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Purchasing Units & Delivery Locations

Decentralized Procurement

UVA has a decentralized procurement structure. Although all acquisition of goods and services is under the oversight of Procurement Services, there are nearly 300 departmental Purchasing Units authorized to acquire some goods and services directly from vendors, under the conditions defined by Procurement Services. When those conditions are not met, goods and services must be acquired for the department by buyers in Procurement Services.

In order for Procurement Services to maintain responsible oversight of departmental procurement-related activities, it is necessary to have a structure that clearly defines the responsible persons in each departmental purchasing area. It is also necessary to link these individuals to all the procurement-related activities carried out for that area.

The primary organizational units for decentralized procurement are:

  • Central Purchasing -- The buyers in Procurement Services.
  • Purchasing Units
  • Delivery Locations

Purchasing Units

Purchasing Units are areas in departmental business units that have been registered with Procurement Services to have oversight of all allowable procurement-related activities for the department -- direct orders, requisitions, invoices, etc.

  • Purchasing Units are assigned, deleted, or updated by Procurement Services when the department submits the Purchasing Unit Request form.
  • Purchasing Units are identified by a 2-character Purchase Unit Code (PUC), such as "MM" or "PN".
  • Each Purchasing Unit has a primary contact and a Fiscal Administrator responsible for all its procurement-related activities.
  • Upon receipt in Accounts Payable, copies of all non-electronic invoices against Purchase Orders and Department Purchase Orders are sent to the Purchasing Unit Contact, who is responsible for reporting any reasons why the invoice should not be paid to Accounts Payable, using the Invoice Correction Form.
  • Purchasing Unit contact information can be found on the Find PUCs & DLCs page.

Delivery Locations

Delivery locations are physical addresses for the delivery of goods and services ordered by or for a particular Purchasing Unit. Delivery Locations must be registered in the Integrated System (Oracle) before they can be used in a Purchase Requisition, or a Department Purchase Order.

  • No Delivery Location can be assigned unless an associated Purchasing Unit exists (see above).
  • Multiple Delivery Locations can be associated with one Purchasing Unit.
  • Delivery Locations are assigned, deleted, or updated when the department submits a Delivery Location Request form.
  • Each Delivery Location is identified by a 5-character Delivery Location Code (DLC).
  • The first 2 characters of the DLC are always the same as the associated PUC (e.g. "MMCAR" and "MMJOR" would both refer to Delivery Locations associated with Purchasing Unit "MM").
  • DLCs appear as entries in the Integrated System "List of Values" (LOV) used to select Ship_To_Locations and Delivery_Locations in various Integrated System purchasing documents.

Why Purchasing Units and Delivery Locations Are Linked

Integrated System "Org Numbers" do not appear on vendors' invoices, and the Org information does not tell us who the individual responsible for purchasing activity in the department would be. However, it is very important that all purchasing transactions and documents can be linked in some way to the proper departmental Purchasing Unit -- for reporting, communication, invoice handling, and problem resolution.

We make that link by ensuring that the first two characters of Delivery Location Code (DLC) correspond to the Purchasing Unit Code (PUC). Delivery Locations print on Purchase Orders and vendors' invoices and that association allows us to tie an Integrated System transaction or a vendor's printed invoice to the responsible individuals in the Purchasing Unit.