Finance
   
   
  

Financial regulations

These Financial Regulations have been approved by the University Council and are mandatory. Officers and employees are required to apply and abide by these regulations to ensure that the University operates with integrity and in accordance with Council Policy.

The University expect all staff to work to the highest professional, academic and ethical standards. This includes compliance with all relevant laws, including the provisions of legislation relating to equality and diversity, data protection and bribery

Failure to abide by these regulations may be considered as gross misconduct and disciplinary procedures may be invoked.

The use of the term Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service throughout these regulations is intended to include all employees who have been delegated authority to control budgets by their Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service.

These Financial Regulations apply to the University of Nottingham and all Subsidiary Companies of the University.

This document is divided into the following sections:

Responsibilities of Officers and Employees

Background

The University Council has designated the Vice Chancellor to be responsible for satisfying himself and the Higher Education Funding Council (HEFCE) that any sums received from the HEFCE and other public and commercial organisations are used only for the purposes for which they were given and that the terms and conditions of the Financial Memorandum between the University and the HEFCE are satisfied.

The Chief Financial Officer is responsible to Council through the Vice Chancellor and the Finance Committee for the financial management of the University and its investments, and ensuring that the University's relationships with associated University Companies are soundly monitored and controlled.  The Chief Estates and Facilities Officer is responsible for the University's buildings, capital works and the maintenance and development of the University's sports and residential facilities.
 

Regulations

  • All changes to these Financial Regulations shall be subject to the approval of the Finance Committee on behalf of Council and noted by Audit and Risk Committee.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services are responsible for ensuring that appropriate procedures are put in place to ensure that all members of their Units comply with all standing orders, financial regulations and any other financial instructions.
  • The Chief Financial Officer will support these Regulations by the issue of more detailed guidance and instructions to Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services from time to time.
  • All officers and employees shall ensure that any financial transaction to which they are party, in the course of their duties, shall be wholly exclusively and necessarily in the interests of the University and shall be properly authorised and recorded in the records and accounts of the University. Where any actual or potential conflict of interest arises this should be declared to the Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service and the advice of the Chief Financial Officer or Registrar obtained as appropriate.
  • A Register will be kept by the Secretary of the University's governing body containing a declaration by members of the governing body, senior officers and staff with the authority to commit to significant amounts of expenditure, of all commercial interests of themselves and close relatives in any organisation which is a supplier or a potential provider of goods and services in any form to the University.
  • Where an employee is not able to satisfy him/herself that a financial transaction should be legitimately charged to the University, this concern shall be notified to management in accordance with the policy on public interest disclosure.
  • The University views fraud very seriously and will take appropriate action to ensure that the public interest is safeguarded. The University has procedures to ensure that members of the University Community can make disclosure of malpractice.
  • All financial quantification and projections to be included on a Committee agenda shall be subject to assessment by the Chief Financial Officer or a delegate prior to being considered by Committee.

Accounting Records, Procedures and Principles

Regulations

  • All the accounting records and procedures of the University are subject to the approval and control of the Director of Financial Management or Director of Financial Operations.
  • Changes to accounting records, documents or procedures may only be made following consultation with the Director of Financial Management or Director of Financial Operations or their deputies acting with delegated authority.
  • The Director of Financial Management and the Director of Financial Operations shall be responsible to the Chief Financial Officer for keeping all financial procedures under review and will implement changes to procedures or systems as may be necessary for efficient and effective financial control.
  • The minimum period for the retention of financial records and related documents shall be specified in the Records Management Policy.
  • The Director of Financial Management will be responsible to the Chief Financial Officer for the preparation of a report to the Finance Committee on the Annual Accounts of the University in the October immediately following the end of the Financial Year on 31st July, and also estimates of financial performance throughout the year.
  • The Director of Financial Management and will be responsible to the Chief Financial Officer for the preparation of cash flow forecasts as required as part of the on-going monitoring of bank balances and current/future debt exposure and to present to Finance Committee to support the affordability of capital investment proposals.

Audit

Background

All accounting and supporting records are subject to annual audit by the External Auditors. The External Auditors have a right of access at all reasonable times to the books and accounts and vouchers of the University and are entitled to require from the Officers of the University such information and explanations as may be necessary for the performance of their duties.

The University maintains an Internal Audit function in accordance with the Memorandum of Assurance and Accountability between the University and the HEFCE.  This function provides an independent appraisal function within the University across all systems and procedures.

The Internal Audit Service will have a right of access at all times to all University records, information and assets which they consider necessary to fulfil their responsibilities. They are entitled to require from any officer or employee of the University such information and explanations as may be necessary for the performance of their duties.

