Director of Finance

The Director of Finance is responsible for making all payments due by the University and must approve all payment procedures.

Authority to Incur Expenditure

No revenue or equipment expenditure may be incurred by a Head of Department unless provision for such expenditure is included in the Annual Budget or has been additionally approved by the Executive Committee or Director of Finance or is covered by a specific provision, from an external source, accepted formally on behalf of the University by an officer authorised in that behalf by the University Secretary.

Likewise no capital expenditure, pment, may be incurred unless provision is included in a Capital Expenditure or Equipment Budget approved by the Council.

A Head of Department may incur revenue expenditure within the approved budget providing that the expenditure is made in accordance with Financial Regulations and Procedures.

Decisions to employ academic and academic-related staff, including the re-filling of a post, even where covered by a budget, must be approved by Executive, except where the post is externally funded. For Administration Departments, other appointments must be approved by the Director of Human Resources.

Changes to structure or grades should always be approved by the Director of Human Resources.

Authorised Signatories

Only employees properly authorised, in writing, by the Head of Department shall have authority to approve requests for orders, certify sums for payment or otherwise contractually commit the University. Such authority shall be subject to any limits or other conditions imposed specifically by the Head of Department or generally by the Director of Finance (see Policy UP2). Authorised signatories are accountable through their Head of Department to the Faculty Dean and to the Vice-Chancellor for the proper exercise of their authority in accordance with the Financial Regulations.

Procurement - Acquiring Goods and Services

Procurement Policy

Procurement (the acquisition of all goods and services) for the University of Bath should always be undertaken with the objective of securing optimum Value for Money (VfM). Heads of Departments are responsible for ensuring that all purchasing activities are operated in accordance with the University's Procurement Policy, as set out in Policy UP3.

Salaries, Wages and Fee Payments

Director of Human Resources

The Director of Human Resources is responsible for the maintenance of Human Resources records and for determining the contractual arrangements relating to the payments of salaries, wages and other emoluments.

The Director of Human Resources is responsible for issuing all contracts of employment and contracts for services. A contract should be set up by the Human Resources Department before any work is performed. Departments should not contract with individuals.

The Director of Human Resources is also responsible for ensuring that people are paid through the University payroll with tax deducted, except where satisfied that a contract of employment does not exist.

Director of Finance

The Director of Finance is responsible for making such payments and for the maintenance of the related records, including those of a statutory nature.

Terms and Conditions of Employment

The University Council approves the standard contractual arrangements relating to all categories of staff within the University and provision is made within the arrangements for all matters affecting gross payment to the employee. All variations affecting gross pay shall be authorised by the Human Resources Department.

Appointment of Staff

All contracts of employment and contracts for services shall be concluded in accordance with the University's approved Human Resources practices and procedures and all offers of employment with the University shall be made in writing by the Director of Human Resources. Heads of Departments should ensure that the Director of Human Resources is provided promptly with all information they may require in connection with the appointment, resignation or dismissal of employees.

Payment of Wages, Salaries and other Remuneration

Except where specifically directed by the Director of Human Resources, all payments of wages, salaries or other emoluments of University office or employment shall be made through the University payroll.

Payment of fees and expenses

Reimbursement of travel and subsistence expenses will be made through the Payments Section of the Finance Office. Claims will not be reimbursed if submitted more than six months after the date of travel. All other payments of fees and expenses to staff and others outside the University will normally be made by the Payroll Office.

Where advances are made to members of staff for reasons of foreign travel, these advances should be accounted for within one week of the return to the University. Further advances will not be made to members of staff who have previous advance accounts outstanding.


The eligibility of staff for membership of the University's Superannuation Scheme (USS) or the Local Government Pension Scheme will be detailed in individual contracts of employment.

The Director of Finance is responsible for undertaking the Council's role as employer in relation to all superannuation matters.


