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The Keene State College Purchasing Office, under the guidance of the University System of New Hampshire Board of Trustees policies and procedures, seeks the development and implementation of effective and ethical procurement practices, principals and techniques, through continuing education, publication and networking opportunities, resulting in the timely procurement of quality goods and services for the College.



The Purchasing Office attempts to serve you in a professional and expeditious manner. From time to time we may offer possible alternatives to items you have requested, or suggest how the cost of doing business may be minimized. The Purchasing Office exists to research products, services, vendor qualifications and usage to develop contracts for you. We mediate disputes with vendors, expedite orders, dispose of surplus items, file claims, seek legal advice and serve you in many other ways.

Centralized purchasing exists to save money and ensure conformance to generally accepted business principles, USNH Purchasing rules and regulations, and public law. The Keene State College Purchasing Office operates under the University System of New Hampshire guidelines, as established by the USNH Board of Trustees. The Purchasing Office reports directly to the Associate Vice-President for Finance and Planning. We subscribe to the National Association of Educational Buyers and as such, have adopted their Code of Ethics. (See EXHIBIT A) Our group meets regularly to solve problems and discuss methods to improve our performance.

It is our hope that this manual will answer common purchasing questions and enable all departments to buy goods and services in a timely manner. As policies change, the Purchasing Office will distribute updates to each department for inclusion in this text.

The Purchasing Office is located in Fiske Annex on Winchester Street. Office hours are from 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM, and we are willing and available to discuss your requests for purchases with you throughout the business day. You may reach us by phone at 603-358-2493.

We ask you for your cooperation and advance planning in order to better serve you.


Purchasing is a vital part of the College's operation. In this section and others, there will be some general statements quoted from the College and University Business Administration, National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO); 1974.

Some of the significant advantages of centralized purchasing are:

1. Definite economies resulting from the pooling and integrated overall planning of the common requirements of various departments.

2. Development of standard specifications for the common commodities purchased, resulting in more uniform quality and less variety of materials, supplies and equipment.

3. Better budgetary and financial control of departments' expenditures.

4. Development of qualified personnel through specialization in purchasing.

5. Reduction in administrative costs through elimination of multiple purchasing staffs, records and procedures.

6. Reduction in inventories because of closer supervision regarding the quantity of materials on each purchase order and greater utilization of the available supply of materials through transfers and substitutions.

7. Prompt delivery and better service by suppliers, resulting from more careful selection and better follow-up systems.

8. Benefits of competition, as a result of improved market studies and other research.

9. Better public relations, as a result of consistent and equitable treatment of vendors.



The current scope of duties performed by the KSC Purchasing Office include the following:

1. Prepare, with the cooperation of user departments, delivery schedules, quality and quantity specifications for items and services to be purchased.

2. Provide user departments with current information on new products and services, alternative materials and costs.

3. Encourage competition among vendors through negotiation, competitive bidding and contract buying.

4. Insure that purchase orders and contracts contain all necessary conditions, such as guarantees, warranties, governmental regulations, shipping instructions, free on board points (f.o.b.), credit terms and discounts.

5. Develop records as needed to determine requirements of the institution for supplies, services and equipment.

6. Arrange for control and disposal of surplus equipment and supplies, salvage and scrap.

7. Explore and use possible advantages of inter-university, consortia, or cooperative purchasing programs. (NACUBO)




3.1.1 State Law

The following is an excerpt taken from the New Hampshire State Law:

RSA21-I:18. The University System shall make purchases under competitive bidding requirements except when waived by the Chancellor of the University System or his authorized agent upon written justification.

3.1.2 Liability for Unauthorized Purchases

If any purchase is made without an order in the prescribed forms of the purchasing Office or not within the policy of the University, the individual member of the staff placing such an order will assume personal liability for the payment of the invoice.


3.2.1 General Bidding Guidelines

The Purchasing Office will bid out any/all items, at any dollar level, that Users request. The Purchasing Office reserves the right to bid out any requests, at any dollar level, if it is deemed to be in the best interests of the Institution.

Listed below are the bidding guidelines for ordering goods and/or services.


$0.00 - $3,000.00 - Paperwork to Purchasing. - 24 Hours

$3,000.00 - $5,000.00 - One (1) written quotation from proposed supplier must be approved by the KSC Purchasing Office BEFORE the request is processed. - 24 Hours

$5,000.00 - $10,000.00 - Three (3) competitive quotes are required. The quotes can be faxed or mailed. They must be approved by the KSC Purchasing Office BEFORE the request can be processed. - 24 Hours

$10,000.00 and up - KSC Purchasing will process formal written bids. Detailed specifications must be forwarded to Purchasing. Once received, a formal bid package will be prepared and processed. - 10-30 Working Days (the length of time depends upon the complexity of the bid)

***Complete, detailed specifications are required on all bids***

Submission of clear, concise specifications, prompt responses to the Purchasing Office inquiries and a properly authorized Banner requisition will facilitate the ordering process. Once the competitive quotation/bid process has been completed, the awards are usually made to those vendors supplying acceptable goods at the lowest overall cost.

