General Terms

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Acknowledgement Form used by a vendor to advice a purchaser that an order has been received, usually implying the order has been accepted.
Acquisition Process of obtaining supplies, services, or construction through purchase, lease, or grants.
Acquittance Written receipt in full, or discharge from all claims.
Ad Valorem Applied to (according to value) a customs duty charged upon the value only of goods that are dutiable, irrespective of quality, weight, or other considerations, usually ascertained from the invoice.
Addendum An addition or supplement to a document. See Change Order
Affidavit Written statement sworn to before a notary.
ANSI American National Standards Institute- An independent organization that develops and maintains standards for industry, engineering and safety design.
Artisan's Lien Lien of a mechanic or other skilled worker in connection with something on which he has bestowed labor or materials, giving him/her a right to retain possession of it until paid.
As Is Term indicating that goods offered for sale are without warranty or guarantee. The purchaser has no recourse on the vendor for the quality or condition of the goods.
Authorized Permission to a supplier authorizing the production or delivery on a deviation restricted basis of items not in conformance with the applicable drawings or specifications.
Award Presentation, after careful consideration, of a purchase agreement or contract to the selected bidder or offeror.



Back Order Portion of an order which the vendor cannot deliver at the scheduled time and which he has reentered for a shipment at a later date or when available.
BAFO Best and Final Offer- In competitive negotiation, the final proposal submitted after negotiation is completed that contains the vendor's most favorable terms for price and services or products to be delivered.
Barter Act of exchanging one kind of goods for another, as distinct from trading by the use of money.
Bid An offer, as a price, whether for payment or acceptance. A quotation specifically given to a prospective purchaser upon his/her request, usually in competition with other vendors. An offer, by a buyer, to a vendor, as at an auction.
Bid Bond Insurance agreement, accompanied by a monetary commitment by which a 3rd party accepts liability and guarantees that the bidder will not withdraw the bid, the bidder will furnish bonds as required.
Bid Deposit Sum of money or a check deposited with and as instructed by the prospective purchaser to guarantee the bidder will, if selected, accept the contract in accordance with the terms of the bid. If bidder does not accept the contract, the deposit if forfeited.
Bid Evaluation Analysis of the provisions of a bid or offer, usually for the purpose of comparing the strengths and weaknesses of the bids received based on the requirements and criteria set forth in the invitation for bids.
Bid Opening Formal process through which bids are opened and the contents revealed for the first time to the jurisdiction, other bidders, and, usually, to the public.
Bid Process Occurs when potential vendors compete for a contract to produce a good or provide a service.
Bidder One who submits a response to an invitation for bid.
Bill Document requesting full payment of goods and/or services supplied; See Invoice
Bill of Entry Detailed statement by the importer of the nature and value of goods entered at the customhouse and used for statistical purposes.
Bill of Exchange Unconditional order in writing addressed by on person to another, signed by the person giving it, requiring the person to whom it is addressed to pay on demand or at a fixed or determinable future time a certain sum in money to order or to bearer; in commercial usage, often synonymous with draft or acceptance. The term is by custom, generally confined to an order to pay money arising out of a foreign transaction, "draft" being the term relating to a domestic transaction.
Bill of Lading Carrier's contract and receipt for goods which it agrees to transport from one place to another and to deliver to a designated person or assigns for compensation and upon such conditions as are stated herein.
Bill of Sale Written agreement under the terms of which the title or interest in a property is transferred by the seller(s) to the buyer or other designated person(s).
Billed Weight Weight on the basis of which charges are assessed by the carrier and shows in freight bill and waybill.
Blanker Order A contract under which a vendor agrees to provide goods or services to a purchaser on a demand basis; generally establishing prices, terms, conditions and the period covered. Used to track quantities and dollar amounts without encumbering monies.
Buyer A purchaser working in a procurement office who is appointed to purchase a specific range of goods or services on a routine basis, usually under the supervision of a purchasing manager.



