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1.0 Purpose and Scope

1.1 Context

This procedure outlines UQ's requirements for the use of corporate credit cards.

Corporate credit cards are used by The University of Queensland (UQ) staff to purchase low value goods and services from suppliers, and are the preferred method of payment for purchases where a travel allowance or preferred supplier or UQeMarket vendor arrangement is not available. 

1.2 Application and objectives

This procedure applies to all UQ staff who hold corporate credit cards (cardholders), their supervisors and staff in UQ Finance. This procedure provides guidance about:

  • applying for a corporate credit card,

  • reconciling corporate credit card expenditure, and

  • meeting obligations as a corporate credit card user.

1.3 UQ expenditure principles 

This procedure is underpinned by UQ's expenditure principles, which are that expenditure must be:

  • for official UQ purposes,

  • appropriate and justifiable,

  • properly document,

  • available for scrutiny, and

  • authorised by an appropriate staff member.

2.0 Process and Key Controls

2.1 Eligibility

Staff considering applying for a corporate credit card should first read this procedure and then before commencing the application process, determine their eligibility against the criteria below.

Applicants must:     

  • demonstrate they have a business need for a corporate credit card,

  • be over 18 years of age, and

  • be employed in a paid position with UQ that is continuing, or of fixed term and of greater than 6 months' duration.

Special permission requirements:

  • Staff employed for a duration of less than 6 months must have an application endorsed by the Head of School (or equivalent) which will be referred to the Office of the Chief Financial Officer for a decision;

  • Co-appointees, where the co-appointment is with an organisation outside of UQ, must have an application endorsed by the Head of School (or equivalent);

  • Applicants who have previously had a corporate credit card cancelled for failing to reconcile transactions, must obtain authorisation for their application from both the Head of the School (or equivalent) and the Chief Financial Officer.

Honorary position holders, casual employees and students are ineligible to hold a corporate credit card.

2.2 Applying for a corporate credit card

Corporate credit card applicants must:

  1. Complete the Cardholder Approval and Declaration Form including authorising signature and return the signed form to the Expense Management Team (expenses@uq.edu.au) for processing. 
  2. Complete the online Commonwealth Bank (CBA) Corporate Credit Card Application, which will be sent to eligible applicants from the CBA (noreply@cardmanager.cba.com.au). The online application must be completed and submitted within 72 hours of receipt.

The process will require the applicant to verify their identity with the bank issuing the credit card (the Commonwealth Bank of Australia) or an appointed UQ Corporate Credit Card Verifying Officer (a list of verifying officers is available from the Expense Management Team).

For identity to be verified, applicants will be required to provide one of the following combinations of identification documents (which must be originals or certified copies):

  • 1 x primary photographic identification (e.g. Australian passport; Australian driver’s licence; proof of age card; international passport) OR

  • 2 x primary non-photographic identification (e.g. Birth certificate or extract issued by an Australian state or territory; Australian citizenship certificate; a citizenship certificate issued by a foreign government) OR

  • 1 x primary non-photographic and 1 x secondary identification (e.g. a notice issued in the preceding 12 months by the Commonwealth, or an Australian state or territory containing the name of the applicant and their residential address; a notice or bill issued in the preceding 3 months by a local government or utilities provider containing the name of the applicant and their residential address).

The full list of acceptable identification documents is available from the Expense Management Team.

The Expense Management Team will notify the applicant when their corporate credit card arrives and provide the cardholder with options to collect it. The Expense Management Team will also notify cardholders for the collection of replacement cards.

2.2.1 Corporate credit card limits

Corporate credit cards are issued with the following standard transaction limits:

  • $5,000 (including GST) per transaction, and

  • $20,000 (including GST) combined monthly transactions.

In some circumstances, a cardholder’s purchasing requirements may exceed these standard limits. Cardholders may apply for a limit adjustment by completing a UQ Corporate Credit Card – Limit Adjustment Form, which will be subject to approval from the relevant Head of School (or equivalent) and the Office of the Chief Financial Officer.

2.3 Inappropriate corporate credit card use and misconduct

  • UQ is legally obliged to monitor corporate credit card use and take measures to recover personal or unauthorised expenditure. 

  • A corporate credit card must only be used for official UQ business. 

  • Expenditure of a personal nature must not be charged to a UQ corporate credit card.

  • UQ will take action against cardholders who:

    • use the card for improper and/or fraudulent transactions;

    • use the card for personal or unauthorised expenditure; or

    • contravene this procedure.

