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Procurement Services

Information for Bidders

All University of North Florida (UNF) solicitations are made upon and subject to the following conditions, if applicable, unless otherwise noted in the Solicitation:

University Demographics / Entity Status

The University of North Florida is a public university in Jacksonville, Florida. Located between Jacksonville’s beaches and downtown, UNF is set on a beautiful 1,381-acre campus surrounded by nature.

Focused on student success, UNF has an annual enrollment of about 17,000 and graduates more than 4,000 students each year. The University offers small class sizes and individualized attention, strong job placement, a welcoming environment and active student life, and is known for providing students with transformational learning experiences — research with faculty, community-based learning or studying abroad, which UNF students do at twice the national average. UNF has more than 200 student clubs and organizations as well as 19 athletic teams and participates in Division I of the NCAA. 

UNF consistently ranks high for quality and value, and is recognized nationally by U.S. News & World Report as a Top Public institution. The University holds the prestigious Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation, a designation held by only 5% of universities in the U.S., and numerous other distinguished rankings.

A member institution of the State University System of Florida, UNF is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award baccalaureate, master's and doctoral degrees.

At the University of North Florida, we ignite a passion for learning and discovery through transformational education in a supportive environment that leads students to rewarding careers and lifelong success. Our beautiful campus is a hub for talent development, relevant research and community engagement, where we enrich lives and fuel the economic and overall prosperity of Northeast Florida and beyond.

Our values are what bind us together. It is what we hold dear as an institution, what we aspire to be and what we expect of one another. Our values are what attract students, faculty and staff to our campus. They reflect how we impact our community, and more importantly, why we do what we do. Our values represent our character as an institution — and as individuals. Our values are who we are.

  • Accountability
  • Integrity
  • Excellence
  • Civility
  • Culture of Care

View UNF's Strategic Plan for 2023-28. 

Use of Agreement by Other Agencies

It is the intent that any agreement resulting from an UNF solicitation be available for use to all units within the University of North Florida, any other educational institution or governmental entity including the State of Florida, its agencies and political subdivisions, counties, cities and any university within or outside the State of Florida State University System. Each entity using such agreement shall do so independently of UNF and shall be solely responsible for its own purchases.

The University reserves the right to add and/or delete elements, or to change any elements of the coverage and participation, at any time without prior notification and without liability of any kind or amount.


Acknowledgment of Designated Contact/ Cone of Silence

From the date of the initial publication of a solicitation until the protest period has expired and a contract is awarded, all communication relating to the solicitation shall be sent to UNF Procurement Services. 

All other communication to UNF or any UNF Employee, Supplier, or Board Member regarding a Solicitation is prohibited. UNF may disqualify any Respondent who makes or causes to be made, directly or indirectly, any improper communication. Nothing contained in this paragraph prohibits UNF personnel from initiating contact with a Respondent and subsequent communication related thereto for the purpose of obtaining additional information that is relevant to the solicitation.


All types of agreements entered into by the University, regardless of what they may be called, for the procurement of materials, services, construction or the disposal of materials. The meaning of agreement or contract is interchangeable.


The final acceptance of a response from a Respondent; the presentation of a purchase agreement or contract to a Supplier.

Best Value

A procurement method that emphasizes value over price, or an assessment of the return that can be achieved over the useful life of the item, e.g., the best combination of quality, service, time, price. 


The response submitted by a bidder to an Invitation to Bid (ITB) or a response to any solicitation. The term "Bid" may also be used to describe a solicitation.

Bid Portal

The UNF Procurement Services website for posting information about upcoming, completed, and current solicitations the University is conducting.


A supplier who submits a bid in response to an Invitation to Bid (ITB), or other formal solicitation type where price is the primary factor in the evaluation process for award determination. May be used in place of Proposer or Respondent. 

Customer or Client

Unless otherwise implied by the context of the specific provision within a solicitation, "Customer" means a customer or client of the Supplier other than the University.

Formal Competitive Solicitation

A competitive solicitation (ITB, ITN, RFP, or RFQ) for commodities or services that require a formal sealed bid, response, proposal, public opening, and/or other formalities. Generally used for purchases greater than UNF’s current competitive solicitation threshold.

Lowest Responsive and Responsible Bidder

The Bidder who fully complied with all bid requirements and whose past performance, reputation, and financial capability are deemed acceptable, and who has offered the most advantageous pricing or cost-benefit, based on the criteria stipulated in the bid documents.


Obligatory, required by order, a provision that may not be waived.

Mandatory Requirement (Condition)

A condition that may apply to a solicitation that is established in the scope of work/specifications or other governing document that must be met without alteration. Not meeting a mandatory requirement may be grounds for the disqualification of a response.