Caliper Thickness of a sheet of board, expressed in thousandths of an inch.
Cash with Order (Cash in Advance) Payment accompanies order when given to seller.
Caveat Venditor "Let the seller beware"- Seller, in some situations, is liable to the buyer if the goods delivered are different in kind, quality, use, and purpose from those described in the contract of sale.
Certificate of Compliance Supplier's certification to the effect that the supplier or services in question meet certain specified requirements.
Certificate of Damage Document issued by dock companies in regard to merchandise received or unloaded in a damaged condition.
Certificate of Origin Certified document as to the origin of goods.
Certificate of Weight Authoritative statement of the weight of a shipment.
Change Order An addendum to amend a purchase transaction previously formalized by a Purchase Order.
Check Bill of exchange or draft drawn on a bank and payable on demand.
Check Request See Request for Payment
COD Cash on Delivery- Payment due when goods are delivered.
Collateral Security placed with a creditor to assure performance of an obligation.
Commercial Law That branch of the law used to designate the rules that determine the rights and duties of persons engaged in trade and commerce.
Commodity Good or service that is being purchased.
Commodity Level Accounting Way of processing a Requisition or Purchase Order in Banner in which each commodity of the order will have its own accounting distribution.
Competitive Bidding Offer of estimates by individuals or firms competing for contract, privilege, or right to supply specified services or merchandise.
Consignee Person or organization to whom a shipper directs the carrier to deliver goods, generally the buyer of goods.
Consignment Goods shipped for future sale or other purpose, title remaining with the shipper (Consignor), for which the receiver (Consignee), upon acceptance, is accountable.
Consignor The person or organization who delivers freight to a carrier for shipment and directs the bill of lading to be executed by the carrier.
Contract An agreement between parties, with binding legal and moral force, usually exchanging goods or services for money or other consideration. A Purchase Order, when accepted by a vendor, becomes a contract.
Contract Date Date when a contract is accepted by all parties thereto.
Contractor 1) Any one of the parties to a contract. 2) One who contract to perform work or furnish materials in accordance with a contract.
Corporation Collection of individuals created by statue as a legal person, vested with powers and capacity to contract, own, control, convey property, and transact business within the limits of the powers granted.
Cost Avoidance Reduction or elimination of a new cost that would have otherwise occurred.
Cost Savings Spending less than previously spent or less than quoted.
Counteroffer An offer to enter into a transaction on terms differing from those first proposed. It should be noted that vendors' "acknowledgement forms" given to a purchaser in response to a purchase order may be in fact, a counteroffer.



Deed Written instrument in a special form that is used to pass the legal title of real property from one person to another.
Delivery Transfer of possessions; as applied to shipping, it occurs when lading is surrendered and title to goods passes to the receiver or consignee.
Demurrage Charge allowed in tariffs or by contract assessed against a consignor, consignee, or other responsible person for delays to transportation equipment in excess of "free time" for loading, unloading, reconsigning, or stopping in transit.
Deposition Written testimony of a witness taken in proper form.
Depreciation Decline in value of a capital asset through wear and tear, age, inadequacy, and obsolescence without loss of substance.
Destination (F.O.B.) Title changes hands from vendor to purchaser at the destination of the shipment; vendor owns goods in transit and files any claims.
Discount Allowance or deduction granted by the seller to the buyer, usually when certain stipulated conditions are met by the buyer, which reduces the cost of the goods purchased.
Document Level Accounting Way of processing a Requisition or Purchase Order in Banner in which the accounting distribution entered applies to the whole order.
Drawback A refund of customs duties paid on material imported and later exported.
Duty A tax levied by a government on the importation, exportation, or use and consumption of goods.



EDI Electronic Data Interchange- The exchange of standardized document forms between computer systems for business use.
Embargo Order issued by a carrier, carriers or their agent, or by a government, prohibiting the acceptance of freight, in any kind or of a specific nature, for shipment.
En Route On the way; in transit.
Encumbrance The encumbering of funds against a budget for a specific and approved Purchase Order. It is reduced or eliminated when an invoice is approved or canceled.
EPA Environmental Protection Agency- Created in 1970 as an agency of the United States government, charged with protecting the environment and enforcing environmental laws and regulations.
EPP Environmentally Preferable Purchasing- Products or services that have a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing products or services.
Expedite To hasten or to assure delivery of goods purchased in accordance with a time schedule, usually by contract by the purchaser with the vendor.
Express Warranty When a seller makes some positive representation concerning the nature, quality, character, use, and purpose of goods, which induces the buyer to buy and the seller intends the buyer to rely thereon.