Use of a corporate credit card for personal or unauthorised expenditure may result in:

  • UQ referring the matter to the police service for criminal charges or the Crime and Corruption Commission for investigation;

  • revocation of approval to use the corporate credit card;

  • recovery action by UQ including:

    • deductions from salary or other entitlements due to the cardholder;

    • legal costs and bank charges incurred by UQ in recovering any such amounts; and

  • the matter being investigated as Misconduct or Serious Misconduct as defined in the Enterprise Agreement and may lead to disciplinary action being taken, including termination of employment.

Cardholders who inadvertently charge personal expenditure to their corporate credit card must reimburse UQ for that expenditure within seven days of becoming aware of it and provide a written explanation of why the expense occurred to their supervisor and the Expense Management Team. To reimburse an expenditure, cardholders make a ‘Return of Payment’ via the UQ Pay online payment facility. UQ may take further action, as described under this section 2.3, against cardholders that repeatedly make inadvertent personal expenditure payments using their corporate credit card.

Further information about inappropriate use and misconduct is available from the Expense Management Team and outlined in The University of Queensland Enterprise Agreement.

2.4 Integrity safeguards

2.4.1 Identity verification

As part of the application process, identity verification of an applicant in undertaken by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia or a UQ verifying officer.

2.4.2 Regular auditing

UQ undertakes ongoing compliance reviews including checking:

  • the appropriateness of cardholders' expenditure; and

  • that cardholders provide:

    • reconciliation (i.e. the full acquittal of expenditure and allocation of costs to appropriate 'chart string'); and

    • required supporting documentation,

for credit transactions.

These activities are undertaken by cardholders’ direct supervisors and compliance reviewers in the Expense Management Team.

2.4.3 Recovery measures

Authorised UQ staff will seek reimbursements and recover corporate credit cards from cardholders where applicable.

3.0 Key Requirements

3.1 Reconciling a corporate credit card

Cardholders are responsible for reconciling their corporate credit card transactions and are accountable for ensuring this process is conducted in a timely manner through UQ’s EMS ProMaster. Reconciling transactions involves the cardholder providing information about the business purpose and description of each expenditure in EMS ProMaster. As part of the process, cardholders must also provide supporting documentation such as receipts, tax invoices and hospitality approvals.

Cardholders must reconcile their transactions within 30 days of the transaction date. UQ may suspend or cancel corporate credit cards, without notice to the cardholder, where transactions are not reconciled and approved within 30 days of the transaction date.

Training and information about reconciling corporate credit card transactions in EMS ProMaster is available through Blackboard. New cardholders are required to complete this training. Existing cardholders are strongly encouraged to complete this training.

3.1.1 Supporting documentation for transactions

For reconciling and tax purposes, cardholders must obtain appropriate documentation for expenses incurred using their corporate credit card. UQ’s preference is a tax invoice, though it is acknowledged that this may not always be available. For transactions of $82.50 (including GST) or less, other documentation containing relevant information is accepted (e.g. cash register docket, receipt or invoice).

Cardholders unable to obtain any supporting documentation must record the transaction on a Missing Supporting Document Declaration. The declaration must specify the reason why supporting documentation is not available and must be signed by the cardholder. One declaration per reconciliation is permitted, and cardholders deemed to be abusing this concession through frequent use may be required to reimburse the expenses to UQ and further action may be considered under section 2.3 of this procedure.

Additional supporting documentation requirements should be in line with any relevant UQ PPL, based on the nature of the expenditure (e.g. 9.45.07 Special Payments).

3.2 Disputing a transaction

Cardholders are responsible for ensuring that all expenses provided in EMS ProMaster are correct. If a cardholder does not agree with or recognise a transaction on their corporate credit card, they must investigate the transaction with the supplier and where necessary, dispute the transaction by lodging a Customer Investigation Request for Disputed Corporate Card Transactions form with the Expense Management Team via email expenses@uq.edu.au. A dispute must be lodged within 30 days of the transaction date. After 30 days, the cardholder’s organisational unit will be liable for the transaction.

Detailed information about how to dispute a transaction or resolve a dispute is provided in online training through Blackboard, and further advice may be sought from the Expense Management Team (expenses@uq.edu.au).

3.3 Prohibited purchases

In addition to ensuring that corporate credit cards are used for official UQ expenditure only and that such expenditure is consistent with UQ’s expenditure principles, cardholders must not make prohibited purchases using a corporate credit card. Cardholders must familiarise themselves with the list of prohibited purchases below.

In certain circumstances where cardholders may need to purchase a prohibited item, the cardholder must seek the written approval from the Chief Financial Officer prior to making the purchase and retain that approval and all other relevant documents. Cardholders should contact the Expense Management Team (expenses@uq.edu.au) in such circumstances.

