Procurement of Promotional Products

Promotional items are items purchased for distribution to employees, students, or the general public and may include pins, buttons, pens, tee shirts, sweatshirts and plaques. The University of Arkansas at Little Rock has been authorized to purchase items for promotional purposes by special language in the agency’s appropriations act. Further direction can be found in the OSP Policies on Promotional Items.

In addition, the University of Arkansas at Little Rock has established a licensing program to protect the university’s brand and prohibit unauthorized use of the university name or logo on commercial or other products. All uses and representations of the university’s name and logo on items of merchandise, whether for sale or internal use, are licensed. Licensed use of UA Little Rock’s name and logo will preserve its reputation by ensuring that these products are of quality and good taste and consistent with the university’s branding efforts. All promotional items must be produced by a Learfield-licensed vendor that has been approved by the Office of Communications and Marketing.

All purchases for promotional items, regardless of cost or method of procurement, will need to be processed using one of the following approved methods of procurement.

Competitive Quote Bid (up to $75,000)

A competitive quote bid must be completed for all promotional items, excluding cooperative purchases, prior to ordering. Departments are given the delegation to solicit competitive quote bids up to $75,000 (including freight and excluding sales tax). Procurement Services is available to assist in processing these bids if departments do not have the time or qualified staff.

The competitive quote bid process is as follows:

  1. Complete the Competitive Quote Bid Form. By using a written request (Competitive Quote Bid Form), we reduce the risk of protest and increase the integrity of the bid. The following information will be required in the bid form:
    1. UA Little Rock Requestor Contact. Enter the contact for the person on campus that will be managing the bid request. They should not be out of the office during the time the bid is out and should be able to answer questions pertaining to the bid.
    2. Bid Submission Deadline. A time and date should be clearly stated on the form informing vendors of the bid submission deadline. The bid should be out for a minimum of five (5) working days. To be considered, the quote must be completed and returned by fax, mail, or email no later than the bid submission deadline.
    3. Specifications. The minimum specifications should be clear and concise and identify quantity, color, details, and make and model of items. If it is not listed in the specifications, the vendor will not be held responsible for providing the item in detail.
      Specification Example:
      Adult Hooded Performance Sweatshirt
      100% Performance Polyester; 8 oz.
      Breathable, moisture managing
      Anti-bacterial treatment
      UV Protection
      Fully cover seamed
      Draw cord to match hoodie color
      Front pouch pocket
      Relaxed fit
      Color to be solid Heather Gray
      Logo to be solid black and shall have the UA Little Rock logo on upper front left of hoodie
      Artwork to be provided upon award of bid
      Item 1: Adult Small, estimated quantity 120 each
      Item 2: Adult Medium, estimated quantity 85 each
      Item 3: Adult Large, estimated quantity 110 each
  2. Contact the Office of Communications and Marketing. The department should contact the Office of Communications and Marketing to get an updated list of Learfield-licensed vendors to send the request to bid.
  3. Send the Competitive Quote Bid Form to Vendors. A minimum of three (3) vendors from the approved vendor list, one of which should be a minority vendor if available for that commodity, should be included in the bid process. The form should be sent by mail, fax, or email. Please remember that all vendors must receive the same request within the same time frame and be issued the same parameters for bidding.
  4. Complete the Competitive Bid Tabulation Form. Once the bid submission deadline has passed, the submitted quotes should be processed and entered into the Competitive Bid Tabulation Form. The department will enter the unit price for each item and any additional charges that may have been submitted, such as shipping, artwork, storage, or other approved costs. If you receive a “no bid” or “no response” from a vendor, include that on your tab sheet by typing “NO BID” in the vendor’s line item field. The items may be awarded on all or none basis or by line item, whichever is in the best interest of the university. The apparent low bidder will be the bidder with the lowest costs that meets or exceeds the specification. If there is a tie bid, please contact Procurement Services for assistance at 501.569.3144.
  5. Submit bid packet to Procurement Services and create a requisition in Banner. Once the apparent low bidder has been identified, Procurement Services will need to review the bid prior to the award. While Procurement Services will work as swiftly as possible, the department should allow five (5) working days after the requisition has been approved for this to process.The following documentation is required to be submitted with the requisition to Procurement Services prior to issuance of a purchase order:
    1. The completed Competitive Quote Bid Form.
    2. Proof that the solicitation was sent to at least three (3) vendors who can provide the requested good or service.
    3. The completed Competitive Bid Tabulation Form.
    4. Copies of each bid response in entirety, including “no bids” if received.

Cooperative Contract (any amount)

Cooperative buying allows the university to make purchases for goods and services from contracts that have already been bid or negotiated for the benefit of the university. Staples Promotional Products is an approved cooperative contract available for the university to use for the purchasing of promotional products without requiring a bid, regardless of cost. This is not a mandatory contract.

  1. Contact Staples Promotional and request a quote referencing the E&I contract number for your requested items. For more information and to receive the contracted discount rate, contact the Account Manager Shelia Mikles, at 314.520.7831 or sheila.mikles@staples.com.
  2. Create a requisition in Banner and submit the quote to Procurement Services through its portal.

Formal Bids (over $75,000)

All purchases exceeding $75,000 must be completed as a formal bid through Procurement Services, with a minimum processing time of sixty (60) days.

Please contact Procurement Services at 501.569.3144 if you have questions or need assistance procuring promotional items.