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Northwestern University

Procurement Methods

This chart summarizes the 5 main procurement methods at Northwestern University:

  Most purchases should start with a Standard Requisition Special Requisition Types Other procurement methods
Procurement Method iBuyNU (Catalog) Requisition Non-Catalog Requisition Blanket Order Requisition Payment Request Corporate Card
Type of Purchase Web-based ordering from Preferred Vendors All other purchases (from both Preferred Vendors not in iBuyNU and other external vendors) For payment of repetitive services under contract (from both Preferred Vendors and other external vendors) To request a check to pay for services that do not fit the normal PO process (such as registration fees, subscriptions, memberships, unplanned emergency services) To pay for goods and services that do not require a PO (such as subscriptions, memberships, emergencies; not to be used for items in iBuyNU)

About Requisitions

Most purchases of most goods and services from outside vendors are to begin with the initiation of a Requisition in NUFinancials (either a catalog Requisition through iBuyNU or a non-catalog Requisition).

Standard requisition types

Special Requisition Types

There are three Special Requisition types. There is an option to select one of these types in the Requisition initiation process in NUFinancials.

Alternative Payment Methods

Procurement and Payment Services has identified some exceptions for certain transaction types that are considered low dollar and low risk, where a formal Purchase Order may not be as necessary. These guidelines are only meant to clarify payment options for certain services: they do not change any other Northwestern or department/school policies and procedures. Please review the Alternative Payment Method Guidelines (PDF).

The following alternative procurement methods are available:

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