ARIBA is the University's electronic procurement system to manage all ordering, purchasing, receiving, invoicing, sourcing, payments and reporting with a single point of entry. ARIBA provides sellers with the ability to manage catalogs, bids, purchases and invoices, and it provides buyers with the ability to search for suppliers, negotiate savings, procure goods and services, and track their spend.

There are three purchasing methods in ARIBA:

  1. Catalog Purchase Orders

  2. Non-Catalog Purchase Orders

  3. Blanket Purchase Orders​

When to Use 

Catalog Order

Non-Catalog Order

Blanket Purchase Order

  • First choice for buying goods at UW
  • Fastest order method with negotiated contract pricing


  • Items not in a catalog
  • One-Time Purchase
  • Fixed quantities and/or dollar amounts
  • Suppliers unable to convert quotes on their catalog


  • Recurring purchases
  • Variable dollar amounts and/or quantities
  • Goods or services may change over time
  • Adjustable maximum order amount
  • Specific contract start and end dates


Open access, electronic web-based interface provides:

  • Reports and search functionality
  • Links between related transactions (i.e., orders and invoices)
  • Document attachments to reduce paper and help manage record retention
  • History of all activity
  • One central resource for all procurement needs
  • Reduces manual and paper processes
  • Real-time monitoring of spend
  • Provides visibility to department approvals, work flow, and status
  • Automatic email notifications
  • Direct linkage to source documents in ARIBA from MyFD for budget reconciliation
  • Document retention for six years
  • Greater flexibility for split-accounting (e.g., multiple budgets or PCA codes)
  • Allows ordering of tax-exempt Machine and Equipment (M&E)
  • Electronic invoicing (reduces paperwork)
  • Helps with reconciliation & records retention

Best Practices

  • ARIBA is supported through most major browsers, except for Internet Explorer in 64-bit mode and the Edge browser in Microsoft's new Windows 10 operating system.
  • If you are scanning paper records and attaching them in Ariba, you must follow the University Scanning Policy which can be found on the Records Management website.