Important considerations before using a vendor

Purchasing or servicing with a vendor is not as simple as "lowest cost" or "best overall value". As a steward of university funds, and state funds, there are important considerations to question before placing an order or service request.

These requirements are constituted within university policy, 7-12.1; however, before using a vendor, ask these questions:

  • Is the total accumulative annual dollar spend with this vendor within policy? This includes all cross-university purchases; under $25,000 for goods and $50,000 for services.
  • Have you assumed all necessary quotes as mandated if using grant funds for purchases over $10,000?
  • Have you considered all diverse vendor options? If not, please contact Supplier Diversity for suggestions.
  • Have you considered all local, Buy Ohio, or Made-In-America options?
  • Is the vendor a member of a valid consortium agreement or State of Ohio contract? The university may benefit from rebates or pricing discounts, if yes. Please contact Procurement for assistance and regulations.
  • Do the good(s)/service(s) to be procured include software, computer hardware, digital content, web-based information or applications, or 3rd party web services (such as marketing, research, monitoring.)? If yes, please review policy 4-16 and respond as necessary.
  • Is there a personal relationship between a university employee and the referenced vendor? If yes, a Conflict of Interest form must be completed as found on the Procurement website.
  • Will the vendor accept a SUA (single use card)as payment? If yes, please note to the Accounts Payable department when processing the order
  • Will the vendor have access to classified Kent State University data? And/or will the vendor need to share this institutional data with partners to accomplish its mission? If yes, a security risk assessment must be performed prior to purchase or award.
  • Is the vendor in compliance with the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) requirements of Executive Orders 11246 as amended by 11375? If not, you may not use this vendor as subject to the Ohio Revised Code and university policy.
  • Did you certify the vendor is not debarred in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Section 9.4 from receiving federal and state funded procurements and has no "unresolved findings for recovery" under Ohio Revised Code Section 9.24? Reminder, state agencies are prohibited from awarding a contract for supplies or services, funded in whole or in part with federal and/or state funds, to a person who appears on any debarment list.

Thank you for considering these questions before using university funds to make your purchase. Take the time to plan your purchase and ask the Procurement Department for help in mitigating risk and vendor selection.