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Solicitation Process

The solicitation process is implemented, when appropriate, by the Purchasing Department. The solicitation process is used in order to obtain the greatest benefit to the University when acquiring goods and services. 

When the solicitation process is necessary, at least three suppliers must be contacted, providing that adequate sources exist. To enhance small business solicitation opportunities, the University will seek quotes/bids from vendors having a significant Idaho economic presence. Departments are welcome to indicate in Document Text of their Requisition a suggested supplier. The Purchasing Department may include additional suppliers.

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Prior to the initiation of the solicitation process, the requesting department will submit detailed specifications for the desired product or service to the Purchasing Department.  Please remember that the specifications must be complete and accurate. Total cost includes shipping, installation, assembly, etc.

Solicitation Dollar Amount Guidelines

  • Purchases from $1-$9,999
    • Quotes are not required, but prudent and competitive business practices are encouraged.
  • Purchases from $10,000-$249,999
    • The Purchasing Department will send out solicitation documents. Departments may submit written quotes with the requisition.
  • Purchases $250,000 and over
    • The Purchasing Department is required to send out formal ITB/RFP documents. Bids will be publicly announced on the ISU Purchasing website under Vendor Solicitation Opportunities.

Solicitation Timelines

  • Purchases from $1-$9,999 may be handled immediately.  
  • Purchases from $10,000-$249,999 may take approximately 2-6 weeks.
  • Purchases $250,000 and over may take approximately 2-5 months.

These times are estimates. Actual time may be more or less depending on the completeness of the specifications and complexity of the purchase.