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This page sets out the areas of consideration when you are purchasing goods and services using University funds, which are all subject to the Universities financial regulations.  It starts with the period when you are considering your purchasing options and sets out the tendering process, through to setting up suppliers for payment.


Before you engage this business have you followed the tendering guidance?

A reminder about the Universities policy on getting quotes for services.  The guidance can be found in the link below

If the value of the contract/service is likely to be less than £500 – you should be obtaining 2 separate quotes, which can be verbal, but you should record them in the attached form

Between £500 and £9999 – you should obtain 3 written quotes and clarify on what basis you selected the supplier (on the attached form).  If this is a completely unique service provided by only one company, you will need to complete a Single Action Waiver form – in the link above and send this to the Finance Office as this has to be approved by the Dean.  There are very few services this applies to, contact the Finance Office for advice if you think that you are sourcing a unique service.

Over £10, 000 – 3 written quotes and should complete  a Bid Evaluation Document – for contract of this level, we could seek support and assistance from purchasing, so it would be helpful to come and see the Finance Office to discuss the contract and next steps.

These values are the amount you will spend with the business over the period you intend to use them, so this could be the value in total over 3 years.

INFORMATION NEEDED TO GET SOMEONE PAID – please collect this information

  1. What service have they done for the School? –eg running an event, careers workshops, teaching
  2. How often will you be using this service in the coming year?
  3. What budget will this be charged to?
  4. What rate are they being paid at?
  5. Do you have their contact details (address, email, telephone)
  6. Are they VAT registered? - if they are and charge VAT, the University cannot recover the VAT, so the charge to your budget is the cost + VAT
  7. Is their business set up as a limited company or are they a sole trader?
    1. If a limited company, will they be invoicing us from their company?
    2. If a limited company – will we be paying them into a company bank account or a personal bank account?

If the answer to these is that we will have an invoice from a company and pay them into a company bank account – we need to set them up as a SUPPLIER

If they are not set up as a company or if we pay them into their personal bank account – they are a sole trader and we will have to follow the NESA process


Go into web agresso and into procurement as if you are going to raise a purchase order.  Type in to the ‘look up’ field the supplier name.  This will show you all similar named suppliers and you might find that yours is already set up.  However this will also show suppliers that are on hold.  To check if it is ‘live’ or ‘parked’ – in agresso click on supplier information, search for the supplier and note the ID number – click on the blue box beside supplier ID – click on the arrows by advanced –enter the supplier number in ‘SuppID’ and click ‘search’.  In the Status box N= Normal (or live) P=Parked (on hold).  Parked suppliers have to be set up again – then tends to apply more to NESA sole traders, please see notes below.

Or you can contact the purchasing teams and check – please quote the supplier name (and number from agresso if you can see it);

For suppliers – query to

For sole traders – query to

SUPPLIER – ie Limited Companies

Send the supplier the ‘new supplier form’ to complete and return to purchasing services – found in link below – New Supplier Application Form.

You complete section A

Supplier completes section B

NESA Process – Sole Trader Businesses

NB: This process is currently undergoing a change due to IR35. Revised details will be available soon, in the meantime, please contact the Finance Office

This process has been updated in August 2016.  There are processes in purchasing that have been amended and should mean that there is less of a delay in getting the business set up to be paid.  From the Schools side, you will do the same forms as before, but in a different order than you might be familiar with.

NESA steps;

  1. As above check if your sole trader is set up in Agresso.  If they are in Agresso please contact the NESA team as forms may not need to be sent out again.  Please qute the agresso supplier id when you email them on and they will confirm next steps
  2. If they are not in Agresso they will need set up.  First step complete an HR form, this allows HR to check and confirm that this is a discrete project and not on-going employment.  The form is in the link
    1. The end date of the assignment is when the business will be parked in Agresso, this cannot be indefinite as sole traders businesses detail tend to change often.  It can be 2 or 3 years max.  If you are unsure, please discuss with the Finance Office. 
    2. Your name should be included in the ‘co-ordinator name’ area so purchasing can contact you if they have queries
    3. The value is the total you will spend with the business over this entire period.  Remember the tendering guidance applies also – so should you be tendering this service?
    4. Completed forms should be sent to IAN BECK in HR who is the Schools HR manager
    5. Send the business the new supplier form and as above you complete section A and send to the business who complete section B.

They should return as per form

  1. Once the purchasing team have set up the business on Agresso they will send you an email.  An example of the email text is below this section.  You can now raise a PO in Agresso  please use the NESA reference in the requisition, if you are unsure where to put this please contact the Finance Office.
  2. Then finally, complete the consultancy schedule and send to the business.  This stage is very important as the PO and this schedule combined is their contract.  The new revised consultancy contract can be found on the purchasing page on the link below

Example NESA email from purchasing;

We have now received the approved NESA Form (15/06/2016 – 30/06/2017  – Purchase of photographic prints) from HR for Svetlana Kaverina t/a Sveta Kaverina Photography and they have now been set-up on Agresso, supplier Id 182343.

The NESA Engagement Reference is: SKP/LR/0617

We recommend you complete the attached Consultancy Schedule (including the NESA Engagement Reference, a short description of services to be provided, start and end dates of the engagement (as above), maximum spend, hourly rate, invoicing terms etc.), unless all the requisite information can be included on the purchase order.

Raise a Purchase Order , quoting the NESA Engagement Reference in the External Reference and Description fields on the Requisition screen (once approved, the PO will be automatically sent to the supplier via email)

When you receive the Agresso alert advising the PO has been emailed to the consultant, send the consultancy schedule via email, ensuring you quote the PO no.

Suggested wording for the email above is;

NESA Ref:  xxxx/xx/mmyy

Please find attached the Schedule of Consultancy Terms re .....short description of services to be provided........... for the Department of XXXXX.  You should have received  the Purchase Order number XXXXX,  which relates to this engagement,  via email. Please check the attached schedule and the Purchase Order.  If you have any queries please contact in the Department of XXXXX as soon as possible.



A reminder – if you are going to employ someone to help your team the steps are;

  1. Are they a student – via Joblink
  2. Are they a temporary member of staff helping/covering a role in your team – you must first discuss this with Amanda Spencer
  3. Are they an external person (non student) doing teaching, research assistance – contact Sarah McAlinden or Jilly Raw to discuss – as this will be a contract issued by HR

If it is a student - you will need to liaise with Joblink direct to set up your casual invigilators/ casual teaching assistant.  Contact Becky Gallagher (joblink) if you have any questions.

The pay rates can be found in the link below

Finance Office – updated February 2018

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