Cooperative / Group Purchasing Programs
Cooperative and Group purchasing organizations allow those eligible to order under established contracts without additional formal bidding. As a state agency and an institution of higher education, The University of Texas at Austin is eligible to participate in many group and cooperative purchasing programs, including the following.
The University of Texas System Supply Chain Alliance – UTSSCA was created to expand the use of joint purchasing and explore new opportunities to leverage the collective size and strength of the UT System institutions through cooperative purchasing.
Educational & Institutional Cooperative (E&I) – E&I is a not-for-profit buying cooperative which provides goods and services to its members at the best possible value. The Cooperative is owned by its membership of more than 1500 tax-exempt colleges, universities, prep schools, hospitals, medical research institutions and hospital purchasing organizations located throughout the United States, including The University of Texas at Austin.
Premier, Inc. – Premier focuses on items required by healthcare organizations. The University of Texas at Austin is eligible to use their contracts. Premier has established an authorization process for Premier members to allow shopping—not buying—by non-procurement staff members. Contact the Purchasing Office for instructions on how to obtain this authorization.
Department of Information Resources (DIR) – DIR is an agency of the State of Texas. Among their varied responsibilities, DIR must negotiate volume purchase agreements for quality products and services. All Texas state agencies are eligible to use these agreements.
Texas Procurement and Support Services (TPASS) – TPASS is a division of the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts whose primary responsibility is to provide goods, services, and facilities to the State of Texas. One part of fulfilling this responsibility is establishing term contracts available to all Texas state agencies.
Texas Multiple Award Schedules (TXMAS) - TPASS also maintains the Texas Multiple Award Schedules (TXMAS); these contracts have been developed from contracts awarded competitively by the federal government or any other governmental entity of any state.
Provista – focuses on items required by healthcare organizations. The University of Texas at Austin is eligible to use their contracts.
The Cooperative Purchasing Network – TCPN is available for use by all public and private schools, colleges, universities, cities, counties, and other government entities in the State of Texas.
BuyBoard – the BuyBoard was developed by the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) along with the Texas Association of Counties and the Texas Municipal League. It is open to all local governments, nonprofits, and other political subdivisions of the state of Texas. School districts must be a member of TASB to participate.
The BuyBoard has established an authorization process for BuyBoard members to allow shopping—not buying—by non-procurement staff members. Contact the Purchasing Office for instructions on how to obtain this authorization.
US Communities – all government entities are eligible to use US Communities contracts, which focus on high use, high volume items.
The Interlocal Purchasing System (TIPS) – TIPS is sponsored by the Region VIII Education Service Center and is available for use by all public and private schools, colleges, universities, cities, counties, and other government entities in the State of Texas. TIPS has competitively bid their contracts, and has followed the HUB guidelines of the State of Texas.
Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) Cooperative Purchasing Program – through the Texas Interlocal Cooperation Act, local governments, states, state agencies and non profit corporations providing one or more governmental functions and services have access to contracts developed by H-GAC.
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