A blanket order is opened by a department to facilitate the purchase of materials or services over a specified period of time, and is used in preference to an order for a specific quantity at a specific price. The blanket order has a description of the materials or services but does not necessarily have a quantity or unit price; for example, “Miscellaneous lab supplies as required”.
To establish a blanket order, a requisition needs to be submitted to Purchasing, requesting an open order for miscellaneous items or services as required. The total dollar amount shown on the requisition will be charged against the initiating department’s available balance. The department may add to this amount, when the original amount has been used, by sending purchasing a note or an e-mail. The directive to increase the encumbrance must come from an authorized signer on the account.
When the blanket order is created, the vendor is mailed the white copy of the purchase order. In order to receive payment for items sold on an open order, the vendor must bill by invoice, noting the initial purchase order number.
In general, the need for a blanket order situation should be reviewed with the Purchasing Department staff, as every situation is likely to present unique problems or conditions. Open orders cannot be carried forward from one fiscal year to the next. A new order must be initiated each fiscal year.