Mandatory Site Visit

Visit to the actual location where the contract is to be performed by potential Suppliers, on the date and time specified in the solicitation, to become familiar with site conditions. May be held in conjunction with a pre-response, pre-bid, or pre-proposal conference. Must be attended by a representative of each Suppliers company. Respondents not in attendance will be deemed non-responsive and will not be evaluated or considered for award. May also be referred to as a Mandatory Site Tour, Mandatory Site Inspection or Mandatory Walk-Through.

May, Might, Should

Indicates something that is not mandatory but permissible, recommended, or desirable.

Must, Shall, Will

Denotes the imperative or mandatory in contract clauses or specifications/statements of work. Also indicates a legal condition required to occur before a prescribed consequence will happen.

Non-Responsive (Bid)

A response to a solicitation that does not conform to the mandatory or essential requirements contained in the solicitation.


A response to a solicitation that, if accepted, would bind the offeror to honor what was submitted.


A generic term that refers to a supplier that submits an offer in response to a solicitation. See also: Proposer, Respondent, Bidder.

Pre-Bid/ Pre-Proposal/ Pre-Response Conference (Meeting)

A meeting held by the procurement professional with potential bidders/proposers/respondents prior to the opening of the solicitation for the purpose of answering questions, clarifying ambiguities, and responding to general issues.


An offer to provide goods or services in response to a Request for Proposals (RFP) or any other solicitation. A proposal may be made verbally or in writing and may or may not be in response to a solicitation. A proposal includes any and all supplemental offers or information not explicitly requested within the solicitation.


A person or supplier who submits a proposal in response to a Request for Proposal (RFP) or other solicitation. May be used in place of Bidder or Respondent.

Qualified Bidder

A bidder determined by Procurement Services to meet the minimum standards of business competence, reputation, financial ability, and product/service quality. See also: Responsible Bidder/Proposer/Offeror.


An offer in response to an informal or formal purchasing process that solicits pricing information from one or several sources.


Same as Bid, Proposal, or Quote.

Respondent or Responder

A person or entity who submits a response to a Request for Qualifications (RFQ), Request for Information (RFI), or other solicitation. May be used interchangeably with Bidder or Proposer.

Responsible Bidder/Proposer/Offeror

A supplier with the integrity and reliability as well as the financial and technical capacity to perform the requirements of a solicitation and subsequent contract. See also: Qualified Bidder.

Responsive Bid/Proposal/Offer

A bid, proposal, or offer that fully conforms in all material respects to the solicitation and all of its requirements, including all form and substance.

Site Visit

Visit to the actual location where the contract is to be performed by potential bidders or proposers to become familiar with site conditions. May be held in conjunction with a pre-bid or pre-proposal conference. May also be referred to as a Site Tour, Site Inspection or Walk-Through.


An Invitation to Bid (ITB), Invitation to Negotiate (ITN), Request for Information (RFI), Request for Proposals (RFP), Request for Qualifications (RFQ), Request for Quotes, telephone calls, emails or any document used to obtain bids, proposals, quotes or responses for the purpose of entering into a contract.

Successful Vendor

Any entity who is awarded a contract resulting from a  solicitation.


A person or business that provides goods or services or any entity that submits a timely response to a competitive solicitation. May be referred to as Vendor, Contractor, or Consultant.

Supplier Portal

Online portal that allows for the electronic registration of new suppliers and the ability for registered suppliers to access and update their profile as needed.

University or UNF

The University of North Florida Board of Trustees, the public body corporate of the University.


Same as Supplier.


The UNF Procurement Services website at

Proposal Preparation & Submission Instructions

Vendor's Understanding of the Solicitation

In responding to a solicitation, the Supplier accepts full responsibility to understand the solicitation in its entirety and in detail, including making any inquires to the University as necessary to gain such understanding. Questions regarding the terms, conditions or specifications of solicitation documents should be written and submitted in accordance with the directions provided no later than the stated deadline for questions.

Original Document

UNF Procurement Services shall retain the proposal and all related terms and conditions, exhibits and other attachments in original form, in an archival copy. Any modification of these in the Supplier's submission is grounds for immediate disqualification.

University Provides Information in Good Faith without Liability

All information provided by the University in the solicitation is offered in good faith. Individual items are subject to change at any time. The University makes no certification that any item is without error. The University is not responsible or liable for use of any information or for any claims based on the information.

Questions, Communications and Inquiries between the University and Suppliers

The University has no obligation to furnish addenda by any other means than posting to its website. The University may not respond to any questions/requests for clarification that require an addendum after the date identified in the solicitation document. Suppliers are not entitled to rely upon communications from the University except as provided by the University in writing.

