Budget & Fiscal Services

Purchasing


Purchasing Topics:


General Purchasing Steps

First, determine what to purchase and acquire departmental approval:

  1. Find the best item or service for your department’s needs.
  2. Get written approval from your department.
  3. Document the business purpose of the purchase and its benefit to the University.
  4. If you have a vendor/supplier in mind, contact UWB Purchasing to see if your item or service can bepurchased through eProcurement or through a pre-contracted vendor.   UW Procurement Services pre-contracted vendors and suppliers are located this site: http://f2.washington.edu/fm/ps/how-to-buy/contracts/uw-contracts
  5. Clarify the cost with the vendor (unless the purchase will be made through eProcurement). For purchases from individuals for personal services, request a Scope of Work, which is described below.Requesting a written quotation from the vendor is the easiest method for clarifying all costs. Vendors routinely provide these. For larger, more complex purchases a quotation is often required.

Second, determine the best method to make the purchase:

  1. Check eProcurement first: No dollar limit exists for purchases made through eProcurement which is the preferred purchasing method. eProcurement offers pre-negotiated prices for office, computer and lab supplies, and a variety of items.
  2. For orders of $3500 or under (including 9.5% sales tax and freight): Use the ProCard. Purchases over $3500 by ProCard may also be possible by emailing the Purchasing Coordinator at UWB Purchasing for approval. Please acquire prior approval for orders over $3500. More information about ProCard can be found at: ProCurement Card Services | Procurement Services.
  3. For orders of $10,000 or under (not including 9.5% sales tax and freight): You may be able to purchase through the Non-PO Invoice system (see below), or ProCard. (Note: ProCard purchases over $3500 must be pre-approved by the Purchasing Coordinator at UWB Purchasing).

    Non-PO Invoice System Procedures:
    • With proper departmental approval, order and receive the item or service.
    • Determine if the vendor is registered as a UW Supplier by contacting UWB Purchasing or checking in the Non-PO system under “Supplier.” If the vendor is not in the system, ask the Vendor/Supplier to register at: http://f2.washington.edu/fm/ps/info-for-suppliers/registration. Failure to complete this step will cause a delay in payment.
    • Receive the vendor invoice and write “Approved to Pay,” the budget number, and obtain the approver’s signature directly on the invoice.
    • Enter the transaction into the Non-PO Invoice system through eProcurement. (Note: If you do not have access to the Non-PO Invoice system, contact UWB Purchasing).
  4. For orders between $10,001 -$100,000: Always contact UWB Purchasing for assistance. At this dollar level UW Seattle must be involved and a purchase order may be required.

    Purchase Order Procedures (informal bid process):
    • Acquire three or more vendors’ quotes. If no other vendor can be located who meets your needs and qualifications, a sole source justification maybe needed.
    • Complete a Request for Purchase (RFP) and attach the vendor quote(s) or complete the on-line sole source form.
    • Email the RFP, quotations or sole source justification to UWB Purchasing at Box 358525.

    ProCard may still be an option for orders between $10,001 -$100,000:
    • Some vendors (particularly caterers, conference registrations, and memberships) are best paid on ProCard through a pre-approved limit increase. Email the Purchasing Coordinator at UWB Purchasing prior to the purchase and:
    • Explain what is to be purchased and its business purpose
    • Attach a quotation from the vendor
  5. For orders over $100,000 (formal bid process): Always contact UWB Purchasing for assistance. At this dollar level, the transaction may require public competitive bidding.

Contact UWB Purchasing or your department fiscal contact if you’re unsure of the best procurement method.


Reimbursements to UW Employees and Non-UW Individuals

Procedures vary depending on who you are reimbursing and for how much. Acquire written approval from your department and food and beverage approval (if applicable) prior to the purchase.

  1. Reimbursing UW employees under $3,500: Use the eReimbursement system for purchases other than travel. Employees are reimbursed by either direct deposit or check. See What are eReimbursements? | Procurement Services
  2. Reimbursing UW employees between $3,501 and $5,000 or Non-UW individuals at $5,000 and under: Complete a Check Request Form 1570 and attach original receipt(s). Have the payee sign. General information can be located at http://f2.washington.edu/fm/ps/resources/forms. Send the completed form to UWB Purchasing at Box 358525.
  3. Reimbursing UW Employees and Non-UW Individuals over $5,000: Complete an Invoice Voucher/Receiving Report, have the payee sign, attach receipts, and submit with receipts to UWB Purchasing at Box 358525. Email UWB Purchasing for questions.

Payments to Non-UW Individuals (other than honoraria)

In addition to paying companies, corporations, businesses and firms for providing goods and services to the UW, individuals (a.k.a. Independent Contractors) also provide a wide range of services for the university. Such payments are for higher-level professional and technical services.

