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Business and Financial Policies and Procedures

Purchase Mobile Communications Equipment/Service Plans for an Employee or Employee Groups

Policy Statement

In general, the University discourages assigning University-owned mobile communications equipment/service plans to individual employees. However, when the benefit of providing this equipment/plan justifies the cost to the University, units are authorized to make these purchases.

With college-level chief executive approval (deans, vice chancellors, or associate vice presidents), units may purchase mobile communications equipment, including pagers, and related service plans for individual employees or groups of employees who will share the equipment for University business purposes. At the discretion of the campus, additional campus-level approvals, or restrictions may be applied.

Units and campus offices processing equipment purchases must retain documented evidence of college-level chief executive approval for all individual and shared group equipment purchases.

Employees are not permitted to receive both a stipend and a University-owned mobile communications device.

Before You Begin

Before you request the purchase of mobile communications equipment/service plans:

  1. Make sure that the employee's job requires the use of mobile communications equipment and/or data or Internet service plans. Consult Question #1 of FAQs for guidance on how to determine the business need.
  2. Identify equipment or services that meet the business needs in the most economical fashion.
  3. Become familiar with additional requirements established by your campus.


To purchase mobile communications equipment/service plans for employee or employee groups:

  1. Obtain college-level chief executive approval for the purchase, as required by your campus. Retain documented evidence of the approval in your unit. At the discretion of the campus, additional campus-level approval levels may be required.
    • Coordinate all purchases of equipment and services through the appropriate campus office. Consult Additional Resources to identify the appropriate campus office. Be sure to follow their established purchasing procedures.
    • Monitor the use of individual and group equipment and related services to ensure they are used only for University business.
    • Ensure that charges associated with personal calls on University-owned devices are reimbursed to the University account against which the total charges have been applied.
    • Follow return/disposal procedures required by your appropriate campus office when there is no longer a business need for the mobile communications device.

    Forms Used in this Procedure

    Chicago: Stipend or Purchase Request
    Springfield: Stipend or Purchase Exception Request 
    Urbana-Champaign: Stipend or Purchase Exception Request

    Additional Resources

    FAQs for Mobile Communications
    UIC Mobile Communications Policy Guidelines
    Urbana-Champaign Campus Administrative Manual, Purchase and Reimbursement of Expenses for Mobile Communications Equipment and Related Service Plans
    Campus offices for equipment purchases:

    Urbana: OBFS Purchasing Office
    Chicago: Academic Computing and Communications Center (ACCC)
    Springfield: Information Technology Services (ITS)

    Last Updated: November 1, 2016 | Approved: Senior Associate Vice President for Business and Finance | Effective: September 2012

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