60.5.4 Procurement Manual
- Executive summary
- Procurement Staff, Accounts Payable, & the Controller?s Office
B. Code of Ethics/Conflict of Interest Guidelines
- Contracts General
- Major Contracts
- Legal Services
- Requisitions General
- Completing a Requisition
- Requisition Approval
- Procurement Department Responsibilities
E. Purchase Orders
- Purchase Orders General
- Purchase Order Processing
- Purchase Order Approval
- Purchase Order File Maintenance
- Tax Exemption
F. Procurement Card
- General ? see P-Card Policy
G. Bidding Requirements
- Competitive Bidding
- Non-Competitive Vendor Selection
- Bidding Process
- Cost/Price Analysis
H. Federal Procurement Guidelines
- Contract Funds
- Grant Funds
This document is a supplemental guide to be used with the Procurement Policy. This manual summarizes the Institutes? Procurement Policy and highlights the administrative processes relating to procurement, and adds the procedures that should be used throughout the Institute.
The Procurement Department?s goal is to procure goods and services that meet the Institute?s needs, in a timely, efficient, and cost effective manner. The Procurement Department fulfills this responsibility through the following:
- To assist the Stevens? campus community with the identification, selection and acquisition of required materials and services.
- To educate the community about "best procurement practices," maintaining Stevens? procurement systems, and enforcing its policies and procedures.
- To acquire materials and services as economically as possible, within acceptable standards of quality and service, while utilizing professional ethics and our best business practices.
- To select the vendor to be used, considering delivered cost, quality required, vendor capability, vendor service record and delivery dates.
- To maintain a consistent and fair policy toward the entire business community, while maximizing the opportunity for small business participation.
- To ensure compliance with all Institute Procurement policies as well as Federal and State procurement regulations.
The services that the department provides includes product and supplier information, pricing, competitive bidding, issuance of sales tax exempt forms, issuance of purchase orders and contract negotiation services for the procurement of goods and services required by the Institute from external suppliers.
Procurement Staff , Accounts Payable, & the Controller?s Office
Director of Procurement: Doris Schultz (5186)
Purchasing Card issues: Barbara Aris (5132)
Requisitions and Purchase Orders: Elizabeth Murolo (5135)
Diana Roman (5136)
Accounts Payable: Anita Noble (5144)
CODE OF ETHICS/CONFLICT OF INTEREST GUIDELINES
Code of Ethics
Personnel involved in the procurement function are in a position to provide or withhold substantial business from suppliers who serve the Institute. They constantly operate under pressure from conflicting sources and must have a highly developed sense of professional ethics to resist these pressures in order to serve the Institute in an honorable way.
To strengthen ethical awareness, and to provide guidelines for its members, the National Association of Educational Buyers has established a code of ethics which is printed below, and is to be observed by all personnel who are involved in the procurement function.
CODE OF ETHICS
1. Give first consideration to the objectives and policies of my institution.
2. Strive to obtain the maximum value for each dollar of expenditure.
3. Decline personal gifts or gratuities.
4. Grant all competitive suppliers equal consideration insofar as state or federal statute and institutional policy permit.
5. Conduct business with potential and current suppliers in an atmosphere of good faith, devoid of intentional misrepresentation.
6. Demand honesty in sales representation whether offered through the medium of a verbal or written statement, an advertisement, or a sample of the product.
7. Receive consent of originator of proprietary ideas and designs before using them for competitive purchasing purposes.
8. Make every reasonable effort to negotiate an equitable and mutually agreeable settlement of any controversy with a supplier; and/or be willing to submit any major controversies to arbitration or other third party review, insofar as the established policies of my institution permit.
9. Accord a prompt and courteous reception insofar as conditions permit to all who call on legitimate business missions.
10. Cooperate with trade, industrial and professional associations, and with governmental and private agencies for the purposes of promoting and developing sound business methods.
11. Foster fair, ethical and legal trade practices.
Conflict of Interest
It is the policy of the Institute that its trustees, officers, faculty, staff, and others undertake their responsibilities on the Institute?s behalf with diligence and professionalism , and comply with the highest standards of honesty, integrity, and fairness. They must avoid ethical, legal, financial, or any other actual or apparent conflicts of interest and ensure that their personal activities and interests do not conflict with their obligations to the Institute or its welfare.
