Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Purchasing FAQ's

Why is there a dollar limit for departmental purchasing?

The University has placed limitations for departments based on knowledge of State and MSU System purchasing policies and procedures. The greater the dollar amount, the more purchasing policies there are to follow. Also, requiring bids allows for competition among vendors, making sure we get the best price possible when using taxpayer's money.

What is the difference between a requisition and purchase order?

Requisitions are internal requests for goods and/or services that are sent to the Purchasing Department prior to the need of such goods and/or services. Purchase Orders are binding documents between the customer and the vendor.

After I prepare my purchase requisition can I contact the vendor to place my order?

No. Vendors may be contacted to obtain quotes but must follow the guidelines posted for established limits for Competitive bidding (see Purchasing Manual). A purchase requisition is basically an end-user request for the Purchasing Office to place the order (using a Purchase Order).

I need to cancel a requisition, can I do it myself?

No, if a department needs to cancel a requisition they have completed they cannot cancel it. The purchasing office will have to. They need to email their buyer and request the cancellation.

What is a HUB vendor and how can I find HUB vendors?

A HUB vendor is a Historically Underutilized Business. The State of Texas has classified minority or woman-owned vendors as HUB's. HUB's can be found using the Centralized Master Bid List (CMBL), using the HUB Directory or calling the Purchasing Department. There are many good HUB vendors that offer office supplies, computer parts and services, or promotional goods.

Do we have to buy from Historically Underutilized Business (HUB)?

Departments are not required to buy from HUBs, but are strongly encouraged to utilize HUBs and request bids from them. It is important to make a Good Faith Effort to assist Midwestern State University in meeting established HUB goals regarding HUB expenditures.

We have some equipment that can only be provided by a specific vendor. Are we still required to get competitive bids?

Proprietary Source purchasing represents the purchase of a specific item that is available from only one vendor who is the sole manufacturer and distributor of the item. The end user must submit a justification explaining the need for the item and why only this specific item will meet his/her needs. See Sole Source Justification Form.

I need to send a tax exemption form to a vendor. Does purchasing need to send it or can I? Where is it located?

The Tax Exemption Certificate can be sent by the ordering department. This form is listed under forms in this web-site.

What do I do if I cannot find the banner number for the vendor I want to use?

Put the vendor name and information in the document text on the requisition. (Requisitions can be completed without the vendor name)

 

Procurement Card FAQ’s

Who is allowed to apply for a university procurement card?

Only benefits eligible university employees whose immediate supervisor finds it necessary for them to have a card to carry out their daily duties are allowed to apply. This doesn’t automatically mean a card will be issued. The application must be signed by the applicant’s immediate supervisor and supervising Vice President or Provost and the applicant must attend mandatory training before a card is issued.

Am I allowed to share my p-card card with other university employees?

University policy strictly prohibits the loaning or sharing of you P-Card with anyone.

My credit limit is $1000, but I need to place an order for an item that will exceed it. Can I split the order to allow the charge to go through?

No. State law mandates that large purchases may not be broken down into smaller purchases to meet delegated limits. To do so would be a violation of State Law and MSU polices. Purchases that exceed your credit limit must be purchased using a purchase requisition.

When is my P-Card Transaction Log due to the Purchasing Office?

In order to assist departments with the reconciliation of accounts, envelopes should be turned in no later than the 25th of each month. All it takes is one late envelope to hold up the upload of the entire month’s batch.

What should I do if my card is lost or stolen?

You must report any lost or stolen P-Card to Citibank @ 1-800-248-4553 immediately. Next, you should contact your supervisor and make them aware of the situation. Finally, you need to contact the P-Card Administrator to ensure the card has been cancelled and a new one is re-issued.

I need to return an item to the store. How should it be handled?

If a cardholder returns goods purchased with the procurement card, he/she must not accept cash or gift cards for the returned goods. The vendor must issue a credit back the procurement card.

What’s the first thing I should do upon receiving my bank statement?

Review your statement to ensure all your charges are correct. If you don’t recognize a charge, contact the vendor and have them send you a copy of the invoice. If you still don’t recognize the charge as your own, contact the P-Card Administrator to initiate the dispute process. This must be done in a timely manner.

What should I do if my card is declined?

First, make sure the vendor is keying the correct expiration date. If that doesn’t fix the problem, contact the bank using the customer service number on the back of your card. If you are unable to contact the bank, contact your P-Card Administrator.

Can I use my P-Card for travel expenses?

You cannot use your card for any travel expenses. If you plan on doing a lot of traveling, it might be in your best interest to apply for a travel card. Travel card applications are handled through the Business Office.

What should I do if I lost a receipt?

You should attempt to get a replacement receipt from the vendor. If that is not possible, you can contact the Program Administrator for a copy of the missing receipts form.  The form must be completed and signed by your immediate supervisor. Remember, excessive use of the “Missing Forms Page” can result in loss of P-Card privileges.

What should I do if I’m not sure a purchase I’m about to make follows policy?

Contact the Purchasing Department or contact the P-Card Administrator. We will be glad to assist.

 

Vendor FAQ's

How do I get on the University's bid list?

At this moment, the quickest and easiest way is to make sure your business is listed on the CMBL (Centralized Master Bidder's List) with the State of Texas. When state purchasers look for vendors that sell a particular service or product, they will search this list first.

What is the CMBL?

The CMBL is an acronym for the Centralized Master Bidders List. It is a listing of Suppliers that are registered with and approved by the Texas Procurement and Support Services (TPASS) to sell to the State of Texas. Creation of the CMBL is an attempt by the TPASS to have one consolidated listing of businesses.

Is there special consideration given to businesses that are primarily minority or women owned?

State agencies shall make a good faith effort to include HUB vendors (Historically Underutilized Businesses) in contracts, services and commodity purchases.

How do I become a registered as a HUB with the State of Texas?

By visiting the Texas Comptrollers Website and registering as a HUB vendor. HUB certification is free of charge.

How do I download Bid Invitations and Catalog Offers from the Texas Marketplace?

You may go directly to the Electronic State Business Daily (ESBD) website and enter the Agency Requisition Number (bid or cataloger number), agency code or commodity code.

Can I just send the first page of my bid back?

No. All bid documents must be returned in order to validate the supplier's acknowledgment and acceptance of bid terms, conditions, and specifications.

How do I determine whether a product or service is covered by a Texas Term Contract?

You may search the Texas Term Contracts on-line by entering a keyword from the product or service you want to buy.

What happens if I forget to sign the bid form, or if I fail to submit my bid on-time?

If a vendor forgets to sign the bid form or fails to meet the bid deadline, the bid is consider invalid or non-responsive.

How can I find the results of a bid?

To receive results of a bid, vendors can contact the buyer responsible for posting the bid and submit a request either by mail or email. A copy of the tabulation sheet with a pricing summary for the requested bid will sent. Closed bids (with bid tabulations) can also be found our Purchasing web page on the Closed Bids page. These bids will be removed 90 days after the closing date.