Finance & Research Administration

Research Lab Procurement

All orders go through the Pathology UMS Financial System.  To get access to the Pathology UMS Financial System, please contact John Harris at or 734-763-4622.

Orders under $5,000 will be routed to the Procurement Team.  Orders over $5,000 will be routed through your lab accountant.  For any person that is responsible for placing procurment orders, please review the UM/Pathology Guidelines for ordering.

Hospital Capitol Procurement

All Hospital Capitol  purchases must be sent to Christine Shaneyfelt.  For more information, please contact Christine at or 734-615-3054.


Some Basic Rules


Before you purchase goods or services on behalf of the University, you should be aware of – and follow – some key policies and procedures, summarized here:

Fiscal Accountability

Your are responsible and accountable for all transaction you make or authorize others to make.  Tips for purchasing responsibly:

  • •Plan your purchases
  • •Spend within your budget and spending limit
  • •Spend within your Spending and Signature Authority

The University Regents require that transactions $5,000 and over be competitively bid.  The bid process is handled by Procurement Services Department.  Department personnel do not have authority to sign contracts and agreements.  Procurement Services Negotiates the terms and conditions with suppliers and obtains the legally authorized signatures.


Signing a contract or agreement means you are personally liable for any consequences that may occur.


Conflict of Interest

State of Michigan Conflict of Interest law says that no public servant can be a party, either directly or indirectly, to any contract between the person and the public entity where she or he is an officer or employee (with a few exceptions).  If you find a potential conflict of interest, you must request that the Board of Regents review the case to approve or disapprove the transaction.  Please contact the Pathology Administration Office prior to the transaction taking place, and they can help prepare the paperwork to be reviewed.  The review can be a lengthy process, so plan well ahead.


Audits:  Internal and Federal

Internal Audit Process:  University units are subject to periodic auds by the Office of University Audits.  The audit process examines and evaluates the adequacy and effectiveness of internal controls, which include among other things, safeguarding of assets and compliance with policies, procedures, laws and regulations.

Federal Audit Process:  The Office of Naval Research conducts periodic audits of University purchaes to ensure compliance with University policies and procedures.  These policies and procedures are in place to comply with Federal and State acquisition requirements.


Before you buy, consider using one of the following:

Internal Service Units:  are University of Michigan business units that provide goods and services to other University units and departments. They handle a large part of the buying process for you, such as auditing invoices; setting product specifications and standards; negotiating pricing; warehousing product, and delivery. The department is responsible for identifying the need for the product or service, receiving the goods/services, and maintaining records.  You will find a list of the current Internal Service Units Here


University Contracts: have negotiated University pricing and offer benefits of lower procurement costs, higher supplier performance levels, and increased value-added services.  You will find the list of current University Contracts at


The Competitive Bid Process

The Regents require that transactions $5,000 and over be competitively bid to assure fair and reasonable pricing in an open and competitive environment.  Procurement Services is the delegated authority to complete the competitive bid process.

Procurement Services can assist departments in finding suitable suppliers, and making sure department needs are clearly outlined in the bid document and agreed to by the supplier.

Procurement Services follows these guidelines when soliciting quotations from potential suppliers:

  • Use one of the University's formal documents to request bids from suppliers (the documents include Request for Information (RFI), Request for Quotation (RFQ), and Request for Proposal (RFP)).
  • Ensure each supplier gets the same information.
  • Include in the bid document specific terms and conditions, including Standard General Conditions, Insurance Liability coverage limits, OSEH requirements, GSA pricing, state and local pricing, etc.
  • Obtain quotations from at least three suppliers whenever possible.
  • Accept as valid for consideration only quotations addressed to and sent to Procurement Services by the specified deadline.
  • Review the submitted proposals from suppliers who wish to bid.
  • Present a summary of the bid results to the department.
  • Work with the department to assess each proposal to determine which represents the best value to the University.


The Department’s Role in the Competitive Bid Process

Departments should follow these guidelines to facilitate the competitive bid process:

  • Contact your Procurement Team or buyer early in the purchasing process.
  • Provide the buyer with detailed information about your requirements for the transaction (supporting documents may be faxed to the buyer, sent via email attachment, or via campus mail or hand delivery). Preparation of specifications considered essential to satisfying the department’s need is the responsibility of the department. If requested, Procurement Services will assist in developing such specifications.
  • Allow the buyer sufficient time to research potential suppliers, review and clarify your department’s requirements, and prepare the bid documents.
  • Allow sufficient time (two weeks on average) for the suppliers to respond to a bid request.

Note: Department staff must not share quotation information with any suppliers. Suppliers must contact Procurement Services to obtain bid results.