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Buying Goods & Services

The buying processes at the University of Texas at Arlington (UT Arlington) include the ordering, receiving, and payment for all goods and services to support the mission of the university. Procurement oversees the various methods used to order goods and services. Asset management responsibilities start with the generation of receiving reports for purchased goods and include documenting procedures for tracking, safeguarding, and disposing of university property and university held federal government property. Payments for goods and services are processed by Accounts Payable in a manner to ensure compliance with all required fiduciary controls. Our goal is to provide for our customers the most effective and efficient procurement of quality goods and services to enable the university to achieve educational and research goals while insuring that all State of Texas as well as UT Arlington Procedures are followed. Information is also provided on this web site to assist vendors in selling their goods and services to the university. If questions arise, please contact UT Arlington Procurement, Asset Management, the HUB Program Director, and Accounts Payable staff at any time.

General Information regarding Buying Goods and Services

Buying procedures and requirements will vary depending upon what is being purchased, who purchases, the source of funding utilized to pay for a purchase, the dollar amount of a purchase, and the vendor of the goods or services. Each user and vendor of goods and services should be aware of the constraints that pertain to their situation. Reference Best Value Purchasing Procedures (Procedure 4-2) for an overview on all of these topics.

Buying Processes

Procurement procedures are written for four buying processes; two processes for buying which do not require purchase orders, and two processes for buying which requires purchase orders.

Buying without a Purchase Order

  • The preferred method utilizes the Purchasing Card (ProCard) Program in which individuals use credit cards issued to them for departmental purchases of $4,000 or less (including freight). Reference Purchasing Card (ProCard) Program (Procedure 4-11) for information.

  • An alternative method for purchases that do not require a purchase order, regardless of the dollar value, is the voucher payment program for certain types of goods and services as specified in Reimbursements and Payments Other Than for Travel and Purchase Orders (Procedure 4-26). Reimbursements are restricted to departmental purchases of $2,000 or less (including freight).

Buying with a Purchase Order

  • Purchase Orders $5,000 or less (including freight) may be initiated by individuals within departments and require compliance with the requirements detailed in Best Value Purchasing Procedures (Procedure 4-2) and *DEFINE Manual PBO, Small Purchase Order.

  • Purchase Orders above $5,000 (including freight) are generated by Procurement after receipt of an approved Request to Purchase Form from a department. Reference Best Value Purchasing Procedures (Procedure 4-2) for information on processing of requests to purchase.

Buying Process Steps

Regardless of the Buying Process used, all purchases undergo a four step process; 1) correct initiation of order, 2) validation of receipt of correct goods and/or services, 3) tagging of capital equipment and controlled items, and 4) authorization for payment.

Ordering

  • Small orders may be done by individuals within departments utilizing a ProCard credit card or with a small purchase order (PBO). Orders with a value in excess of $4,000 and up to $5,000 (including freight) must be secured with a PBO, and are also done at the department level. Each method has various advantages and restrictions, and, persons placing orders should refer to Best Value Purchasing Procedures (Procedure 4-2) or *DEFINE Manual PBO, Small Purchase Order, for information. Small purchase orders may necessitate setting up a new vendor in *DEFINE. Reference Vendor Set-Up and Maintenance (Procedure 2-13) and *DEFINE Manual GGV, Vendor ID Request, for additional information.

  • Orders above $5,000 are processed by Procurement after receipt of an approved Request to Purchase Form from a department. Reference Best Value Purchasing Procedures (Procedure 4-2) for information on processing of requests to purchase.

Receiving Goods and Services

  • Small orders of $5,000 or less are usually received by Central Receiving and delivered to ordering department. Validation of completeness of shipment and usability of received goods and/or services is the responsibility of the department. Return of defective shipments and damage claims are covered in Damages and Shortages(Procedure 4-22).

  • Orders above $5,000 are usually received by Central Receiving. Central Receiving checks the shipment, prepares the Receiving Report, and delivers the shipment to the requesting department. Reference Damages and Shortages (Procedure 4-22) for directions in checking delivered merchandise and notifying appropriate departments of any discrepancies.

Tagging of Capital Equipment and Controlled Items

  • Small orders of $5,000 or less may contain controlled items which must be tagged for inventory control purposes. Asset Management must be notified to provide tags for all controlled items in any shipment accepted by a department. Controlled items are listed in Reimbursements and Payments Other Than for Travel and Purchase Orders (Procedure 4-26), and *DEFINE Manual VP1, Purchase Order Payment Request.

