Policy Notes: Purchases Requiring a Bilateral Contract

There are special considerations, government regulations and University policies that pertain to hiring services providers, contractors, and consultants.

On this page:

When Is a Contract Issued?

A Stanford Contract must be issued by the Contracts Group for all construction-related projects (including architectural services) of any dollar amount, and for other projects performed by contractors, consultants and service providers that meet certain conditions.

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Get Your Contract Processed in 21 Days

When a contract is required, the Procurement Contracts Team ensures a turnaround time of no more than 21 business days––and often less––if the information outlined below is included in the requisition.

Note:  Occasionally, certain contracts may require review by other departments (e.g., the Office of General Counsel, Global Business Services, or Office of Technology Licensing) or pose unique circumstances, which may affect processing time.

Click each block to see more details: (View as PDF)
Contract Process Flow for Suppliers - click each block to navigate through details for each step click to view details for Scope of Work click to view details for Certificate of Insurance click to view details for Contact Information click to view details for Bid Comparison/Sole Source Justification click to view details for Data Security Verification click to view details for Bonding or Waiver

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How Are Stanford Contracts Processed?

Stanford Contracts are executed between the Contracts Group and the supplier, and in general, follow this process:

For New Requisitions Less Than $25,000

Click each block to navigate through details for each step:
Contract Process Flow for requisition less than 25,000 - click each block to navigate through details for each step

For New Requisitions $25,000 and Greater

Click each block to navigate through details for each step:
Contract Process Flow for requisition 25,000 and greater - click each block to navigate through details for each step

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Hiring Service Providers, Contractors and Consultants

University policy requires that acquisition of products or services be by competition between potential suppliers, to the maximum practical extent subject to the requirements of quality, price and performance. When a department needs to use a single or sole source in the acquisition of a product or service with a cost of $5,000 or more, a written source justification is required. ("Single source" means other sources are available but the requisitioner chooses to use only one particular source. "Sole source" means that no other sources, other than the one recommended are available.) The source justification should include the following information:

  • A specific description of the supplies or services required to meet needs, and a statement of fact that shows the unique qualifications of the services or items selected to satisfy those needs.
  • A description of efforts made to locate other sources of supply.
  • Documentation that the anticipated cost is fair and reasonable. This can be a comparison of prices when the item is generally available or, when the item is to be specially fabricated, an analysis of the manufacturer's cost.

For assistance with the preparation of a Request for Proposal "RFP"* packet, or an Invitation for Bid "IFB"** packet, please contact your assigned Contract Specialist in the Contracts Group.

For Bid / Proposal solicitations managed by the department, without assistance from the Contracts Department, please know that there are special considerations, government regulations and University policies that pertain to hiring contractors and consultants. Please provide all bidders / proposers the following contract documents, as part of your Request for Proposal "RFP"* or Invitation for Bid "IFB"**, as applicable.

* A Request for Proposal (RFP) is needed when the vendor selection will be based on important factors in addition to cost.
** An Invitation for Bid (IFB) is needed when the vendor selection will be based solely on the lowest Bid received.

Additional Information

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bullet arrow Minimum Insurance Requirements (Applied to: All)

bullet arrow Living Wage and Benefit Guidelines (Applied to: All)

bullet arrow Affirmative Action Special Conditions (Applied to: All)

bullet arrow IRS Qualification as Independent Contractor or Consultant (Applied to: Individuals / Sole owners)

bullet arrow EH&S Notifications for Consultants (Applied to: Consultants)

bullet arrow Environmental Health & Safety Document (Long Form) (Applied to: All construction-related work and services involving pollutants, hazardous materials, contaminants, chemicals, toxins, and all other "harmful-to-the-environment" materials)

bullet arrow California State Requirements for Contractors (For Construction Trades) (Applied to: Construction / Janitorial / Security)

bullet arrow Tree and Shrub Protection (Applied to: Construction / Trade work)

bullet arrow General Conditions for Construction Projects (Applied to: Construction / Trade work)

bullet arrow Storm Water Special Conditions (Applied to: Construction / Trade work / Landscape work / when solvents or detergents used)

bullet arrow Stanford Truck Routes Map (Applied to: All services)

bullet arrow EH&S Notifications for Non-Construction Contractors (Applied to: Non-construction services)

bullet arrow Payment & Performance Bonds (Applied to: As required; see below)

bullet arrow LBRE Facilities Project Initiation Policy (Form 1) (Applied to: Facilities and infrastructure projects)

bullet arrow Facility Design Guidelines (FDG) (Applied to: Architectural and landscape design services)

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