Regulations

  • The External Auditors shall be appointed by the Council of the University.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services shall promptly inform both the Director of Financial Management and the Director of Financial Operations and the Head of Internal Audit of any irregularities affecting income, expenditure, cash, intellectual and other property of the University.

Contracts/Agreements and Expenditure Authorisation

Regulations

  • Contracts/Agreements for external expenditure may only be made by persons acting under the express or implied authority of the Council within the parameters defined in the Schedule of Delegated Financial Authorities.
  • The Seal of the University shall only be affixed to an instrument by the authority of a resolution of the Council and in the presence of any two of the following officials of the University; the President, Pro Chancellor, Vice-President, Vice-Chancellor, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, a Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Registrar, Chief Financial Officer. The same officials are also authorised to sign every instrument to which the Seal of the University is affixed.
  • All supplier agreements which result in a third party supply of goods, services or works must comply with the University's Purchasing Policy.

Capital Expenditure

Regulations

  • The University shall not be committed to buying or renting or developing or constructing any land or buildings without the approval of Finance Committee and Council or one of its sub-committees.
  • Capital contracts shall be subject to competitive tendering procedures and comply with the University's Purchasing Policy and relevant EU procurement directives.
  • The Chief Estates and Facilities Officer is responsible for the management and monitoring of all fixed asset developments together with the on-going maintenance of fixed assets (excluding the University of Nottingham Malaysia and the University of Nottingham Ningbo, China). All proposals for alteration or extensions to University property or the allocation of departmental accommodation must be notified to the Chief Estates and Facilities Officer.
  • Any increase in the cost of a capital item beyond the sum approved by the appropriate committees of Council shall be reported promptly to the Chief Financial Officer and to the relevant committees for consideration.
  • Capital expenditure proposals shall be prioritised by Finance Committee in accordance with the University Plan and, where appropriate shall be evaluated by investment appraisal techniques.
  • Post-completion appraisals shall be provided to Finance Committee as soon as practicable after completion for all major projects, as agreed by the Committee.
     

Investments, Acquisitions and Disposals 

Regulations 

  • The protocol on Investments, Acquisitions and Disposals is laid out in the paper approved by Finance Committee.
  • The University invests in its spin-out companies drawing on the advice provided by the Innovation Board. The Innovation Board has an annual budget of £250k and can invest up to £100k per transaction. Investments above £100k must be approved by University Executive Board.
  • Where investment in a spin-out company might exceed £1m, or the University’s return might exceed £1m as the result of the acquisition or disposal of shares in a spin-out company, formal approval from Finance Committee must be sought.
  • Any proposed investment to exceed £1m in a single transaction should be routed through the Innovation Board, approved by University Executive Board and then by Finance Committee.
  • Where approval is required urgently between Finance Committee meetings, this could be given by the Officers of Council acting under the Standing Orders.
     

Revenue expenditure

Regulations

  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services are responsible for containing expenditure within the allocated budget, this includes research expenditure. In exercising this responsibility they have discretion to delegate to Department or School Heads within the budget unit. Delegated authority should not exceed the levels specified in the Schedule of Delegated Financial Authorities as approved by Council.
  • Where it is anticipated that the budget allocated to a Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service  may be overspent or the agreed amount of any income may not be reached, it is the duty of the Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service to inform the Director of Financial Management.
  • The University shall not be committed to any major continuing liability without the prior agreement of the Chief Financial Officer or Director of Financial Management and Director of Financial Operations.
  • Leasing agreements require the approval of the Chief Financial Officer. Procurement shall maintain a list of items authorised by the Chief Financial Officer which may routinely be purchased under leasing arrangements, and no commitment shall be entered into by any employee of the University for items covered by leasing agreements but not on the approved list prior to the approval and signature of the agreement by the Chief Financial Officer. The disposal of leased assets is subject to the prior approval of the Chief Financial Officer.

Orders and payments for goods, services and works

Regulations

  • Orders or commitments shall only be placed in accordance with the University Purchasing policy and guidelines, unless the Director of Procurement has granted specific dispensation.  Such dispensation shall be appropriately documented.
  • No Officer or employee of the University shall authorise work to be undertaken or goods to be supplied which are:

• outside their purview to authorise as defined by the Schedule of Financial Delegated Authorities

• cannot be funded from within the relevant Budget Unit's allocated budget

• not supported by an official purchase order number and appropriate documentation evidencing policy compliance

  • Officers and employees of the University shall not make use of official orders or University facilities to obtain goods and services for private purposes.

Imprest Accounts

Regulations

  • Imprest Petty Cash Accounts shall be provided by the Director of Financial Operations only and shall be operated only for urgent or minor expenses where a credit account with the University is not acceptable to the supplier.
  • All expenditure must be supported by the relevant receipts and vouchers.
  • Petty cash must not be used for personal expenditure or for the encashment of personal cheques.

