Procurement Services

Procurement Services provides integrated solutions to enhance the University's Procure-to-Pay experience. This includes establishing contracts, creating purchase orders and administering the credit card program, travel services and other specialized campus programs.

In the Spotlight  

GEMS International Transactions

Good News!

Starting Monday, August 6, 2018, a separate “International Transaction Fees” will no longer appear in GEMS/Concur.  The fee will be bundled into the transaction amount eliminating the current two-transaction process. Going forward for international charges, you will have single transaction charge to reconcile. This change should make reconciling a little easier for our international travelers!

Keep in mind, international transactions that occurred prior to August 6th will still appear as two transactions, as shown in the image below.

International Fee.PNG

Uniform Guidance

The University’s implementation of the Uniform Guidance Procurement Standards will become effective July 1, 2018 in conjunction with updated federal government regulations.

 In an effort to improve efficiency and expenditure oversight, the federal government is updating its procurement guidance for institutions that manage federal funds through grants and contracts.  The most visible aspect of the changes is an increase to the purchasing thresholds for competition and documentation requirements. 

Beginning on July 1, 2018 the following changes will be made to our procurement thresholds:


Current

New

Procurement Method

Documentation Requirements

$0 - $5k

$0 - $10k

Micro-Purchase

Documentation of price

$5k-$25k

$10k-$150k

Informal Procurement

Documentation of competition, price reasonability or sole source justification

>$25k

>$150k

Formal Procurement

Competitive proposals (or sole source justification) – proactively engage Procurement Services

       

A complete summary of the changes is available here
A list of FAQs is available here.
A short informational video that highlights the key changes to the procurement process which can be accessed here.

If you have any questions, please contact the Shared Services Help Desk at 773.702.5800 or online at services.uchicago.edu.

Notice to Suppliers: Fraudulent Purchase Order Email Activity

We want to alert you to an active email scam involving purchase orders and request for product quotations that purport to originate from The University of Chicago but are in fact fraudulent.  While The University cannot prevent this illegal actvitiy, we are actively working with law enforcement to investigate these fradulent email contacts.

We can share some common traits or themes of these fradulent emails that may help reduce risk to your company in becoming a financial victim of this scam:

[Read more] [Printer-friendly version]

Fiscal Year End '18 Deadline Dates

To ensure procurement transactions are appropriately recorded, please refer to the suggested timeframes below.  Shared Services will process procurement transactions throughout the year. However, it cannot guarantee requests received after these dates will post in FY18.

  • Approved BuySite Purchase Requisitions should be submitted as early as possible to allow for vendor processing. 
  • Approved purchase order invoices received by Shared Services before 5:00 PM on June 8, 2018 will post to FY18 ledgers. 
  • ePayment Requests received earlier than 5:00 PM on June 15, 2018, with all required information and approvals, will post in FY18.
  • GEMS Expense Reports submitted and approved prior to 5:00 PM on June 13, 2018 will be accounted for in FY18. 
  • Payroll Fiscal Year End.

Please note that July business transactions should not be submitted prior to July 1st, 2018.

For assistance, please contact the Shared Services Office at 773.702.5800 or online at services.uchicago.edu

Single-Use Account (SUA) Credit Card Payment Initiative!

Procurement Services is collaborating with JPMorgan Chase to provide Single Use Account (SUA) credit cards as an electronic payment option to the University's suppliers. This will provide suppliers with real-time access to their funds, including payment details and remittance information, via a secured email.

If you receive a supplier inquiry or have any questions or concerns regarding this program, please contact the Shared Services Help Desk at 773.702.5800, email pps@uchicago.edu, or submit your inquiry via the Ask a Procurement/Payment Question Form. The JP Morgan Supplier Recruitment team is available to support the suppliers through the enrollment process and answer any enrollment-related questions.  Additional information about the supplier enrollment campaign provided via the FAQ.

Training opportunities are available!

  • Introduction to Procure-to-Pay - Suggested pre-requisite for all Procurement System Training
  • BuySite Fundamentals - University’s web Purchasing Application
  • GEMS New User Training - University’s Expense Management Program
  • Introduction to ePayment - University’s Check Request System

Click here to register.  For questions contact a Shared Services, Customer Resolution Specialist by dialing 2-5800 from your University phone.

Audit of AP Payments by Broniec Associates

Broniec is actively performing a contingency based recovery audit of the AP payment records for FY13 to FY15.

Uniform Guidance

The University has opted to delayed the implementation of the Uniform Guidance Procurement Standards until July 1, 2018 as provided by the waiver of the procurement rules stated in2 CFR Part 200, released May 17, 2017.  Additional information regarding the extension is located at: https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2017-09909.pdf.  . In the interim, the OMB Circulars will apply to grants, cooperative agreements, and all procurement transactions.

GEMS Best Practices

If you've logged into the UChicago GEMS website in the past few weeks, you've had the chance to experience our new expense reporting site, hosted by Concur. The new site helps simplify the reconciliation and reporting process with new tools and a clean, user-friendly interface.

In addition to the site's makeover, we're providing users with some tools and reminders on GEMS Best Practices — a list of guidelines and advice meant to save you time and help ensure accuracy.

A few GEMS Best Practices include:

Avoid submitting multiple expense reports – create one expense report and continue to add transactions to it throughout the month. Travel should be reconciled and submitted for approval within 30 days of purchase – this includes airfare, hotel deposits, conference registrations, etc. Supporting documentation should be well organized – scanned receipts should be legible and all facing the same direction.

View all of the GEMS Best Practices here, or download this helpful [PDF] and post it at your desk.

If you have any questions about GEMS Best Practices, please contact the Shared Services Help Desk at 773.702.5800, email pps@uchicago.edu, or submit an Ask a Procurement/Payment inquiry form available on the online portal.

View the news archive for past announcements.