How To Make A Purchase Under $1500

Full time University staff and faculty who hold a University account with sufficient funds can purchase goods or services valued at less than $1500.00 without assistance from Purchasing. Two purchase methods are listed below. There are, however, restrictions in the use of these methods for several items or purposes. Please read the restrictions section carefully.

Methods of Purchase

1) Corporate VISA

  • We offer four types of corporate Visa Cards:
    • Standard Card - issued in the name of a specific staff member.
    • Departmental Card - issued in the name of the department for use
      by multiple staff members.
    • Fleet Card - issued for fuel and vehicle maintenance. Linked to vehicle plate.
    • Limited term card.

On a monthly basis you will receive an electronic record of your transactions. You are required to assign GL account numbers, attach receipts and return to the Finance Office. Timely return of Visa statements is essential to continuing in the Visa program

Download Visa Application Form

2) Standing or Blanket Purchase Order

This Purchase Order, established once a year, is ideal for large volume low value purchases from one source. Once established with the assistance of Purchasing, the account holder or delegate is free to initiate orders with the selected supplier. Invoices are sent directly to Purchasing for payment.

If you wish to have Purchasing Staff assist you with ordering please complete a Purchase Requisition and submit the form to the Purchasing Office located in Blackburn Hall, Fax 1140.


The following categories of material or services cannot be purchased using the simplified methods described above. Rather a standard purchase requisition form must be completed and the appropriate signatures as required need to be on the requisition.


  • Imported items - Customs regulations can make the purchase of foreign goods costly and time consuming. Proper customs documentation is required to avoid fines, delays at the border, storage charges, duties and extra taxes. The Purchasing Office has an established Customs Broker. Please call us first before importing or exporting any goods.
  • Live vertebrates – The Animal Care Committee oversees the use of live vertebrates. An animal care protocol number from the Animal Care Committee is required prior to placing an order. This number must be on the purchase requisition as “ACC number *********” .
  • Electrical Equipment -All electrical equipment used in Canada is required to meet specific safety standards.  Imported equipment frequently lacks appropriate certification and will require additional onsite inspection by the Electrical Safety Authority and possible modification before it can be placed in service.  For further information see  (Link under development)
  • Controlled substances – Controlled drugs to be used with animals must be purchased through the Animal Care Supervisor.
  • Hazardous chemicals- Any chemical or material that is considered hazardous must be purchased using a purchase requisition. Typically, a hazardous material will have either WHMIS labels and/or TDG documentation and will come with an MSDS. Any person receiving hazardous material must have TDG training (contact the risk management office for more information
  • Biohazardous Materials - Purchasing biological material that is considered to be biohazardous by either the Public Health Agency Canada or the Canadian Food Inspection Agency must be purchased using a Purchase requisition and the signature of the Biosafety Officer is required on the requisition. In addition, a copy of the receiving documentation must be forwarded to the BSO upon receiving the material.
  • Radioactive Material or devices containing radioactive material – must be purchased using a Purchase Requisition and the signature of the Radiation Safety Officer is required. In addition a copy of the receiving documentation must be forwarded to the RSO upon receiving the material.
  • Alcohol (lab use) - The Excise Act requires a University specific license number be applied to all purchases. Alcohol purchases must be accounted for in detail. Contact the Chemical Stores Supervisor for assistance.
  • Alcohol (for consumption) – Generally University funds cannot be used to purchase alcohol. Events involving alcohol require a liquor license and are arranged through Conference Services. Research accounts have specific restrictions on the use of funds for entertainment.
  • Goods or services from a University employee or his or her dependents. Please contact Purchasing for assistance.
  • Building repairs, renovations, or alterations - All alterations to University property require the approval of the the Physical Resources Department. To assist with requests for alterations in the Science Buildings contact the Science Facilities Manager. Requests for repairs to existing services and buildings should be forwarded to
  • Purchases for personal use.
  • Travel and Accommodation – Staff who travel frequently are advised to obtain a Corporate American Express Card. The American Express card allows the traveller to obtain cash advances and provides insurance as well as other travel benefits. See Travel Information.

Who to Contact for Assistance

  • Science Facilities Assistant : Angela Sikma
  • Science Facilities Manager, RSO, BSO: Chris Williams
  • Animal Care Manager: Jason Allen
  • Fixit:, ext 1366
  • Purchasing Services, ext 1203