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The purchase of goods and services plays a big part in helping to achieve the university’s mission. Faculty and staff who make purchases have a key role in stewarding the university’s resources.

Stanford Financial Management Services (FMS) recently launched FIN-0420: Preferred Purchasing Methods to equip purchasers with the knowledge and resources to choose the purchasing method that best meets their department’s needs, balances operational efficiency, and meets key compliance procedures required of the university. This new course is now required to access iProcurement, including all central staff working within a purchasing role in Oracle, such as buyers. The course takes approximately 35 minutes to complete and no recertification is required after successful completion.  

Before this change, all new employees were automatically granted access to iProcurement. This change now establishes a process and opportunity to provide foundational knowledge on preferred purchasing practices prior to receiving access. This aligns with our standard practices around access to financial systems like Expense Requests and PCard, reserving system access to those individuals for whom purchasing is a primary responsibility of their role with the university and therefore have been granted appropriate authority privileges in Authority Manager and complete required training.

Existing iProcurement users were sent several email reminders to complete the Preferred Purchasing Methods course and its prerequisite FIN-PROG-0020: Financial Stewardship Expectations by midnight on June 18, 2023. If the course was not completed, iProcurement access was removed.

Actions now required to access iProcurement 

After June 19, 2023, employees should follow the below instructions to access iProcurement:

  1. Have their school or department grant the SU Internet Procurement authority privilege using the Authority Manager application. For more information, see getting access to iProcurement
  2. After being granted the SU Internet Procurement authority privilege, employees must enroll in and complete the new course, FIN-0420 Preferred Purchasing Methods, and its prerequisite, FIN-PROG-0020: Financial Stewardship Expectations (if not already completed). After course completion, iProcurement access will be granted within two hours.

Please note:  If the course is completed before the SU Internet Procurement authority privilege is granted, employees will still need to request that their school or unit grant the privilege in Authority Manager in order to access iProcurement.

Students require an additional step to receive access to Oracle Financials. To request access to the Oracle Financials system for a non-employee student, please submit a support request.

One-time mass grant to initial authority grantors

At Stanford, authority to create financial transactions is managed by specific individuals referred to as authority grantors. They use the Authority Manager system to grant needed privileges to staff in their school or unit.

To support and facilitate this change, the SU Internet Procurement authority privilege was provided automatically to an initial population of authority grantors who had existing authority for granting SU Expense Requests, SU Digital Payments, and/or SU PCard. 

Going forward, individuals who need the ability to grant the SU Internet Procurement authority privilege, should request that ability from their school or unit grantors. Please refer to Topic Overview: Grant or Update Fingate Authority Assignments.

Who should take the course

  • Preparers of iProcurement requisitions are required to complete the course to access iProcurement and its suite of systems, which includes Stanford’s Amazon Business account, SmartMart Catalog Suppliers, SmartMart Contracts, Non-Catalog Requests, and Cardinal Temps for initiating requisitions to hire temporary labor.
  • Approvers of iProcurement requisitions (who are not also preparing requisitions) are highly encouraged to complete the course to learn purchasing best practices that will assist with their approval responsibilities. Because required approval activities can be accessed outside of iProcurement through the Oracle Workflow Notification email and the Requisition and PO Query tool, iProcurement access and course completion is ultimately optional for approvers who are not also preparing requisitions. 

What is iProcurement?

SU Internet Procurement, also referred to as iProcurement, is the system the university uses to facilitate the purchasing of goods and services through a suite of connected systems. Purchasing through iProcurement is preferred because it offers increased built-in features to protect the university and steward its resources.

iProcurement facilitates the transaction approval process prior to the payment being made, which supports accurate, reasonable, and appropriate use of Stanford’s financial resources. Additional benefits are offered by the individual systems, for example Amazon Business provides similar availability and access to items available on its public website, but holds higher standards of vetting and approving sellers. SmartMart Catalog Suppliers offers pre-vetted suppliers, pre-negotiated pricing and efficiencies such as repeat ordering and a streamlined invoice and payment process. Learn more about how to gain access on the iProcurement Systems page.


In addition to the new FIN-0420: Preferred Purchasing Methods course, we compiled a toolkit of purchasing resources on Fingate that helps purchasers to complete tasks correctly and efficiently and it includes:

To get assistance

If you need help with financial training please submit a support request. For assistance with purchasing activities and transactions, contact the Financial Support Center.

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