Pricing and/or Revenue Proposal

Suppliers shall indicate pricing and/or revenue offers in the appropriate spaces and/or areas provided in the solicitation document.

The University may presume and hold as the Supplier's final offer all pricing and/or revenue offerings, whether stated as amounts or percentages, and/or whether or not offered on an all-or-none basis, if not specified by the SUpplier. The University may accept or reject, in part or entirely, the Supplier's pricing and/or revenue offerings when such offerings are not on an all-or-none basis. The University prohibits the changing of pricing and/or revenue proposals after the initial bid opening/ proposal closing date and time.

If the solicitation process involves negotiations, during the negotiation phase, favorable changes in pricing and/or revenue offers will be considered and/or expected. Unless otherwise specifically proposed by the Supplier, the University reserves the right to hold such pricing and/or revenue proposal as effective for the entire intended contract term. The University may prescribe the manner and method by which pricing and/or revenue offerings shall be communicated in the Supplier's response. The University may reject any response in which the pricing and/or revenue offering does not conform to such prescribed manner and method.

Revisions to the Solicitation

The University may revise any part of the solicitation for any reason by issuing addenda. The University will communicate additional information and addenda to the solicitation by posting them on the Bid Portal. Suppliers are responsible for the information contained in such addenda. The University is under no obligation to communicate such addenda to Suppliers other than posting to the Bid Portal. The University may determine whether an addendum will be considered as part of the solicitation and/or as part of any contract resulting therefrom. The University shall reject Supplier's responses to addenda if such responses are received after the bid opening/proposal closing date and time.

Attention to Terms and Conditions

Suppliers are cautioned to thoroughly understand and comply with all matters covered under the University's Terms and Conditions, Information for Bidders, and specific solicitation instructions. Questions regarding the terms, conditions or specifications of the solicitation document should be written and submitted in accordance with the solicitation instructions no later than the stated deadline for questions.

Responses that are contingent upon any changes to the stated terms and conditions and/or information for bidders may be deemed to be non-responsive and may be rejected by the University at its sole discretion and render the Supplier ineligible for evaluation or award. When there are no stated exceptions in the proposal it shall be assumed that the Supplier will comply with the requirements without qualification and may not re-negotiate contract terms if awarded.

Required Signature

The University may reject any Supplier's response if it is not fully completed and signed with legal authority where indicated.

Authority to Negotiate

If negotiations are involved, company negotiators must enter the negotiations with authority to bind. The University reserves the right to immediately terminate negotiations with any company whose representative is not empowered to, or who will not, make decisions during the negotiation session. The University may elect not to solicit a best and final offer from any Supplier whose representative(s) have been unable or unwilling to commit to decisions reached during the verbal negotiation process.

Collusion Prohibited

In connection with the solicitation, Supplier collusion with other Suppliers or employees thereof, or with any employee of the University, is prohibited and may, at University's option, result in Supplier disqualification and/or cancellation of award. Any attempt by the Supplier to subvert or skirt the principles of open and fair competition may result in Supplier disqualification and/or cancellation of award.

Conflict of Interest

All Suppliers of the University are subject to the provisions of §112, Fla. Stat. Suppliers shall disclose the name of any officer, partner, director, proprietor or agent of Supplier who is, or whose spouse or child is, an employee of the University. Further, all Suppliers shall disclose the name of any University employee who owns, or whose spouse or child owns, directly or indirectly, an interest of 5 percent (5%) or more in the Supplier's firm or any of its branches. Suppliers shall ensure that no material conflict of interest exists between or among the Supplier, the University and any other party to the business conducted with the University. The University reserves the right to determine the materiality of such conflict and to decide whether or not Supplier disqualification and/or cancellation shall result.

Corrections, Changes, and Providing Information on Forms within the Response

Suppliers shall ensure that an authorized individual initials each correction using pen and ink. Suppliers shall use pen and ink in providing information directly on pages, or copies thereof, contained within the response.

Bonding Requirements

The University may set bonding requirements for Solicitation Security, Payment & Performance, and/or Solicitation Protest in accordance with BOG Regulation 18.003.


Supplier shall comply with the Copeland "Anti-Kickback" Act (18 U.S.C. 874), as supplemented by Department of Labor regulations (29 CFR part 3). The Act provides that Vendor is prohibited from inducing, by any means, any person employed in the construction, completion or repair of public work, to give up any part of the compensation to which he is otherwise entitled.