FIFO First In, First Out- The first put in is taken out first instead of the last in.
Firm Offer Definite proposal to sell something on stated terms, such offer binding the proposer up to stipulated time of expiration.
Fixed Asset Property or item of a lasting nature owned by the institute for its day-to-day operations and cannot be instantly liquidated.
FOAP Fund, Organization, Account, Program- Banner term which makes reference to the accounting numbers needed for operating and capital expenses.
FOB Free on Board- Without charge for deliver to and placing on board a carrier at a specified point, determines the point at which title for the shipment passes from vendor or purchaser.
Freight at Destination An expression meaning that freight charges will be paid by the consignee of goods upon their arrival at a specified destination.



GIS Geographic Information System- Computer system for capturing, storing, checking, integrating, manipulating, analyzing, and displaying data related to positions on the Earth's surface; handling maps of one kind or another.
GPS Global Positioning System- was developed by the US Department of Defense to provide all-weather round-the-clock navigation capabilities for military ground, sea, and air forces; 24 satellites which are used for navigation and precise geodetic position measurements.





Indemnify Protect against hurt or loss; to exempt from incurred penalties or liabilities.
IFB Invitation For Bids- Formal request to prospective vendors soliciting price quotations or bids; contains, or incorporates by reference, the specifications or scope of work and all contractual terms and conditions.
Import To receive goods from a foreign country.
Importer Buyer or merchant who imports goods.
Independent Contractor Worker hired by a business or jurisdiction to accomplish a given result who has the right to control or direct his or her own work as to the details and means by which the desired results are achieved; self-employed and/or employs others.
Installment Payments Schedule of payment arranged in connection with a purchase transaction requiring periodic payment of a specific sum for each of a stated number of payments.
Invoice Commercial document showing the character, quantity, price, terms, nature of delivery, and other particulars of goods sold or of services rendered; a bill.
IT Information Technology- Applied computer systems; both hardware and software, and often including networking and telecommunications in the context of a business or other enterprise.



Jobber Middleman or dealer who purchases goods or commodities from manufacturers or importers and sells them to retailers. Also called a dealer or wholesale merchant.



KD Knocked Down- Article desired is supplied unassembled.



Late Bid/Proposal Bid, proposal, withdrawal, or modification received, at the designated place for receipt, after the established due date and time.
Lead Time Period of time from date of ordering to the date of delivery which the buyer must reasonably allow the vendor to prepare goods for shipment.
Lease Contract giving one party (lessee) the right to use real estate or other asset owned by another (lessor) for a specified time, in return for compensation (rent). Title does not pass from the lessor to the lessee.
Letter of Intent Preliminary contractual arrangement customarily used in situations where the items, quantities, price, and delivery dates are known, but where the principal contract provisions required additional time-consuming negotiations.
Lien One person, usually a creditor, has to keep possession of or control the property of another for the purpose of satisfying a debt.
LIFO Last In, First Out- Referring to accounting, handling, and pricing of materials held in inventories.
Liquidated Damages Specific sum stated in the contract to be paid by the party who is in default, or who breaches the contract, to the other party in settlement for damages.
Lump Sum Price agreed upon between vendor and purchaser for a group of items without breakdown of individual values; a Lot price.



Mechanic's Lien Created by statute to secure laborers for their wages. Such liens has for its purpose to subject the land of an owner to a lien for material and labor expended in the construction of buildings, which buildings having been placed on the land become a part thereof by the law of accession.
MRO Maintenance, repair and operating supplies.
MSDS Material Safety Data Sheets- Documents written by chemical producing companies to describe the handling and storage of a given product. The sheet will state the product's name and manufacturer.
Mullen Test Test of pressure required to puncture a paper sample under specific conditions, as indicated on a piece of testing equipment known as a Mullen tester; a requirement in connection with various shipping regulations.
Mutual Assent In every contract each party must agree to the same thing, Each must know what the other intends; they must mutually assent to be in agreement.



Negligence Failure to do that which an ordinary, reasonable, prudent person would do, or the doing of some act which an ordinary, prudent person would not do. Reference must always be made to the situation, the circumstances, and the knowledge of the parties.
NIGP National Institute of Governmental Purchasing- A non-profit educational and technical assistance corporation of public purchasing agencies and activities at the federal, state and local levels of government.
NIST National Institute of Standards and Technology- An agency of the US Department of Commerce that works with industry to develop and apply technology, measurements, and standards.
Non-responsive Bid Bid from a vendor who does not conform to the mandatory or essential requirements of the invitation for bid.



