Category: Uncategorized

Preparing for the Holiday Break

The holidays will be here before we realize.  It is only 7 weeks before the holiday break.  Do you have a project that you need to complete before the holidays or items that need to be ordered and received before the holiday break?  Please get ahead of the crowd and begin planning your projects and purchases now.  This will allow you to get your project scheduled and long lead time items ordered to ensure your project goes smoothly and is completed on time.  Please avoid waiting until the week before the break whenever possible.  Please contact the appropriate Senior Buyer to assist with your bid requests and discuss any projects that you have planned in the near future.  Please call 348-5230 with any questions.

Coming Soon – Amazon Business as a Catalog Vendor on buyBAMA

We are excited to announce that Purchasing will be adding Amazon Business as a Catalog Vendor on buyBAMA later this month! Purchasing has established a centralized Amazon Business account for University Faculty and Staff to use as a secondary contract vendor to other UA Approved Contract Vendors.

There are many benefits that come with this new account, including:

  • FREE two-day shipping on all Amazon Prime eligible items at no extra cost to your department;
  • Automatic sales tax exemption on eligible items sold by LLC and accepting resellers;
  • Competitive Amazon Business pricing;
  • Access to a dedicated Amazon Business customer service team;
  • And much more!

We will be sending additional information out very soon. Please note that a buyBAMA account will be required to access the Amazon Business catalog.  If you are not currently registered in buyBAMA please submit a buyBAMA Request Access Form.

”Amazon Business

Space Heaters

It’s still summer in Tuscaloosa, but cooler weather will arrive eventually. When the weather turns cooler, we begin to see requests for space heaters from areas that have issues heating their office adequately.

The University’s Energy Management Department should be contacted by the Building Representative if the central heating system is incapable of meeting comfort requirements or if a space heater is to be used to offset excessively cool areas in a space. State regulations require that the University follow ASHRAE Standard 90.1, which says that heating and cooling are not allowed simultaneously in the same space for the sole purpose of achieving comfort. Excessive cooling of a space on campus below the summertime University Temperature Guidelines should be reported to University Facilities so that air-conditioning levels can be adjusted. Use of space heaters is a potential fire hazard and consumes excessive amounts of electricity. The issue of energy efficiency is also important — electric space heaters are a very costly means of heating. If a member of the campus community feels that a space heater is necessary for adequate warmth, this may indicate that the central heating system needs repair. If you have questions regarding heating or cooling your space, please contact Energy Management.

VWR Scientific Vendor Show

Tuesday, October 1, 2019, is the Scientific Vendor Show presented by VWR International and UA Purchasing. We have over 20 vendors participating this year. The event will be at the Ferguson Center Ballroom (3rd Floor) from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Faculty, Grad Students and Staff in the Education, Scientific and Engineering Departments are welcome to attend. Please join us for lunch and for the chance to win prizes!

Did You Know? – The Dell buyBAMA Catalog Includes a Quote to Cart Feature

If you have a custom quote that was provided by the Dell rep or an E-quote created in the Dell catalog, you should place your order through the Dell catalog in buyBAMA using your P-Card. Do not follow the link instructions provided on the quote itself. See steps below:

  • Access the Dell catalog through buyBAMA
  • Click “Quotes” in the menu at the top of the screen
  • Input the quote number in the search field – Your order will then populate.
  • Click “View Details” – Review the details of your order for accuracy.
  • Click “Create Order Requisition”
  • On this screen, you have the option to change your shipping requirements, if necessary. When you are ready to complete order – Click “Submit Order Requisition.”
  • The Dell catalog will close, and your order will be in your buyBAMA cart to complete the check-out process with your P-Card.

Reminder – If your order amount exceeds your P-Card single purchase limit, please include whose card your order will be charged to and the last 4 digits of the card number in the internal notes.  This information is used for the automated P-Card single purchase limit increase within the buyBAMA approval workflow.

Important – If you request a quote for a Dell consumer product, the UA Dell rep will forward you to a Dell consumer rep who can process your order.  You will need to place your order directly with him/her.  You should not place consumer orders through buyBAMA.

Board of Trustees Approval Threshold Changes

At the June 06 – 07, 2019 Board of Trustees Meeting, several expenditure thresholds requiring Board of Trustees approval were revised. See summary of revisions below:

  • Purchase or lease of equipment threshold increased from $500,000 to $750,000.
  • Technology acquisitions threshold, not included in the annual technology plans, increased from $500,000 to $750,000. The revised rule also clarifies technology as inclusive of all aspects – hardware, software, associated services, upgrades and expansions.
  • Previously, all consulting and professional service agreements over $250,000 and goods over $1,000,000 if not competitively bid were subject to the System Office Heightened Review process. Now, those same thresholds are subject to Board of Trustees approval, further clarified as follows: Goods over $1,000,000 unless competitively bid; Consulting and professional services over $250,000 regardless of whether the contracts result from a competitive process.
  • Capital projects that involve construction, demolition, or renovation of University facilities threshold increased from $750,000 to $1,000,000.

The above threshold changes became effective immediately upon approval at the June meetings.  The System Office is in the process of updating the Board Manual which can be referred to for full context once updates are complete.

buyBAMA’s New User Interface

We are pleased to announce that buyBAMA’s new user interface was successfully upgraded on May 13, 2019. The changes included a few new features as well as an enhanced user experience. We believe this upgrade is a great benefit to all users and will allow for other new features in the future. Updated training and reference material can be found on the buyBAMA website. If you have any questions, please email

buyBAMA eProcurement System – User Interface Upgrade

We are pleased to announce that buyBAMA’s user interface will be upgraded in May. The changes will include a few new features as well as an enhanced user experience. The tentative go-live date will be Monday, May 13th. An email will be sent out to all buyBAMA users once the date is finalized, along with updated training and reference material. We are very excited for this launch as the upgrades will be beneficial to all users.

When is the Right Time to Engage Purchasing?

Purchasing encourages campus partners to research products and services to determine what best suits their needs.  If the preferred product or service is not available from an Approved Contract Vendor and is anticipated to exceed the State competitive bid threshold of $15,000, it is very important to engage Purchasing before getting too far down the road.  Purchasing can assist with determining if a competitive bid will be required or if the purchase qualifies as a sole source.  This determination needs to be made early in the process to ensure Purchasing compliance as well as preventing any accidental commitments to vendors that cannot be fulfilled due to compliance obligations.  Please refer to our Purchasing Guidelines and Competitive Bid Process webpages for associated information.  As always, please contact Purchasing at or 348-5230 with any questions.

Contract Vendor Fair

Please join us on Tuesday, April 2, 2019 as Procurement Services hosts a Contract Vendor Fair in the Ferguson Center Ballroom from 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM. Lunch will be provided and many of our current Contract Vendors will be on hand to showcase the products and services they provide for the University. We invite all UA Faculty and Staff to come meet our representatives face to face and learn more about their products. There will be employees from Procurement Services on hand throughout the day to assist and answer questions as well. If you have any event questions, please email Jana Weaver.

Add the Contract Vendor Fair to your Outlook Calendar