Subcontract Standing Purchase Orders (Subcontract SPOs) are for repetitive purchases or for services provided by a non-catalog supplier over a specific period of time, where there is a subcontract (e.g., personal services contracts). A subcontract is involved when the University plans to purchase services from an external supplier (e.g., another university) with funds from an external sponsor (e.g., the National Institutes of Health). SPOs must be submitted with a grand total of at least $10,000.

Read the procedures

  1. From the CU Purchasing & Payment Forms section of the Shopping Home page, select the SPO – Sponsored Project Subcontract form. The form will appear in a separate window.

  2. Enter the Supplier or click the supplier search link. Select the appropriate supplier from the list of results.

    Can’t find your supplier? A supplier must be set up in CU Marketplace before you can enter a form. Refer to the CU Supplier Portal web page for guidance.

  3. Verify that supplier information is correct. Note that the Fulfillment Address is the address to which the Subcontract SPO will be issued. The preferred fulfillment address specified by the supplier will default.

  4. Enter the required information, indicated by the boldfaced fields.



    a. Enter the SPO Description.
    b. The Unit Price defaults to “1.00” and cannot be changed.
    c. Enter the full amount of the SPO as the SPO Encumbrance, or if you want to encumber less than the full amount, enter the specific amount that you want to encumber. You’ll see this encumbrance on your financial reports.
    d. Select a Commodity Code.
    e. Enter the Begin Date of your Subcontract SPO. This is a date in the future when you expect work to begin.
    f.  Enter the End Date of the SPO. This is a date in the future when you expect to get your last invoice.
    g. Enter the Subcontract Grand Total amount. This is the full amount that you expect to pay over the course of this SPO.
    h. If renewing an existing Subcontract SPO, enter the Standing Order PO # being replaced.

  5. Use the Available Actions dropdown menu located at the top of page and select Add and go to Cart; click Go.

  6. We recommend that you enter a unique shopping cart Name to easily identify or search for your shopping cart. If you do, click Update to save your shopping cart’s new name.

  7. To verify your SPO is in the workflow, select the PR Approvals tab. If the Grand Total of your SPO is less than $10,000, you’ll see a step called SPO Auto-return.

    If your requisition is less than $10,000, it will be automatically returned to you. You’ll receive an email from CU Marketplace telling you that you must increase the grand total on your SPO form before resubmitting the requisition.

    To increase the total, select Action Items > Carts Assigned To Me and select your requisition from the Returned Requisitions section. Update your SPO Grand Total amount and click Go. Resubmit the requisition.

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