Skip over navigation

Changes to Purchasing and Controller’s Office Policies

Purchasing Policies Effective July 1, 2013

Purchases Under $3,000

A purchase order is not needed unless the purchase is for a good or service that requires review from another department (see table below), or the purchase will require multiple payments. In addition, a purchase order is not needed for allowable transactions using the University’s Pcard. Initiators of these orders must ensure that the transactions they submit for direct payment comply with University policies and procedures for allowable purchases. Initiators must also obtain appropriate review and an authorized signature if a contract is involved.

Purchases Over $3,000

In Workday, an acknowledgement of the order being received is required for purchase orders over $3,000. This “receipt” must be created in Workday to process the invoice against the purchase order.

Purchases Requiring Review

Purchases that require review from designated offices will continue to be processed with a purchase order according to the table below. The review will be handled through the Workday approval process or coordinated by Purchasing if it is not set up as an automated approval.

Goods or Services Approving Department
Animals Animal Care Facility
Brown Logo Suppliers be registered through Licensing Resource Group (
Catering Dining Service (Brown First)
Computer systems and software CIS
Facilities-related work Facilities Management
Hazardous or Radioactive Materials Environmental Health & Safety
Hotel Contracts Insurance & Purchasing Services
Leases/housing rentals Office of the General Counsel
Printing/Copying Graphic Services (Brown First)

Bid Threshold Changes

The chart below details the new thresholds for bids Brown University requires to ensure a supplier is qualified to provide the goods or services purchased:

Bid Requirements for Goods and Services

Bid Threshold

Purchasing Requirement

Under $5000 Bids/quotes recommended, but not required
$5000-$25000 One written quote
$25000 and above Three signed and dated written bids or one quote with a sole source memo



Bid Requirements for Construction/Renovation/Architects/Engineers*

Bid Threshold

Purchasing Requirement**

Up to $25,000 One written quote
$25,001-$100,000 Three signed and dated written bids or one quote with a sole source memo

$100,000 and above

Three formal sealed bids that are signed and dated and submitted to Insurance and Purchasing for tracking the receipt and opening of the bids

*all work related to construction and renovation must be coordinated through Facilities Management

**In addition to the general bid requirements, contracting for these types of services also requires AIA bid documents.

Purchasing & Accounts Payable Policies Effective April 1, 2013

Guest Speaker Agreement Form and Short Form PSA

The threshold for using the Guest Speaker Agreement Form and the Short Form PSA will be increased from $2000 to $5000. A purchase order will still be needed if the PSA requires multiple payments. Please be sure to use the most current versions of the PSA templates, which have been updated on the Controller’s Office website.

Independent Contractor Registration

Brown University will now only require a Rhode Island Independent Contractor Registration when the independent contractor is hired for more than 30 continuous business days and paid more than $5000.

PCard Transaction Limit Increased

The Pcard transaction limit will be increased from $2999 to $4999. This increase will apply only to those Pcards where the transaction limit was $2999.   There is a new Paymentnet web address for managing transactions after July 1, 2013.  Additional information regarding the Paymentnet system upgrade can be found at

Purchasing & Accounts Payable Policies Effective November 1, 2012

The Supplier & Individual Payee Registration process has transitioned to an online form. When there are new payees (a business or an individual) to be set up for payment or, an existing payee that needs to update their information, please refer them to the Purchasing website to complete the registration process. Questions may be directed to Jeanne Hebert at x3-3366 ( or Josh Peloquin ( at x3-5264.