Single/Sole Source Purchases

Justification for selecting a single or sole source supplier—rather than engaging in the required bidding process for purchases above $25,000—must be documented on the Single/Sole Source Justification form and attached to the requisition. The form must include, at a minimum, a description of the unique features, specific rationale, and documented research that has been conducted to confirm that the requested supplier is the single or only known source. The request must be approved by Procurement before goods or services are acquired, and before a supplier commitment or kick-off is made.

Procurement evaluates all purchase requisitions with a Single/Sole Source Justification form for exception to the competitive solicitation process and makes the final determination as to whether the request is acceptable—including that the appropriate source type is selected.

The requesting department is responsible for ensuring the requirements for single or sole source justification have been met and are defendable against an audit. Procurement does not confirm the requesting department's assertion that a supplier is the single/sole source of the good or service as part of its evaluation, as this takes extensive expertise in the technical distinctions between items, where departments themselves have better background.

If a purchase is approved for single/sole sourcing, Procurement obtains a quotation from the supplier, negotiates the final purchase transaction, provides fair and reasonable price documentation, and ensures that all procurement requirements of the university are met. Additional considerations and requirements may apply to federally funded acquisitions.

Single source purchase requests

A single source purchase request is considered in instances where alternate products and sources exist, but only one truly meets the needs of the requesting department. 

There are many chip manufacturers, but only one specific chip is compatible with the department's MRI machine. External auditors will likely look at MRI specifications and service manuals to validate that no other chip is compatible.

Single source justification example that echoes example provided in text

Sole source purchase requests

A sole source purchase request means that no alternative exists for the item(s) or service(s) required and the identified source can be documented as the only source available.

There is only one supplier in the world for a specific type of plastic foam needed by a department, so a formal bid process would be an unnecssary use of university resources. External auditors will likely look at web scrapes and industry papers/periodicals to confirm that no other manufacturer of the plastic foam existed at the time of the order.

Sole source justification example that echoes example provided in text