Finance Department


Procurement exist to help the University achieve our objectives and deliver the best results for the best value expenditure. Our role is to assist our staff in dealings with suppliers and to work with them to help source the goods and services needed to do their work.

Procurement do not just provide value for money, but also ensure an operational fit between the needs of the University, our students and staff, and the solutions available from the market. 

In the current day and age, there is high scrutiny of expenditure and a need to reduce costs. Procurement therefore:

  1. Provide procurement services and advice for all spend
  2.  Work collaboratively to ensure we get best value for money
  3.  Analyse spend and risk
  4.  Select suppliers to reduce risk
  5.  Review pricing, costs, terms and conditions and performance
  6.  Work collaboratively to drive performance and value for money
  7.  Deliver operational support
  8. Review how the University works with our suppliers

Approximately £54m a year is spent with external suppliers and contractors. Procurement exist to ensure that that money is spent in a manner that is demonstrably best value in terms of performance, delivery of outcomes, reduced cost and customer satisfaction. 

This includes involvement at every step of a requirement, from the early stages where a need is identified, to the last day of a multi-year contract, and the subsequent arrangement of a new contract. Our intention is to deliver a co-ordinated, business wide approach that meets the aims of the corporate plan.

The Procurement team at the University use an online tender portal, to publish all our procurement opportunities over the value of £25,000. Suppliers should register their details at:

If you wish to become a supplier to us, please use the Contact tab and we will respond if there is a requirement we may wish to pursue.

Off-Payroll working rules (IR35)

The Intermediary Legislation (known as IR35) applies if an individual engages with the end client through their own intermediary. Following changes in legislation on 6th April 2017, the University (Public Sector Body) is responsible in determining whether IR35 rules apply to a particular engagement. If these rules apply the University is required to withhold Tax and National Insurance from the payment "at source" and submit the reports to HMRC. These rules are in place to make sure that where an individual would have been an employee if they were providing their services directly, they pay broadly the same tax and national insurance contributions as an employee. The intermediary can be:

  • a worker's own limited company - known as a personal service company (PSC)
  • a partnership
  • agency worker

If you intend to engage as a contractor, consultant or specialist service provider with the University then please be aware that the HMRC's IR35 assessment will need to be carried out by the engaging School / Department before any work is carried out.

If the contractor or consultant is deemed 'inside IR35' it is the responsibility of the fee payer to ensure that tax and national insurance contributions (NIC) are being paid in line with the legislation, so payment to the intermediary will be made net of these.

If the contractor is deemed 'outside of IR35' then tax and NIC payments are the responsibility of the contractor or consultant.

Changes to off-payroll rules April 2021

The University will continue to apply the rules when the changes come into force on 6th April 2021. However, from this date there will be extra responsibilities:

  • We will need to provide both the worker and the agency (where applicable) with a status determination statement, as well as the reasons behind this determination. This will be when or before the contract is entered into, or when the work starts if that is later
  • The worker and / or agency will be able to dispute the employment status determination. The University must consider the reasons given for the disagreement and respond within 45 days
  • After careful consideration, we will decide whether to maintain the determination if we feel it is correct, giving reasons why, or provide a new determination because we feel it was wrong
  • During this time the University must continue to apply the rules in line with the original determination

Characteristics that may result in being inside the legislation include the following:

  • Having to work under direct supervision or control of the end client
  • Having to work at a set location or to set hours
  • Having to formally request leave or seek permission for absence
  • Having an hourly, daily or weekly rate of pay
  • Being paid for overtime, or to correct unsatisfactory work
  • Is unable to provide a substitute ie the work has to be carried out by the contractor
  • Is able to be moved from task to task or to another location without arranging a new contract

Characteristics that may result in being outside the legislation include the following:

  • Not having to work under direct supervision or control of the end client
  • Having control over how / where / when to complete the work
  • Has no access to holiday pay or sickness benefits
  • Able to refuse or accept work at their own discretion
  • A fixed fee is agreed by the employer for the work, regardless of how long it actually takes to complete
  • Financial risk eg having to correct errors in their own time and at their own expense
  • Being able to propose a substitute agent or person to complete the work

In the event of any queries please contact




Finance Department, The Registry, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ

Contact us - Students | Staff | External, or Fax: +44(0)1227 827024

Last Updated: 20/10/2022