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Information Technology Purchasing Policy

Georgia Southern University
Information Technology Purchasing Policy
Technology Purchases and Acquisitions

Purchases of technology for campus use must be coordinated through Materials Management and Information Technology Services.

Applicability

This policy applies to all computing- and network-related resources of the University, whether located on the campus or in remote locations or facilities. These resources include but are not necessarily limited to:

  • desktops, laptops and servers
  • software running on these devices
  • peripheral equipment (e.g. printers, scanners, etc.)
  • cabling or connectivity-related devices
  • audio-visual equipment such as projectors

Please note: ‘Technology’ typically implies any device containing or operated by a computer chip.

Standardization of Technology

At any point in time, the University gains benefits from maintaining within reason the practice of purchasing equipment according to agreed-upon standards. Agreement by a purchaser to accept standard configurations achieves the benefits to the campus of better pricing for components and supplies, and less administrative overhead; and to the purchaser of better pricing, faster processing of requests, better support, less costly maintenance, and a better ability to train on and provide assistance with technologies purchased.

Purchase of non-standard technology components is not prohibited. However, such purchases should be minimized as much as reasonably possible. The purchase of non-standard technology components must be justified by the existence of special circumstances that require it. Also, the purchaser of a non-standard technology component must document the source of support for the component before purchase will be approved.

Vendor Reviews

It is the policy of Georgia Southern University to periodically review performance by suppliers of technology for the benefit of the campus in terms of cost, service and reliability. Performance reviews will be conducted every six (6) months by representatives of Materials Management, Information Technology Services and technology representatives from other campus organizations. Vendor performance will be evaluated in several categories, including but not limited to: cost; reliability; service times and performance; and acquisition time.

Forms and Procedures

All forms and procedures associated with this policy may be found at the following link: Purchasing Technology Procedures.

Workstation and Laptop Replacement Plan

Realizing that technology is an integral part of a University of academic distinction, The President’s Cabinet has approved the following replacement plan for Georgia Southern University computers to ensure that computers on campus are kept up-to-date:

  • Computer Labs funded by Student Technology Fees will be eligible to be refreshed every four years.
  • Faculty/Staff laptops and tablets will be eligible to be refreshed every four years.
  • Faculty/Staff workstations will be will eligible to be replaced every five years, or:
    • If the workstation is out of warranty and repair is not feasible; or
    • If there is adequate justification that the workstation does not met the requirements for the user’s job.
SOFTWARE

Standard Office Productivity/Instructional Software

Office productivity/instructional software includes such packages as Microsoft Word and Excel, SAS, Crystal Reports, etc. When a software package is defined as a standard for the campus, that definition is typically supported in terms of:

  1. provision of a site license or volume purchase agreement for the package;
  2. call center and/or help center support for the package; and
  3. training on use of the package.

Standards for office productivity/instructional software are defined for the campus and re-evaluated periodically. When a package is approved as a campus standard it is considered to be pre-approved for purchase without additional consideration by IT Services or Materials Management. Thus, requests for standard office productivity/instructional software will normally be processed immediately upon receipt.

Requests for standard software may be made using the Software Request Form (SRF). Current standards for these types of software packages and a copy of the SRF are available at Order Software.

Non-Standard Office Productivity/Instructional Software

If a package is not listed as a current standard at the URL shown above, it is considered to be non-standard. Requests for non-standard software must be made using the Software Request Form (SRF), and must be approved by the Dean or department head and IT Services.

Non-standard software will not be supported by IT Services. Before purchasing non-standard software, the purchaser must describe the source of support for the software being purchased. This information will be provided on the form.

Application Software

Application software is software that fulfills a specific business purpose. Examples of application software are: Banner, Peoplesoft, VisaManager, and Resource25 (events calendar and scheduling software). When an application software package is considered for purchase, it must be evaluated in terms of its fit with the campus environment (operating hardware requirements, database management system, operating system requirements, Web environment requirements), and the support requirements associated with the package.

Application software will be evaluated based on the nature of the application, its usage base, and its criticality to the mission of the department or the University as a whole. If application software is to be supported by central IT, the package must fit within the standard operating environment. Attachment 1 is a matrix that describes the levels at which application software is classified. For each classification, a standard operating environment is defined. In addition, the document describes how support will be provided for each level of software.

With this in mind, all application software packages must be evaluated and approved by IT Services before purchase. In some cases, Materials Management will be required to engage in a bid process. Before an application software package is purchased, agreement must be reached between the purchaser and IT Services in regard to the operating environment of and support for the application. All requests for application software must be initiated using the Software Request Form (SRF).

HARDWARE

Hardware Standards

Standards have been defined for workstation hardware and peripherals, audio-visual equipment and servers. These standards are re-evaluated periodically based on common needs, vendor offerings, cost, reliability, their ability to be supported, and the quality and timeliness of vendor support. When an item is approved as a campus standard it is considered to be pre-approved for purchase without additional consideration by IT Services or Materials Management. Thus, requests for standard hardware will normally be processed immediately upon receipt.

Requests for standard hardware may be made using the Hardware Request Form (HRF). Current standard hardware configurations, links to vendor Websites, and a copy of the HRF are available at Order Hardware.

Non-Standard Hardware

If a hardware component is not listed as a current standard at the URL shown above, it is considered to be non-standard. Requests for non-standard hardware must be made using the
Hardware Request Form (HRF), and must be approved by the Dean or department head and IT Services.

Non-standard hardware will not be supported by IT Services. Before purchasing non-standard hardware, the purchaser must describe the source of support for the hardware being purchased. This information will be provided on the form requesting purchase of the hardware.

Last updated: 10/28/2013