Purchasing consists of three departments: Purchasing, Receiving, and Surplus Property. Collectively, these departments have the responsibility for procuring goods and services used by the University community, receiving and distributing the purchased items, and accepting surplus items from University departments and State and federal surplus programs and redistributing them to University departments upon request.
The Purchasing Official is responsible for coordinating the activities of the three departments and thereby assuring satisfaction of the procurement needs of the University community in a timely and efficient manner. The Purchasing Official has been given authority to make legally binding commitments for goods and services. Commitments by any University employee other than the Purchasing Official or the Chancellor are in violation of Board of Trustees Policy.
The purchasing function begins when a department anticipates a need for a commodity, an item of equipment or a service and communicates this need by completing and submitting a Purchase Requisition.
Within limits prescribed by the Illinois Procurement Code (30 ILCS 500/et seq.), Regulations Governing Procurement and Bidding at State Universities in Illinois and the By-Laws, Statutes and Policies of the Board of Trustees of Southern Illinois University, it is the responsibility of Purchasing to provide a continuing and timely flow of goods and services to satisfy the needs of the departments.
To accept the responsibility and assure conformity with the above stated laws, regulations and purchasing policies, centralization of the function is necessary. To ensure this centralization, basic services are offered, and certain guidelines and procedures have been established. Basic services are as follows:
- Act as an information center for sources of supply for the many items used by the University.
- Assist in setting up specifications.
- Recommend standards for equipment and materials of common use throughout the University in order to take advantage of volume buying and warehousing capabilities.
- Record the commitment of funds.
- Obtain quotations from qualified bidders.
- Award Purchase Orders.
- Monitor and enforce terms of the order from the time it is issued until the equipment or commodities are received or services are satisfactorily performed.
- Effect savings and conserve University resources.
- Centralize the receiving and shipping functions and provide delivery service throughout the University.
- Administer the Surplus Property program.
To perform these basic services, Purchasing requests the cooperation of University departments in the following ways:
- Anticipate departmental requirements sufficiently in advance to permit the Purchasing Department to buy advantageously.
- Make requisitions for needed goods and/or services specific and clear in every detail, but permit the Purchasing Department a sufficient latitude of choice that may result in either improvement or economy.
- When asked for recommendations for awarding of bids, make decisions as promptly as possible in writing, justifying the recommendation if it is for award to other than the low bidder. Vendors usually quote for immediate acceptance.
- Do not make commitments to vendors without the agreement of the Purchasing Official or his designee.
- Keep all information and quotations submitted by competing vendors strictly confidential.
- Check all deliveries carefully and in a timely manner. (Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) requires claims to be filed within 15 days - return any cartons that may show damage.)
- Sign invoice vouchers promptly.
- To comply with goals on the purchase of products made of recycled materials and products that are recyclable, Purchasing asks that each department be receptive to usage of same and, in fact (when deemed feasible), recommends products which do meet these specifications. New Recycle clause?
- To comply with goals of the Business Enterprise Program for Minorities, Female and People With Disabilities Owned Enterprises Act (BEP), wherein at least 20% of the University's appropriations is to be expended with minority, female owned and persons with disabilities owned business enterprises, with a minimum of 11% of the appropriations to be expended with minority, 7% of the appropriations to be expended with female, and 2% of the appropriations is to be expended with disabled owned enterprises, Purchasing asks that (where practical) suggested vendors for goods and services reflect a representation of such enterprises.