Welcome to Columbus State University's online submission portal!
The Office of General Counsel, in concert with the University Information and Technology Services Department, developed this online process in order to make contract submissions seamless, straightforward and intuitive. Some of the benefits are, as follows:
- Individualized design - the online submission form was designed to be consistent with the university's procurement, UITS, and contract review guidelines.
- Automated workflows - tired of schlepping your contract to multiple reviewers in multiple locations around campus? Just make sure you input the correct information, answer all the questions accurately and the contract will be routed automatically to required reviewers.
- Email Notifications - different types of contracts require different types of reviewers. As part of the automated workflow process, required reviewers will receive notifications via email that a contract requires their review and approval. With just a click, the reviewer will find all the information about the contract necessary to appropriately assess whether to approve or deny, including, of course, the contract documents.
- Real-time Data - haven't received your contract and don't know what's holding it up. Call us and we'll let you know exactly where the contract is in the approval process.
- Integration with DocuSign - based on the University's recent purchase of DocuSign, the entire contract cycle has been digitized. Moving forward, contracts approved via the online submission portal will be routed initially for execution to the vendor/contractor. Upon signing, the contract will automatically be routed back to the university official authorized to sign on behalf of CSU. The fully executed agreement will then be routed back to the vendor , as well as any other relevant individuals identified by the vendor or CSU.
Even with this new and improved methodology, contracts will still need time to get approved (particularly if the contract needs to be edited by the OGC and the proposed changes approved by the contractor); nevertheless, the contract approval cycle should prove to be shorter in duration and much more efficient, allowing all of us to devote time and energy to other endeavors.
For general questions about the contract approval and routing process, please refer to the Contract Approval Policy which can be found on the OGC's home page. It contains all the details that govern the contract approval process, such as what constitutes a contract, who is authorized to sign a contract, which departments must review contracts, and why Georgia law prohibits certain provisions from being included in contracts executed on the university's behalf.
A few things to consider when submitting contracts for approval
- Only a limited number of individuals are authorized to sign contracts on behalf of the University. The President's Delegation of Authority identifies those individuals who are authorized to sign contracts on behalf of the University.
- Unauthorized contracts are not binding on the University. To the extent an individuals signs or executes a contract without the requisite authority, he or she could be held personally responsible for any resulting liability.
- Columbus State University is a unit of the University System of Georgia; it is not legally distinct or independent from the USG. Accordingly, contracts submitted for approval should always be in the name of the "University System of Georgia by and on behalf of Columbus State University."
- Contracts should be submitted well in advance of the expected effective date, at least 14 days, and sometimes longer. Contracts that probably will take longer to review are, as follows:
- Vendor-created contracts typically contain provisions that are contrary to Georgia law. Removing those terms from the contract is a negotiated process that takes time and effort on behalf of the OGC. For a list of prohibited contract terms, click here!
- Contracts that exceed $24,999.99 must be, in most instances, competitively bid, and thus, must be coordinated and administered by the University's Procurement Department. Whether a contract is excepted from the competitive bid requirements should be addressed to the Procurement Department.