When the equipment has a unit cost of $5,000.00 or more, an equipment authorization form (Form D) must be completed and signed by the Dean/Director, the department's Vice-President and the President before the Purchasing Office can place an order with the winning vendor. Any/all computer or audio visual equipment must have a Form D completed and signed by the IT Department regardless of the unit cost. (See Form D Instructions (6.3)).

3.2.2 Bid Exceptions

All exceptions to bid, including single sourcing, MUST be formally requested in writing. The exception to bid form can be accessed from the Purchasing Web site.

They must also be:

1. Approved by KSC Purchasing

2. Approved by the USNH Purchasing Director.

All legitimate bid exception requests will be reviewed and evaluated in a timely manner. Please plan on at least three (3) week's processing time after KSC Purchasing has received the request. Some examples of bid exceptions are: Public Service of NH, Nynex, AT & T, City of Keene and Time Warner Cable.

3.2.3 Paper Flow

The following is the order and flow of paperwork for bid guidelines:

1. Bid specifications sent to KSC purchasing.

2. KSC Purchasing processes the bids:  Bid summaries sent to User within 3 days after bid     opening.

    USNH Purchasing processes the bids:  Bid summaries sent to KSC within 3 days after bid     opening.
    KSC purchasing will send copies to user after the summaries are received.

3. User reviews bid summaries.

4. User enters requisition in Banner to the vendor who won the bid.

5. Formal bid exception procedures are required, should the USNH or KSC Purchasing     Offices' recommendations not be accepted by the user.

3.2.4 Contracts

KSC authorizations are between $1.00 and $75,000.00. USNH authorizations are above $75,000.00.

All contracts must be based upon bids prepared, submitted and reviewed by the Purchasing Office. All contracts must be based upon bid documentation. The list of Campus Contracts represent those agreements where favorable pricing is provided through MANDATORY use. The Campus Contract list can be found at:

3.2.5 Timing

The implementation of the bidding contracts for 07/01/FY are as follows:

1. KSC = specification to Purchasing 02/01/YR.

2. USNH = specifications to USNH 02/01/YR.

3. BOT = Board of Trustees - at least 1 month prior to signing.

All contracts must have bid documentation, proper evaluation, and recommendations before they can be prepared for authorized signatures.

Renewals of all contracts must follow the above procedures. Yearly vendor evaluations and all proposed changes (additions or deletions to contracts) must accompany renewal requests.

Specific Commodity Guidelines

The following is a list of specific guidelines for renovations and construction.

3.2.6 Construction

All requests for Campus Construction Projects must have the written approval of the budget Unit Director, the Divisional Vice-President, the Director of Physical Plant and the President before the Purchasing Office can begin processing the paperwork.

3.2.7 Fiscal Year - Purchasing Guidelines

JULY - All FY contracts signed - Standing Orders effective. All 1st semester departmental equipment requirements to Purchasing.

AUGUST - All departmental bulk orders, (i.e. office supplies, small equipment, etc.)
Fall Semester needs to Purchasing.

OCTOBER - 2nd semester construction specifications & next FY construction priorities established.

NOVEMBER - 2nd semester departmental needs to Purchasing. Next FY construction consultant's agreements in process.
All 2nd semester equipment needs to Purchasing.

JANUARY - Mid year budget review.

FEBRUARY - All contract renewal/new - Documentation to Purchasing. All construction specifications for next FY to Purchasing - (02/01/YR).
All next FY furniture/carpet/drapes/renovations to Purchasing - (02/01/YR).

MARCH - Department input to campus-wide services, supplies/follow-up contract requirements.
All current FY equipment specifications to Purchasing - (03/31/YR).

APRIL - Contract renewals in process. Contract bids in process.

MAY - All contracts in final stages of processing. Current FY close-out begins.
USNH equipment cut-off - (05/YR).

JUNE - USNH supply cut-off - (06/YR).
Contracts approved - processed for 07/01/YR start-up. End of current FY close-out.
USNH Trustee's approval of next FY budgets.


3.3.1 Requisition Procedures

The Banner requisition is the document used to request the purchase of goods or services. Instructions for entering the Banner requisition are in the Banner Manual. To eliminate the possibility of error and to ensure that you receive the correct items, requisitions MUST have complete and full information. Clear and concise specifications and information will expedite the ordering, receiving and invoicing processes. Avoid using abbreviations, as this can cause confusion and result in receiving the wrong items. If the description is too long for the commodity line, go to OPTIONS, click on ITEM TEXT, do a NEXT BLOCK and continue the description of the item that is being purchased. Do not use commodity lines with $0 as they can not be processed in Banner.