Purchases requiring prior written approval from Head of School or equivalent

Flowers

Passports

Personal luggage

Memberships

Airport Lounge Memberships for business use can be purchased or renewed through UQ by completing the relevant form.

Purchases that are strictly prohibited

Any expenditure that may be subject to other taxation such as income tax.

Cash exchangeable products (e.g. travellers’ cheques) and foreign currency.

Cash withdrawals from the bank.

Dangerous goods and hazardous substances 1 (incl. scheduled medicines and poisons; prohibition not intended to capture normal consumer products and use per note 2).

Expenses where funds have been or will be paid via another method.

Internet transactions that are not on secure websites.

Special Studies Program related travel expenditure for which an allowance has been paid.

Meal or incidental expenditure on official travel when a travel allowance has been paid.

Tipping/gratuities in Australia or other countries where tipping is not common practice.

Transactions exceeding the cardholder’s transaction limit (transactions cannot be split to fit within the card’s transaction limit);

Personal rewards cards (e.g. Flybuys and Everyday Rewards) must not be used to accumulate points when using a UQ corporate credit card;

The following plant and equipment items:

-        (IT Equipment) Account code 705230

-        (Motor Vehicles) Account code 705240

-        (Other Plant and Equipment) Account code 705250

The following portable and attractive items:

-        (Plant & Equipment) Account code 705310

-        (Mobiles) Account code 705315

-        (IT) Account code 705320

 

1 In certain circumstances a cardholder may need to apply for an exemption by seeking written approval from the Director Health, Safety and Wellness prior to making the purchase. This exemption is intended to capture corporate card purchased materials that must be included on University inventories and hazardous substances registers (Ref. Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011, Chapter 7).

2 In this context Consumer Products (that are dangerous goods, hazardous substances or scheduled medicines and poisons) are products intended for use by consumers as per manufacturer's direction, e.g. diesel purchased from a service station to fuel a generator, petrol purchased from a service station as boat fuel, LPG purchased from a camping store for stove fuel, an Epipen or Ventolin purchased from a pharmacy and held by an accredited first aider as part of an asthma or anaphylaxis plan.  

3.4 Online purchases

Cardholders should exercise increased discretion and judgement when using their corporate credit card to make online purchases. Purchases should only be made from reputable or known suppliers. Contact information appearing on the website should be verified against other sources such as a telephone directory or promotional material appearing in an industry journal. The card number must not be used as proof of identity.

The corporate credit card number should be provided to the supplier each time an order or purchase is made. In the event that such information needs to be stored on a supplier’s website (e.g. within a user profile), cardholders must email expenses@uq.edu.au the website address and details. These details will be logged on a register acknowledging where UQ corporate credit card details are stored.

Useful information to consider in making safe and secure online purchases is available from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

3.5 Fringe benefit tax (FBT) requirements

Cardholders should familiarise themselves with FBT and how it applies to certain expenses. Additional information is available via PPL 9.65.02 FBT and calculation tools are available in EMS ProMaster to assist cardholders.

3.6 Loss, theft or unauthorised use

Loss, theft or suspected unauthorised use of the corporate credit card must be reported immediately to the cardholder’s supervisor and to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (13 15 76). Cardholders must then advise the Expense Management Team (expenses@uq.edu.au) with details of the incident.

3.7 Travelling overseas

UQ travellers are encouraged to carry a UQ corporate credit card whilst travelling overseas for safety reasons, if they are eligible in accordance with this procedure.

Cardholders are recommended to notify the CBA prior to travel, particularly if they are travelling to a high risk country, as the bank’s security team monitors any unusual or suspicious activity on their accounts. The CBA corporate credit cards team can be contacted any time on 131 576. This number is also printed on the back of UQ’s corporate credit cards.

4.0 Roles, Responsibilities and Accountabilities

4.1 Cardholders

Cardholders are staff that have been allocated a UQ corporate credit card.

Cardholders are:

  • obliged to:

    • comply with this procedure; and

    • use the card for official UQ expenditure only

  • accountable for:

    • all transactions on their corporate credit card; and

    • the reconciliation and submission of their corporate credit card transactions in the times prescribed by this procedure;

    • reimbursement of costs to UQ for inadvertent personal transactions in the times prescribed by this procedure;

    • custody of their corporate credit cards and Personal Identification Numbers (PINs). Under no circumstances should cardholders disclose their PINs to any other person or allow their corporate credit card to be used by any other person. 

