Finance Division

Purchasing Goods and Services

Find out more about purchasing goods and services at the University.

Quick links to policies, forms and guidance


Procurement and Purchasing Policy [PDF 772.36KB]

Modern Slavery Act Statement [PDF 124.71KB]

Finance Systems Facilitated Delegation Framework with Responsibilities [PDF 197.97KB]


Purchasing Card Application Form [PDF 206.56KB]

Purchasing Card Application Checklist [DOCX 21.78KB]

Purchasing Card Cash Withdrawal Request [DOCX 18.53KB]

Purchasing Card Limit Increase Request [DOCX 21.20KB]

Request for Procurement Support over £25,000 [DOCX 15.05KB]


Purchasing Goods and Services Guide [PDF 6.90MB]

Purchasing Card Guide [PDF 2.48MB]

Travel and Working Away from Base, Hospitality and Out of Pocket Expenses Guide [PDF 3.82MB]

Amazon Business Training Video - Find out what Amazon Business is and how to access it (MP4 file)

Approved Suppliers [PDF 167.07KB]

Faster Payment Guide [PDF 625.43KB]

How to Find the Right Supplier [PDF 181.48KB]

University of Sussex - Conditions of Purchase [PDF 110.21KB]

University of Sussex - General Conditions - Consultancy [PDF 304.97KB]

University of Sussex - General Conditions - Goods and/or Services [PDF 413.46KB]

IR35 Guidance and Advice

Contract Signature Process Flowchart [PDF 80.47KB]

Finance systems access and financial literacy training

Achieving value for money

To achieve value for money when purchasing, the benefits derived from goods and services need to be balanced against the 'total cost' of buying and using them.

The 'total cost' includes the purchase cost, maintenance and running costs, costs of disposal, as well as the cost of the buying process itself. Therefore, it is not always best value for money to buy the cheapest product or service.

Heads of School and Directors of Professional Service should take these factors into account when purchasing to ensure that the University gets the best deal overall.

Some types of purchase are subject of specific rules to ensure the best use of University funds. See our Buyer's Toolkit - Existing suppliers and agreements page for more information on this.   

Working out the value of a purchase

When estimating the value of a purchase you should:

  • Include any applicable VAT - In the vast majority of cases the University cannot recover VAT incurred on its purchases, therefore the cost to the University and the commitment against a budget will be the VAT inclusive amount.
  • Include the cost of the full length of contracted services - If a contract is for continuous service but has no defined end date, then four years should be assumed.

Different purchasing procedures apply dependent on the value of your purchase. See our Buyer's Toolkit - How to find the right supplier page for more information on this.