IT Purchases: who, what and how.
This page explains the purchasing process for all IT purchases in departments, programs and centers supported by LS IT.
Who buys what?
- LSIT handles all IT purchasing for equipment, software, IT services, data sets, and IT peripherals.
- Departmental administrative staff are responsible for purchasing IT supplies, including printer paper, toner/ink (except for printers on Ray Morgan or Xerox contracts), and blank media.
How do I start the IT purchasing process?
For commonly-purchased items, we provide recommendations and prices on the LS IT website:
When submitting a purchasing ticket, please be sure to provide the information we'll need to assist you:
- If you would like a recommendation on what to purchase, make sure to include any special requirements and your price range.
- If you already know what you want to purchase, please include the make and model and links to any relevant websites.
- If your order is urgent, please let us know—in fact, we highly recommend that you call our service desk (530-752-8800) to initiate urgent orders.
What happens after I submit a purchasing ticket?
- Once we receive your purchase request ticket, we'll follow up with vendor quotes/pricing and other information, as needed.
- For Software and IT services, we are required by UC policy to complete a Vendor Risk Assessment. If a VRA is needed, we will ask you to fill out a very short survey (5 minutes or less) to describe your use case and the data you will be working with.
- Once you've accepted the specifications and pricing, we will initiate an order in the Online Pre-Purchasing (OPP) system.
- OPP will route the order first to you (or your PI/supervisor) for approval (you or your PI/supervisor will receive an email with approval instructions), then to your account manager.
- Once all the OPP approvals have been completed, we will place the order with the vendor.
- All information about the order, including current status, shipping information, invoices, and packing slips will be scanned into OPP. You can log into OPP at any time to check on the status of your order.
- Once we receive the item(s) from your request, we will process them, then deliver it to you. Please note that for computers, network printers, and other items that require configuration before being used, it make take a few days from the time the item is received until it is prepared for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does a purchase usually take?
For order requests received before 4PM on business days, we initiate the process on the same day. If all approvals are received by 4PM on business days, we place the order with the vendor on the same day.
For in-stock items, most university-contracted vendors provide free two-day shipping. Computers from Apple and Dell have unpredictable lead times, but the variation is typically 1-3 weeks. For items from non-contracted vendors, shipping methods and times vary widely.
LS IT handles purchasing for all items or services that store or process data, connect to a computer, or connect to a network, including:
- IT equipment, such as computers, tablets, printers, servers, cell phones, specialized research equipment like eye trackers, etc.
- IT peripherals, such as monitors, keyboards, mice, external drives and flash drives, adapters, cables, webcams, headphones, computer components, etc.
- Software, cloud services, and commercial data
- Services, including repairs for IT equipment/peripherals, professional services that involve creating/processing/moving data, etc.
Departments handle anything not noted above, including:
- IT supplies, such as toner (except for devices on the Ray Morgan or Xerox contracts), printer paper, blank media like CDs (NOT including external drives/flash drives), cases/bags/carriers for IT equipment, office furniture like keyboard trays/printer stands/laptop stands/desks, etc.
- Cell phone service (but not the phone itself) purchased through IET-Communications Resources
In some cases, while LS IT handles the initial intake for a purchase, security evaluation, and any needed Supply Chain security sign-off forms, we may ask that the department handle the actual mechanics of the purchase. Specifically, we are doing this for some software/service subscriptions where there’s no good way for someone other than the primary user to pay (e.g., the user would pay out of pocket and the department would be handling a periodic reimbursement) or where there is some ongoing contract work that needs to be managed (e.g., a faculty member hiring a contractor to write software or do data processing).