Once all the description has been entered, save the information and exit back to the commodity section of the requisition. If a department should wish to check the status of a requisition and knows the number, they can go to FOIDOCH, type REQ, tab, type the number, NEXT BLOCK and it will show the status. Departments will also see if a purchase order has been issued, an invoice has been paid and a check has been processed.

3.3.2 Quoted Prices From Supplier

Any time you have a price or verbal quote from a supplier, it must be forwarded to the KSC Purchasing Office.


3.4.1 Purchase Order Procedure

Purchase Orders are assigned to requisitions once the requisition has gone through the approval process. The only copy of a purchase order that is printed is the vendor copy. There are, however, some exceptions when a department will pick up the purchase order in the Purchasing Office. These exceptions are:

  • Athen's Pizza
  • Domino's Pizza
  • Hannaford Bros. Supermarket
  • Jack's True Value
  • Pizza Hut
  • Pizza Pie
  • Shaw's Supermarket

The department that initiates the requisition will be notified when the purchase order is ready and can pick up the vendor copy in the Purchasing Office. If the order is for another area, it is the responsibility of the department expending funds to send a copy to the ordering department.

3.4.2 Emergency Purchases

Under normal circumstances the Purchasing Office processes all documents within a 48 hour turn-around time. If a department has an emergency order, we will issue a confirming number over the phone. When this is done we require that the paperwork be in the Purchasing Office within 48 hours.

Although emergencies sometimes occur through failure of equipment or needs that cannot be anticipated, frequent emergency or confirmation orders may indicate poor planning, coordination and organization. CORRECTIVE MEASURES MUST BE TAKEN BY THE ORDERING DEPARTMENT TO REDUCE FREQUENT OCCURRENCES OF EMERGENCIES.

3.4.3 Authorizations

The Purchsing Office is the only office authorized to commit USNH funds for goods or services using a purchase order or through the issuing of the college PCard. The exception to this is the purchase of real estate, investments and insurance, which require the signatures of the Vice-President, President and Treasurer. Do not order goods or services from any off-campus source without first obtaining an authorized purchase order or using a College approved PCard. Departments prepare the Requisition, and the Purchasing Office will be responsible for preparing, printing, signing the Purchase Order and sending it to the vendor.

Remember:  A requisition is not to be used for ordering goods and services. Only a purchase order or PCard does this.

All purchases for a grant must have the approval of the project director.

All equipment purchases for a department must have the approval of the Dean/Director, Vice-President for that area and the President. A signed equipment authorization form must accompany the request. Any item that has a unit cost of $5,000.00 or more is considered equipment with the exception of software. (See Form D instructions (6.3))


Keene State College has been authorized by the University System of New Hampshire Purchasing Office to issue Standing Purchase Orders.

All Standing Orders have a maximum limit of $5,000.00 unless it is a current KSC contracted Vendor. Standing Orders should be requested if your department plans to use the vendor frequently during the year. An individual item that costs over $1,000.00 or has a life of two (2) or more years cannot be purchased against a Standing Order.

Departments request Standing Orders by typing the word "Standing" in the comments section of the requisition.

Type the purpose of the standing order in the commodity line, i.e., Catering Services for FY 'XX. In Item text, type the name(s) of the person(s) who will have authority to order goods/services against the standing order.


1. Use only one commodity line on a Standing Order. (if more description is needed, go to Options and Item Text and finish the description.) Never have a $0 line in the commodity or FOAPAL line. Banner will not allow a purchase order to be processed if there is $0 in either of these lines.

2. There can be several FOAPAL lines on one Standing Order.


The Purchasing Office issues KSC PCards for supplies and/or travel. The PCard is a tool that can be used in place of purchase orders especially for large volume, low dollar items. Equipment can not be purchased with a PCard but must be processed with a requisition.


The Direct Pay form is for pre-payments of memberships, subscriptions, postage, pre-registrations, reimbursements and other types of payments for which the requisition to Purchase Order process cannot be used.

Also, non-contract/non-blanket order items purchased for $200.00 and under can be bought by using either the Petty Cash or Direct Pay procedures.

Transactions Not Requiring a P.O.


A memo is sent to Purchasing at via e-mail requesting adjustments to previously placed orders with the "Purchase Modification Form" attached. The form can be found in Outlook Public Folders, Banner Finance, User Information, Forms - Revised for Banner. When requesting a change to a purchase order please include, the purchase order number, vendor name, accounting information, the amount of the change and whether it's an increase or decrease.

NOTE: An increase usually does not have to be requested for freight charges.


To close purchase orders follow the same instructions as you would to request changes except attach the "Close Purchase Order Request Form". The form can be found in Outlook Public Folders, Banner Finance, User Information, Forms - Revised for Banner.


All requisitions must have the correct FOAPAL information in order to be processed into Purchase Orders. When funds are not adequate to cover the proposed expenses, a budget transfer must be made.

Funds must be available and transfers approved by the Business Office and/or the Vice-President of Finance and Planning prior to purchase.

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