Procurement of Goods and Services (Procedure)

Procurement of Goods and Services (Procedure)

Topic: Financial and Operations
Approval Authority: Vice-President Finance and Administration
Effective Date: March 2021
Last Revised: Revised March 2021

Sets out guidelines and processes for the acquisition of goods and/or services. Issued pursuant to the University Policy on Procurement of Goods and Services.

Section I:  Definitions

Canadian-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement: Is an international free trade agreement that expands opportunities between suppliers in Canada and the European Union.

Canadian Free Trade AgreementIs an agreement between the Canadian provinces whose objective is to reduce and eliminate, to the extent possible, barriers to the free movement of persons, goods, services and investments within Canada and to establish an open, efficient and stable domestic market.

Goods: Physical or tangible items that can be produced, bought and sold.

Services: The delivery or provision of skills, expertise, goods and/or actions.

Non-Consulting Services: A person or entity retained for the provision of assistance to others in order to complete a required task or for the creation, installation, maintenance or repair of goods or other property.

Consulting Services: A person or entity that provides expert or strategic advice and related services for consideration and decision-making.

Services for Resale: A situation where the University provides open enrollment non-credit courses/seminars to the public and customized courses/seminars to third parties external to the community for the purpose of professional development and training. In this capacity, the University acts as an enabler by engaging the services of individuals/corporations with the required expertise, excluding current University employees, to develop and deliver these services. This does not apply to credit courses or programs at the undergraduate and graduate level.

Change Order: A change in scope, specifications, value and/or details of an original purchase order or awarded contract.

Department Head: The employee who has the highest level of decision-making authority for a cost centre in a faculty, department, or other operating unit. Emergency: A circumstance in which an immediate purchase or procurement decision is necessary to prevent a serious delay, which delay reasonably could result in a danger to life, damage to property or suspension of the provision of an essential service.

Vendors of Record: Vendors of goods and services with whom the University has negotiated a contract or agreement with set terms, conditions and/or pricing over a fixed period of time.

Section II:  Application

  1. This Procedure applies to all University acquisitions (goods and services, purchase, lease or rent) expended from University operating, capital, ancillary, research and special purpose funds unless exempt as noted below.
  2. The University endeavours to procure goods and services in the most efficient and cost-effective manner.  Procurement Services (Finance Department) shall also adopt leading practices, including technology, to maximize efforts associated with the procure-to-pay process.

Section III: Guidelines

  1. The University shall award contracts for goods and services on the basis of the terms described in this Procedure as well as the policy objectives set out in the Policy.
  2. All acquisitions must be compliant with provincial and federal laws, trade agreements and all related University Policies, Procedures and Guidelines.
  3. Restrictions relating to Conflict of Interest, Gifts and Gratuities, and Solicitations or Donations – as set out in the University Policy on Procurement of Goods and Services – shall apply to all acquisitions.
  4. Goods and services shall be acquired competitively from qualified vendors who meet specific requirements and provide the maximum benefit for funds expended, subject to ethical, environmental, and legal considerations.
  5. The University shall conduct and maintain business relationships with vendors who demonstrate good financial standing.
  6. The University shall normally give preference to vendors of products and services that are environmentally friendly and acquisitions that targets poverty reduction.
  7. The University shall not purchase apparel, including items with the University logo or trademark, from vendors under investigation or being monitored by an external monitoring agency or third party for violating fair labour practices.
  8. The University may acquire goods and services cooperatively with other not for profit agencies/institutions to benefit from leveraged spending.
  9. The University may give consideration to acquisitions that result from strategic business alliances with other agencies/institutions or corporations, provided the parameters of the University’s procurement policy are met.
  10. University acquisitions of goods and services expended from all funds administered by the University must remain the property of the University, unless otherwise approved by the Vice-President Finance and Administration.
  11. Procurement approvals and supporting documentation shall be retained for review and auditing.
  12. Change Orders shall be restricted to unforeseen circumstances and notwithstanding shall be subject to a review and approval process.

Section IV:  Procurement of Goods and Services not Subject to this Procedure

  1. The following transactions are exempt from the University Policy and Procedure on Procurement of Goods and Services but shall be subject to other governing legislation or other University policies:
    1. Payments to regulatory agencies;
    2. Staff professional development and training;
    3. Travel and hospitality.
  2. The engagement of individuals/companies categorized as Services for Resale is delegated to the unit/department offering this service.

