Materials Management Functionalities

Q:How does the "shopping cart" work?

A:The shopping cart is used to request goods or services. It takes the place of the paper requisition or whatever methods your agency now uses to request the purchase of goods or services.

The shopping cart is built as a web interface, for access by remote users. Basically, the shopping cart is a three-step wizard-type process:

  1. Choose the type of procurement that is required,
  2. Fill in the details for the procurement, and,
  3. Place the order. (Note: See the question/answer immediately below.)

There are several ways to select the items you want to buy.

  • Select goods and services from catalogs or contracts,
  • Enter a description of your requirements
  • For recurring orders, use previous shopping carts or templates provided by the purchasing department.

Q:Do I actually purchase an item while in the shopping cart?

A:No. Shopping Cart begins the purchase process, but does not immediately send the order to a vendor. Workflow within SCEIS sends your purchase request to the proper person(s) for approval, before bidding takes place or (for an item with no bidding requirement) a purchase order is issued, and before the order is placed by the agency buyer.

Q:What are shopping cart templates? Who creates them?

A:Templates are created for recurring procurement processes, as a time saver. They can be accessed by requestors using the shopping cart. Ordinarily, a buyer will create templates in the shopping cart. However, template creation involves security, and it will be the agency’s decision as to who is given authorization to create templates.

Q:As a requestor or shopping cart creator, how do I check on contracts and bids?

A:The shopping cart requestor has the authorization to “check status” of a request, to view follow-on documents that have been created by the buyer. After the requisition follow-on document, other follow-on documents include a bid solicitation document, a vendor response document, a purchase order document, and a contract document.

Q:Will I have DocBuilder capability?

A:If you have been given security as a buyer, you will have DocBuilder capability.

Document Builder is an application in SAP that supplies "boilerplate" language for terms and conditions in solicitations, purchase orders and contracts.

ITMO (Information Technology Management Office) and MMO (Materials Management Office) have spent many years developing standard clauses (terms and conditions) that are added to solicitation documents and become part of a contract. They have also created standard language for purchase orders.

Q:How will I secure a new NIGP code in a timely manner?

A:If a new Code is needed from NIGP, the agency will contact SCEIS, which centrally maintains the purchase and posting of NIGP codes. SCEIS downloads the new NIGP Code to SCEIS, extending it to all agencies.

SCEIS is developing a procedures manual which will include the turn-around time in collaboration with NIGP. The need for an additional NIGP Code should not delay the procurement process, however. The bidding process can begin without the new NIGP Code, which can be added (or changed) during purchase order creation.

Q:What do I do if a vendor is not in the system?

A:Encourage the purchasing vendor vendor to register their company using the
SC Online Vendor Registration system. If the vendor has not registered or does not have the technology necessary to register, the agency can register a vendor using the application developed by the Office of the Comptroller General. Contact the Office of the the Comptroller General for further information and access to the application.

For Direct Pay vendors, a W-9 is needed. The Comptroller General's Office reviews the registration requests to verify the required information is provided. A vendor may be blocked until the registration process is complete. If you know of duplicate vendor registrations, please let the Comptroller General's Office know.

Q:Can a vendor have multiple ID numbers?

A:Yes, if the vendor has multiple addresses, the vendor will have multiple ID numbers.

Q:What about when a vendor changes address?

A:For a change-of-address, the vendor should use the online registration system to enter the change. Do NOT set up a new vendor record for a change of address.

Q:What if I don't know the funding information when I am completing the shopping cart?

A:If you don't know the funding stream (account information), enter a "U" in the field "Cost Assignment" tab. The Shopping Cart will route to the designated person in Finance to complete that information.

Q:When are funds actually encumbered?

A:Funds are encumbered when a purchase order is created.

Q:When is "carry out sourcing" used?

A:Carry out sourcing is used by the buyer to create a purchase order, or when a vendor response is needed for a solicitation.

Q:Can I get a list of General Ledger codes in SRM?

A:Currently, the GL code is a default, based on the selection of the NIGP code. The Materials Management Team, along with the Finance Team, plans to revisit the GL codes.

Q:Explain the use of codes for applying tax.

A:SCEIS has a dropdown list with "taxable" codes or "tax exempt" code. The buyer selects the appropriate code for each line item on a purchase order. This can be changed at the Invoice. Use Tax also can be applied to a purchase at Invoice.

Q:Can I get the tax printed on the purchase order?

A:The design for the system is not to have taxes printed on the purchase order, as the vendor is not affected by taxes.  

Q:What supporting documentation for purchases should be scanned for State Auditors?

A:Scan in any supporting document that you think will be requested by the Auditors, and that is not already in the system. It is not necessary to print out a purchase order and then scan it back in.

Q:Should packing slips be scanned?

A:If the packing slip has warranty information on it, it's good practice to scan it. In general, guidelines for such scanning are a business decision by each agency.

Q:How are public bid openings handled, when all bids are received electronically?

A:You still must allow for a public forum at the bid opening, in accordance with Section 11-35-1520 of the SC Consolidated Procurement Code. Each agency may develop its own internal policy on how to handle public bid openings. For example, ITMO prints off the bid tabulation sheet and reads out the vendor name and total in a conference room.

Q:Is a purchase order number specific to each agency, or does the number come from a shared pool?

A:Purchase order numbers are sequential and are shared by all SCEIS agencies.

Q:Why do I not check goods receipt for a blanket purchase order?

A:A blanket purchase order is usually used for services that do not require goods receipts. This allows Accounts Payable to make payments without a good receipt being done. An example would be a repetitive service such as garbage pick-up. This is not to be confused with the blanket purchase agreement, which would require a goods receipt for repetitive goods/services. (Refer to Section 19-445.2100(B) of the SC Consolidated Procurement Code.)

Q:When do I place taxes and shipping?

A:Taxes and shipping (freight) are added during the creation of the purchase order.

Q:Is the shipping cost included in the total amount of the purchase order, or does it show as a separate line item?

A:Shipping or freight is calculated in the total amount of the purchase order. The shipping cost is printed on the purchase order as part of the line item. For example, if the line item cost is $10.00 and the freight (shown with the line item) is $2.00, the total on the purchase order will be $12.00. 

Q:* Is material expensed at goods receipt?

A:Material is not expensed at goods receipt. The expense occurs at time of consumption, when the material is issued from inventory. 

Q:* How do I request a new material be created in SCEIS?

A:Work with your Agency Material Master Liaison (AMML), who will gather your requirements and verify the material does not currently exist in SCEIS. The AMML will in turn work with the Central Material Master Data Team (CMMDT) to set up the material and make it available for use in your plant.

Q:* How do I ensure I will have enough stock on hand to fulfill my regularly-scheduled inventory issues?

A:Safety stock / minimum stock levels will be managed through a process called Material Requirements Planning.

Q:* How do serial numbers get tracked when I issue a sensitive item?

A:If the item has been set up as a serialized material, you will be prompted to enter the serial number of the item you are issuing at time of goods issue. This will remove that item from inventory and will also allow you to track  movement of that item by serial number going forward.