The Technology Purchasing Procedures apply to all computing and network related resources of UA Little Rock, whether located on the campus or in remote locations or facilities. These resources include but are not limited to:
- Desktops, laptops, all-in-one computers, tablets, and servers;
- New software or licenses; and
- Peripheral equipment that connects to the UA Little Rock network (i.e., printers, scanners, etc.).
The items listed above cannot be purchased without prior approval from Information Technology Services, and if purchasing using a P-Card, without prior written authorization by Procurement Services. Low-cost cabling or connectivity-related cords and devices are permitted P-Card purchases and do not require prior authorization.
Technology Purchasing Process
Departments that need to purchase any of the technology items listed above must receive pre-approval from IT Services, as follows:
- Submit an IT Services Incident Ticket describing the desired technology purchase, what the department’s needs are, and any technology specifications. IT Services will assist the department in selecting the appropriate equipment and obtaining a quote from an approved vendor.
- IT Services will forward the quote to the department for review and approval. If the department does not approve the quote, IT Services will work with the department to obtain an acceptable quote that meets the needs of both the department and the university.
- Once an acceptable quote is obtained, the department will follow university procurement procedures (requisition or P-Card) to place the order with the vendor. Procurement Services will forward purchase orders directly to the vendor and email a copy to the department.
- It is the department’s responsibility to follow university receiving procedures to approve payment of invoices.
- If there is an issue with the delivery or goods the department should work with Procurement Services to resolve the issue.
- It is the department’s responsibility to contact General Accounting upon receipt of the technology equipment to ensure fixed asset purchases are properly tagged for inventory purposes.
Voluntary Products Accessibility Template (VPAT)
Regardless of dollar amount, if the purchase has a technology component, the selected vendor is required by Arkansas law to complete a Voluntary Products Accessibility Template (VPAT) prior to the purchase. This form certifies that the purchased technology is accessible to visually impaired or blind individuals. Procurement Services and IT Services will ensure that the VPAT form is in place prior to purchase, which is one of the reasons for the pre-approval process outlined above.
Technology Access Clause
Arkansas law also requires that all solicitations (quote bids) have the following language included as part of the bid package. If the department is soliciting bids without the assistance of Procurement Services or IT Services, this language must be included or the bid will be null and void:
- When procuring a technology product or when soliciting the development of such a product, the State of Arkansas is required to comply with the provisions of Arkansas Code Annotated §25-26-201 et seq., as amended by Act 308 of 2013, which expresses the policy of the State to provide individuals who are blind or visually impaired with access to information technology purchased in whole or in part with state funds. The Vendor expressly acknowledges and agrees that state funds may not be expended in connection with the purchase of information technology unless that technology meets the statutory requirements found in 36 C.F.R. §1194.21, as it existed on January 1, 2013 (software applications and operating ICSs) and 36 C.F.R. § 1194.22, as it existed on January 1, 2013 (web-based intranet and internet information and applications), in accordance with the State of Arkansas technology policy standards relating to accessibility by persons with visual impairments.
- ACCORDINGLY, THE VENDOR EXPRESSLY REPRESENTS AND WARRANTS to the State of Arkansas through the procurement process by submission of a Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) for 36 C.F.R. § 1194.21, as it existed on January 1, 2013 (software applications and operating ICSs) and 36 C.F.R. § 1194.22, that the technology provided to the State for purchase is capable, either by virtue of features included within the technology, or because it is readily adaptable by use with other technology, of:
- Providing, to the extent required by Arkansas Code Annotated §25-26-201 et seq., as amended by Act 308 of 2013, equivalent access for effective use by both visual and non-visual means;
- Presenting information, including prompts used for interactive communications, in formats intended for non-visual use;
- After being made accessible, integrating into networks for obtaining, retrieving, and disseminating information used by individuals who are not blind or visually impaired;
- Providing effective, interactive control and use of the technology, including without limitation the operating system, software applications, and format of the data presented is readily achievable by nonvisual means;
- Being compatible with information technology used by other individuals with whom the blind or visually impaired individuals interact;
- Integrating into networks used to share communications among employees, program participants, and the public; and
- Providing the capability of equivalent access by nonvisual means to telecommunications or other interconnected network services used by persons who are not blind or visually impaired.
- State agencies cannot claim a product as a whole is not reasonably available because no product in the marketplace meets all the standards. Agencies must evaluate products to determine which product best meets the standards. If an agency purchases a product that does not best meet the standards, the agency must provide written documentation supporting the selection of a different product, including any required reasonable accommodations.
- For purposes of this section, the phrase “equivalent access” means a substantially similar ability to communicate with, or make use of, the technology, either directly, by features incorporated within the technology, or by other reasonable means such as assistive devices or services which would constitute reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act or similar state and federal laws. Examples of methods by which equivalent access may be provided include, but are not limited to, keyboard alternatives to mouse commands or other means of navigating graphical displays, and customizable display appearance. As provided in Arkansas Code Annotated §25-26-201 et seq., as amended by Act 308 of 2013, if equivalent access is not reasonably available, then individuals who are blind or visually impaired shall be provided a reasonable accommodation as defined in 42 U.S.C. §12111(9), as it existed on January 1, 2013.
- If the information manipulated or presented by the product is inherently visual in nature, so that its meaning cannot be conveyed non-visually, these specifications do not prohibit the purchase or use of an information technology product that does not meet these standards.