Furniture Procurement Policy
In the interest of consistency, quality, and cost containment, Alfred University is implementing this furniture purchase policy and procedure. By formalizing this, we will ensure that we are working with suppliers who will deliver us the best possible quality product that fits the University's image at a price point that provides the best value for the University.
We have several options via New York State Contract, and through our various consortia memberships that offer competitive pricing, terms, and sometimes other incentives. The purchase of all furniture, regardless of cost, will be coordinated by the Procurement Department through one of these companies. We will not purchase any furniture via Amazon, Wal-Mart, or other non-contract supplier.
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In the interest of consistency and fairness, we have selected several task chair options that are University approved for use in our office spaces. There are several mid-back, high-back, and task stool options available. The information for these can be found on the University Approved Task Seating page. If you need to replace a task chair, simply complete a requisition and list which task chair option with the desired fabric selection. Once a signed, complete requisition is received, we can generally get the chairs in within three to four weeks.
A sit-stand desk converter allows the user to work at the best seated height, promotes posture changes throughout the work day, and provides other health benefits. Height adjustable desks may be considered if one or more of the below criteria is met:
- User spends >50% of their day doing computer work
- Multiple users share the same workstation
- Current desk height does not go low or high enough to properly fit user
- As a reasonable accommodation due to a disability, with medical documentation
We have two preferred suppliers for standing desks, Ergotron and VariDesk, and the information for available options can be found at the Standing Desk Converter Options page. Both companies participate in consortia agreements that give us competitive discounts. In addition, these brands offer a standard, five year warranty for their products. In the interest of consistency and fairness, unless there are documented extenuating circumstances approved by an area VP, we will not purchase products other than these.
Once you have authorization and have chosen the option that is right for you, send Procurement a signed, complete requisition, and we will order your sit-stand desk converter. Delivery for these typically runs between one and two weeks.
When your department needs to purchase other furniture, your first step will be to contact the Procurement Office. They will need the following information:
- What furniture you are looking to purchase (i.e. desk, filing cabinet, lounge furniture, dorm room furniture, etc.)
- Where it will be installed (location, floor plan and/or photos of the space if available, etc.)
- What your desired timeline is
- Condition of the furniture that will be removed (Could it be re-deployed?)
- What your department’s budget is for the furniture purchase
Once that they have all of the information required, Procurement will then reach out to several of our qualified suppliers to obtain quotations. For typical office refreshes and simple purchases, we can generally get quotations within one to two weeks.
During the quoting process for larger/more complex projects, suppliers may request a visit to campus to review the space and get a better understanding of the décor and layout. Procurement is happy to facilitate these meetings, but will need the department’s cooperation when suppliers are there to allow for photos and measurements to be taken.
Please note that for large scale purchases and furniture to support capital projects, such as residence hall or other building renovations, with expected furniture purchases of $20,000 or more, a formal Request for Proposal will be required. Procurement will coordinate this effort as well, but this process requires more time to complete.
Once proposals are received, Procurement will meet with the requesting department to go over them. The Facilities team will also be involved as required based on the scope of the project. While we are always cost-conscious and would typically encourage you to go with the best priced solution, if there is a potential solution that better meets your needs and is within your budget, exceptions can be made.
Once all parties come to an agreement on the proposal that is selected, the Department will need to complete a requisition with the proper account to charge and approval signatures as required. Upon receipt of the completed requisition in the Procurement Office, a purchase order will be generated and sent to the chosen supplier.
Typical lead-times for furniture vary anywhere from a couple of weeks to a couple of months depending on the complexity and time of year when the procurement takes place. Procurement will track the order and work with the supplier to coordinate a time to install your new furniture.
Once the date has been set for the furniture to arrive, the Department that requested the furniture will need to write a work order to the Physical Plant to have the existing furniture removed and will want to ensure that the space is clean and ready by the installation date. It will be the Department’s responsibility to find a temporary working location for anyone that is displaced during this activity.
Often the furniture that we are replacing may still have some life left in it, and it could be used elsewhere on campus. Procurement and Facilities will let you know if they believe the furniture could be repurposed/redeployed on campus. If so, photos will be taken and posted on Alfred Today to see if there are immediate needs. If none are determined, we will make every effort to find storage space for the furniture until we can find a new home for it.
Procurement will work with the supplier to ensure that they have directions to the proper location. Either Procurement or Facilities will be there to meet the supplier when they arrive. The Department will need to review the furniture once it is installed and confirm that all of their needs are met and that they are satisfied. If there are any issues or concerns, Procurement will work with the supplier to get them resolved.
During the life of the furniture, if a problem is encountered and the supplier needs to be contacted, the Department should work with Procurement. We will gladly reach out to the supplier on your behalf. This will give us the opportunity to track the suppliers’ performance and ensure that your issues are resolved in a timely manner.