Penn State Procurement Services has initiatives in place that aim to broaden its pool of suppliers and promote doing business with minority-owned (MBE) and women-owned (WBE) businesses, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) - owned businesses. To qualify as an MBE or WBE, a business must be at least 51 percent owned, controlled, and/or actively managed by one or more minorities or women. Publicly owned businesses must have at least 51 percent of its stock owned by one or more minorities or women.
Fill out a supplier application form to become a registered supplier with Penn State.
Working with Penn State
Once you've registered and identified your business as an MBE or WBE, you will need to get on the Penn State purchasing agent's bidders list. This way, the purchasing agent can solicit your name when opportunities become available in your commodity area. We also encourage that you speak directly to end users about the product and/or services you offer. This will allow the end users to potentially suggest your firm on the order requisition coming through to the Purchasing Department. An official purchase order containing an authorized number is the accepted business transaction for goods and services, with the exception of transactions made with a Penn State Purchasing Card. Bids are not required for orders with a total cost of less than $10,000. However, the purchasing agent, taking into consideration lead-time, availability of substitutes, and knowledge of the general marketplace, may solicit bids. For purchases between $10,000 and $25,000, evidence of competition is required. The purchasing agent may solicit written, faxed, or Internet pricing quotes from a minimum of three suppliers. Purchases over $25,000, if not on contract or a sole-source purchase, require formal written bids by the Purchasing Department from a minimum of three responsive suppliers. Requests for bids allow seven to 14 days for suppliers to respond typically. Requests for proposals generally allow 30 days for supplier response.
The Bidding Process
An open, competitive bidding process conducted by Purchasing Services is the key to the Penn State purchasing system. In general, to be awarded a purchase order for goods or services from Penn State, a supplier must be the lowest responsive, responsible bidder in the bid solicitation process who meets the minimum specifications as required. When choosing a supplier, Penn State may consider factors other than price, including the types of goods and services that can be supplied, the particular needs of the requesting department, the date of delivery, and the reliability, quality, and experience of the supplier. When a supplier has been selected to receive a request for bid/proposal, the supplier is responsible for completing the request form and returning it to Purchasing Services. Bids must be received by Purchasing Services by the specified due date and time to be considered.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Contracts
Penn State is authorized to use all Commonwealth of Pennsylvania contracts when they are advantageous to the University. Suppliers should supply the appropriate University purchasing agent with current contract information. Penn State requires a huge variety of supplies and services at all levels of its operation. There are opportunities at all of the University's 24 locations across the Commonwealth. We look forward to conducting more business with the talented and hard working MBE and WBE businesses in and around Pennsylvania.
For more information, please contact DiverseSuppliers@psu.edu.