To establish a College wide purchasing policy


The purchasing function involves the procurement of goods and services that meet community needs at the lowest possible cost consistent with the quality needed for the proper operation of the various departments.

The Accounting Services Department is responsible for assisting the purchasing function of the College by providing the community with "best procurement practices" guidelines; maintaining College procurement systems, and communicating the purchasing policies and procedures of the College.  Operating within the guidelines described in this document, authorized department representatives may initiate purchases with funds available in their approved budgets.


1.  Conduct all purchasing in accordance with College policy as outlined in this guide.

2.  Stimulate competitive bidding and provide interested vendors with an opportunity to offer their products to the College.

3.  All bidders must be afforded equal opportunities to quote and are to compete on equal terms.

4.  Employees must not become obligated to any supplier. No member of the staff of the Accounting Services Department or College employee shall receive any monetary benefit greater than $50 without prior VP approval, arising from any contract or purchase made by the College.

5.  The Accounting Services Department shall not knowingly issue a purchase order when there is evidence of an undocumented conflict of interest.

6.  There must be funds available in the departmental budget before considering any purchase.

7.  Employees are not permitted to make purchases with College funds for personal use.


Departments may make decisions concerning product and vendor selection and engage directly with a vendor to meet their requirements, with due consideration given to the following business practices:

1. Competitive bidding is required for acquisitions expected to exceed $75,000.  Competitive bidding is strongly recommended for acquisitions expected to exceed $10,000, but less than $75,000, to maximize the value of each dollar spent unless sole source is justified. Comparative pricing is recommended for acquisitions not exceeding $10,000.  If acquisitions are being made with grant or contract funds, please refer to your individual award or the grants office for specific guidelines that may exist.

2.  Specialty business units of the College are preferred providers of certain services for all departments, and should be contacted when needed for:

  • Catering services
  • Mail services
  • Printing services

3.  Other specialty business units of the College perform the purchasing function for all departments.   

  • Information Technology and Library Services has primary responsibility for the acquisition of all computing requirements for academic and administrative departments.
  • Information Technology and Library Services has primary responsibility for the acquisition and use of copier equipment and copy and printer paper.
  • Facilities Services has primary responsibility for the acquisition of all services and materials for all of the College's buildings and grounds.
  • Facilities Services has primary responsibility for the acquisition of all College vehicles.
    Departments should seek internal support for meeting these requirements.

4.  Departments should utilize existing institutional vendor relationships to obtain their goods and services when their needs include:

  • Priority mail
  • Equipment rentals
  • Document destruction
  • Office supply products 
  • Furniture
  • Vehicle rental
  • Charter bus services

5.  The requirement to obtain competitive bids may be waived in certain situations such as the following:

  • The item requires compatibility with an existing product or system.
  • No other item meets reasonable specifications
  • The item is of a proprietary nature
  • Procurement can be made under an existing agreement.
  • An emergency situation exists.
  • The price and terms are known to be substantially identical among all suppliers.
  • The request is for an identical requirement that has been procured recently through the quotation procedure.
  • The available supply is limited and procurement must be made immediately or an opportunity will be lost.
  • The decision to do so is in the best interests of the College.

Methods of Procurement

1.  Purchase Order Form.

A Purchase Order form is the basic document used for initiating the procurement of supplies, services, or equipment and may be obtained from the Purchasing Assistant or retrieved from The ARCH. Purchase Order forms must be signed by an authorized department employee prior to sending the request form to the Accounting Services Department.

Please make sure all information is accurate and that proper signatures and account codes are obtained.  Use the account code which best describes the type of expenditure.  Check your budget to ensure you have sufficient funds to cover the expenditure.

When to Use

·         When no other written contract/agreement exists

·         When required by vendor

·         To facilitate departmental ordering processes and/or recordkeeping 

When Unnecessary

·         Value less than $500

·         Standing order

·         Campus contracts signed by the VP or Controller

·         Travel related

·         Professional services


How To Use

Complete a Purchase Requisition Form in detail, to include the description, quantity, unit price and estimated cost of each item and have the requisition signed by the Department Chair or supervisor.

Submit the Purchase Requisition Form to the Purchasing Assistant.   A purchase order will then be generated. Purchase Requisition Forms are processed Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week.  Purchase Requisition forms received no later than noon prior to this schedule, will result in a purchase order being generated the following day barring no problems or issues.  Purchase requisitions covering contracts or that need to be prepaid will result in a bit more processing time.  Please note any special instructions on the purchase requisition form as to how you would prefer the order to be handled.  Should you need the purchase order faxed, please provide the fax number.