Banking Arrangements

Regulations

  • All arrangements with the University's bankers concerning the operation of bank accounts for the receipt and disbursement of University funds will be made by the Chief Financial Officer and Director of Financial Operations and approved by Finance Committee and Council as required.
  • Payments will be made out of the University's bank accounts by authorised transfer (including BACS and CHAPS) and by cheques bearing the facsimile and manuscript signature of the Chief Financial Officer and all the manuscript signatures of those individuals specified in the Bank Mandate.
  • The Bank Mandate shall be reviewed at least annually and any amendments approved by Finance Committee.
  • Bank Accounts relating to the University shall include in their title "University of Nottingham".
  • The Chief Financial Officer, Director of Financial Management and Director of Financial Operations are jointly authorised to open bank accounts as and when required for the receipt and disbursement of University funds. No bank accounts bearing the name of the University or in which University monies may be deposited shall be opened by any other Officer or employee of the University.

Income

Regulations

  • Annual reviews of prices to be charged for goods and services supplied by the University shall be undertaken in consultation with the Chief Financial Officer and considered by the University Executive Board and Finance Committee as appropriate.
  • Only the Chief Financial Officer and Director of Financial Operations have authority to write-off debts. Written authority should be sought of them where a bad debt exists and adjustment of the record of sums due is required.
  • The collection of all income due to the University is under the control of the Director of Financial Operations. All monies should be promptly paid over to Income Services unless the Director of Financial Operations has specifically approved alternative paying-in arrangements.
  • All income received must be recorded at the point of receipt, where cash is received an official University Receipt must be given immediately to the payer, unless a specific waiver has been given by the Director of Financial Operations.
  • All income received at any University location should formally be acknowledged. The transfer of custody of income should be acknowledged by the issue of an official receipt, or the endorsement by the receiver on the records of the first holder. The receipting of cheque income may be waived under circumstances approved by the Director of Financial Operations. Cash should not be sent through the internal post: any losses incurred in this way will be required to be made good by the sender.
  • All income must be held securely within Insurance limits.
  • All debtor accounts (sales invoices) or requests for payment shall be controlled and raised by Income Services except where specific approval to make alternative arrangements has been granted by the Director of Financial Operations.
  • All accounts shall specify that payments should be made to "the University of Nottingham" and not to any individual.
  • Income received should not be diverted for expenditures or used for the encashment of personal cheques or for loans. All income must be promptly paid intact to Income Services or the University's bank account.
  • All receipt books, forms, tickets and debtor accounts shall be ordered controlled and issued by Financial Operations under the direction of the Director of Financial Operations.
  • Income Services will pay income into the University bank account daily.

Appointment of Employees

Regulation

  • Employees may only be appointed in accordance with the procedures established by the Registrar acting through the Director of Human Resources.

Payments to Employees

Regulations

  • The payment of salaries and other emoluments and pensions shall be made by the Director of Financial Operations or under arrangements approved and controlled by him.
  • All salary payments to employees shall be processed by Payroll Services.
  • All claims for expenses must be wholly, necessarily and exclusively incurred in the performance of University duties.
  • All expense claims shall be submitted in accordance with the Travel and Expenses Policy unless otherwise directed by the Director of Financial Operations.
  • Fee payments to employees and third parties shall only be made in accordance with policy determined by Human Resources.

Services Rendered and Consultancy Activity

Regulations

  • No activity may be undertaken without the authorisation of the appropriate Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service.
  • With the exception of short-courses all services rendered activity must be notified to the Director of Research & Graduate Services to enable any potential liability exposure to be assessed.
  • Services rendered activity must demonstrate added value to the University's operations and be separately accounted for.
  • All departmental and personal consultancy activity must comply with the policies approved by Human Resources and Council.

Risk Management

Background

Risk is the possibility that unforeseen events, outcomes or actions may adversely affect the University's ability to achieve its objectives; it arises as much from the possibility that opportunities will not be realised as from the possibility that threats will materialise.

Regulations

  • The application of the Risk Management Policy is the responsibility of Council through the Vice-Chancellor. The Vice-Chancellor and the University Executive Board are responsible for the implementation of the policy, which is managed by the Registrar. In addition the Audit and Risk Committee provides oversight of risk management, providing a formalised reporting and appraisal mechanism.

Insurance

Regulations

  • The Chief Financial Officer via the Director of Procurement shall be responsible for affecting all necessary insurance within the policy determined by Council.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services shall be responsible for notifying the Director of Procurement of any changes to insurable risk.
  • The Insurance Risk Strategy shall be reviewed annually by University Executive Board.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services shall notify the Director of Procurement of any loss, liability of damage, which may lead to a claim against or on behalf of the University.

