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Overview of Purchasing at JHU



Overview of Purchasing at JHU

There are four (4) primary means of purchasing products and services at the University (Purchase Order, Procurement Card, Corporate Travel Card, and online Payment Request).

In support of the decentralized nature of the University's purchasing process, most buying decisions are made by faculty and staff on a departmental level. Faculty and staff are expected to make ethical and sound purchasing decisions that will ensure the efficient and effective operation of the University.

The authority to create shopping carts via SAP has been delegated to system users in divisions and centers across the University. Purchase order approval for transactions less than $3,000 is completed in divisions and centers in accordance with SAP purchase order approval workflow. Purchase transactions with an aggregate value of $3,000 or more are routed to the Office of Purchasing Services for final approval. All purchase order-related contracts and agreements must be sent to the Office of Purchasing Services for review and approval.

When a purchase is initiated, University funds are being committed and the authorized system user/cardholder is assuring the University that:

  • a legitimate business need for the purchase has been identified;
  • an approved supplier has been selected, whenever prudent and possible;
  • sponsored program procurement requirements have been met, when required;
  • are in compliance with the University's conflict of interest policy and code of ethics;
  • when prudent or when required, purchases have been competitively bid or negotiated;
  • suppliers are dealt with in a professional manner, consistent with good business practices;
  • purchases have been inspected upon receipt, and an SAP Goods Receipt has been completed when required;
  • use of diversity and local community businesses and environmentally friendly products have been considered;
  • documentation requirements to support the purchase have been met; and
  • all Procurement Card transactions, once input into the University's SAP system, have been reconciled.

Procurement Card cardholders are empowered to purchase approved goods and services with a total dollar value less than $3,000 in accordance with Procurement Card Program policies, procedures, and commodity restrictions.

Full-time faculty and staff who are required to travel or entertain on University business are eligible to apply for a University sponsored Corporate Travel Card.

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Supplier Management

The Office of Purchasing Services is responsible for managing the University supply chain, which includes the approved supplier database in the SAP System. In order to create a purchase order for a particular supplier, the supplier must be in the SAP supplier database.

Requests to add a new supplier must be submitted via the online request form and approved by the Office of Purchasing Services. The Office of Purchasing Services may deny a request to add a new supplier if denying the request is deemed in the best interest of the University.

Various supplier definitions are used by the Office of Purchasing Services and are listed below to describe supplier involvement in the procurement process.

Approved Supplier

An Approved Supplier is one who has been reviewed and approved by the Office of Purchasing Services and then added to the SAP System supplier database.  Requisitioners can create Low Value Purchase Orders (LVPO) only with approved suppliers in the SAP System supplier database.

An online form is available for faculty and staff to request to add a supplier to the SAP System approved supplier database.

Strategic Contract Supplier

A Strategic Contract Supplier is a University approved supplier that has been recruited for participation in the Strategic Contract Supplier Program. The Strategic Contract Supplier Program is focused on meeting the long-term needs of the University. Strategic Contract Suppliers have agreed to provide the University community with competitive pricing, exceptional customer service, and a willingness to work to conduct business as efficiently and effectively as possible. Only a limited number of highly capable and qualified suppliers shall be awarded this designation. Suppliers must compete to earn and maintain this distinction. Competitive bids are not required for purchases from Strategic Contract Suppliers regardless of the total purchase order dollar value.

HopkinsSelect Supplier

A HopkinsSelect Supplier is an approved supplier that has agreed to provide catalog content and contract pricing for the HopkinsSelect eMarketplace. Competitive bids are not required for purchases from HopkinsSelect suppliers unless the total purchase order dollar volume is greater than $25,000.

To insure the University is in compliance with OMB Uniform Guidance and the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), orders placed directly by departments with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers should not exceed $25,000. Orders with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers greater than $25,000 should be sent to the Office of Purchasing Services for review and processing.

Diversity Supplier

A Diversity Supplier is an approved supplier in the University’s Supplier Diversity Program that is certified as a small, minority, or women-owned business.

Deactivated Supplier

A Deactivated Supplier is a supplier that has been deactivated in the SAP supplier database. This action may have been taken as a result of supplier consolidation, new supplier contract(s), or supplier performance. A recommended approved replacement supplier is listed by each deactivated supplier name in the Deactivated Supplier List.

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The HopkinsSelect eMarketplace
 

The HopkinsSelect eMarketplace provides an efficient and user-friendly process for ordering commonly required products. The HopkinsSelect eMarketplace streamlines the purchasing process, maximizes strategic supplier relationships, reduces acquisition costs, and increases customer satisfaction.

Most suppliers included in the HopkinsSelect eMarketplace offer Johns Hopkins-specific discounted pricing, and special value-added services to the Johns Hopkins community.  Some vendors are included for ordering convenience, however, and offer market-based pricing.  Be sure to compare pricing when ordering from these suppliers since they are not Johns Hopkins contract suppliers.

To insure the University is in compliance with OMB Uniform Guidance and the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), orders placed directly by departments with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers should not exceed $25,000. Orders with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers greater than $25,000 should be sent to the Office of Purchasing Services for review and processing.

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Purchase Order Approval Procedures

All non-eMarketplace shopping carts with a total aggregate cost of $3,000 or more are to be forwarded to the Office of Purchasing Services for review and final approval. All supporting documentation, including supplier contracts that need to be signed on behalf of the University must be forwarded as well.

To insure the University is in compliance with OMB Uniform Guidance and the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR), orders placed directly by departments with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers may not exceed $25,000. Orders with HopkinsSelect eMarketplace suppliers greater than $25,000 should be sent to the Office of Purchasing Services for review and processing.
 
The Process Flow

All incoming shopping carts are forwarded to the appropriate Commodity/Sourcing Specialist based on assigned commodity responsibilities. All associated supporting documentation is forwarded to the Commodity/Sourcing Specialist. Supporting documents are to be sent directly to the Office of Purchasing Services as attachments to shopping carts in SAP, or via fax (443-997-5699) or interdepartmental mail.

The Approval Process

The goal of the Office of Purchasing Services is to approve and process all shopping carts, that meet all established purchasing requirements, within two (2) business days. Shopping carts referencing a message such as "Attachments to be sent to the Office of Purchasing Services" will be held until receipt of all necessary attachments.

Purchase Orders with Supplier Contracts

When a supplier contract is required for a specific transaction, the Commodity/Sourcing Specialist is responsible for reviewing the terms and conditions of the contract. The Commodity/Sourcing Specialist is responsible for working with the supplier and ordering department to address or resolve any contract language issues. Commodity/Sourcing Specialists will consult with the Office of the General Counsel as required for specific terms and conditions.

Conditions for approving supplier contracts:

  1. Due to the volume and complexity of the contracts received by the department, the Supply Chain Service Center will require three (3) business days to review and approve a supplier contract. The review and approval period may take longer than three (3) days based on unique business requirements or supplier terms and conditions. The Commodity/Sourcing Specialist will advise the Requisitioner if the approval period will take longer than three (3) business days.
  2. Emergency contract requirements will be processed on case-by-case basis.
After-the-Fact Purchase Orders

After-the fact purchase orders create significant compliance, payment and supplier relationship problems for the University.  Requisitioners should not create a purchase order for payment of an invoice for product(s) already received or service(s) already performed by an external supplier. Purchase orders received referencing an after-the-fact transaction will be rejected.

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Last updated07/21/2015

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