Please use these 6 easy steps when processing a purchase request for goods and services

1.       Fill out the Purchase Requisition Form: Be certain to include as much information as possible. Catalog number(s), description of item(s), size(s), color, grade (if applicable), contact person and fax number, costs and the budget number should be noted on each requisition. The purchasing staff will be happy to assist you in attaining this information.

2.       Forward the completed form to the Purchasing Assistant:  If any of this information cannot be determined, the Purchasing Assistant will obtain it after the request form arrives for processing. Bear in mind that Purchasing may be able to secure the requested good/services from another more effective source and will advise you on vendor selection when appropriate.

3.       Estimated prices are to be entered on the requisition when actual costs are not known.

4.       Enter a date wanted (delivery date) on each requisition: Please specify a date. ASAP, RUSH, IMMEDIATELY are usually ineffective.

5.       To insure your requisition is processed as quickly as possible, please be sure all appropriate signatures are attained BEFORE forwarding to the purchasing office.

6.       Please include any bid documents with your requisition. When a department specifies a single vendor for materials, service or equipment costing $10,000 or more, the requisitioner must provide a supporting statement as to why competitive prices cannot be obtained.

Blanket Orders

Blanket Order: You may find yourself using a particular supplier many times during the course of the year for small dollar purchases. In this case, a "Blanket Purchase Order" may be the best means of conducting business. A blanket Purchase Order is a simplified method of filling repetitive needs for small quantities of supplies or services with qualified sources. Blanket Purchase Orders are designed to reduce administrative costs in accomplishing small purchases by eliminating the need for issuing individual orders. If you think you need a blanket Purchase Order, please contact the Purchasing Assistant to discuss your options.

Standing Orders: A Standing Blanket Order is used by a requesting department when a specified quantity is to be delivered at a specified set time. The requesting department will set up a specified delivery schedule with specific quantities to be delivered on a specific day, week, etc.

FOB Terms

FOB Origin means that the seller bears the risk until it loads the goods onto an appropriate carrier, after which the buyer assumes risk of loss and must claim against the carrier for damage or loss in-transit. Also, the buyer assumes the cost of freight.

FOB Destination means that the seller bears the risk until the goods are transported to the buyer’s dock, after which the risk will pass to the buyer. Also, the seller bears the cost of freight.

Damaged Goods

When your order is received, compare the invoice or packing slip to the purchase order. Open cartons immediately to check for damage. The truck driver can wait until you do this. If you see obvious damage to the carton or goods upon delivery, either refuse the delivery or make note on the bill of lading that goods were damaged. If you accept the shipment and find hidden damage, save the carton that the product came in and report the damage to the vendor.


Returned Goods Procedure

Occasionally it becomes necessary to return materials ordered because the goods are no longer required, excess material was ordered, or the material, as received, is not acceptable. In order to document the return of goods, the following procedure will be used.

The end user will contact the vendor, negotiate a return, get the returned goods authorization number and set up pick-up of the return materials. The following information may be required by the vendor:

·         Purchase Order number

·         Reason for return

·         Description of item

·         Action required (e.g., credit, replacement, or repair).

2.  Juniata College Purchasing Card (Pcard)

Credit cards can be used for purchasing. Please refer to the Purchasing Card Policy for further details.  College credit cards may be used for purchases over the Internet. Please make sure you are on a secure site when using your credit card.

3.  Cash Reimbursement Form

Cash Reimbursement forms for personal funds that are to be reimbursed by the College.  This form can also be found on the ARCH.  Sales tax may not be reimbursable.

Requirements for a Contractor or Consultant

Prior to a contractor or consultant performing work or providing service, they must submit the following:

· Insurance Requirements and Indemnification Agreement

· Certificate of Insurance listing Juniata College as additional insured.

Insurance Certificates

Any vendor performing work/service on the Juniata College campus must provide proof of insurance.  The certificate of insurance can easily be obtained by contacting one’s insurance broker or carrier, and it must be presented to the College prior to the commencement of any work/service.  Insurance is required in order to protect the vendor and the College should an event occur which causes personal injury or property damage.

The current insurance requirements are:

  • Comprehensive General Liability
  • $1,000,000 occurrence
  • $3,000,000 aggregate
  • Comprehensive Automobile Liability
  • Including owned, non-owned and hired autos
  • $1,000,000 combined single limit
  • Workers Compensation as required by law