Procurement of Goods and Services (Policy)

Procurement of Goods and Services (Policy)

Topic: Financial and Operations
Approval Authority: Board of Governors
Approval Date: 2007/06/25
Effective Date: 2007/06/25
Last Revised: 2007/06/25

Description: Establishes the principles for and the context within which University procurement activity may occur. Has associated procedure.

Policy Statement

  1. York University aspires to high ethical, legal, environmental, managerial and professional standards in the management of the resources entrusted to it.  Within this context, the University’s procurement function shall be performed in an open, fair and transparent manner where goods and services are procured in a competitive environment and where all transactions yield the optimal benefit to the University in the circumstances.
  2. York University shall adopt leading procurement principles and practices, subject to applicable provincial and federal laws and other University policies, procedures and guidelines as arise from time to time.
  3. York University is committed to promoting the values of sustainability and social responsibility. To the degree possible, the University shall incorporate sustainability standards into its procurement practices, and give favorable consideration in its evaluation process to those goods and services which reflect this commitment to sustainability or broader social responsibility.


  1. This policy shall apply to all University acquisitions (purchase, lease or rent) expended from University operating, capital, ancillary, special purpose and research funds unless exempt as noted below. All University employees shall abide by this Policy and its associated procedures and guidelines.
  2. All acquisitions of goods and services shall be pursuant to the Procedures issued under this Policy and guidelines created from time to time by the Director of Procurement Services (Finance Department).
  3. York University shall award contracts for goods or services using the most appropriate procurement practices based on the acquisition methods described in the Procurement Procedures.

Conflict of Interest

  1. York University shall not acquire goods and services from a business or other entity owned by an officer or employee of the University or from anyone who is not at arm's length from any officer or employee, including any corporation or other business entity in which an employee or someone with whom he/she has a non arms length relationship holds a controlling interest (either directly or indirectly).
  2. No University employee shall take any steps to influence the acquisition of goods or services from any corporation or other business entity in which the employee or those with whom he/she has a non arms length relationship hold a controlling interest (either directly or indirectly).
  3. Notwithstanding the foregoing, in rare circumstances,  if and when appropriate and in the best interests of the University, upon full disclosure of a conflict or the perception of a conflict pursuant to any procedures set out therefore, the Vice-President, Finance and Administration may consider whether any such conflict exists and if so whether it may be waived or otherwise resolved, and may thereafter and on such terms as are deemed appropriate, approve a proposed acquisition from a University employee or a person or entity not at arms length from the employee.
  4. York University shall not seek to acquire goods or services from any member of the Board of Governors or any person or business entity in which a governor or person who is not arms length from a governor holds a substantial interest (either directly or indirectly), except insofar as any such dealings are approved in advance pursuant to the Board of Governors policies and procedures on Conflicts of Interest.

Gifts and Gratuities

  1. No University employee or agent shall accept gifts, benefits or favours from individuals, firms or corporations with which the University does or may do business, except as token courtesies or except on behalf of the University and for the University’s benefit. To ensure transparency and fairness and to avoid conflict of interest, gifts, benefits or favours shall be declared to the Department Head who will use his/her judgment in this regard.

Undue Influence

  1. No University employee or agent shall attempt to influence the purchase of goods or services for the University on the basis of the supplier’s previous record of philanthropic giving to the University or on the basis of the supplier’s stated intent to give to the University in the future.

Execution of Procurement

  1. All documentation relating to the procurement of goods and services shall be executed subject to the University’s Signing Authority Policy and related procedures and guidelines.


  1. The Vice-President Finance and Administration or equivalent shall create and promulgate such procedures and guidelines as necessary or desirable to give effect to this Policy.
Legislative History: Replaces Policy on Purchasing of Goods and Services (1999). Approved by the Board of Governors: 2007/06/25;
Related Policies, Procedures and Guidelines: Procurement Code of Ethics