  • responsible for the security of their corporate credit card and must notify the Expense Management Team (expenses@uq.edu.au) in the following circumstances:

    • if the cardholder takes significant leave exceeding 6 months (e.g. annual leave, long service leave or extended sick leave) - the card should be returned to the Expense Management Team,

    • if the cardholder changes their name - a copy of the legal document effecting the name change must be provided to the Expense Management Team,

    • if the cardholder is transferring from one UQ organisational unit to another,

Subject to the prior authorisation of the new Head of Organisational Unit, cards are transferable from one organisational unit to another.

A corporate credit card must not be used and must be returned to the Expense Management Team in the following circumstances:

  • after notice of termination of employment with UQ is given or received by the cardholder.

  • If the cardholder is:

    • transferred to duties not requiring use of the card;

    • given a directive by the Chief Financial Officer to surrender the card;

    • suspended from, or directed to cease, using the card by UQ.

4.1.1 Providing corporate credit card details to suppliers

Cardholders should exercise suitable care and discretion when providing their corporate credit card details to suppliers via email, fax or phone. For example, cardholders should directly contact the relevant supplier to confirm their receipt of any details provided via email or fax.

Cardholders should not email the entire corporate credit card details to a supplier at once or photocopy their corporate credit card (front or back).

4.2 Verifying officers

A verifying officer is a UQ staff member authorised by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia to verify identities of cardholders. Responsibilities of the verifying officer include confirming the identity of a corporate credit card applicant and assisting the applicant to ensure that all application forms and required identification documentation are accurate. 

4.3 Compliance reviewer

A compliance reviewer is a UQ staff member authorised to review the financial elements of corporate credit card expenditure for compliance with relevant finance policies and procedures. Compliance reviewers may report non-compliant corporate credit card expenditure to the Chief Financial Officer.

4.4 Budget Holders

Budget holders are required to review the fortnightly budget holder report, which details all corporate credit card transactions that have been costed to an operational unit or project budget for which they are responsible. The budget holder must regularly review the corporate card use of University staff to ensure goods and services are valid and that funds are available.

4.5 Supervisors

Supervisors are required to review the fortnightly supervisor report, which details all corporate credit card transactions performed by their direct reports. This is an important control and risk mitigation process that minimises the incidence of external fraud, internal fraud and general misuse.

As part of this process, supervisors must regularly review the corporate credit card use of their staff to:

  • assess the reasonableness of each expense and how it relates to business requirements; and

  • ensure ongoing appropriate use and to account for any inadvertent personal expenditure (and associated reimbursement).

4.6 Financial delegate

A financial delegate is a UQ staff member who has a financial sub-delegation from the Vice‑Chancellor. Financial delegates must exercise their authority under this procedure in accordance with the Financial and Contract Sub-delegations Procedure. 

5.0 Monitoring, Review and Assurance

The Expense Management Team are UQ staff members responsible for administering UQ’s corporate credit card facility. The team will assess compliance with this procedure via a range of mechanisms – including monitoring the age of transactions and reconciliation, monitoring the allocation of corporate credit cards, and randomly auditing transactions for compliance – and may report non-compliance with this procedure to the Chief Financial Officer.

The Expense Management Team are responsible for issuing fortnightly supervisor reports with details of all corporate credit card transactions performed by the supervisor’s direct reports, and are authorised to prepare reports to:

  • the Chief Financial Officer requesting that a corporate credit card be suspended or cancelled;

  • the Vice-Chancellor seeking approval to implement all measures and steps for the reimbursement or recovery of misused UQ funds from cardholders

due to a cardholder's non-compliance with relevant UQ policies and procedures.

The Expense Management Team are also responsible for ensuring recovery of corporate credit cards from cardholders who have left UQ or who no longer require a corporate credit card to fulfil their duties.

6.0 Recording and Reporting

Cardholders are responsible for ensuring compliance with this procedure, including obtaining appropriate documentation for expenses incurred using their corporate credit card and reconciling these transactions appropriately. Transactions, activities and results related to this procedure are recorded in UQ’s EMS ProMaster and UniFi financial management systems.

The Expense Management Team will maintain a record of non-compliant corporate credit card transactions and associated breach notices issued to cardholders. 

7.0 Appendix

7.1 Related policies and procedures

9.40.01 Purchasing

1.90.01 Travel

9.15.02 Retention of Financial Information

1.10.02 Financial Delegations

1.50.01 Code of Conduct

9.45.07 Special Payments

9.65.02 FBT

7.2 Training

7.2.1 Cardholder

Staff issued with a corporate credit card must undertake the following training which is available via Learn.UQ to help ensure that they meet their obligations as a cardholder:

7.2.2 Supervisor

It is recommended Supervisors of corporate credit cardholding direct reports complete the Corporate Credit Card Supervisor Responsibilities online training which is located within Finance Training on Learn.UQ

Custodians
Chief Financial Officer Mr Andrew Betts