Back to Top

Purchases Glossary



Banner - A packaged Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software product that includes Student Administration, Human Resources, and Finance functionality. It forms the core of the UI-Integrate system.

Bid - Response to an Invitation for Bids.

Bid Opening - The process through which the contents of bids are revealed for the first time.

Bidder - Any person who submits a bid.

Blanket Order - A contract to order a certain dollar amount of commodities from a specific vendor. It may be used to establish a multiple year agreement or contract. Blanket orders require no FOAPAL and do not encumber funds. Because there is no FOAPAL, invoices are not paid against a blanket order. A regular purchase order is issued against the blanket order to identify the FOAPAL, establish an encumbrance, and make payments.


CARF - Contract Approval/Routing Form.

CFOAPAL - The Banner finance accounting string consisting of chart, fund, organization, account, program, activity, and location. Chart, fund, organization, account, and program are the required segments to record a financial transaction.

Chart (C) - The field used to determine which campus the transaction is being processed for. In the Banner to UFAS crosswalk, Chart = UFAS Campus.

Chart of Accounts - A systematic classification of accounts. This is the nucleus of the Banner finance system.

Commodity - An article of trade, a moveable article of value, something that is bought or sold; any moveable or tangible thing that is produced or used as the subject of barter or sale.

Competition - The process by which two or more vendors vie to secure the business of a purchaser by offering the most favorable terms as to price, quality, and service.

Competitive Bidding - The offer of prices by individuals or firms competing for a contract, privilege, or right to supply specified services or merchandise.

Competitive Negotiation - A method for contracting for goods and services whereby proposals are solicited from qualified suppliers, following submission of which changes in proposals and prices be allowed, and the offer deemed by the awarding authority to be most advantageous in terms of criteria as designated in the Request for Proposal is accepted; a negotiated purchase.

Competitive Quotations - The customary, and usually prescribed, method for making purchases involving dollar amounts less than that for which competitive sealed bidding is required

Confidential Information - Any information which is available to an employee only because of the employee's status as a public employee and is not a matter of public knowledge or available to the public on request or any information such as trade secrets and test data which may be kept confidential in the purchasing process.

Confirming Order - A purchase order issued to a vendor, listing the goods or services and terms of an order placed verbally, or otherwise, in advance of the issuance of the usual purchase document.

Conflict of Interest - A conflict of interest arises when a faculty or staff member is in a position to influence the business, research, or other decisions of the University in relationship to an outside organization in ways that could lead directly or indirectly to financial gain for the faculty or staff member or the family of the faculty or staff member, or give improper advantage to others to the detriment of the University.

Contract - All types of State agreements, regardless of what they may be called, for the procurement, use, or disposal of supplies, services, professional or artistic services, construction, or real property or capital improvement leases, and including master contracts and contracts for financing through use of installment or lease-purchase arrangements.

Contract Administration - The management of all facets of contracts to assure that the contractor's total performance is in accordance with his contractual commitments and that the obligations of the purchaser are fulfilled.


Delivery Schedule - The required or agreed time, or rate, of delivery of goods or services.

Delivery Terms - Conditions in a contract relating to freight charges, place of delivery, time of delivery or method of transportation.


Encumbrance - A contracted obligation of available budget.

Emergency Purchase(s) - A purchase made following a special purchasing procedure in order to obtain goods or services quickly to meet an emergency. These items are defined as necessary to continue the instructional process and/or maintain a safe operational environment, the loss of which would create a situation which would adversely and unduly affect the safety, health or comfort of building, occupants or otherwise cause a loss to the institution.

Evaluation of Bid - The process of examining a bid after opening to determine the bidder's responsibility, responsiveness to requirements and other characteristics of the bid relating to the selection of the winning bid.


Firm Bid - A bid that binds the bidder until a stipulated time of expiration.

Fixed Price Contract - A contract that provides for a price that does not change.

Formal Bid or Offer - A bid that must be forwarded in a sealed envelope and in conformance with a prescribed format to be opened at a specified time.


Gratuitous Offer - an uninvited condition or provision submitted by a bidder or offeror; an unnecessary or unwarranted submission.


HIPAA - If services involve the sharing of Protected Health Information (PHI), the provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act apply. For sevices involving the sharing of PHI, use the Memorandum of Understanding with HIPAA form.


Informal Bid - An unsealed competitive offer conveyed by letter, telephone, telegram, fax or other means.

Invitation for Bids (IFB) - The process by which the University requests information from bidders, including all documents, whether attached or incorporated by reference, used for soliciting bids.

Item - any product, material or service.


Late Bid or Proposal - A bid or proposal which is received at the place designated in the Invitation for Bids after the hour established by the invitation as the time by which all bids or proposals must be received.

