ALC Computer and Tech Purchases Policy and Procedure

Policy and procedures for initial and subsequent purchases of computer and technological devices for members of the department of Asian Languages and Cultures.

A PDF version of the policy is available here.

ALC Computer and Tech Purchases Policy and Procedures

Reason for Policy: ALC is committed to being good stewards of university funds and resources. This policy is intended to provide guidance on the purchase of IT devices within the department and ensure department practices are in alignment with college, campus, and state policies.

Scope: All IT device purchases, including but not limited to computers, laptops, tablets, scanners, printers, webcams, external hard drives, and other similar devices made using UW administered funding sources, including research funds.


  • All equipment and service purchases are to be used exclusively for business purposes that benefit the institution and its mission of teaching, research, and service. Any benefit to the individual should only be incidental.
  • It is generally assumed that IT devices will be used on-campus. If a device will be primarily used off-campus, additional approvals will be required.
  • Standard set-up and configuration
    • The standard workstation set-up for employees includes a laptop computer, monitor, keyboard, mouse, and a dock or dongle to connect to the monitors. Employees may also request a webcam and/or headphones with or without a built-in microphone.
    • The department will usually defer to LSS Techzone on the standard configuration for tech devices, including peripheral devices.
  • Purchases beyond standard set-up and standard configuration
    • Any technology purchased beyond the standard set-up or standard configuration using department funds requires justification and must be pre-approved. For example, if a higher processor and other enhancements are requested in order to perform video editing, the need for video editing as a professional responsibility must be clearly explained.
    • Faculty or Staff who use their own research or start-up funds are free to purchase a computer that exceeds the standard configuration.
  • Faculty use of own start-up and research funds
    • New faculty are to use their start-up funds for initial IT purchases.
    • Faculty are strongly encouraged to use their own research funds for IT purchases when possible.
  • Replacement of devices
    • Computers will be eligible for replacement on a five-year cycle, if using department funds. Otherwise, faculty can use research funds at any time to make IT purchases, in compliance with grant/award requirements.
    • If a person has more than one computer, the department will only purchase a replacement when the newest computer is due for replacement and will not fund the replacement of the older computers.
    • Essential peripherals can be replaced if they no longer function well. Essential peripherals are generally limited to mouse (or other pointing device), dongle or hub, keyboard, and monitor.
    • If a device is having multiple or repetitive tech issues and/or breakdowns, department funds may be available for a replacement on a case-by-case basis. If department funds are used, they can only be used to cover up to the cost of a standard device and configuration and other funds must be used to cover the rest of the expense.
  • Reallocation of devices
    • For items purchased with department funds, the department may request that it be returned to the department for repurposing when a replacement has been purchased.
    • Items purchased with research funds may be retained as long as the person is employed with the department. However, faculty are strongly encouraged to give IT devices to the department once they are replaced by newer equipment or if the device will no longer be used primarily for university business, allowing the department to repurpose the device.
    • Reallocated devices should be in good condition and performing well. Repurposing of devices will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
  • Return of items
    • When business purposes are completed or terminated, all University-owned equipment and software must be returned to the department for reallocation or proper disposal.


  • IT devices purchased with start-up or research funds
    • The requestor contacts LSS Techzone and work with that unit to identify a device that meets their requirements.
    • The requestor completes the L&S Prior Approval for Purchase of Personal Computer and Other Electronic Devices Form, including requestor name and signature.
    • The requestor sends the completed Form to the department’s Financial Specialist.
    • The Financial Specialist will coordinate the purchase with LSS TechZone.
    • Purchases will be shipped to a campus address.
  • IT device purchases with department funds
    • Computers due for 5-year replacement
      • The department will contact everyone in the department who is eligible for a replacement computer in the department on a yearly basis.
      • The Financial Specialist will work with eligible department members and LSS Techzone to identify standard configuration devices available for purchase.
      • If the requestor requires something beyond the standard configuration, they need to submit a justification via email to the Financial Specialist and have LSS Techzone confirm the justification.
      • Once a device has been identified, the requestor must complete L&S Prior Approval for Purchase of Personal Computer and Other Electronic Devices Form, including requestor name and signature.
      • The requestor sends the filled-out form to the ALC Financial Specialist, who will route the form for approvals and work with TechZone to make the purchase.
    • Computer peripherals, either new or as a replacement
      • Requests for new or replacement peripheral devices should be sent to the Financial Specialist.
      • The department will first check whether there is an existing option already in the department that can be repurposed for the requestor.
      • The requestor and the department will work with LSS Techzone to identify standard configuration for the item and options for purchase.
      • Items under $50 require no additional approval and the Financial Specialist may make the purchase immediately.
      • Items or total purchases over $50 must be brought to the chair for approval.
    • Computer replacements before 5-years
      • Requests for a replacement computer before the five-year replacement date must have a written justification and be supported by input from LSS Techzone.
      • The requestor should email their request and justification to the chair, including by cc the Financial Specialist and Department Administrator.
      • The request may need to go to the department Budget Committee for final approval.
      • If approved, the requestor will follow the same procedure for purchase of computers due for five-year replacement.
  • IT devices to be used primarily off-campus
    • Devices that will be primarily used off-campus will require the additional step of L&S approval on the L&S Prior Approval for Purchase of Personal Computer and Other Electronic Devices Form before the purchase can be initiated.

Policy References:

Keywordstech, purchase, computer, device, policy   Doc ID117074
OwnerJennifer H.GroupALC KB
Created2022-03-02 11:40:21Updated2022-03-02 11:50:30
SitesAsian Languages and Cultures
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