Information for Departments

Frequently Asked Questions

The Purchasing Department is here to procure goods and services in a timely manner as required by the University to fulfill its mission in education, research, economic, and cultural/social development.

Common Frequently Asked Questions

How do I order something?

Please refer to the Purchasing Manual for more information on how to order items. Detailed policies and procedures are provided.

Should I use a Procurement Card?

On July 01, 2011, it became mandatory that all purchases under $1000 must be made with a procurement card. The exceptions are that anything that goes in, on, or attaches to a computer; services; or equipment. They all have to be published via a Purchase Requisition Form. Please refer to the Procurement Card tab on our home page.

What do I need to put on a requisition?

Anything that is not being purchased with a procurement card must be put on a requisition and submitted to the Purchasing Department. Please remember to attach all supporting documentation. I.E. Invoices, quotes, estimates, as they are part of the procurement record to establish reasonableness of price and/or justification of vendor selection.

How do I get a blank requisition pad?

Please contact the Purchasing Department for a requisition pad. Requisition pads contain fifty requisitions and must be signed for.

What is an acceptable quote and why do I need one?

An acceptable quote is a quote that contains the item[s] requested, it's specifications, the quantity ordered, a price, a delivery date, and any additional information that may contain the vendor's contact information and if freight is being charged. An acceptable quote is needed so that specification, quantities, and prices can easily be compared from one vendor to another. This will establish justification of vendor and reasonableness of price should your purchase ever be audited. It should be noted that for any items ordered that have a delivery charge that an original freight bill is required should it exceed $99.99 (per Bulletin No. G-169).

For electronics will I need ITS approval?

ITS approval is needed for anything that goes in, on, or attaches to your computer or printer. ITS maintains all computer equipment on the Fredonia campus, along with all licensing and software support.

How do I order an Apple or Dell computer?

Standard HP and Apple computer configurations and quotes are available as pricing and equipment reference guides in Tracker Knowledge Base article #4964 at Once funding has been secured, please submit a request for a computer quote via a Tracker ticket (select 'Quote Requests' ), indicating the quantity needed it the description field. A quote will be prepared and emailed to you to attach to a purchase requisition. In the event a specialty configuration is needed, please provide specific requirements in the description field or as an attachment to the Tracker ticket.

How do I order a printer?

Standard printer quotes are available in Tracker Knowledge Base article #4964. Please submit the quote with a purchase requisition, noting the quantity needed. These standard printers have been selected based on acquisition cost and copy yield (cost to maintain). Please NOTE**Academic Departments and Administrative Offices are encouraged to provide centralized printing via network laser or network copier rather than 'printers at the desktop' as a more cost effective printing solution. If interested in transitioning to central printing/copying please refer to the network laser printer quotes available in Tracker Knowledge article #4964. Information regarding copier models can be obtained by submitting a Tracker ticket (select Quote Requests >copier/fax) or by contacting the Purchasing Office at 673-3438.

How do I order software?

Software quotes for use on faculty/staff desktops or in smart classrooms and computer labs can be requested by submitting a Tracker ticket. Select 'Quote Requests' and provide specific requirements and quantity in the description field. A quote will be prepared and mailed to you to attach to a purchase requisition with software master agreement. For information about currently licensed software, please check Tracker Knowledge Base article #6316. Newly purchased or renewed software must have it's terms and conditions reviewed by the Purchasing Office. Departments are not authorized to sign on behalf of the campus to accept terms and conditions.

What goes to Property Control?

All assets, regardless of funding or means of acquisition, need to be tracked by the Property Control Office. They can be reached at 673-3216.

Can I purchase food/beverages and get reimbursed?

Meeting expenses, specifically related to breakfast, lunch and dinner need proper justification. The office of the State Comptroller requires the following information: 1. The purpose and necessity of the meeting including an explanation why it was held during normal working hours. 2. The specific nature of State business being conducted. 3. The location of the meeting. 4. The number of participants including names and titles and their relationship to the business being conducted. 5. The cost of the meal (alcoholic beverages will not be reimbursed). Any meeting and subsequent Requisition that cannot provide all of the information in1-5 cannot be paid through state funds and must therefore be processed through an FSA or Foundation account.


Common words used in Purchasing


(See 'Competitive B id' below)

Bid Opening

In public sector purchasing, the process through which the contents of bids are revealed for the first time to the government, to other bidders and usually to the public.

Blanket Order

A purchase order that covers a reoccurring service over a specific time. Blanket Purchase Orders are common for services such as copier costs.


A standard article of commerce in the form of material goods, supplies, products or similar items.

Competitive Bid (or IFB - Invitation For Bid)

A common method of source selection is the offer of prices and specified elements of performance by vendors competing for a contract. Public sector purchases are often required to perform competitive bid selection using a sealed bid process with the law requiring that the award be made to the lowest responsive and responsible bidder.


A written or oral agreement between two or more competent parties that defines a job or service to be performed and which is legally enforceable.


The recording of a monetary commitment in an account's budget to buy goods or services via requisition, purchase order or contract.


The act of contacting a supplier or carrier with the goal of speeding up the delivery date of an inbound shipment.

Fiscal Year

The time-frame in which a budget is in effect or financial reporting is done. Fredonia's fiscal year runs July 1 through June 30 of the following calendar year.


Any payment, fee or other compensation given to a covered individual for services that are not related to the individual's official State duties when that compensation is made as a gratuity of an award of honor.

IFR (Income Fund Reimbursable) Account

A self-supporting account that generates revenues and provides services which are not included in the state operating budget. IFR's include athletics fee, technology fee, parking fees and fines, student health fee, facilities and user fee, recreational services, non-credit continuing education programs, fine arts events box office receipts, salary reimbursements from sponsored grants and contracts, transcript and placement file fees, time payment plan and telephone resale. An IFR account must follow all State and campus purchasing and payroll regulations and procedures. The difference between an IFR account and a state operating budget account is an IFR generates its own revenue to support its expenditures, whereas a state operating budget account is supported by general State revenues and by SUNY revenues. The year-end cash balance in an IFR is carried over to the next year; it does not revert back to the State.


A bill for goods or services purchased that includes pertinent information with respect to the quantity, price, terms, nature of delivery, etc.

M/WBE (Minority/Women Business Enterprise)

Any legal entity, organized to engage in commercial transactions that is at least 51 percent owned and controlled by one or more minority (or woman) persons. Ownership interest in the firm must be real, substantial and continuing.

Per Diem

This term literally means "per day" and is used to determine a specific daily rate allowable for a specific purpose.

Procurement Card

A payment method whereby individuals are empowered to deal directly with suppliers for low-dollar, high-frequency purchases. The cards reduce paperwork and must be used on purchases under $1000.

Purchase Order

A written contractual document prepared by a buyer to describe all terms and conditions of a purchase.

Purchase Requisition

A written or computerized request from faculty or staff to the purchasing department for the procurement of goods or services from suppliers.

Quotation (or RFQ - Request For Quote)

A document which can be used to obtain pricing from suppliers when a formal bid opening is not required including discretionary, sole source, single source or emergency purchases.

SDVOB (Service Disabled Veteran Owned Business)

Any legal entity, organized to engage in commercial transaction that is at least 51 percent owned and controlled by one or more service disabled owned veteran(s). Ownership interest in the firm must be real, substantial, and continuing.

SMRT (SUNY Management Resource Tool)

A web-based application for querying budget and expenditure information for an account from the SUNY accounting system.

Sealed Bid

A bid which has been submitted in a sealed envelope to prevent its contents from being revealed or known before the deadline for the submission of all bids.


A documentary record of a business transaction denoting payment due the payee.