Response Submission and Subsequent Opening

Responses must be submitted electronically through the UNF Bid Portal as set forth in the solicitation document on or before the specified date and time. Late submissions will not be accepted by the UNF Bid Portal.  The University will not accept responses received in-person, by mail, by fax, or by email. The University shall, at the specified opening date and time, open all responses that are otherwise in order. The University may allow interested parties to attend such opening for purposes of identifying which Suppliers have responded. The University will make no immediate decision at such time.

The University will hold unopened any responses received outside of the UNF Bid Portal and will not consider such proposals. The University reserves the right to retain or dispose of such unopened responses at its discretion; however, the University may return such responses to their Suppliers at such Supplier's request and at no cost or expense whatsoever to the University.

If only one response is received, Procurement Services may delay the opening in order to determine why other Suppliers did not respond and/or to encourage other Suppliers to respond.

Each response package submitted must clearly show the respondent's company name, contact information, and solicitation number. Each proposer is fully responsible for ensuring that its response is timely received and shall assume the risk of non-delivery.

More than one response from an individual, firm, partnership, corporation or association under the same or different names will not be considered. Reasonable grounds for believing that a respondent is involved in more than one response for the same work will be cause for rejection of all responses in which such offerers are believed to be involved.

Proposal Costs

The University is not liable in any manner or to any extent for any cost or expense incurred by any Supplier in the preparation, submission, presentation, or any other action connected with proposing or otherwise responding to the solicitation. Such exemption from liability applies whether such costs are incurred directly by the Supplier or indirectly through the Supplier's agents, employees, assigns or others, whether related or not, to the Supplier.

Electronic Responses Required; In-Person Delivery, Mail, Faxes, or Emails Not Accepted

Responses delivered in-person, by mail, by fax, or by email will be deemed non-responsive. Responses must be uploaded to the UNF Bid Portal by the date and time identified in the solicitation.

Withdrawal of Response

Suppliers may withdraw their response any time prior to the bid opening/proposal closing date. Suppliers may request to withdraw their responses after the bid opening/proposal closing date and time prior to selection and Statement of Intent to Award. The University shall have sole authority to grant or deny such a request. In the event the University grants such a request, it may withhold issuing future solicitations to such Suppliers.

University's Right to Use Suppliers's Ideas/Proprietary Information

If the Supplier needs to submit proprietary information with its response, the Supplier shall ensure that it is submitted in a separate document from the original response and that it is clearly designated and conspicuously labeled as such. Selection or rejection of the response shall not affect the University's right of use; provided, however, that the University will, in good faith and to the extent allowed by law, honor the confidentiality of any Supplier information that is clearly designated and conspicuously labeled as proprietary. Supplier information labeled proprietary shall be maintained as confidential subject to limitations in Florida and Federal law, including the Florida Public Records law and the order of any court of competent jurisdiction. Pricing information cannot be considered proprietary. The University shall not be liable in any manner, or in any amount, for disclosing proprietary information if such information is not clearly so designated and conspicuously so labeled. The University shall likewise not be liable if it did not know, or could not have reasonably known, that such information was proprietary.

Contractual Intent/Right to Suspend, Terminate and/or Recommence Solicitation Process

The University intends to contract with one or more Supplier whose response(s) are considered to be in the best interests of the University. However, the University may suspend and/or terminate a solicitation process at any time up to Statement of Intent to Award, without prior notice, and without liability of any kind or amount. Further, the University reserves the right to commence one or more subsequent solicitation processes seeking the same or similar products or services covered hereunder.

Effective Period of Responses

Under a solicitation, the University shall hold that Suppliers' responses to a solicitation shall remain in effect for a period of 180 days following the bid opening/proposal closing date in order to allow time for evaluation, approval and award of the contract. Any Supplier who does not agree to this condition shall specifically communicate in its response such disagreement to the University along with any proposed alternatives. The University may accept or reject such proposed alternatives without further notification or explanation.

Errors and Omissions in Supplier's Proposals

The University may accept or reject any Supplier's response, in part or in its entirety, if such proposal contains errors, omissions or other problematic information. The University may decide upon the materiality of such errors, omissions or other problematic information.

Apparently Conflicting Information Obtained by Supplier

The University is under no obligation whatsoever to honor or observe any information that may conflict, or appear to conflict, with any provision herein, regardless of whether such information be obtained from any office, agent or employee of the University. Such information shall not affect the Supplier's risks or obligations under an agreement resulting from a solicitation.

Rejection of Supplier Counter-offers, Stipulations and Other Exceptions

Any Supplier exception, stipulation, counter-offer, requirement, and/or other alternative term or condition shall be considered rejected unless specifically accepted, in writing, by the University and thereafter incorporated into any contract resulting from a solicitation.