OEM Producer of equipment from components usually bought from other manufacturers.
Offeror 1) One who submits a proposal in response to an RFP in competitive negotiation. 2) One who makes an offer in response to a solicitation.
Origin (F.O.B.) (Shipping Point) Title changes hands from vendor to purchaser at the origin of the shipment; purchaser owns goods in transit and files any claims.
OSHA Occupational Safety and Health Administration- Federal agency responsible for health and safety related regulations for various products and services.



Packing List Document which itemizes in detail the contents of a particular package or shipment.
Payment Terms Terms applicable to the payment including any discount.
P-Card Purchasing Card- MasterCard issued by JP Morgan Chase assigned to a person for business transactions when transactions are low-dollar (single transaction less that $1000), low-risk and a Purchase Order is not required.
PO Purchase Order; See Purchase Order
Point of Origin Station at which a shipment is received by a transportation line from the shipper.
Prepaid Transportation charges have been or are to be paid a the point of shipment.
Preventive Maintenance Planned maintenance activities undertaken to retain equipment or material in a serviceable condition; includes scheduled inspection, testing, servicing, classification as to serviceability, repairs, rebuilding and reclamation.
Proforma Invoice Invoice prepared by a vendor in advance of a sale to show the form and amount of the invoice which will be rendered to the purchaser if the sale is consummated. Proforma invoices are often used in export transactions to support the purchaser's request to governmental authorities for import permits and foreign exchange.
Promissory Note Unconditional written promise, signed by the makers, to pay a certain sum in money, on demand or at a fixed or determinable future date, either to the bearer or to the order of a designated person.
Public Bid Document submitted by a bidder in response to a sealed, public request bid.
Purchase Procure property or services for a price; includes obtaining by barter.
Purchase Order Purchaser's document used to formalize a purchase transaction with a vendor, containing statements as to quantity, description, and price of the goods or services ordered, as well as agreed terms as to payment, discounts, date of performance/delivery, transportation terms, and all other agreements pertinent to the purchase and its execution by the vendor.



QA Quality Assurance- A planned and systematic pattern of actions necessary to provide adequate confidence that products and services conform to established technical requirements and achieve satisfactory performance.
QC Quality Control- Practices and procedures followed to ensure appropriate quality and performance of goods produced or received, such as design, testing, and inspection.
QPL Qualified Products List- An approved list of supplies, services or construction items, described by model or catalogue numbers, which prior to competitive solicitation, have been determined to meet the applicable specifications requirements.
Quotation State of price, terms of sale, and description of goods or services offered by a vendor to a prospective purchaser; may be non binding if solicited to obtain market information for planning purposes.
Quote Response to a request for quotation.



Rate As applied to transportation or the movement and handling of goods and persons, the cost of, or charge for, service to be or which has been rendered.
Rebate Sum of money returned by the vendor to a purchaser in consideration of the purchase of a stipulated quantity or value of goods, usually within a stated period.
Refund A payback of monies owed by the Institute to an individual/company/corporation that were previously paid to the University by that individual/company/corporation.
Reimbursement A payback of monies to an individual/company/corporation that were paid out of pocket to a vendor by that individual/company/corporation by the use of an Accounts Payable Request for Payment form.
REQ Requisition. See Requisition
Request for Payment Form needed to request a check payment of an invoice or bill of materials or services already received and/or rendered and approved by the department head without prior establishment of a Purchase Order. It is also used for reimbursement of monies spent out-of-pocket for the institution.
Request for Proposal (RFP) All documents, whether attached or incorporated by reference, utilized for soliciting competitive proposals. A bid solicitation methods used for requirements exceeding authorized limits when it is expected that negotiations with one or more bidders may be required with respect to any aspect of the requirements, or other factors will be considered in the selection of the contractor in addition to price, or only one source is being solicited.
Request for Quotation (RFQ) Informal solicitation or request for information, where oral or written quotes are obtained from vendors, without formal advertising or receipt of sealed bids. Used only where statues do not require formal sealed bids, such as small or emergency purchases, but price competition is desired.
Requisition Form used to obtain materials or services and authority to commit funds to cover the purchase. Becomes a Purchase Order after processing is complete.
Retention Practice of withholding a portion of the sum due a vendor until the purchase has been finally accepted as fully meeting specifications.
RFP Request for Proposal; See Request for Proposal
RFQ Request for Quotation; See Request for Quotation
RFQC Request for Qualified Contractors- Form of RFQ that provides for a greater flexibility and opportunity for offeror to change its proposal as it becomes more familiar with the agency needs and requirements. It includes a number of gates and phases. Fair and equal treatment required.
Risk Management Identification, measurement, and treatment of property, liability, and personal loss exposures; includes analysis of potential risk situations and insurance needs, as well as the amount of financial coverage needed to protect the government.



