services are ordered and paid for via a University Purchasing Card or a Corporate Card (Travel & Subsistence) when the guidelines applicable to these card programmes must be followed. In exceptional circumstances urgent orders may be given orally but must be confirmed by an official purchase order endorsed ‘confirmation order only’ no later than the following working day.

The procedures to be followed and paperwork to be completed in requesting a payment will be in a form specified by the GFD or FD. Details of these procedures are included in Financial Procedure 15. The University’s standard payment terms are 30 days from date of invoice. Finance Office staff reserve the right to delay or accelerate payment to take maximum credit or avoid adverse relations with suppliers.

The GFD or FD will make available to Departments/Centres/Activities such petty cash floats as they consider necessary for the disbursement of petty cash expenses. However, it is important for security purposes that petty cash floats are kept to a minimum.

Detail on the categories of appropriate petty cash expense may be found in Financial Procedure 15.


II. Employment and Remuneration of Staff

The Director of Human Resources is responsible for the maintenance of human resources records and for determining the contractual arrangements relating to the payment of salaries, wages and other emoluments. Further details can be found on the Human Resources website and in Financial Procedure 16.

All contracts of employment must be issued by the Human Resources department unless specifically agreed by the Director of Human Resources. In such cases a standard contract template must be used.

The Director of Human Resources is responsible for making payments to staff and for the maintenance of related records, including those of a statutory nature.

The Director of Human Resources will decide when tax will be deducted from payments to staff and consultants. The Director of Human Resources will ensure compliance with all regulations from the appropriate authority regarding the deduction of tax, national insurance, superannuation and statutory deductions (including any credits to be applied through the taxation system).

HODs are responsible for providing promptly to the Director of Human Resources any relevant information regarding the appointment, resignation or dismissal of an employee or consultant.

There may be certain circumstances when it is appropriate to make payments to members of staff which are in addition to those specified within their contract of employment. In all such cases the hourly or daily rates for such proposed payments (which must be included within the department/centre/activity budget) must be agreed by the Director of Human Resources or delegated authority in consultation with the HOD. HODs should only forward requests to the Director of Human Resources after budgetary approval has been obtained.


III. Employment of Temporary Staff

Departments/Centres/Activities are expected to use temporary staff for temporary purposes only and not to cover tasks of permanent duration.

Departments/Centres/Activities must:

  • Ensure that Unitemps are approached as the first source for non-academic staff wherever possible. Student workers should be encouraged to register with Unitemps to simplify the administration of their employment and to enable compliance with legal requirements.
  • Satisfy themselves before employing temporary staff that there is an adequate budget to meet the cost.
  • Comply with employment law taking advice from the Human Resources Department if necessary.
  • Note that tax will be deducted from payments to the individual under PAYE.

Further guidance is contained within Financial Procedure 17.


IV. Travel, Subsistence, Gifts and Hospitality

Guidance and procedures relating to the reimbursement of expenses necessarily incurred in the performance of duties on behalf of the University can be found within Financial Procedure 16. This complies with the requirements of HMRC on payment of expenses and benefits in kind. Financial Procedure 16 also covers other staff related expenses, no matter how paid; provision of gifts, hospitality and entertainment on and off campus, travel and subsistence and the use of Corporate Cards (Travel and Subsistence).

V. Legal, Employment Tribunal and Severance Costs

Any potential or pending legal related matters should be referred as soon as practicable to the Director of Human Resources (where employment related) and the Director of Legal and Compliance Services. The Director of Human Resources and Director of Legal and Compliance Services will consult further (for example with designated preferred suppliers; the Purchasing Office; the GFD or the Registrar) as appropriate.

The University’s Remuneration Committee is required to determine the level of severance pay to be awarded to those members of staff whose salary exceeds £100,000 and all those senior members of University staff whose remuneration packages are determined and reviewed by the Committee. Reference should be made to the HR Director for further information and the Secretary to Council should be notified of such cases at the earliest opportunity.

Further detail is set out within Financial Procedure 17

VI. Arrangements for Relocation

The University has limits for the payment of travel expenses and expenses incurred in the removal of household effects of a person moving their main place of residence to take up a post at the University. Further details can be found within Financial Procedure 16.


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I. Treasury Management and Investments

FGPC is responsible for approving a treasury management policy statement.

The GFD is responsible for managing the working capital of the University in accordance with the approved treasury management policy.

The GFD will invest surplus funds in accordance with the above policy approved by FGPC.