Documents needed:

  1. Request for Purchase form.
  2. Form 1632 to determine whether the payee can be designated as an independent contractor.
  3. An invoice from the vendor with the following information: “Remit to” name and address, current date, description of the item(s) received, unit costs, and total amount due.
  4. Competitive bids or a sole source justification. Although acquiring competing bids is an option, a sole source justification is more common, and can be completed on-line at: http://f2.washington.edu/fm/ps/how-to-buy/sole-source.
  5. Optional but highly recommended: Scope of Work -- one or two pages outlining the following:
    • The full name and address of the individual(s) doing the work.
    • A clear description of the deliverables (for example, a draft or final paper,) and/or other services to be received (consultations, meetings, etc.).
    • A timeline for start and completion of the work, and the amount to be paid. Payment can be paid upon full completion of the task, or upon partial completion of the task, such as “payment of $1,000 upon completion of the draft paper,” or “payment of $900 after three consultations.”
    • Email UWB Purchasing for Scope of Work examples.

Honorarium Payments to Non-UW Individuals

An honorarium is a “presentation-oriented, invitational event,” such as a lecture or talk. Pay honoraria by completing:

  1. Check Request form
  2. Form 1631 to determine if the presenter can be hired as an independent contractor. An invoice from the payee is not required for honoraria and the payee’s signature is required on the Check Request only if they are also to be reimbursed for items. See this site: http://f2.washington.edu/fm/ps/node/3550 for more details.
  3. Submit the forms to UWB Purchasing at Box 358525.

Other Payment and Purchase Options

Contact UWB Purchasing for assistance with the following:

  • Cell phone purchases or transfers
  • Consultant payments
  • Contractual issues and management
  • Customs letters for foreign travel with equipment
  • Equipment insurance
  • Equipment inventory
  • Field advances
  • Field trip insurance
  • Fiscal compliance approval or questions
  • Foreign vendor orders (import/export costs)
  • Hazardous material purchases
  • Household moves of new faculty or staff
  • IACUC (animal product)
  • Notary services
  • Paying non-resident aliens
  • Prizes, gifts, awards to students, faculty or staff
  • ProCard purchases for advertising or items over $3500
  • Refunds on items purchased
  • Reversals of expenditures and refunds
  • Sales or other taxes associated with a purchase
  • Sole source statements
  • Stipends
  • Student group travel arrangements and costs
  • Subcontracts for research
  • Veterans’ reimbursements by the DVA
  • Wire transfers (both payments and receiving funds)

Monitoring Your Purchases

Each on-line system for purchasing (i.e., eProcurement, Expense Reports (for travel), Non-PO invoice, eReimbursements, etc.) can be used to monitor and follow up on approvals and payments. Additionally, these systems can be used to monitor payments pending or finalized:

  1. Procurement Desktop Reports (PDR): A suite of web based reports used for approving payments of invoices, tracking payments and resolving issues, budget reconciliation, assuring appropriate use of department resources, managing compliance issues, and many other uses.
  2. My Financial Desktop (MyFD): The primary web interface for monitoring expenditures and encumbrances, reviewing budget activity and balances, reconciling transactions, customizing reports, and a lot more!

Fiscal Compliance

All employees must strive to assure that all fiscal procedures and purchases are in accordance with University of Washington regulations and Washington State law. Call the UWB Purchasing Coordinator (425-352-5260) or Director at the UWB Budget and Fiscal Services office (425-352-3804) if you have questions about the appropriateness of a purchase or fiscal procedure. Other guidelines:

  • Ask UW Purchasing to review contractual agreements of any dollar amount prior to signing it. Send the contract to UWB Purchasing or directly to pcshelp@u.washington.edu for review. They will often sign the contract and return it to you.
  • Know the dollar limit for the purchase you intend to make. The $10,000 direct buy threshold, for example, was established by the Washington State Legislature; violating this seriously compromises our financial standing.
  • Document the business purpose. Any purchase using University funds is subject to audit review, particularly food, catering, awards, prizes, gifts, event items and services, group or individual travel, and items construed as “personal use.”
  • Clarify any fiscal procedures and policies as well as signature authority with your administrator, fiscal specialist, or UWB Purchasing prior to making a purchase.

Questions? Call UWB Purchasing or UW Seattle Procurement Services

The UWB Budget & Fiscal Services office advises on UW Bothell purchases and reimbursements, and serves as intermediaries between you and UW Seattle Procurement Services, vendors and others to resolve purchasing concerns. Feel free to contact us at the UWB Purchasing email purchasing@uwb.edu or call the office at 425-352-5235.

To contact UW Seattle Procurement Services directly:

  • Procurement Services | 206-543-5810
  • Accounts Payable and Vendor Control | 206-543-4500
  • Payman Team | 206-685-5377
  • General procurement inquiries at UW Seattle email | pcshelp@uw.edu
  • UW Procurement Services website | Welcome to Procurement Services