  • Orders above $5,000 may contain capital equipment as well as controlled items. If a shipment is received by Central Receiving, the tagging process will begin as part of the shipment processing. If a shipment is received by the requesting department, Asset Management must be notified to provide tags. Reference Identification (Procedure 2-59) for tagging requirements of U.S. Government property.

Authorization for Payment

  • Small orders of $5,000 or less that are accepted by departments must be paid for in a timely manner. The process for payment authorization for ProCard purchases may be found in *DEFINE Manual VP7, ProCard Payment Voucher. If the purchase was done with a direct invoice, the payment authorization process is delineated in *DEFINE Manual VP2, Payment Request Voucher. If the purchase was done with a small purchase order, refer to *DEFINE Manual VP1, Purchase Order Payment Request, for information.

  • Orders above $5,000 are authorized for payment when the receiving department instructs Central Receiving to release the Receiving Report as complete. Accounts Payable then matches up the invoice to the Purchase Order with a completed Receiving Report to proceed with payment to the vendor.

Additional Information regarding Payment Processing

Processing of payments to vendors in a timely manner is necessary to avoid late payment charges. Refer to the following resources for assistance in payment processing, and, use the Procurement Services button on the contact us screen to reach your Accounts Payable representatives for additional help should the need arise.

  • The current late payment penalty may be found at Prompt Payment Law Interest Rate.

  • Receipts denominated in foreign currency will require conversion to U.S. Dollars. Reference OANDA, for the currency converter service recommended by Accounts Payable.

  • A tutorial on problem resolution in payment processing is available at Common Oversights.

Additional Procurement Procedures

Additional Procurement procedures are available for processes that are unique to specific situations or need expanded delineation of specific requirements or restrictions.

  • Guidance for establishing employee eligibility for a wireless communication device plan allowance, initiation of a request for the plan, maintenance of approved wireless communication device allowance plans, and reimbursement for business calls may be found in Wireless Communication Device Allowance Procedures (Procedure 4-5).

  • Guidelines for administration of contracts may be found in Departmental Contract Administration (Procedure 4-7) and Interagency Contracts (Procedure 4-21).

  • Transactions with employee restrictions are delineated in Transactions with Employees (Procedure 4-14).

  • Guidelines for the payment of, or exemption from, taxes applied to UT Arlington purchases may be found inTax (Procedure 4-16).

  • Instructions for acquiring departmental gasoline credit cards for use for UT Arlington vehicles may be found inGasoline Credit Card (Procedure 4-27).

Contract Services and/or Preferred Vendors

Several goods and/or services are available from vendors that are recommended by Procurement or contractually required in order to provide best value to UT Arlington.

  • Contracted services for bus charters and temporary employees may be found at Campus Wide Blanket OrdersYou are required to use these vendors for these types of services.

  • UT Arlington’s preferred vendor for express shipping may be found at eShipGlobal. This vendor is HUB certified (see next section).

  • UT Arlington’s exclusive vendor for office supplies may be found at Today's Business Solutions. This vendor is also HUB certified (see next section).

Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB)

All state agencies are encouraged to make a good faith effort to increase purchases and contract awards to certified Historically Underutilized Businesses. It is the policy of UT Arlington to maximize opportunities for HUB firms to provide materials, supplies, equipment, and services to the university. The various methods used to promote HUB participation in procurement processes are found in Contract with Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB) (Procedure 4-28). HUB certified vendors may be found in the following listings.

  • Listings of HUB certified vendors may be found at UT Arlington’s web site Find a HUB.

  • Listings of HUB vendors that have been certified with the Comptroller of Public Accounts may be found at the Texas Centralized Master Bidder List.

Additional Buying Resources

Additional resources are available for buying goods and services at UT Arlington.

  • Your department’s assigned procurement specialist (buyer) may be found at Find a Buyer.

  • Information in Purchase Orders may be viewed at POINT Plus.

  • Employees responsible for preparing payment vouchers may wish to attend *DEFINE training sessions which cover rules and voucher preparation in detail. Training manuals (GGV, PBO, VP1, VP2, and VP7) for various payment voucher types may be found at Training Detailed Steps. Reference Define Training application to enroll in sessions.

  • A list of all the Procedures may be found at Procedures Index.

  • A list of all the forms referenced in the Procedures may be found in the Forms/Exhibits Index.

Information for Vendors Doing Business with UT Arlington

Bids, Requests for Proposals, and other information for vendors who wish to sell goods and services to UT Arlington is available at Doing Business with UT Arlington.

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