Latent Defect - A defect that could not be discovered by ordinary and reasonable inspection.

Lead Time - The period of time from date of ordering to date of delivery that the buyer must reasonably allow the vendor to prepare goods for shipment.


Net Price - Price after all discounts, rebates, etc. have been allowed.

No Bid - A response to an Invitation for Bids stating that the respondent does not wish to submit a bid.

Nonresponsive Bid - A bid that does not conform to the essential requirements of the Invitation for Bids.


Performance Bond - A contract of guaranty executed subsequent to award by a successful bidder to protect against loss due to the bidder's inability to complete the contract as agreed.

Perishable Goods - Goods, which are subject to spoilage within a relatively short time.

Pre-Bid or Pre-Proposal Conference - A meeting held prior to the date of bid or proposal submittal, which disseminates to all bidders or proposers in attendance information to assist them in submitting a bid or proposal.

Preferred Vendor - A supplier with whom the University has established a beneficial agreement that is generally University wide

Prime Vendor - A supplier with whom the University has established a beneficial agreement with a sense of exclusivity of business relationship (main source for commodity or service) serving all three campuses of the University

Professional and Artistic Services - Services provided under contract to a State Agency by a person or business, acting as an independent contractor, qualified by education, experience, and technical ability.

Professional Services - Infrequent, technical, and/or unique functions performed by independent contractors whose occupation is the rendering of such services. The services are considered "professional," and the contract may run to partnerships, firms or corporations as well as individuals.

Proposal - An offer made by one party to another as a basis for negotiations for entering into a contract; the response to a Request for Proposal.

Proposal Evaluation Criteria - Factors, usually weighted, relating to management capability, technical capability, manner of meeting performance requirements, price and other important considerations used to evaluate which proposer in a competitive negotiation has made the most advantageous offer.

Proposer - A person submitting a proposal in response to a Request for Proposal (RFP).

Proprietary Article - An item made and marketed by a person or persons having the exclusive right to manufacturer and sell it.

Proprietary Information - Information or data describing technical processes, mechanisms, or operational factors that a business wishes to keep from general public view in order to maintain competitive capabilities in the market.

Protest - A complaint about an action or decision brought by a bidder or vendor to the appropriate administrative section with the intention of achieving a remedial result

Public Bid Opening - The process of opening and reading bids, conducted at the time and place specified in the Invitation for Bids and/or the advertisement and in the view of anyone who wishes to attend.

Purchase Order - The document used to formalize a purchase transaction with a vendor. A purchase order, when given to a vendor, may contain statements as to the quantity, description and price of the goods or services ordered; agreed terms as to payment, discounts, date of performance, transportation terms and all other agreements pertinent to the purchase and its execution by the vendor. A purchase order constitutes acceptance of a bid.


Quotation - A statement of price, terms of sale, and description of goods or services offered by a vendor to a prospective purchaser.


Regular Purchase Order - Can be used for purchases involving specific multiple-year agreements, large dollar amounts and either single FOAPAL or limited FOAPALS with a consistent distribution (for the entire contract period). Regular purchase orders have a quantity and a unit price and encumber funds

Request for Proposal (RFP) - Process by which a purchasing agency requests information from offerors, including all documents, whether attached or incorporated by reference, used for soliciting proposals.

Responsible Bidder or Offeror - Person who has the capability in all respects to perform fully the contract requirements and the integrity and reliability that will assure good faith performance.

Responsive Bidder - Person who has submitted a bid that conforms or meets in all material respects to the invitation for bids.


Sole Source - Purchases when a requirement is available from only a single supplier or when only one supplier is deemed economically feasible.

Specification - Any description of the physical, functional, or performance characteristics, or of the nature of a supply or service. A specification includes, as appropriate, requirements for inspecting, testing or preparing a supply or service item for delivery.

Standing Purchase Order - Purchase order that require no quantity or unit price. A standing order has a commodity description and expenditure total, but no quantity. Standing orders do encumber funds; standing orders should not be used for fixed assed commodity codes.

State Purchasing Divisionr (SPO) - Person appointed by any of the chief procurement officers to exercise the procurement authority created by the Illinois Procurement Code or by rule.


Terms and Conditions - The rules under which all bids must be submitted and terms that are included in most purchase contracts.


Unsolicited Offer - Any offer other than one submitted in response to a solicitation

Unsuccessful Bidder - An offer whose bid is not accepted for reasons of price, quality, failure to comply with specifications, etc.


Vendor - An actual or potential supplier of goods and/or services.

Last Updated: October 28, 2013

Give us feedback about this page Submit Feedback