Contracts & Purchasing - Purchasing Methods
There two standard methods available for the acquisition of goods and services.
- Requisition/purchase order
- Procurement card (p card)
All district purchase requires either a purchase order or p card transaction approved by a budget supervisor as evidence of the district’s acceptance of the responsibility to pay for the goods and services. The district cannot be obligated for materials or services purchased without prior approval of a budget supervisor. Individuals who obligate the district without proper prior authorization may be held personally responsible for payment of such obligations.
A requisition is defined as a “request for purchase” and can be either electronic or hand written.
Electronic requisitions are entered into the WESPaC/Skyward by a requestor and submitted for higher approval. Once the requisition has been approved by the budget supervisor, the business services department and any special approvals needed (i.e., technology department, grant administrators, special fund approvals, etc.), the requisition is batched (converted from a requisition to a purchase order), printed and then uploaded to the general ledger. An original purchase order will be mailed to the vendor unless the requester has indicated that they will place the order themselves (hand carry).
Written requisitions (purchase requests)
Written requisitions are utilized in rare cases when a required signature is not obtainable in the WESPaC/Skyward system or to submit for payment an invoice that was not issued against a purchase order (i.e., on-going subscriptions, legal notices, etc). A purchase request is also used to receive approval for p card purchases.
A written requisition should contain the following information:
- Vendor name and address
- Location (ship to) and mark for
- Quantity and description of items
- Price, including tax and shipping
- Budget expenditure code
- Budget supervisor's approval
- Purchasing approval
Important notes about purchase orders
1. All district purchases require a purchase order as evidence of the district’s acceptance of the responsibility to pay. The district cannot be obligated for materials or services without a purchase order or other form of pre-approval.
2. Purchase orders will not be issued in an amount less than $15. What can you do if you wish to purchase an item for under $15?
- If using a local vendor, you can use a p card.
- Employees can request approval from your administrator to purchase the item personally subject to reimbursement by the District (Use the blue sheet/reimbursement form) or your school or department petty cash fund (general fund only).
- Schools can combine their order with that of another school or department to reach the $15 minimum level.
- If purchasing from a vendor more than once throughout the school year, schools or departments may complete an open purchase order for an “amount not to exceed”
Procurement card (p card)
A p card is a credit card used to simply the purchasing and accounts payable process when buying certain equipment, materials and supplies. All purchases made using the p card are subject to the same requirements as other purchases: budget manager approval, receiving and bid laws.
Individuals using p cards must sign a memorandum of agreement annually which outlines acceptable use of the card and acknowledging their responsibilities. P card usage is reconciled on a weekly basis using the banks on-line system and by providing Business Services with a reconciliation report and original receipts.