Process invoices

Expand All

Invoices may be received electronically or in hard copy. Hard copy invoices or credit notes should be date stamped immediately. 'Copy' invoices or credit notes should be stamped appropriately.

Check the following details to ensure the invoice or credit note is legally valid:

  • Address details - invoices must be addressed either to the University of Oxford or to the department.
  • PO Number - where relevant, the purchase order number should be shown.
  • Document status – the document must be an invoice rather than a delivery note, order acknowledgement or statement. If the word ‘invoice’ appears on the document then it should be treated as an invoice.
  • VAT details - Invoices that charge VAT must also contain all of the following details:
    • Supplier VAT number, trading name and address.
    • Description of goods or services.
    • Invoice number and invoice date (required for invoices over £250; desirable in invoices below £250).
    • Time of supply (‘tax point’) if different from the invoice date.
    • Analysis of VAT charged, including value and rate used. 
    • The supplier's VAT number is shown (where they are VAT registered).
  • Totals - the invoice totals are correct.

Any invoices that do not meet the criteria should not be input to Oracle Financials but, if necessary, queried with the supplier. Any uncertainty over VAT treatment of should be checked with the Tax Team.


Invoices that relate to a forward currency contract must be handled as per the Foreign Currency Management   process.


Invoices and credit notes should be processed as soon as possible after receipt, and it is best practice to enter them within three days of invoice date. They should be entered onto Oracle Financials either in the department or sent to the Payments Team (depending on your arrangements).

Invoices processed by the Payments Team:

  • Must be sent in electronically 
  • If relating to a purchase order, ensure the purchase order number is shown clearly on the invoice. No authorisation of the invoice is required.
  • If not related to a purchase order, add the tax classification code, tax code and full accounting string on the invoice and ensure it is authorised (signed and dated) by an appropriate authorised signatory.

Invoices processed in the department:

  • If relating to a purchase order, match to the purchase order. No authorisation of the invoice is required.
  • If not relating to a purchase order, ensure the invoice is authorised by an appropriate authorised signatory then enter a standard invoice. 


  1. All invoices over £100,000 (including local currency equivalent) not matched to a Purchase Order must be authorised by Divisional Financial Controller in accordance with the Financial Regulations.
  2. All invoices for payments to individuals must be sent to the Payments Team. Departments are not permitted to input any payments to individuals to the Financials system themselves.

Incorrect value

  • Where the total value on the invoice is greater than agreed, you should request a credit note from the supplier. The invoice should still be entered onto Oracle Financials, as detailed above, but put on 'hold' awaiting the credit note. For further guidance contact Financial Systems Customer Services.

Incorrect address

  • If the invoice is addressed incorrectly, the invoice is deemed to be invalid, you should return the invoice to the supplier, logging its receipt and return on a spreadsheet or similar. Do not enter the invoice onto Oracle Financials.


For tax and audit purposes, original invoices must be retained for seven years in a suitable format and storage location. Further guidance on suitability of storage can be provided by the Payments Team.

Contact us

 : Purchasing Department
       Finance Division
       University of Oxford
       23-38 Hythe Bridge Street
       Oxford OX1 2ET
 :  01865 (6) 16022

 : For further information
      please contact the
      Purchasing Department