Prerequisites to Becoming a Vendor
Before becoming a Rice University vendor, a company or organization must agree to a set of prerequisites in order to allow the Rice/vendor relationship to work as efficiently as possible, administratively. ¬†To that end, vendors must:
1. ¬†Be a registered business entity with a valid Taxpayer Identification Number (NOT a Social Security Number) on a completed (i.e signed) W-9 form and be prepared to submit the completed form upon request from Rice University Office of Procurement.
2. ¬†Have a physical address (no PO boxes, please.)¬†
3. ¬†Accept Rice University Purchase Orders via email (preferred) or facsimile.
4. ¬†Agree to the standard Purchase Order Terms and Conditions (click here to review)
5. ¬†Review and adhere to the Vendor Code of Conduct (found here)
Establishing a Relationship with Rice University
Rice University has identified through competition, access to competitively-bid contracts and other consortium platforms a number of vendors in a variety of commodity areas. ¬†These vendors are referred to on campus as Preferred Vendors and have the endorsement of the Office of Procurement. ¬†Vendors in these commodity areas not designated as Preferred will not be supported or otherwise endorsed and campus customers will be discouraged from using non-preferred vendors. ¬†To the end, vendors not qualified as Preferred Vendors are discouraged from offering goods or services to faculty and staff that conflict with the Preferred Vendor program. ¬†Faculty and staff are advised that it is in their best interests (best value, best terms, etc.) to conduct business with Preferred Vendors. ¬†Vendors not selected as Preferred Vendors are welcome to contact the Office of Procurement using the email link below to introduce themselves and request that Rice University consider their goods or services for opportunities in the future. ¬†
Vendor Selection and Competition
Faculty and staff are responsible for identifying the goods/services required to conduct business daily. ¬†They use the Preferred Vendors where it best fits their needs and seek out additional sources of supply where it makes the most sense to do so when a Preferred Vendor is not available. ¬† When the value of a potential transaction reaches $25,000, the employee is required to seek out competitive bids for the goods or services. ¬†Vendors who receive a bid solicitation from Rice University are encouraged to carefully read the solicitation and respond only if they can meet the minimum requirements listed in the bid solicitation.¬†
No Solicitation Area
Rice University, while an open campus, is a NO SOLICITATION area. ¬†Uninvited vendors are not permitted to "walk that campus" to distribute flyers, business cards, literature, or otherwise "drop in" on any department or unit without first setting up an appointment with a department representative. ¬†Vendors are welcome to use the Rice University directory to identify individuals they wish to speak with but please remember this is only at the choice of the Rice staff or faculty. ¬†Vendors are NOT permitted to distribute unsolicited email traffic to Rice staff or faculty unless those individuals have opted in and directly agreed to receiving such solicitations. ¬†
Vendors who do not respect this request will be escorted off campus and asked not to return. ¬†
Rice University welcomes incentives to conduct business that are intended to benefit the University and its business relationship with a vendor. ¬†However, Rice University does not permit personal incentives of any kind to individuals intended to influence or "purchase" a business relationship. ¬†Gifts and gratuities are not permitted in business relationships and Rice staff and faculty are held to a set of standards that may be higher than other institutions. ¬†An easy rule to remember - no gifts or gratuities, please. ¬†
Due to the administrative burden resulting from the maintenance of a vendor master database, all unsolicited requests to become a registered, preferred, approved or any other classification as a vendor at Rice University without having the University first identifying a need for your goods or services, will be ignored. Repeated unsolicited requests to be registered as a vendor may result in debarment for a period not less than twelve (12) months.