Determination of, and Information Concerning, Supplier's Qualifications

The University reserves the right to determine whether a Supplier has the ability, capacity and resources necessary to fully perform any contract resulting from a solicitation. The University may request from Supplier information it deems necessary to evaluate such Suppliers' qualifications and capacities to deliver the products and/or services sought hereunder. The University may reject any Supplier's response for which such information has been requested but which the Supplier has not provided. Such information may include, but is not limited to:

  • Financial resources
  • Personnel resources
  • Physical resources
  • Internal financial, operating, quality assurance and other similar controls and policies
  • Resumes of key executives, officers and other personnel pertinent to the requirements of the solicitation
  • Customer / Client references
  • Disclosure of complaints or pending actions, legal or otherwise, against the Supplier.

Prohibition Against Considering Social, Political or Ideological Interests In State University Procurement -- F.S. 1010.04:  Vendors are hereby notified of the provisions of Section 1010.04, Florida Statutes, that the University is not permitted to request documentation of or consider a Vendor's social, political, or ideological interests when determining if the Vendor is a responsible VendorVendors are further notified that the University is not permitted to give preference to a Vendor based on the Vendor’s social, political, or ideological interests. 

Selection, Negotiation, Additional Information

Although the University reserves the right to negotiate with any Supplier(s) to arrive at its final decision and/or to request additional information or clarification on any matter included in the response, it also reserves the right to select the most responsive Supplier(s) without further discussion, negotiation or prior notice. The University may presume that any response is a best-and-final offer.

Pre-Award Presentations

The University reserves the right to require presentations from the highest ranked Supplier(s) in which they may be asked to provide information in addition to that provided in their responses. Such presentations may include discussions relating to proprietary information, ability to perform and specific provisions of a Supplier's response. Presentations are not public meetings.

Pre-Award Negotiations

The University reserves the right to negotiate prior to award with the highest ranked Supplier(s) for the purpose of addressing the matters set forth in the following list, which may not be exclusive:

  • Resolving minor difference and typographical errors
  • Terms and conditions
  • Clarifying necessary details and responsibilities
  • Emphasizing important issues and points
  • Receiving assurances from Suppliers
  • Obtaining the best pricing and/or revenue agreement

Statement of Intent to Award

A Statement of Intent to Award will be posted for review by interested parties on Procurement Services Bid Portal and will remain posted for a period of 72 hours. The University has no obligation to furnish this information by any other means than posting to this Bid Portal.


Any Supplier/interested person who is disputing the specifications or is adversely affected by a decision or intended decision concerning this competitive solicitation or contract award and who wants to protest such specifications, decision or intended decision shall file a protest in compliance with the University of North Florida regulations. Failure to file a protest or post the bond or other security in accordance with UNF Regulation 13.0010R shall constitute a waiver of protest proceedings.

Supplier's Need to Use Proprietary Rights of the University

All information proprietary to the University and disclosed by the University to any Supplier shall be held in confidence by the Supplier and shall be used only for purposes of the Supplier's performance under any contract resulting from this solicitation.

Open Meetings Requirement

Pursuant to §286.0113, Fla. Stat., evaluation committee meetings are not open to proposers or other members of the public when negotiation strategies are discussed, any portion of the meeting involves negotiation with a vendor, at which a vendor makes an oral presentation, or at which a vendor answers questions.

A complete recording (i.e. audio recording or transcript) is made of these closed meetings. These recordings are exempt from disclosure under the public records law (see Section 4.33) until Procurement Services posts Statement of Intento to Award or until 30 days after final sealed replies are all opened, whichever occurs first. If all sealed replies are rejected, the recordings remain exempt until Procurement Services posts a Statement of Intent to Award concerning the reissued solicitation or until Procurement Services withdraws the reissued solicitation. The exemption period cannot exceed 12 months after the initial Procurement Services notice rejecting all replies.

Preference for Florida Based Vendors for Purchases of Personal Property

Pursuant to §287.084, Fla. Stat., a preference shall be provided to vendors with a principal place of business in Florida. If the highest ranked responsible and responsive reply is from a vendor whose principal place of business is outside of Florida and is in a state or political subdivision thereof that grants a preference for the same purchase to a vendor in such state or political subdivision, as applicable, then the University shall grant the same preference to the Florida based vendor with the highest ranked responsible and responsive reply received pursuant to this solicitation.

For vendors whose principal place of business is outside of Florida, such vendors must, at the time of submitting its reply, provide a written opinion from a licensed attorney in its state specifying (a) the preference(s) granted by the state or political subdivision and (b) how the preference(s) is/are calculated. An Attestation of Principal Place of Business, must be completed and returned with your response.