Conflicts of interest may arise when a trustee, officer or other employee undertakes activities or has personal interests that may interfere with his or her objective performance of his or her responsibilities to the Institute. Even the appearance of a conflict of interest is to be avoided.
Please See ?Conflict of Interest Policy? for guidelines regarding potential conflict of interest situations.
All contracts must be reviewed by Procurement and Finance and signed by one of the following signing officers.
Hal Raveche , President
Stefano Falconi, Treasurer
Mark Samolewicz, Secretary
- Diane Colombo, Assistant Secretary
All major Contracts must be approved, and signed, by the CFO. A major contract is defined as any contract that binds Stevens to a financial commitment of $10,000 regardless of the period of time covered by the contract. For contracts above $25,000, the approval of the President is also required. The dollar thresholds do not apply to legal and consulting contracts. Please refer to Legal and Consulting Services memo for more details.
All legal engagements must be authorized by the CFO. Please refer to the Legal and Consulting Services memo.
Description: Requisitioning is the process of registering a need for a material or service for business purposes. The Requisition should be completed on line through FRS.
Note: Staff, Faculty or students that are irregular requestors and/or who do not have an authorized user of the FRS system will continue to use a paper-based requisitioning process until the Internet-based requisitioning facility is available.
Objectives: The objective of purchase requisition processing is to: Enable the timely and efficient request of materials and services to support academic and operational services; and
Trigger an electronic release process for the creation and appropriate approval of the purchase request.
Completing a Requisition
The various Institute Departments are responsible for initiating a Purchase Requisition. The preferred method of completing a Requisition is online through FRS. For those Departments who are infrequent users or who do not have a logon, they will obtain from the Print Shop blocks of pre-numbered, three part, Purchase Requisition forms. The originating Department will complete the Purchase Requisition with the item description, the account distribution, and the proper approval signatures. All requisitions must a) give a complete description of materials or services required b) reference the proposal or quoted prices from vendor and c) quotes must be in writing and signed by vendors authorized agent and attached to requisition. Requisitions for services must contain complete description of services with sufficient justification for the cost. The signature of the originating Department Head indicates approval of the justification. Failure to comply will result in return of requisition to originating department for completion. The departmental copy will be kept on file, and the accounting and purchasing copies will be returned to the Procurement Department. Purchases bypassing this process will not be honored by the Institute and will result in a personal charge.
The proper approval signature depends on the area originating the requisition and the dollar amount to be expended. All Purchase Requisitions require at least the Department Head signature; Research and Grant (4 and 5 ledger) accounts require the signature of the Grants and Contract Manager; current restricted and agency (6 and 9 ledger) accounts require the signature of the Controller; Plant Fund (7 ledger) accounts require the signature of the Project Administrator and the Direct Report; computer purchases utilizing institutional funds require the approval of the Assistant Vice President of Information Technology.
The requisitioner is responsible to ensure that there are sufficient funds for the purchase. An item's purchase that would put an account over budget is considered an insufficient funds item and requires special approval beyond those previously listed. For insufficient funds purchases: current restricted and agency (6 and 9 ledger) accounts, and also Plant Fund accounts, require the Controller's signature; and, current operating budget (2 and 3 ledger) accounts require the Budget Director's signature.
The proper approval signature depends on the area originating the requisition and the dollar amount to be expended. All Purchase Requisitions require at least the department Head signature. The signature is either electronic when the requisition is initiated in FRS, or on the 3-part form if a manual process is used. The Treasurer's signature is required for the purchase of any item over $10,000.00 and the Asst. Treasurer?s signature is required for any item above $5,000. Required Signatures are as follows:
Procurement Department Responsibilities
The Procurement Department is responsible for obtaining the best price given the parameters specified on the Purchase Requisition. Parameters include the requisitioner's choice of supplier, terms of delivery, and material specifications. The Procurement Department will make every effort to satisfy the requisitioner's choices. However, the Procurement Department will have the final decision on the appropriate vendor for the purchase. The Purchase Requisition will be reviewed by Procurement Department personnel for completeness and proper approval signatures. Procurement is responsible for verifying subcodes. On equipment purchases, a brief description of the type of equipment, (i.e. laboratory equipment, computer software etc.) must be disclosed in the Purchase Order. If the Purchase Requisition passes review, a Procurement officer will sign the Purchase Requisition and log the information into the FRS, if it has not been done at the Departmental level. The Procurement Department copy is kept on file.
