Purchasing Policies Introduction

Last Revised Date
Tuesday, December 22, 2020 - 12:42 pm


TO: The Faculty, Academic Professionals, Administrators and Staff of the University of Arizona

The primary responsibilities of the Financial Services Purchasing office are:

  • To serve the faculty, academic professionals, administrators and staff by facilitating the timely acquisition of needed goods and services.
  • To provide initiative and leadership in procurement that maximizes the value of university expenditures, leverages purchases, broadens relationships with suppliers via strategic alliances, and creates new sources of revenue.
  • To identify ways to improve the acquisition process through procedural enhancements while at the same time assuring compliance with the ABOR University Procurement Code.

The University's Purchasing Policies are designed to meet the requirements of the Arizona Board of Regents, general university regulations, specified requirements of various agencies from whom the University secures funds, and good business practices. These policies contribute to maintaining and improving the quality of services rendered by the Financial Services Purchasing office. If you are in a leadership or supervisory position, please assist in this effort by ensuring that all employees under your supervision read, understand, and comply with these policies. Thank you for your cooperation in this important effort.

Robert C. Robbins


The function of the Purchasing office is to administer procurement for all departments in accordance with the responsibility and authority delegated by the University's President.

The Chief Procurement Officer and his staff are expected to conduct themselves in a courteous, ethical, and professional manner; to maintain good relations with faculty and staff; to regard each transaction on its own merits and to promote fair, ethical, and legal trade practices.

These Purchasing Policies set down the general policies developed to accomplish the procurement processes for the University. While it is somewhat detailed, it cannot cover all eventualities. Exceptions, not governed by ABOR Policy, State or Federal law, rules, or regulations, may be granted to departments by written authorization from the Chief Procurement Officer. The exceptions will be worked out as circumstances and good business practices warrant.

Ted Nasser, C.P.M.
Chief Procurement Officer

Code of Ethics

The nature of purchasing functions makes it critical that all players in the process remain independent, free of obligation or suspicion, and completely fair and impartial. Maintaining the integrity and credibility of a purchasing program requires a clear set of guidelines, rules and responsibilities to govern the behavior of purchasing employees. Credibility and public confidence are vital throughout the purchasing and contracting system. Any erosion of honesty, integrity or openness tends to be more injurious to purchasing than to most other public programs. The shadow of doubt can be as harmful as the conduct itself. It is with this in mind that the following code is set forth. This document defines the ethical standards of conduct required of the University of Arizona Financial Services Purchasing employees, suppliers, potential suppliers and employees of other agencies when acting under the authority delegated by the University of Arizona.

  • To give first consideration to the objectives and policies of the University.
  • To purchase without prejudice, seeking to obtain maximum value for each dollar expended on behalf of the University. 
  • To conduct ourselves with fairness and dignity and to demand honesty and truth in the purchasing process.
  • Demand honesty in sale representation whether offered through the medium of a verbal or written statement, an advertisement, or sample of the product.
  • Strive to continually increase competition in supplier selection and endeavor to prevent any collusive activities among suppliers.
  • Avoid soliciting or accepting money, loans, credits, gifts, entertainment, favors, or services from present or potential suppliers that might influence, or appear to influence supply management decisions.
  • Handle confidential or proprietary information with due care and proper consideration. Receive consent of originator of confidential information or proprietary ideas and designs before using them for competitive purchasing purposes.
  • To honor our obligations and require that obligations to the University be honored.
  • Promote positive supplier relations through courtesy and impartiality. Conduct business with potential and current suppliers in an atmosphere of good faith, devoid of intentional misrepresentation.
  • To grant all competitive suppliers equal consideration insofar as state or federal statute and University policy permit.
  • Foster fair, ethical and legal trade practices.
  • Encourage support of Small Businesses whenever possible.
  • Make every reasonable effort to negotiate an equitable and mutually agreeable settlement of any controversy with suppliers; and/or be willing to submit any major controversies to arbitration or other third party review, insofar as the established policies of the University permit.
  • Cooperate with trade, industry, professional associations, governmental and private agencies for the purposes of promoting and developing sound practices.

An Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer