Contract Procurement

The university procures three types of goods/services: 

  • Goods: commercial or specialized, etc.
  • Services: artist agreement, independent contractor, maintenance, etc.
  • Goods / Services (Mixed): hotels, events, catering, equipment with maintenance, etc.

Goods can be purchased the following four ways: 

The preferred method is via SmartCART, then Peoplesoft Financials - Special Request, and then PCard. The least effective method is after-the-fact reimbursements to individuals.

If you use a SmartCART vendor, CWRU has transparency on your spend (since it is categorized and coded properly), sales terms (such as payment, shipping , warranty, liability, etc.) are pre-determined.  If you use a PeopleSoft Financials Purchase Order (i.e. a Special Request), documents such as a Price Quotation(s), Single Source Justification Form, or Supplier Terms must be added as supporting attachments (for future audit).  A PCard transaction is expedient for some simple, low dollar, low-risk commercial transactions, but it customarily does not protect the University like a signed contract.  Reimbursements for after-the-fact transactions are the least effective sourcing methodology.

For Contracts

  • If a supplier accepts CWRU standard terms and conditions, then a Purchase Order is quick.
  • If a supplier does not accept CWRU standard terms or their Quote references non-standard terms (such as Net30 payment terms, non-Ohio jurisdiction, no liability, etc.), then will redact the Suppliers Quote and request signature. If signed, then a PO may be created quickly.
  • If a supplier does not accept CWRU terms or CWRU changes to their Quote, then either a negotiated compromise or Legal Approval must be obtained in order for CWRU signatory authority and the Procurement Buyer to issue a Purchase Order. 


The most common cause of delay in issuing Purchase Orders are:

  • Slow approval of the funding requisition
  • Non-approval (or push back) of funding requisition due to incomplete documentation;
  • Non-approval of requisition due to supplier delay in agreeing to CWRU terms; and
  • Internal review and signatory completion time.

Questions Regarding CWRU Suppliers