Procurement Policy

Category:  Finance
Approval:  Vice-Principals' Operations Committee 
Responsibility:  Director Strategic Procurement Services
Date initially approved:  March 5, 2012
Date of last revision:  April, 2017


A complete list of definitions is available in the Procedures document. 

Purpose/Reason for Policy:

Queen’s University strives to procure all goods and services by applying professional and ethical standards.

The purpose of the Procurement Policy is to ensure accountable, efficient, transparent, and ethical practices are used to acquire products and services for Queen’s University whether by purchase, rental, or lease.   

Scope of this Policy: 

This policy applies to the acquisition of products and services, by purchase, rental or lease, except as noted below under exceptions.  
Where procurement regulations from external funding agencies or organizations are different from university policy, the more restrictive regulations will take precedence.


Policy Statement:

General Standards

1. Queen’s University will maintain high legal, ethical, managerial, and professional standards in the management of the resources entrusted to it as a publicly funded institution and will ensure that products and services are acquired in a manner that ensures the University:

  • Obtains value for money by incurring the lowest cost in the fulfillment of specified needs with appropriate levels of quality and service;
  • Uses fair and open process when calling for, receiving and evaluating quotations and tenders from qualified suppliers;
  • Meets its statutory, legal and ethical obligations in the acquisition of products and services by purchase, rental or lease; and

Depending on both the nature and the dollar value of the purchase, different procurement methodologies can be used.  These are outlined in the Procurement Procedures.

2. The University Procurement system may not be used for personal purchases.

3. When procuring goods, services and facilities, Queen's University will incorporate accessibility criteria and features as prescribed in the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, 2005 – O. Reg. 191/11, Queen’s University will incorporate accessibility criteria and features when procuring goods, services and facilities. Where applicable, procurement documents will specify the desired accessibility criteria to be met and provide guidelines for the evaluation of proposals in respect of those criteria. Where it is impractical for Queen's University to incorporate accessibility criteria and features when procuring or acquiring specific goods, service or facilities, the Director of Procurement will provide a written explanation.

4. As required by the Ontario Ministry of Finance, Queen's University has adopted the Ontario Broader Public Sector (BPS) Procurement Directive and the BPS Procurement Code of Ethics. Further information on the BPS Procurement Code of Ethics can be found in Appendix I.

5. Instances of non-compliance with this policy will be reviewed.  Consequences of non-compliance could include disciplinary action and/or suspension/revocation of purchasing privileges.


Exceptions to competitive bidding requirements must not be for the purposes of avoiding competition or to discriminate against or favor specific suppliers.  In rare circumstances, single or sole source purchases can be made.  Details of these circumstances are outlined in the Procurement Procedures.  

Purchasing Thresholds

The total Contract Value / purchase price determines the Procurement Process and the approval authority required (including Board of Trustees approval as applicable).  Refer to the Policy on Approval and Execution of Contracts and Invoices for approval authority requirements.

Total Contract Value / Purchase Price

Procurement Method

All consulting services with a value under $100,000 require an approved purchase requisition and three (3) invitational quotations.

It is prohibited to create separate purchase requisitions to split an order to avoid a competitive bid process.

Up to $9,999

If you cannot purchase your good or service through an acQuire catalogue supplier, use a Queen’s Procurement Card (PCard) to purchase goods or services (excluding consulting services and CFI Orders) up to $10,000.  

$10,000 – $49,999*

Two (2) invitational quotations are mandatory for purchases of goods and or non-consulting (“professional”) services over $10,000 and under $50,000.  Purchases must be processed using a duly authorized Purchase Order.

$50,000 – $99,999*

Three (3) invitational quotations are mandatory for purchases of goods or non-consulting (‘professional’) services over $50,000. Purchases must be processed using a duly authorized Purchase Order.

$100,000 and greater*

Open Competitive (RFP) process is mandatory.  Contact Strategic Procurement Services for assistance.

*please note: multiple quotations are not required for purchases made from a Vendor with an established Vendor of Record (VOR) contract.  VOR contracts and threshold requirements can be found at  If you have additional questions, please contact Strategic Procurement Services.


Strategic Procurement Services is responsible to:

  • Maintain procurement policies, procedures, and systems that support the selection and acquisition of goods and services as economically and efficiently as possible within acceptable standards and legislative requirements;
  • Manage supplier relationships on behalf of the University; and
  • Ensure that written contracts between the University and its suppliers represent the University’s interests adequately and meet all legal requirements.

University faculty and staff are responsible to:

  • Identify the need for a good or service;
  • Obtain the appropriate approval to initiate the procurement process;
  • Ensure adequate funding is available to cover the cost of the acquisition; and
  • Comply with applicable University policies and procedures, including contacting Strategic Procurement Services for the planning and execution of all open competitive procurement projects greater than $100,000.

Contact Officer

Director, Strategic Procurement Director

Date for Next Review

2022 January 01

Related Policies, Procedures and Guidelines

Procurement Procedure

Policies Superseded by This Policy

Procurement Policy, date initially approved March 5, 2012; date of last revision May 28, 2014

Appendix I

Ontario Broader Public Sector Procurement Code of Ethics

Goal: To ensure an ethical, professional and accountable procurement program at Queen's University.

Personal Integrity and Professionalism
All individuals involved in purchasing or other supply chain-related activities must act, and be seen to act, with integrity and professionalism. Honesty, care and due diligence must be integral to all supply chain activities within and between BPS organizations, suppliers and other stakeholders. Respect must be demonstrated for each other and for the environment. Confidential and personal information   must   be safeguarded. Participants must not engage in any activity that may create, or appear to create a conflict of interest, such as accepting gifts or favours, providing preferential treatment, or publicly endorsing suppliers or products.

Accountability & Transparency
Supply chain activities must be open and accountable. In particular, tendering, contracting and purchasing activities must be fair, transparent and conducted with a view to obtaining the best value for public money. All participants must ensure that public sector resources are used in a responsible, efficient and effective manner.

Compliance & Continuous Improvement
All BPS supply chain participants must comply with this Code of Ethics and the laws of Canada and Ontario. Participants should continuously work to improve supply chain policies and procedures, to improve supply chain knowledge and skill levels, and to share leading practices.



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