Purchase Orders General
A purchase order is a formal request to a vendor for the supply of a material or service. A Purchase Order may only be used by the Procurement Department and must be signed by the Director of Procurement for it to be a valid enforceable document,
Purchase Order Processing
Purchase order processing includes creation, change, display, deletion and release (approve) of purchase orders in FRS.
The objectives of purchase order processing are to:
- Convert approved purchase requisitions into purchase orders in a timely, efficient and accurate manner.
- Reference outlines agreements (contracts) where possible.
- Reference required quotations
- Ensure on-line approval of purchase orders where necessary.
- Ensure Institute Procurement Terms and Conditions are clearly communicated
The Procurement Department is responsible for input of all information to a Purchase Order. Purchasing will perform the following steps: transfer through FRS approved Purchase Requisition information; input to FRS the vendor and price information; if a new vendor, input all vendor information to FRS Vendor File, input to FRS acceptable price and quantity variation parameters; and, categorize Purchase Orders in the FRS to define matching requirements necessary for check issuance (see Accounts Payable Policy and Procedure, Section 3.10 for matching requirements). The Purchase Orders are printed daily through the FRS.Purchase Order Approval
Unless authority has been granted to an individual by the President, only the Procurement Department has the authority to enter into a purchase agreement or otherwise obligate the Institute. A properly executed purchase order constitutes a contract that is binding on both the Institute and the vendor. Some vendors may also require accompanying terms, conditions, agreements or forms. In all cases these agreements are to be signed by the Director of Procurement; however, they may also be co-signed by an appropriate representative of the using departments if desired. All documents without an authorized signature will be considered invalid and not binding upon the University
After final review, the printed Purchase Orders will be approved and signed by the Director of Procurement. The four-part Purchase Order will be distributed by Purchasing; the original will be mailed to the vendor, a copy kept on file in Purchasing, and copies forwarded to the Accounts Payable Department, and the requisitioning department.
Any returns made against Purchase Orders must be processed through the Procurement Department.
Purchase Order File Maintenance
The Procurement Department is responsible for timely review and maintenance of the Purchase Order file. This review includes, but is not limited to, invoices matched to Purchase Orders that were not transferred to vouchers, old Purchase Orders for which no invoices or receipts have been recorded, Purchase Order lines for which goods have been invoiced but not yet received, and invoice amounts that exceed allowable purchasing quotes.
Stevens is exempt from State Sales Tax. It is important that each purchase order have the appropriate documentation and notation. Upon request, the Procurement Department will furnish a copy of the Institute?s tax exemption certificate with the purchase order. It is incumbent for individuals making cash transactions to ensure that they provide sales tax exempt information available from the Procurement Department at the point of sale.
Procurement Card (P-Card) - General
The Procurement Card (P-Card) is an AMEX credit card, which can be used for purchases up to $250.00. Exceptions to this dollar limit are considered on a case by case basis and must be made in writing by the Department Head or Dean to the Procurement Director. A requisition should be completed for those items requiring a requisition and should indicate that the form of payment is P-Card. The P-Card should be used in place of Blanket Orders, Business Expense Reimbursements and Petty Cash. The P-Card provides a faster, more efficient way to purchase low value goods.
Guidelines for the Procurement Card Usage
- Use of the Stevens P-Card by someone other than the individual named on the card is strictly prohibited.
- Use of the Stevens P-Card for personal purchases is strictly prohibited.
- No cash access is allowed on the Stevens P-Card.
- The use of the Stevens P-Card is authorized for items defined in the Policy only. Exceptions to usage categories are reviewed on a case by case basis; requests (approved by the Department Head or Dean) should be made in writing to the Procurement Director.
