Category: Uncategorized

New Fiscal Year Budget Planning

As we enter the last quarter of FY22, budgetary planning for FY23 is well underway.  Are you planning any significant purchases of software, equipment, or services that are not available from an approved contract vendor?  Now is a good time to discuss your spending plans with Purchasing to ensure all can be accomplished in an efficient manner.  By planning ahead, you can avoid any unanticipated lead times or speed bumps along the way.  Also, if the items you need have to be competitively bid, planning ahead will allow enough time for that process which normally takes 3 to 4 weeks minimum, but can take longer in some cases.  Please contact the appropriate Senior Buyer to assist with any questions you have about upcoming purchases.  Please refer to our Purchasing Guidelines for additional information.

PPE Updates

The University previously purchased over 250k various items for distribution across our campus and there are still plenty of the below items available.  For more information on how you can obtain these items and to see what is remaining please reach out to Logistical Support Services.  When making requests to logistics.ic@ua.edu please include the Department, contact person with email address, number of employees needing PPE, and purpose of PPE.  Any PPE that would be ordered by a department under normal operations unrelated to any COVID safety measures may be purchased through normal procurement methods.

  • Masks – KN95, cloth, disposable, adjustable
  • Wipes
  • Sanitizer – all sizes
  • Disinfectant spray
  • Clear masks
  • Safety goggles
  • Safety glasses
  • Face shields

Medical Purchases

Departments across campus sometimes feel the need to purchase various medications for disbursement to faculty, staff, or students.  This includes Tylenol, Advil, Aleve or any other over-the-counter medications.  These purchases cannot be paid for using any type of UA funding (state funds or foundation funds).  If you have any questions, please reach out to Robby Plumb in Risk Management.

buyBAMA Catalog Purchases – Valid Business Purpose Still Required

As most are aware, buyBama is the University’s eProcurement system where users can browse vendor catalogs, add items to a shopping cart, and submit orders electronically using their P-Card.  All catalog vendors are Approved Contract Vendors.  Please remember that just because an item is available through buyBama catalog vendors does not automatically mean it is an allowable purchase.  All purchases through buyBama catalogs are still subject to all applicable University policies and guidelines.  If you are not sure if an item available through a buyBama catalog is allowable, please reach out to the appropriate Purchasing Senior Buyer for guidance prior to purchasing.

Thank You Campus!

Procurement Services hosted its annual Contract Vendor Fair at the Ferguson Center on Tuesday, April 5.  Thirty one contract vendors participated in the event.  The attendance from our campus partners was excellent and the feedback received from both campus and the participating vendors was all very positive.  One campus partner described the event as “like trick-or-treating for adults with all of the vendor swag!”  Thank you to all that came to network with many of our contract vendors and to enjoy some food, drinks and prizes.  We look forward to next year’s event and will hope for an even better turnout.

Advanced Branding and Licensing Approval Required

As a reminder, all marketing, advertising and promotional materials should be submitted for approval in advance of purchase at ua.edu/brandapproval, especially promotional items. There has been an increase in submissions coming through after items have been received. If submissions after items have been purchased are denied, use of State funds for the expense may not be allowed and the items cannot be used or distributed.  This includes reorders as a licensee’s status can change over time. Departments are encouraged to share this information during their onboarding process with new employees. Complete info can be found at: https://stratcomm.ua.edu/brand-strategy/.

Campus Tour Transportation

If you or someone in your department find yourself needing to book micro-transportation or touring services around campus, please review the options below.

  • First, check with the Capstone Men & Women.  This group provides tours for large groups at specially arranged times.
  • If someone in your department would like to provide a tour, please check with Fleet Services about renting a UA vehicle.
  • Another option would be to use Crimson Ride Charter Services.  There are two bus options, and both are ADA accessible.

If these options do not meet your needs, you will need to obtain approval from Catherine Johnson, UA Senior Buyer in the Purchasing Department.  Be sure to include why the alternate method is needed and why the above-mentioned options will not meet your needs.

2022 Contract Vendor Fair

Please join us on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, as Procurement Services hosts a Contract Vendor Fair in the UA Student Center Ballroom (Formerly The Ferguson Center Ballroom) from 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM. 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. Snacks and light refreshments will be provided. If you have any questions please email Meagan Stockton, mlstockton@ua.edu.

Add the Contract Vendor Fair to your Outlook Calendar

Holiday Break Planning

The University’s Holiday break beginning on Thursday, December 23 is fast approaching.  In order to allow time for bids to complete before the Holiday break, please submit your bid requests to Purchasing no later than Friday, December 3.  We encourage you to use your p-card for all purchases whenever possible.  If a purchase order is required, the request should be submitted in buyBAMA, approved by all approvers, and to Purchasing no later than Monday, December 20 to allow time for review and issuance prior to the Holiday break.  Please contact Purchasing at 348-5230 or uapurchasing@ua.edu with any questions.

Supply Chain Issues Still Ongoing

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, supply chain issues are expected to be a challenge for the foreseeable future.  Material shortages, delivery delays, increased freight costs, and decreased labor forces are some factors that are expected to continue to create supply chain inconsistencies.

The following are some (not all!) categories which have been impacted the most:

  • Furniture (longer than normal lead times)
  • Charter buses (driver shortage)
  • Anything with a computer chip
  • Imported goods
  • Vehicles
  • Staffing services

The best mitigation to the ongoing supply chain issues is to plan further ahead and place orders as far in advance of fulfillment need as practical.  With FY22 budgets set, Purchasing encourages all University departments to plan their order placements ahead as much as possible.  Please don’t hesitate to reach out to UA Purchasing for assistance with your purchasing needs.