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The best practice procedures and guidelines set out in this chapter are intended to assist institutions in the management of trading income and to reduce outstanding debtors by identifying the steps and considerations to be made before, during and after the sale of goods and services.
The purpose of this is to:

  • ensure that only appropriate trading activities are undertaken 
  • help to manage any financial and reputational risks to the University and institutions
  • provide efficient procedures
  • ensure a consistent and effective approach to collecting overdue debt
  • prevent bad-debt provisions being lodged against institution accounts
  • prevent loss to the institution through minimising the writing-off of bad debts


This chapter concentrates on sales of goods and services to external customers (including students), that is, the University’s trading activities.
For purposes of this chapter, institution means any of the following: a faculty not organised in departments, schools, centres, institutes, any bodies under the supervision of the General Board or Council, and divisions within the Unified Administrative Service.
Guidance for the other sources of income can be found in the following chapters of the Financial Procedures Manual:

Institution responsibilities and Financial Regulations

Heads of Institutions (HoIs) are responsible for ensuring that all income-generating activity is carried out in accordance with the Financial Regulations and the procedures set out in this chapter.
Institutional procedures should be developed for internal use in respect of sales, banking, and income collection. The documents should set out:

  • those persons authorised to raise sales transactions, ensuring they have the correct CUFS responsibility
  • the financial limits of their authority
  • the preferred terms and conditions on which the goods and/or services are to be provided
  • the practice on extending credit to external customers (debtors), addressing credit risk and credit worthiness
  • any procedural requirements for making sales
  • timely production and appropriate despatch of invoices
  • monitoring and reporting of the debt book and debt provision
  • steps that will be taken to recover outstanding debts
  • those persons authorised to approve the write-off of a debt


Key contacts

Section Contact Details Role in process
Accounts Receivable Helpdesk Provides basic guidance, advice, and direction on all AR matters
Accounts Receivable Customer Set Up  On receipt of AR customer setup form, creates new, and amends existing, customer records on CUFS 
Performs credit checks on customers
Credit Control  Assists with issues related to debt collection
Completes supplier portal registration
Uploads AR invoices onto supplier portals for payment
Cash Management Monitors University bank account
Receipts income
Distributes BACS list
Tax Office Assists with establishing correct VAT treatment for external sales
Legal Services Office Advises on legal matters surrounding the supply of goods and services
Provides standard University Terms & Conditions


Latest version 29 April 2024



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