- Transactions are processed when the supplier verifies the Stevens P-Card Account number with the P-Card vendor (American Express). Spending limits are enforced by the P-Card vendor. These spending limits are checked by the P-Card Administrator systematically against Institute policy.
- All procurement cards have monthly spending limits ($1,000) as well as single transactions limits ($250). These limits may be changed if the business needs of the department change; requests (approved by the Department Head or Dean) should be made in writing to the Procurement Director for consideration and approval.
- Charges will be declined at the time of purchase if the purchase exceeds the spending limit on the card member?s Steven?s Procurement Card.
- Monthly statements must be reconciled to receipts by the card member and the card member must resolve all disputed charges by contacting the supplier directly or through American Express. You will not receive a credit until it is processed by AMEX. The P-Card administrator must also be notified of disputed charges.
- The card member?s monthly activity will be charged to the budget account/cost center supplied on the employee acknowledgment form. Accounting needs to be advised of any change in account allocation.
- Any credits from resolution of disputed items will not be credited to the budget account/cost center supplied by you until it is received from AMEX.
- Card member is required to forward all reconciled monthly statements and original procurement card receipts to the P-Card Administrator within 10 days of receipt of statement.
- In the event of a lost or stolen P-Card, it is the card member?s responsibility to notify AMEX immediately at 1-800-492-4920, and notify the program administrator the next business day.
The Stevens program administrator is the Director of Procurement. If you have any questions regarding the program, please contact the Procurement Department.
Please See Policy for Procurement Card.
Stevens requires competitive bidding and documentation for every purchase order $2,500 and over. Buyers are expected to promote competition and ensure advantageous pricing by soliciting bids from a minimum of three vendors. All competitive bids will be solicited by the Procurement Department. In addition, the Procurement Department reserves the right to obtain competitive quotations regardless of dollar value whenever, in its judgment the quotations may best serve the interest of the Institute.
Non-Competitive Vendor Selection
Occasionally, a buyer is unable or chooses not to competitively bid the requirements. These situations involve either selected or sole sources. The definitions are as follows: A selected source: alternative vendors exist in the competitive market, but the buyer chooses a particular vendor because of technical requirements (precision, reliability) or past performance by other vendors (poor service, availability of parts). A sole source: no other vendor capable of fully meeting the requirements exists. Sole sources should be the exception, not the rule.
Competitive bidding through an RFx process is an invitation to a vendor to submit a bid indicating the pricing terms for the supply of a material or the provision of a service. The RFx specifies the material (service), quantity, delivery date and the bid submission deadline. The objectives of RFx?s are to:
- Create bids from vendors for the supply goods or services that amount to $2,500 and over.
- Create records in which quotations are maintained.
The Competitive Bid Process will provide comparative pricing to enable procurement staff to select the best possible purchase price for the goods and/or services requested. This should include documentation that verifies that all purchase prices are fair and reasonable. Documentation can be based on of previous and similar purchases, current prices lists, advertisements and vendor agreements.
FEDERAL PROCUREMENT GUIDELINES
The Procurement Department must review all purchases made with contract funds and grant funds to ensure that they comply with the Federal Acquisition Regulation and the Office of Management and Budget Circular A-110. In addition, contract funds and grant funds procurement decisions must be made with respect to the Bidding Requirements outlined above. As part of the federal guidelines the Procurement Department is required to retain all supporting documentation for purchases made with federal funds to support federal/internal/external audits. This can include purchase orders, invoices, competitive quotes, and cost/price analysis.
Any questions regarding Federal procurement regulations should be directed to the Procurement Director and/or the Office of Sponsored Research Director.
Procurement decisions made with contract funds are required to adhere to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR).
Procurement decisions made with grant funds are required to adhere to OMB Circular A-110. A-110 provides the procurement standards to ensure that materials and services are obtained in an effective manner and in compliance with the provisions of applicable Federal statutes and executive orders.
FAR requires that Stevens obtain written certification from vendors receiving a purchase order of $25,000 and over and made with Federal funds certify that they have not been debarred (prohibited) from doing business with the Federal Government.