Before You Buy

Procurement Services’ responsibility for University expenditures are governed by the Colorado State University Procurement Rules. While each purchase is initiated by a requisition in the financial system, the course it follows will vary depending upon the anticipated cost, complexity, or legalities of the buy. Early involvement of Procurement Services is highly recommended to better guide you through the process. Faculty and staff who are charged with initiating procurement requests should use the links to the right of this page for guidance on the procurement process. Please click here to locate a purchasing agent for more information on how to proceed with your purchase. Below is a quick glance of Procurement Services’ dollar thresholds.

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU BUY


GOODS: SERVICES: CONSTRUCTION:
$5,000 and less
Small Dollar Purchase
$5,000 and less
Small Dollar Purchase
*All construction and building maintenance activities at CSU are under the direct control of Facilities Management. Campus departments are not authorized to undertake construction or building maintenance activities.
Contact Facilities Management (www.facilities.colostate.edu)
>$5,000 to $10,000.00 Purchasing Agent Discretion (excluding shop catalogs vendors) >$5,000 to $25,000.00 Purchasing Agent Discretion
$10,000 to $150,000 Documented Quote (DQ) via State of Colorado "BIDS" System $25,000 to $500,000 Documented Quote (DQ) via State of Colorado "BIDS" System
$150,000 and more Formal Invitation For Bid (IFB) via State of Colorado "BIDS" System $500,000 and more Formal Request for Proposal (RFP) via State of Colorado "BIDS" System
Sole Source: Any amount over $10,000 must be supported by an approved justification Sole Source: Any amount over $25,000 must be supported by an approved justification

DOLLAR THRESHOLDS:
  • $5,000 and less for goods and services Small dollar purchase: Small dollar purchases are those purchases where it is NOT anticipated that future (in the fiscal year) purchases of like or similar goods or services will be needed, OR if it is anticipated, that any future recurring (in the fiscal year) purchases will remain small, cumulatively $5,000 or less. The reasoning behind this rule is that small transactions that are recurring can add up to large purchases and would be subject to competitive bidding in order to comply with procurement and fiscal rules and to assure maximum value to the University. Departments are delegated the use of the Automatic Purchase Order (APO) , along with the CSU Marketplace ,when making purchases of goods and services that total $5,000 or less, or a Disbursement Voucher (DV) when paying invoices totaling $5,000 or less.
  • $5,000 and greater for goods and services Source Selection:
    • Purchasing Agent (PA) discretion. Competition is not required; however, PA must assure CSU is receiving maximum value and may solicit competition.
    • University price agreement, State of Colorado price agreement or Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) agreement. Consult with PA.
    • Competitive solicitation. DQ, IFB or RFP via the State of Colorado BIDS system. Consult with PA.
    • Sole source. See Sole Source Guidelines and consult with Purchasing Agent responsible for commodity.

DEFINITIONS:
  • PurcPurchasing Agent Discretion - Competition not required. However, PA may elect to solicit competition if deemed in the best interest of the University. All purchases greater than $500 require a written quotation per the Uniform Commercial Code.
  • Documented Quotation (DQ) - Informal quote process. Must be posted on the State of Colorado "BIDS" System for a minimum of 3 business days. >
  • Invitation for Bid (IFB) - Formal bid process. Must be posted on the State of Colorado "BIDS" System for a minimum of 14 calendar days.
  • Request for Proposal (RFP) - Formal process which considers criteria other than prices in evaluation and award. Must be posted on the State of Colorado "BIDS" System for a minimum of 30 calendar days.
  • “BIDS" System - State of Colorado Internet bidding system. Only method of bid notification allowed.
  • CSU Marketplace. University contracted suppliers in Kuali Shop Catalogs up to $10,000 for certain goods.