Competitive Purchasing Requirements

If a good or service is available from a contracted supplier in Lion Marketplace the competitive requirements below are not applicable.  

Less than $10,000

Although bids are not required for orders with a total cost of less than $10,000, bids may be solicited by the Purchasing Agent, taking into consideration lead time, availability of substitutes, and knowledge of the general marketplace.

Between $10,000 and $24,000

For purchases between $10,000 and $24,999.99, evidence of competition is required, and the Purchasing Agent may solicit written bids from at least three responsive and responsible suppliers.

Equal or greater than $25,000

Purchases equal to or greater than $25,000 require, whenever possible, written bids or proposals from at least three responsive and responsible suppliers solicited by Purchasing.

One bidding tool option for purchases of $25,000 or more is called a reverse auction, in which qualified and pre-selected Penn State suppliers are invited to bid their prices down (versus up in a traditional auction) during a live, real-time virtual event. Reverse auctions are ideal when a department needs a large quantity of standard items. Learn more about reverse auctions and their benefits.

Requests for Proposals

Find components and a checklist for purchases equal to or greater than $25,000. 

Sole Source Justification

Learn requirements for purchases from a specific manufacturer or brand.