Spring 2015 Newsletter

This quarterly newsletter is sent to Procurement Services customers to provide announcements and updates regarding ongoing initiatives and procedures.

Vehicle auction taking place tomorrow

Property Disposition will be holding another live vehicle auction tomorrow, May 5, at the Washtenaw Farm Council Grounds at 5 p.m.  For more information, including photos of the vehicles up for auction, visit the auctioneer's website.  The last auction, which took place in December, resulted in almost 70 vehicles, as well as miscellaneous equipment, being sold.

Supplier shows popular!                                 

More than 975 employees attended the Strategic Supplier Product and Service shows that were held on the Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and Flint campuses this year.  Thanks to your attendance and ongoing commitment to using the strategic suppliers that come on campus to meet customers, these shows continue to be extremely well received.

"Both our employees and suppliers find these shows very beneficial," said Norma Glennie, contract administrator.  "It gives employees a chance to talk with our suppliers and learn about new products and services while enabling the suppliers to learn more about the unique needs of university community."

Plans are underway for commodity-specific-shows (e.g., food, travel, research, etc.) so please keep an eye out for details on our web page.  "We're continually looking for ways to improve the customer experience at our supplier shows and these smaller, more targeted shows will appeal to buyers who routinely make purchases in specific commodities." 

New website coming soon

You may recall that we invited you to complete a short survey about our website last fall.  Nearly 200 subscribers participated and the feedback you provided was incredibly helpful to the web project.

Thanks to your input, the new website will feature easier and more intuitive navigation, enhanced searching capabilities, new content, a completely new design, and many other upgrades that will make purchasing at the university even more convenient.  The website is in the final stages of development and will be launched this summer.  We'll be sure to let you know when it goes live!

Concur News


Helpful resources for new and infrequent business travelers

A variety of easy-to-use resources are now available for new and infrequent business travelers at U-M.  The resources, which range from tip sheets to short videos, were developed to enhance every facet of your travel experience from planning a trip and managing expenses while traveling to creating an expense report when you return home.

New mobile apps for Concur

University travelers can now use a Concur mobile app to take pictures of receipts, check on expense reports, book a flight, arrange for ground transportation, and perform a variety of other key travel functions.

Another Concur app--TripIt Pro--can also be downloaded by employees.  The app automatically creates master itineraries, monitors flights, seats, fares, and travel points, and sends alerts for delays or cancellations, among other things.  It's like having a personal travel assistant!

TripIt Pro also lets travelers forward reservation information to Concur to automatically create an itinerary for expense reporting when it's necessary to book outside of Concur (e.g., through a conference website).

Learn more about the new Concur mobile apps, including how to download them.

If you have any questions, please contact us at procurement.services@umich.edu or (734) 764-8212, opt. 2.

Vendor spotlight:  Conlin Travel


Conlin Travel has been the university's dedicated travel agency for more than a year.  It's a local company with a long history of providing outstanding service to the university.  If you have not yet booked travel through Conlin Travel, Procurement Services encourages you to contact the company for assistance with your next business trip.

"By using Conlin Travel, you'll not only save your unit money, but receive assistance at every step of the travel process.  The university's discounts with Delta and United airlines, for example, are only available when you purchase your ticket through Conlin Travel," said Becky Dunlavy, procurement supervisor.

Discounts can be arranged when booking through the Concur online travel booking tool or by calling a Conlin Travel agent at U-M's dedicated toll-free number at (855) 200-8785 (when calling from outside the United States, use (734) 477-6022).  Travelers can also visit Conlin Travel's office at 3270 Washtenaw Avenue in Ann Arbor for assistance.

"In FY 2014, the university saved over $200,000 in airfare by purchasing through Conlin Travel," said Becky.  Using the travel agency allows U-M to take advantage of Edge Points, a special program offered by Delta that can save money if a traveler's ticket has to be changed in some way or can't be used before it expires."  The Edge Points Program, by way of example, could save a traveler up to $300 if a change to an international ticket is made.

Conlin Travel's focus on providing exemplary customer service is particularly appreciated by units across the university, all of which have special and diverse travel needs. "I've been using Conlin Travel regularly since attending a conference last year and frankly don't believe I could do my job without their help. It's much easier for me to work with Conlin Travel and let them handle the travel details, than it would be for me to do this work on my own while handling all the other event logistics," said Todd Stuart, events manager at the School of Information.

If your department is interested in learning more about the benefits of using Conlin Travel, please contact Procurement Services to schedule an on-site visit. Conlin Travel offers a variety of travel-related services to help university travelers and travel arrangers plan business trips.   More information about Conlin Travel.

Employee spotlight:  Ted Eisenhut


Meet Ted Eisenhut, a commodity manager in Procurement Services.  Ted has been an employee at the university for nearly five years, primarily leading the Technology Procurement team.

Ted and his team are responsible for the university-wide procurement of hardware, software, and professional services.  The team also supports unit-level procurement efforts such as managing competitive bids and contract negotiations.

As a member of the Procurement Services Lead Team, Ted--and his colleagues on the lead team--play a key role in the department's ongoing efforts to secure great pricing for the university community, provide exemplary customer service, and make the buying experience as easy as possible.  Prior to joining the university, Ted spent 23 years at Mercedes-Benz AG as Procurement Manager, Americas where he was responsible for Procurement and Business Travel Management in North, Central, and South America.

"The part of my job that I enjoy the most is meeting and working with our customers across the campus and health system.  They are incredibly talented and motivated folks, committed to the mission of the university.  Our role is to use our commodity and business expertise and support our customers so they can concentrate on what they do best, namely world class research, health care, and educating tomorrow's leaders." 

Ted grew up in upstate New York, and spent the first 15 years of his career in New England and the Metro New York Region.  He moved to Michigan in 2000 as a result of the Daimler-Chrysler merger and now lives in Brighton with his wife and three daughters.  When not at work, Ted can usually be found on the golf course or in his garage brewing craft beers.  He can be reached at eisenhut@umich.edu or (734) 615-9240.

New team members

Over the past few months, several new hires have joined Procurement Services:

Print and Professional Services - Shukri Osman, Associate Procurement Agent and Holly Kubiak-Squashic, Procurement Agent
General Goods and Services - Jessica Ritchie-Smola, Procurement Agent
Technology (IT) - Deanna Trinkle, Procurement Agent
Research - Kelly Pavlica, Procurement Agent

Please join us in welcoming these new team members!

ALERT:  Exclude PHI from expense reports

To comply with the federal government's Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Protected Health Information (PHI) cannot be included when reconciling your PCard transactions.  PHI is generally defined as any information--spoken, written, or recorded--that concerns the health of an individual or identifies that person in some way (e.g., name, Social Security Number, etc.,).

If you do use your PCard to pay for healthcare-related expenses for a patient or client, the information submitted to Concur, the university's travel and expense system, should not include any PHI.  All PHI on receipts or other documentation should be redacted prior to uploading the information to Concur when completing your expense report.  Failure on the part of the PCard holder or approver to comply with this requirement will result in  the cancellation of the PCard.

Read the emails that were sent to PCard approvers and holders about PHI.

Corrective steps to follow if PHI has inadvertently been uploaded to Concur.

Contact us

Please contact us with any feedback, comments, questions, or concerns at (734) 764-8212 or procurement.services@umich.edu.  We'd love to hear from you!


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