Selecting a Supplier

If you are not purchasing against an existing university purchasing agreement, you must consider the points on this page when selecting a supplier.

Purchases of goods and services from $10K to $250K are subject to the requirements of the UC Small Business First Program, for ALL supplier types, including Independent Contractors and Consultants. Learn how you can ensure compliance with the Small Business First Program.

Conflict of Interest

Per university policy, it is important to avoid any and all conflicts of interest. Employees must disqualify themselves from participating in university decisions in which they have a personal financial interest. This includes purchasing from:

  • spouses/relatives/near-relatives
  • companies for which the purchaser/decision-maker has stock ownership
  • current/former UC Davis employees. See policy.  

A Report of Proposed Transaction Involving Potential Conflict of Interest (PDF) should be completed and electronically attached to the Requisition document in Aggie Enterprise if there is any concern of a possible conflict of interest.

California Public Contract Code (section 10515 through 10524) restricts the way UC does business with consultants, employees, former employees and independent contractors. The code primarily impacts the following three business practices:

Successor Contracts

  • A person or business entity awarded a consulting services agreement by UC shall not bid on or be awarded a successor contract to provide goods or services required, suggested, or otherwise deemed appropriate in the end product of the original consulting services agreement. In other words, consultants who have performed work for the university cannot participate in subsequent projects relating to the consultant's findings. 
  • If a multi-phase project is contemplated, such as a pilot or prototype to be followed by full implementation, any agreement should cover all potential phases of the project with appropriate language reserving final cost figures and the university's discretion to proceed or not with full implementation.

Employee Suppliers

  • The  California Public Code statute prohibits university employees from contracting as individuals (independent contractors) with any university department to provide goods or services as an independent contractor. This statute applies to contracts with ANY UC employees, including, but not limited to, UC Davis employees.
  • In addition, the statute prohibits employees from engaging in any employment, activity or enterprise from which the employee receives compensation, or in which he or she has a financial interest that is sponsored or funded, in whole or in part, through a contract with the university.  UC employees with teaching or research responsibilities are exempted from this provision of the statute but are still subject to university guidelines for employee-suppliers. See UC Davis Policy & Procedure Manual, Section 350-90.

Contractors who are Former UC Employees

The statute contains two restrictions on contracting with former employees:

  • A former university employee cannot enter into a contract for two years from the date of separation to perform work related to contracts that were planned, negotiated, or executed by that employee.
  • A former university employee cannot enter into a contract for one year from the date of separation to perform work on a contract if he or she was employed by that department in a policymaking position in the same general subject area as that contract.

UC Davis Health Considerations

In addition to the conflict of interest situations described above, employees who work for UC Davis Health and health professional schools (e.g., medicine, dentistry, nursing, pharmacy, optometry, veterinary medicine) should be aware of the Health Care Vendor Relations Policy. This policy has additional restrictions on supplier compensation and gifts to departments, and also discusses suppliers entering and/or working in patient care areas.

Ethical Considerations

Choose suppliers for the quality and prices of the goods and services they provide. Avoid gifts or gratuities from suppliers.

Location Related Costs

If considering an international supplier, consider the added costs for customs and import fees. Buying locally is generally more economical and more sustainable.