Responsibility for accounting for PAYE, NIC and any other taxes, and for making all statutory returns, rests with the Director of Finance. Where payments for services rendered are made to individuals not employed by the University, the Director of Finance is responsible for maintaining any records required by the HM Revenue and Customs for tax purposes.

The University has a [dispensation from the HM Revenue and Customs] to make payments to employees for certain specified items without deduction of income tax. Reimbursement by the University of expenditure not included in the dispensation is prima-facie subject to the deduction of income tax before payment. The Director of Finance shall decide when income tax should be deducted from payments.

Sickness & Other Absences

It is the responsibility of the Head of Department to notify the Payroll Office of any absences through sickness. Other absences, such as maternity, paternity, jury service and unpaid leave should be notified to the Director of Human Resources.

Provision of Clothing

Where clothing is provided to employees because a department requires its staff to be dressed uniformly for security, protective or other business reasons, that clothing must bear a University logo. This requirement does not apply to provision of laboratory coats, safety shoes and hard hats. Further advice may be obtained from the Finance Office.

Employment of Students

Where students of the University are employed for casual work, the arrangements should be made through the Job Link, which is part of the Students’ Union.

Capital Expenditure

Capital projects between £100,000 and £2 million must be approved by the Vice-Chancellor. Detailed schemes for projects in excess of £2 million and up to £5 million must be approved by the Finance Committee and reported to Council for information. Detailed schemes for projects in excess of £5 million must be approved by Council on the recommendation of the Finance Committee. [See Procedure PR3]

All capital expenditure on land, buildings, furniture, equipment and any associated costs may only be incurred if it is part of an approved Capital Budget and detailed procedures for such financial transactions are followed.

When part of a capital project is funded by a grant, the grant claim process must be initialised before expenditure will be authorised. [See procedure PR4].

The Director of Estates is responsible for providing regular statements relating to all capital expenditure to the Finance Committee with an individual value in excess of £2 million.


Reasonable amounts of expenditure for hospitality and entertaining of third parties may be charged to University administered funds where necessarily incurred in the course of the University’s business.

All claims for payment or reimbursement of the cost of provision of hospitality or entertainment which is provided other than through the use of University facilities must contain the following information:

  • the names of those present and the organisation(s) they represent
  • the purpose of the entertainment.

Entertaining not involving third parties (i.e. attended by University staff only) should not be charged to University administered funds. This applies to all entertaining, whether provided on- or off-campus. Expenditure of a trivial sum per head connected to events such as a retirement may be charged.

Value Added Tax

The University is registered for VAT.

Departments must confirm the Value Added Tax liability on research contracts and agreements with the Research Support Unit. All other VAT liabilities should be confirmed with the Finance Office.

The Departments are responsible for ensuring that VAT is recovered on expenditure where this is appropriate, at the point of coding and authorising payments.

Petty Cash

The University's imprest petty cash account is maintained by the Finance Office. Cash floats should not normally be maintained in Departments.

However, under exceptional circumstances, imprest accounts may be maintained on the authority of the Director of Finance to meet minor payments and disbursements.

Such accounts are the responsibility of the member of staff to whom they are entrusted.

Payments from imprest accounts must be supported by appropriate invoices or receipts.

The following types of expenditure are expressly forbidden:

  • Any item over £25 unless prior permission is obtained from the Director of Finance.
  • Payment of wages, call-out payments, overtime payments, staff expenses or other ad hoc remuneration.
  • Gifts to members of staff or ex-members of staff.
  • Gifts, gratuities or donations of any nature to external bodies.
  • Payments for non-business use of goods/services.
  • Personal expenditure, loans or advances to employees or students, or for cashing personal cheques.


The University is an exempt charity by virtue of the Charities Act 2011 and does not therefore make donations to other charitable bodies.

University Accommodation

Overnight stops in University accommodation will be funded by the university only when it is necessary to stay overnight to carry out one’s work and with the approval of the individual’s line manager.