Sales Tax Tax imposed specifically on a sale made by a vendor.
Salvage Property that has some value in addition to its value as a scrap, but which is no longer useful as a unit in its present condition and whose restoration to usefulness as a unit is economically not practicable.
Sample A small portion of merchandise takes as a specimen of quality.
Scrap Material that has no value except for its basic material content.
Sealed Bid Bid submitted in response to an invitation for bid (IFB). Bid is submitted in a sealed envelope to prevent dissemination of its contents before the deadline for the submission of all bids.
Seller's Lien The right of a seller to retain possession of goods until the price is paid. Such right does not exist where goods are sold on credit.
SERB Socially/Economically Restricted Business- Small business whose economic growth and development has been restricted on social and economic bias. Such businesses are minority and women business enterprises, other disadvantaged businesses and certain businesses whose primary or headquarter facilities exist within designated enterprise zones.
Service Vendor's ability to comply with promised delivery dates, specifications, and technical assistance.
Service Contract Agreement calling for a contractor's time and effort rather than for a product.
Services Work performed to meet a demand, especially work not connected with a manufacturing process.
Setup The article described is supplied fully assembled.
Sole Source Item An item that can only be purchased from one supplier, usually because of its technological, specialized, or unique character.
Sole Source Vendor A vendor, for reasons of expertise, and/or standardization, quality, compatibility with existing equipment, specifications or availability, is the only source acceptable to the requester or Institute.
SOW Statement of Work- detailed description for work which the purchasing jurisdiction wants the contractor to perform.
Specifications Detailed description of what the purchaser requires and, consequently, what a bidder must offer to be considered for an award.
Stock Supply of goods maintained on hand at the storage points in a supply system to meet demands that it is anticipated will be made.
SU Setup. See Setup
Subcontract A contract with another business entity entered into by a prime contractor or another subcontractor to obtain supplies, services, or construction items of any kind under a prime contract.
Supplier Person or business unit actually performing services, or manufacturing, producing, or shipping supplies required.
Supplies All property, including but not limited to equipment, materials, printing, insurance, and leases of real property, excluding land.



T&C's Terms and Conditions; See Terms and Conditions below
Terms and Conditions All language in a contract, including applicable standard clauses and special provisions, the rules under which all bids must be submitted, and the stipulations, applicable to most contracts, often published by purchasing authorities for the information of all potential bidders.



UCC Uniform Commercial Code- One of the uniform laws drafted by the National Conference of Commissioners on uniform state laws to simplify, clarify and modernize the law governing commercial transactions, and to make uniform the laws among the various jurisdictions, define the rights and duties in commercial situations and conforms the rules to modern commercial usages.                
USDA United States Department of Agriculture- Responsible for the safety of meat, poultry, and egg products.



Vendor Any person or company that sells something or charges for a service.
Visual Inspection Term generally used to indicate inspection performed without the aid of test instruments.
VOC Volatile Organic Compounds- Any compound of carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, carbonic acid, metallic carbicles, and ammonium carbonate, which participates in atmospheric photochemical reactions.
Voucher Written instrument that bears witness or "vouches" for something. Generally a voucher is an instrument showing services have been performed, or goods purchased, and authorizes payment to be made to the vendor.



Warranty An undertaking, either expressed or implied, that a certain fact regarding the subject matter of a contract is presently true or will be true. The word should be distinguished from "guaranty" which means a contract or promise by one person to answer for the performance of another.
Waybill Document prepared by a transportation line at the point of origin of a shipment, showing the point of origin, destination, route, consignor, consignee, description of shipment and amount charged for the transportation service, and forwarded to the carrier's agent at transfer point or destination.
Weight, Gross Weight of an article together with the weight of its container and the material used for packing.
Weight, Net The actual weight of the contents of a container or of the cargo of a vehicle. It is the total weight less the tare weight.
Weight, Tare The weight of an empty container and the other material used for packing its contents.
Wholesaler Purchaser who acquires goods for resale to a retailer or a jobber.