Updated Procurement Policies

As we have been working towards our implementation of the Concur travel and expense management tool, we have reviewed many of our policies to ensure we are effectively utilizing our new resources. As such, we have a significant travel policy update to share with you. Effective January 1, 2017, The University of Alabama transitioned to a per diem method for reimbursing UA Employees for meals and incidental expenses for any travel outside of the state of Alabama. Travelers will no longer have to maintain and submit receipts for meals while traveling. This will make travel expense reporting far less time consuming and labor intensive for departments and will also allow departments to gain more certainty and predictability in travel budgeting. For non-UA employees, we will continue to reimburse using an actual expense method not to exceed a set maximum, but the non-UA employee traveler will no longer have to maintain and submit receipts either.

For more information on the change to the per diem method, please see our Per Diem Guide on the Accounts Payable website.

We will also hold two town hall style information sessions in January in order to communicate our policy updates and answer any questions you may have. All are welcome to attend but registration is preferred. Please sign up and submit any questions that you’d like to have covered during the meeting. We hope to see you there!

We’re Moving!

Procurement Services will be moving to the Partlow campus on January 17th. We will do everything that we can to ensure that our services to campus are not interrupted during the move, but we do appreciate your patience as we get settled in. We will be located at 1500 Flint River Drive across from the Business Activities building, and there will be plenty of faculty/staff parking available. Please see the map below.

A few details:

  • Since our address might not be recognized by GPS, please see our driving directions.
  • Departments moving to the new building include:  Accounts Payable, Contract Management, P-Card Services, Procurement Services, Procurement Training, and Purchasing.
  • Starting in February, all regularly scheduled Procurement Training sessions will be held in the new building.
  • You may continue to contact our staff using the same phone numbers and email addresses.
  • We will continue to use the same box numbers for campus mail, and our curbside dropbox will move with us as well.

new-building

Thank You!

we wanted to take a moment to acknowledge you, our campus partners, and express our gratitude for all that you do to make The University of Alabama a great place to work and learn. It is truly a pleasure to work with you all.

We have prepared a short video that highlights the top 10 reasons why we love working with you. Please feel free to share it with others in your department.

Top 10 Reasons We Love Working with You!

Trouble viewing the video? Try the YouTube version.

Introducing Concur

The Office of Procurement Services has partnered with Concur Technologies to provide UA faculty and staff with an online travel and expense management solution. Concur will be used to electronically process P-Card transactions, travel reimbursements, and miscellaneous reimbursements and payments. With faculty, staff, and students traveling and completing transactions on behalf of the University almost every single day, the Concur tools will help all areas of campus to eliminate paper, simplify processes, and reduce reimbursement times. Over the next few months, we will be providing more detailed information regarding the Concur implementation and rollout schedule.

2016 Fiscal Year End

September means that the students are back on campus, football season is on the way, and that the end of the fiscal year is coming soon. Over the next month, there are several deadlines to be aware of. Please review the reminders below.

Year End Deadlines

Please remember to plan your purchases early this month so you won’t miss the boat at the end of the month. Information and due dates for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2016, are available on the Financial Accounting & Reporting website.

  • Previous Month Payments: Please submit invoices and/or reimbursements to Accounts Payable ASAP for invoices or trips dated prior to August 1.
  • Travel Vouchers and MDVs: Travel and Miscellaneous Disbursement Vouchers should be completed and delivered to Accounts Payable as soon as possiblefor prompt payment and accurate recording. As year-end approaches, please submit your vouchers along with the appropriate documentation to Accounts Payable without delay to ensure timely processing.
  • Receiving: Receiving should be promply completed when items are received on or prior to September 30.
  • Requisitions: Fiscal year 2016 orders must be created and approved in buyBAMA by close of business on Monday, September 26 in order for the encumbrance to be brought forward to FY2017. All purchase orders created afterSeptember 30 must be charged to FY2017.All purchase orders outstanding in fiscal year 2016 will be carried forward to your 2017 budget. A budget increase equal to these commitments will be processed to your 2017 budget to the degree that funds are available for funds 11000-11012. Departments will be responsible for budgeting encumbrances in all other funds, if appropriate.Encumbrances will roll forward October 20.

    Please review any outstanding requisitions and purchase orders via Banner screen FGIOENC or via buyBama, and direct questions regarding encumbrances for requisitions and purchase orders to Purchasing at 348-5230 or the appropriate buyer.

  • Bids: Items for bid must be requested by close of business on Wednesday, September 7 to allow time for bid advertising requirements, award and issuance of a purchase order for funds to be encumbered in FY2016.

New Director of Purchasing

Jason JeffreysWe are pleased to announce that Jason Jeffreys has been named as the new Director of Purchasing. Jason is a UA graduate who comes to us with a very diverse professional background in procurement, project management, business development and entrepreneurship. Most recently, he has worked in UA Contract Administration for approximately a year and a half as a Contract Administrator responsible for procuring construction services and managing contract compliance aspects of projects.

Please help us congratulate Jason on his new position and welcome him to the Purchasing Department.

Procurement is Getting Social

Procurement Services has entered the world of social media, and we would like to invite you to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Use the links or search for us under “UAProcurement”.

We will use these platforms to send out answers to common questions and announce upcoming training opportunities. We’ve also started a new #VirtualTourFriday feature where each week we give you a glimpse into one of our current construction or remodeling projects. We hope that you will take advantage of these platforms to find answers to your questions and stay up-to-date on procurement topics.

Vendor Disclosure Statement

While we have collected information from vendors about their connections to UA personnel or their families in the past, the System Office has recently issued new guidance on obtaining conflict of interest disclosure statements from vendors prior to issuing payment. In order to meet the new requirements, Procurement Services has developed an updated vendor disclosure statement form, and Accounts Payable, Purchasing, Contract Management, and Contract Administration are all working together to incorporate it into our processes. We will utilize DocuSign to provide contractors with a link where they may fill out and sign the form, but we may need your help from time to time to make sure that the vendors are aware that they will have to disclose their relationships to UA employees, Trustees, and Officials or their families and to ensure that they complete the form.

Please visit our updated Vendor Disclosure Statement webpage for more information.

Disaster Prepared

Over the last month, the Procurement Services management team has been updating and testing plans to ensure that the services we provide to campus would not be significantly interrupted if a natural disaster were to occur. We know that you depend on us to help you keep your department supplied with everyday necessities, and we want to be there for you when you need us. We have prioritized the introduction of more electronic processes, making it much easier for us to be responsive to your needs even if we couldn’t work from our normal offices. However, until we can completely transition to paperless processes, we need your help to make sure that paper documentation is backed up properly. Departments should always retain copies (paper or electronic) of all P-Card packets for a minimum of 2 years. Copies of Travel Vouchers or MDVs should be kept until the payment has been made.

Hopefully we won’t ever have to enact our disaster recovery plans, but if we do, you can rest assured that we will do all that we can to meet your needs and live up to your expectations.

Travel and Expense Module Update

As many of you know, Procurement Services has long been working on a project to implement the Banner Travel and Expense Module (TEM) to provide an avenue for electronic processing of Travel Vouchers, MDV reimbursements/payments, and P-Card reconciliations. We recently learned that Banner has discontinued support of the current TEM product and has partnered with a third-party vendor. As such, our current progress on the TEM project has come to a halt while we evaluate our options and determine the best path forward for The University of Alabama. We appreciate your partnership in preparing for the TEM rollout and wanted you to be among the first to know of this development. We will continue to provide you with more details on our path forward in the next few weeks.