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Central PurchasingUniversity of CincinnatiDivision of Administration and FinancingCentral Purchasing

Central Purchasing

PACE Resources

The office of Central Purchasing is pleased to announce the implementation of a new purchasing and contracting tool. PACE consolidates two prior platforms, ESM and FLEX, that were required for contracting and purchasing. PACE provides contract management, on-line shopping, and enables electronic bidding, order placement and even invoicing by certain suppliers. This streamlining of processes is intended to simplify and expedite needed goods and services.


PACE Quick Links

Training Tools

The Staff Success Center provides a system training class:

Other Resources:

Benefits of PACE to users:

  • Find the goods and services you want simply and quickly
  • Web-based, shopping cart-style ordering with online catalogs and easily replicate orders
  • Allows all employees to shop and forward requests for specific things they want to those in their units that have been trained to make purchases and perform related accounting
  • Flexible workflows help ensure the right reviewers and approvers are involved based on parameters of the transaction
  • Shows the status of contracts and/or purchases in each step in the workflow
  • Helps store, track, author, amend, renew and manage contracts
  • Accommodates multiple types of contract templates (e.g. MSAs, NDAs, SOWs, etc.)
  • Notifications and obligations remind contract managers and stakeholders about renewal dates, benchmarks, and more

Frequently Asked Questions:

This section will be expanded as more users access the system and generate common queries.

  • How do I access PACE?
    • All UC employees have access to the system with the shopper or contract manager role automatically. Requisitioner and COA roles can be obtained after attending training through SuccessFactors and approval of their application (see next question for instructions on accessing the form).
  • How do I complete the PACE Role Request Form?
    • The Role Request form can be accessed on the BCS UC Flex site page by clicking Access Requests under the Additional Resources section and choosing the Decentral Financial form from the Access Request Forms section. Once it opens, click Open in Desktop App, which will launch an editable form in Word to complete.

PACE Roles:

  • Shopper – all UC employees are able to search the PACE site for goods and services and place desired products in a cart, and then send/assign the cart to the requisitioner to make purchases. Able to track the progress of their request.
  • Requisitioner – employees trained to purchase goods and services in PACE. To be granted this role an employee must first complete training, then have a role application approved by their management.
  • Cost Object Approver – employees responsible for various funds in a department/unit. This role is available to those on the Controller's Office COA table once training has been completed and their application has been approved.
  • Contract Manager – the role that initiates a contract in PACE. They complete required fields and obtain the required unit and division approvals; they may also use PACE to acquire any optional approvals desired. The contract manager initiates the automated contract routing to predetermined central offices based on the type of contract, culminating in final review and execution by General Counsel. They act as the owner of a contract in PACE and follow up to ensure completion.

Helpful PACE Definitions:

  • Stakeholder – this is a person who has a vested interest in monitoring the status of the contract. Unit/Departmental Stakeholders can be added at any time to a contract record. Stakeholders can view the contract during the drafting/processing stages and receive notifications for renewal/expiration dates in the future.
  • Work Group – this is the unit/department for which the contract is being created.
  • External Review (Ad Hoc Approval) – this is a function in PACE that allows the Contract Manager to send an email from PACE to anyone with the contract attached requesting review for approval.  The recipient/Reviewer will not have to log into PACE, rather can simply reply to the email in accordance with its instructions.  That response will go directly to the Contract Manager and will also be saved within the Communications Center on the contract record.
  • Internal Review (Institutional Approval) – on contract submission, they are automatically routed to predetermined central offices based on the contract type. This ensures the proper approvals/reviews are received prior to it routing to OGC for execution.  Each reviewer will receive a notification that contains a direct link to the contract record in PACE.  They will access that record and either suggest or make redline changes. Once one review is completed the next reviewer is automatically notified.
  • Contract Template – Numerous contract templates have been designed by UC and are available for use. In addition to the templates each contract review request may contain a Main Document, which is the document to be executed and any additional attachments needed to support the request (e.g., Service Agreements).
  • Main Document – this is the document that will become the executed contract.
  • Attachments – this can include any supporting documentation that either “prints with the contract” as part of the contract package or is just an internal attachment for record keeping, etc.