Section V:  Procedure


  1. Where the University has established contracts or agreements with Vendors of Record, University operating units shall purchase goods and/or services against these contracts or from these vendors.
  2. The University will publicly tender purchases of goods and services in excess of $100,000 unless otherwise exempted.
  3. Goods and services shall not be split into lower dollar values to avoid compliance with the University Policy on Procurement of Goods and Services and this Procedure or applicable law. The total purchase value shall include the cost of associated warranties, maintenance and service agreements but shall not include applicable taxes.

Vendors of Record

  1. Where the University has established contracts or agreements with vendors, Procurement Services shall determine the most appropriate order mechanism, regardless of total procurement value.

No Vendors of Record

  1. Where the University has not established contracts or agreements with vendors, the following process shall apply:

Consulting Services

Regardless of total purchase value, all consulting services must be competitively bid.

a. Total Purchase Value under $25,000
Departments shall determine fair market value and use the University’s Procurement Card (PCard) wherever possible.

b. Total Purchase Value between $25,000 and $50,000
Departments shall solicit quotations from three or more vendors using the Vendor Quote Solicitation form; completing a Purchasing Requisition and forwarding with all solicited quotations to Procurement Services for Purchase Order issuance.

c. Total Purchase Value in excess of $50,000
Departments shall contact Procurement Services who will determine the best acquisition method and shall manage the acquisition process.

Non-Competitive Procurement

  1. In specific circumstances, only one vendor may be able or capable of providing goods and/or services. In such a case, a Limited Tendering and Non-Application Approval form is required and must be approved by the Director, Procurement Services, in advance of the Department making any commitment to the vendor/service provider.
  2. In the case of certain professionals for whom the Canadian Free Trade Agreement stipulates its non-application, in addition to an approved Limited Tendering and Non-Application Approval form a Performance Evaluation and Engagement Renewal for Licensed Professionals is also required from the acquiring Department. Performance evaluations and engagement renewals must be completed every five years at a minimum.


  1. In an Emergency, the following authority shall apply:
    • The Dean or Director of the affected area has the authority to acquire goods or  services up to $100,000 without regard to this Procedure; and
    • The Associate or Assistant Vice President of the affected area has the authority to acquire goods and services in excess of $100,000 without regard to this Procedure.

The nature of the emergency and the action taken must be provided in writing to the Director, Procurement Services immediately after the emergency has been addressed by using the Limited Tendering and Non-Application Approval form.

Controlled Goods and/or Hazardous Materials

  1. Acquisitions associated with Controlled Goods, as defined by the Control Goods Program (CGP) of Canada, and Hazardous Materials, as defined by the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act and its Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) Regulation, shall be acquired via Purchase Order and notice to Procurement Services regardless of value.

Section VI:  Payment Processes and Methods

Vendors of Record

  1. Where the University has established contracts or agreements with vendors of record, the payment method will be outlined in the agreement and shall apply regardless of total procurement value.

No Vendors of Record

  1. Where the University has not established contracts or agreements with vendors, the following payment processes shall apply:
    • Petty Cash – invoices less than $100;
    • PCard – invoices under $10,000 (if vendor does not accept PCard, a Payment Requisition with invoice is acceptable); or
    • Purchase Order – purchases in excess of $25,000.

Payment Terms

  1. Standard payment terms of Net 30 days from invoice receipt or satisfactory delivery of goods and/or services, whichever is later, shall be applied unless more favourable payment terms have been negotiated with the vendor by Procurement Services.


  1. The University normally does not allow advance payment or pre-payment.
  2. Where goods or services being acquired are unique and are being produced exclusively for the University, the Comptroller may authorize vendor prepayment if one or more of the following conditions are met:
    • The total prepayment amount requested is less than $10,000;
    • The vendor has provided an irrevocable standby letter of credit;
    • The vendor has provided a credit reference from its banker; and/or
    • The vendor is a government agency that requires advance payment prior to completion of the sale.
Legislative History: Replaces Procedure on Purchasing of Goods and Services (1999). Approved by the Vice-President Finance and Administration: 2007/04/30; Date Effective: 2007/06/25. Revised: July 1, 2012. Revised March 2021.
Date of Next Review: March 2026
Related Policies, Procedures and Guidelines: