Vendor Selection

The Purchasing Office encourages an open and professional relationship with each vendor while maintaining total independence and objectivity.

Every effort must be made to use a bid vendor in compliance with applicable statutes and regulations. Bid vendors normally offer a discount off catalog prices and/or free shipping. Therefore, it is to the district’s advantage to consistently use bid vendors.

In some cases, however, a new vendor must be added because the item(s) needed is a:

  • Sole source
  • Consultant, staff development presenter or doctor, psychologist, etc.
  • New workshop, membership or conference registration

Procedures for adding new vendors that are to be paid through the District’s finance system

1. The requesting campus/department must make a request to the Purchasing Office via email with a current W-9 taxpayer identification form to add a new vendor.

2. The Purchasing Office will set up the new vendor in the system and notify the requesting campus/department of the vendor number.

  • The Purchasing Office will make every effort to expedite this process including the use of the fax machine.
  • If such documentation is not received from the vendor, the vendor will not be added and other arrangements for purchase will have to be made.

3. Once the new vendor is added, the requesting campus or department can enter the requisition using the online purchasing system.

4. All new vendor purchases will be approved by the Director of Purchasing and the approval done before a purchase order is issued to the vendor.

Vendor List

The Purchasing Office maintains an Active Contracts list on the district’s web site that includes the major contracts and the names of the vendors that have been awarded a contract through the District. The Purchasing Office updates the Active Contracts list monthly to provide a complete and functional list of contracted vendors with whom the District is to conduct its business.

Awarded Contract Vendors

Vendors that have been awarded a contract for goods or services, through a district specified solicitation process, for either a one-time purchase or the purchase of certain goods and services for a specified contract period.

Vendor Award Criteria

Texas Education Code 44.031 states that in determining contract awards to vendors, the district may consider:

  • The purchase price
  • The reputation of the vendor and of the vendor’s goods and services
  • The quality of the vendor’s goods or services
  • The extent to which the goods or services meet the district’s needs
  • The vendor’s past relationship with the district
  • The impact on the ability of the district to comply with laws and rules relating to historically underutilized businesses
  • The total long-term cost to the district to acquire the vendor’s goods or services
  • Any other relevant factor that a private business entity would consider in selecting a vendor. Factors that a school district may consider under this criteria would include:
    • Vendor response time
    • Compatibility of goods/products purchased with those already in use in the district

It is important to note that under Section 44.035, Texas Education Code, the district must publish in the request for bids, proposals, or qualifications for construction services the criteria that will be used to evaluate the offers and relative weights, if known at the time of the publication, given to the criteria.

Vendor Communication

Communications to vendors may be made directly to the vendor or through the Purchasing Office.

  • Inquiry
  • Placing an order
  • Follow up of order already placed
  • Returns
  • Exchanges
  • Changes

Vendor Gifts and Relations

School district officials and employees cannot accept anything of value from a vendor, such as personal gifts or gratuities, which may be construed to have been given to influence the purchasing process. Although such practices may be legitimate and generally accepted in the private sector, giving and receiving gifts in the public sector may constitute a violation of law.

Vendor Performance Evaluation

Some of the factors to consider in the evaluation of vendor’s performance are:

  • Timeliness of deliveries
  • Service availability
  • Completeness and accuracy of order
  • Quality of products or services received

Vendor Problems

  • Document the problem, noting the date and an accurate description of the problem and forward a copy of documentation to the Purchasing Office.
  • Contact the vendor immediately. Keep a record of all phone calls, including dates and what was discussed.
  • If the problem is not resolved or continues to occur, written notification must be made to the vendor stating the problem, the corrective action required, and that failure by the vendor to correct the problem will be considered a breach of contract and could result in the cancellation of the contract.
  • If significant problems are encountered, consult with the Purchasing Office, who will involve Legal Services or other departments as required.

Any questions related to these procedures can be directed to the RRISD Purchasing Office at ext. 6950.