Bids and Proposals

Bid requirements ensure that expenses for goods and/or services are conducted in an accountable and ethical manner according to principles of sound business practices. Bid requirements provide guidelines for the type and level of solicitation required for the acquisition of goods and/or services for the University. All bids, where required, must be initiated and processed by OPS.

Does my purchase require a bid?

  • If your purchase is less than $50,000, the department can obtain a quote without procurement intervention*
  • If your purchase is more than $50,000 OPS obtains the bids. Departments are to contact OPS to discuss their needs; departments are not to contact suppliers directly at this dollar level.

For more information on the bid process please contact OPS.

*OPS reserves the right to get other bids (as they see fit) when the requisition is received.

Types of Bids/Proposal

Invitation for Bid (IFB)

An IFB applies to purchases that can be translated into exact specifications where the university intends to award a contract to the responsible and responsive supplier having the lowest price. IFBs may either be competitive bids or competitively sealed bids.

IFB General Information

  • Open at specified time and date, publicly read bidder's name, price, items offered, F.O.B points, delivery, etc.
  • No discussion with bidders allowed during the bid process
  • Evaluate against specifications
  • Entire procurement public record

Request for Proposal (RFP)

A RFP applies to purchases where factors, in addition to cost, are of equal or greater importance. A comparative evaluation of the proposals is necessary. The majority of RFPs are competitively sealed bids. As you review your needs, it is helpful to ask specific questions that will help you and the purchasing agent determine which the best method to use is.

RFP General Information

  • Close at specified time and date; read only the names of offers submitting proposals
  • Discussion with bidders permitted with restrictions specified prior to the submittals
  • Evaluate against evaluation criteria and against competing proposals
  • Awarded contract public record

What to consider

  • Are there complex specifications, standards, or installation requirements?
  • Is the product, service or software very sophisticated?
  • What is the life cycle cost of the product?
  • Are there any critical performance requirements?
  • Are there any trade-ins or upgrades planned?
  • Is it desirable or necessary to discuss offers prior to an award?
  • Do you have a specific solution to your needs or are you open to proposer's solutions?
  • Is it necessary to compare quality, technical, contractual and/or price factors?

Bid Submission and Evaluation

Once a decision has been made as to the type of bid, either IFB or RFP, and the opening date determined, the appropriate director and/or staff will forward the requests to qualified suppliers. At the same time, those who are involved will receive notification and instructions pertaining to the events as they lead up to the bid opening, selection and evaluation. On the date scheduled for the opening, all bids received will be reviewed and an award made once all questions and comments have been addressed.

Contact OPS for specific details pertaining to the bid process.