II. Borrowing

The GFD is responsible for short-term borrowing to meet day-to-day cash shortfalls within limits approved by FGPC.

All borrowing will be subject to the approval of FGPC and the Council, who will consider the necessity of the loan, the reasonableness of the terms and the University’s ability to repay.


III. Banking Arrangements

Bank Accounts and Cheques:

The GFD is responsible for all the University’s banking arrangements.

The permission of FGPC is required to either open or close a bank account for dealing with the University’s funds. All bank accounts will be in the name of the University.

Mandates for the operation of the University’s bank accounts will be approved by FGPC.

Direct Debits:

Direct Debit arrangements, whether collections or payments, may only be entered into under the authority of the GFD.


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I. Fixed Assets - Land & Buildings and Equipment

The Estates Director is responsible for the management and maintenance of all land and buildings and for the preparation and implementation of a plan for the acquisition, refurbishment and disposal of land and buildings in the context of the Estates Strategy. The Director of Estates is also responsible for updating and ensuring compliance with the guidance set out in “Estates: Policies and Procedures Manual”.

The University’s ten year capital plan is approved by the Council on the recommendation of FGPC and the University Estate Committee (UEC). The inclusion of an Estates Project within the capital plan is subject to approval by FGPC on the recommendation of the Financial Plan Sub-Committee (FPSC). FPSC will scrutinise the proposal which will be in a format determined by FPSC from time to time and set out in Financial Procedure 18. CSAG is responsible for overseeing the University’s space requirements. This includes recommending to FPSC future investment priorities for the development and maintenance of fit for purpose buildings on the recommendation of the Estates Director.

The University Estate Committee is responsible for approving on behalf of Council the plans and programme of construction for University building projects subject to release of the appropriate funds by FGPC.

Further detail on the above approval process together with the process for the ongoing monitoring of capital projects is set out within Financial Procedure 18.

Where capital equipment spend (that is equipment spend in excess of £25,000 including irrecoverable VAT) is 100% covered by an awarded grant, and appropriate space and infrastructure has been identified, this spend and associated grant income can be included within the accounts and forecasts for the Department/Centre/Activity. Where 100% funding has not been12 awarded or space and infrastructure not identified the equipment spend should be discussed with the Finance Contact Officer who will determine whether this needs to be included as a bid to the Academic Resourcing Committee (for academic departments), to CCSG (for all commercial activities) or to PSG (for professional services departments). If bids are approved they will be included within Department/Centre/Activity plans for recommendation to FGPC (or sub-committee thereof). The costing of all equipment purchases must include all the costs of ownership including the supply of services to the equipment, location and installation costs.

Additional guidance exists (including guidance on producing associated business plans) for equipment costing greater than £500,000 within Financial Procedure 19 – Fixed Assets.

Proposed capital projects must comply with Financial Procedures 18 and 19. The purchase, lease or rent of assets must comply with Financial Procedures 18, 19 and 20. Reference must be made to OfS requirements where exchequer-funded assets or exchequer funds are involved.


II. Recording and Disposal of Fixed Assets

In the accounts of the University, equipment (excluding vehicles) costing less than £25,000 (including irrecoverable VAT) per individual item or group of related items (£1,000 for subsidiaries) is written off in the year of purchase. As these are written off they are not recorded in the University’s Central fixed asset register which is maintained by the Finance Office within SAP. As such, there is a need for Departments/Centres/Activities to keep a record of all of these assets and to make sure this is kept up to date.

In order for the University to ensure that its central fixed asset register is kept up to date, Departments/Centres/Activities must communicate to the central finance office (Finance Manager, Transparency on behalf of the Group Accountant) where they become aware of changes in capitalised assets (for example where any of these assets are disposed of or where their value has fallen due to damage or changes in market conditions).

Any assets owned or leased by the University must not be subject to personal use without prior approval from the GFD or Finance Director. This includes free issue software provided under licence. This permission would only be given in exceptional circumstances. A market rate charge would be levied for such personal use. Any non-University use will be subject to charges being levied. For further advice on such charges the Finance Office should be contacted for guidance.

Reference should be made to Financial Procedure 19 for further information.


III. The Use and Control of University Vehicles

The Estates Director is responsible for all University vehicles. This responsibility includes acquisition and disposal, taxation, legal compliance and maintenance arrangements. Insurance is the responsibility of the Purchasing and Insurance Office.