Physical and Intellectual Property

Regulations

  • It shall be the responsibility of the Chief Financial Officer to maintain a register in a suitable form for all properties and land owned or used by the University.
  • The Chief Financial Officer shall arrange for the safe custody of all title deeds.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services are responsible for ensuring the proper security of all buildings and assets under their control.
  • No University assets shall be subject to personal use without proper authority having been obtained from the Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / and Director of Professional Service.
  • Lessees and/or other occupiers of University land shall not be allowed to take possession or enter the land until the lease or agreement, in a form approved by the Registrar and the Chief Financial Officer, has been signed.
  • Employees are responsible for ensuring that the Intellectual Property Rights of the University are protected and may only be disposed of or exploited with the authorisation of the Director of Business Engagement and Innovation Services acting on behalf of the Chief Financial Officer.

Patents and Inventions

Regulations

  • When members of staff make an invention which, in their opinion, it is desirable to protect by a patent, they shall inform their Head of School who shall inform the Director of Business Engagement and Innovation Services.
  • Royalty payments shall be in accordance with a royalty apportionment schedule agreed by Council.

Stores and Equipment Inventory

Regulations

  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services are responsible for the safe custody of stores, equipment and assets.
  • No items are to be removed from stores or their usual location without written authorisation of the appropriate line manager.
  • No items shall be disposed of without the written approval of line management in accordance with the Schedule of Delegated Financial Authorities.
  • No item of equipment may be sold without consulting a faculty adviser and obtaining the approval of the Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor / Director of Professional Service.
  • Stores shall not be used for personal purchases.
  • Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors and Directors of Professional Services should ensure that Stores and Equipment inventories are maintained and independently checked on an annual basis to ensure that they are accurate and complete.
  • Stores shall be operated in accordance with policy issued by the Director of Procurement.

Vehicles

Regulations

  • The existence of all vehicles purchased by the University shall be notified to the Chief Estates and Facilities Officer who shall retain all registration and MOT documents.
  • The insurance of all vehicles shall be undertaken by the Director of Procurement.
  • The licensing of all vehicles shall be undertaken by the Chief Estates and Facilities Officer.

Subsidiary and Associated Companies

Regulations

  • Investments in subsidiary or associated companies (including all spin-out companies) shall be approved by University Executive Board up to £1m, above £1m approval shall be sought from Finance Committee.
  • Separate accounting arrangements shall be established by the Director of Financial Management for each subsidiary or associated company, such that all transactions with the University are transparent and authorised in accordance with the Schedule of Delegated Financial Authorities.
  • Reporting requirements for the overseas campuses will be determined by the Director of Financial Management in conjunction with the relevant Heads of Finance in Malaysia and China.
  • Funds from public sources shall not be used to subsidise the operation of subsidiary or associated companies. Any subsidy provided must be approved by the Finance Committee.
  • The CFO is authorised to establish Subsidiary Companies on behalf of the University.

Intercompany Loans

  • Loans are sometimes required between the University and Subsidiary Companies for cashflow purposes. For example, loans are sometimes required between the University and NOTICE ltd to provide cashflow funding for capital investment in the University’s power infrastructure. Loans between the University and its subsidiaries do not affect the University’s Group balance sheet as intercompany transactions are eliminated on consolidation.
  • The CFO is authorised to agree any loans on behalf of the University with a Director of the relevant subsidiary company authorising the receipt of any loan on behalf of the company. 

Loans to Univesity of Nottingham Malaysia Campus ("UNMC")

  • UNMC is an Associate Company of the University. The University has a minority shareholding in UNMC with the majority of the shares in UNMC owned by Boustead Holdings Berhad, a Malaysian company.
  • The University of Nottingham periodically provides cashflow loans to UNMC in proportion to the University’s shareholding in UNMC. There is a standing agreement covering the terms of any loan from the University of Nottingham and UNMC.
  • The CFO is authorised to agree any loan on behalf of the University of Nottingham to UNMC. The CFO is also authorised to negotiate the terms of any loans from the University of Nottingham to UNMC from time to time.

Loans to Univesity of Nottingham Ninbgo Campus ("UNNC")

  • The University would not normally expect to lend money to UNNC. Any loans or payments to UNNC are subject to the normal delegated authorities in Schedule 1 and are treated as Revenue expenditure due to the complexities of transferring money to and from China. 

 

last reviewed and updated following the Finance Committee meeting which took place 26.04.16
 

General Finance enquiries

email list: Please see our contacts page