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Finance tips: Making travel easier

Some tips from the Finance division to make life easier when travelling and working away from the University.

Claiming back expenses

Many staff will have travelled and worked away from campus over the summer and now is the time to claim back any remaining out of pocket expenses you have incurred.

TIP: Before you submit a claim make sure you’ve attached a clear receipt for all expenses, except for mileage. Budget holders need to check receipts to authorise the claim and the receipt image needs to be retrievable and legible for HMRC and research funders. Without receipts, budget holders will reject claims back to you to for you to attach them.

TIP: Lots of people have found the new smart phone app very useful for preparing their claims – full instructions are included in the travel and working away from base guidance, and the Finance Service Desk can help you to download or use it if you have any problems.

TIP: Our Scanning guide provides further guidance on how to ensure receipts are legible and show all necessary information.

TIP: Remember it’s really easy to track the progress of a claim yourself, you just need to use the ‘Enquire on my expenses claim progress’ report on the finance system home page to check what is happening. You can use the heart icon on the top right of your screen to add this report (and any others) to your favourites for easy access in the future.

TIP: There is also a useful report called 'My Expenses’ that gives you a list of all the expense claims you have input into the finance system.

Working away from campus

TIP: If you’re a frequent traveller or are travelling overseas for work purposes, a University purchasing card could make purchasing simpler and avoid the out-of-pocket expenses process. Read guidance on using purchasing cards, and look out for a new expanded guide we’re publishing in the next few weeks.

TIP: If you plan to make out-of-pocket expense claims make sure that you have access to the finance system in advance. This is the only way to get your claim submitted and paid. There’s a simple form to fill in to get access to the system but it does need to be authorised in your area so please allow time for this. The Finance Service Desk will help you if you have any problems.

Budget holders

If you are a budget holder, tasks will continue to get sent to you even when you are away from the campus. If you aren’t around to authorise them then colleagues will not be able to get what they need and suppliers may not get paid

TIP: Budget holders have found the Unit4 Tasks app for smart phones to be very helpful in allowing them to authorise out-of-pocket expense claims and requisitions rapidly on the go. The Finance Service Desk can help with any problems downloading or using the app.

TIP: You can delegate your tasks on the finance system to delegated authorities (‘substitutes’) before you go on leave or travel away from campus so that nothing gets stuck in the system whilst you’re away. You need to get them authorised by your Head of School / Director of Service and the Director of Finance and from then on you can activate them whenever you need to. To set up a delegated authority, fill in the Delegated Authority Set Up form and return it to the Finance Service Desk once it has been authorised in your area.

Where to get help

Further information on working away from campus is contained within our travel and working away from base guidance.

The Finance service desk will always support you in resolving your finance enquiries and aims to respond to all emails within two working days, with priority for urgent issues. If you have any questions – or any suggestions or training requests - email:

Telephone support is available for urgent enquiries from 8.30am to 5pm on x7172 or 01273 877172 externally.

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By: Sean Armstrong
Last updated: Friday, 28 September 2018