University vehicles (other than Company cars) may only be used on University business and not by staff or others in a private capacity. The prior consent of the HOD to meeting the cost of a journey must be obtained. The University reserves the right to recharge employees any fines, administration fees and other related costs incurred whilst driving in a University owned, leased or hired vehicle.

Where a department manages a pool car a Car Pool Protocol must be in place and approved by the GFD who will consult with the Group Head of Tax as appropriate.

IV. Stocks and Stores

HODs are responsible for establishing and maintaining adequate arrangements for the custody of stocks and stores within their Department/Centre/Activity.

Those HODs whose stocks require valuation on the balance sheet must ensure that regular inspections and stock checks are carried out.

The SAP system must be used for stocks and stores accounting unless agreed otherwise by the GFD or Finance Director .

Stocks and stores of a hazardous nature must be subject to the appropriate security checks and Health and Safety procedures.


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I. Insurance

The Head of Purchasing and Insurance on behalf of the GFD is responsible for the University’s insurance arrangements, including the provision of advice on the range of insurance cover available. Further information on the University’s insurance arrangements can be obtained from the Head of Purchasing and Insurance.

In order to ensure that the University’s liabilities are limited (including implied contracts); HODs must ensure that the contracts approval process as set out in Financial Procedure 11, Financial Procedure 13, Financial Procedure 14 and Financial Procedure 20 are followed.

The Estates Director is responsible for keeping up to date records of the insurance valuation of buildings and plant and machinery as required which may be subject to inspection by an insurance company. All staff using their own vehicles on behalf of the University will maintain appropriate insurance cover for business use.


II. Use of the University Seal

The University Seal is applied by the Secretary to Council in the presence of no less than two members of the Council.

The Secretary to Council prepares the list of deeds executed for submission to the Council at least once in each academic session.


III. Guarantees and Indemnities

No guarantee or letter of comfort or support will be issued other than as approved by the GFD within limits approved by FGPC.

Any member of staff asked to give an indemnity, for whatever purpose, will refer the request to the GFD.


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Financial Regulations Wherever this document refers to Financial Regulations it is deemed to include the associated Financial Procedures
The University

For the purposes of this document “The University” means the University Group including all non-dormant consolidated entities currently comprising of:

  • The University of Warwick;
  • Warwick University Training Limited;
  • Warwick University Services Limited;
  • The University of Warwick Foundation;
  • Warwick University Enterprises Limited;
  • University of Warwick Science Park Ltd;
  • University of Warwick Science Park Concepts Ltd;
  • University of Warwick Science Park Business Innovations Centre Ltd
  • University of Warwick Science Park Innovation Centre Ltd
  • Warwick Learning Limited
  • Warwick University Enterprises (Australia) Pty Ltd
The University Financial Plan The Financial Plan produced for the University on an annual basis covering the current financial year and the subsequent five financial years as submitted to OfS
GFD Group Finance Director

Finance Director


Finance and General Purposes Committee


Financial Plan Sub-Committee


University Estate Committee


University Executive Board


Academic Resourcing Committee


Campus, Space and Amenities Group


Campus and Commercial Services Steering

PSG Professional Services Group
OfS The Office for Students

UK Research and Innovation

URRS University Records Retention schedule (available via
RIS Research and Impact Services

Central Finance Manager

Allocated within the Departmental Services Team (DST). See Central Finance Manager List for full details.

HOD(s) - Heads of Departments/Centres/Activities

A list of all Heads of Departments/Centres/Activities can be found at

An email resource account for any questions relating to the Financial Regulations and Procedures and for any approvals required, a summary of which can be found here:


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Financial Procedure


Date of Issue



Conflicts of Interest










Fraud and Bribery





Departmental Finances and Financial Monitoring





Retention of Financial and Associated Legal Documents





Journals, Internal Trading and Reallocation & Reapportionment of Costs





Student Fees Including Tuition Fee Setting





Non-Student Income





Philanthropic Gifts to the University





Private Work and Other Appointments





Non-Research Contracts, Commercial and Other Trading





Related Companies and Similar Entities





Exploitation of IP





Research Grants and Contracts










Travel, Subsistence, Gifts and Hospitality





Employment and Remuneration of Staff and Related Legal Matters





Capital Expenditure Approval and Monitoring - Building Projects





Fixed Assets





Leases, Licences and Other Property Arrangements





Stocks and Stores





Administration of All Taxes





Banking and Treasury Investments





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All Financial Regulations were revised on 1 June 2012, following FGPC approval on 13 March 2012. Where subsequent amendments have been approved, the date of issue has been updated in Appendix 2

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