The University of Virginia is committed to:
- Enhancing successful business relationships between small, minority-owned, women-owned (SWaM), and otherwise disadvantaged business enterprises and through the implementation of programs that will require a consistent and high level of participation from all University schools and departments; and
- Actively seeking goods and services from small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses in support of the Commonwealth’s small, minority-owned, and women-owned (SWaM) program. Supplier diversity provides the University with a significant position of strength in which to support students and contribute to the sustainability of our communities and our organization. We are committed to providing meaningful opportunities for qualified diverse suppliers to compete for our business.
The SWaM program is intended to build an awareness of the University’s supplier diversity efforts and to provide opportunities for small, minority-owned, and women-owned business enterprises. This program is developed not as a response to outside regulatory agencies or mandatory requirements but, rather, as an effort to recognize and support programs which can enhance our community.
UVA's Supplier Diversity Policy Statement
The University of Virginia increases business opportunities for small, minority-owned, and women-owned (SWaM) business enterprises through its supplier diversity program. The University’s commitment is to maximize SWaM participation through the development of mutually beneficial business relationships with such firms. The effort is University-wide (excludes the Medical Center, UVA Bookstores, and University-related Foundations) and includes traditional procurement, contracted services, and subcontracting activities. All schools and departments are responsible for seeking out diverse businesses and taking the steps necessary to assure these businesses receive fair consideration in the economic opportunities available. While the University does not practice set-asides (also known as procurement preferences), it makes every effort to provide opportunities and offer assistance to SWaM suppliers who want to do business with the University.
The Commonwealth's Supplier Diversity Policy
Small and diverse businesses drive our economy and contribute to the fabric of our local communities, our Commonwealth, and our nation. Fostering an environment for entrepreneurial, high-growth companies to succeed leads to job creation for Virginians. Supporting small and diverse businesses is a vital component of that effort.
As our economic base expands, it is imperative that we foster an inclusive procurement environment that creates the broadest opportunity to compete in all supply sectors. The business relationships that are forged from that expanded opportunity can provide value both to the Commonwealth and to the business owners without the relaxation of current purchasing policies and procedures. Competitive opportunities for small and diverse businesses must only be awarded on merit and demonstrated performance and potential for success. Small and diverse businesses across Virginia have demonstrated that, when given the opportunity to compete, they will perform on their own merit.
Further, the Commonwealth recognizes that there are many advantages to maintaining and fostering competition in the supply of goods and services, and believes that such competition can and should be accomplished without granting preferences based on race and/or gender. A robust supplier diversity program stimulates competition as it increases the number of qualified enterprises in the supplier pool — lowering costs and providing better service for all.
The Commonwealth’s Supplier Diversity Objectives:
- Actively, routinely, and directly seek out qualified small and diverse business enterprises that can provide price competitive and high-quality commodities and services.
- Ensure that small and diverse business enterprises are fully aware of the requirements to participate in the Commonwealth’s procurement opportunities.
- Identify commodities and services in which small and diverse businesses are the most competitive and publish such procurement opportunities with extended advance notice.
- Encourage large suppliers to actively mentor and partner with small and diverse businesses.
- Engage and partner with supplier diversity advocacy groups, nonprofits, trade associations, and other state and federal agencies to assist in the development and competitiveness of small and diverse businesses through instructional and outreach activities.
- Ensure that procurement professionals involved in the selection, evaluation and/or approval of suppliers and contractors share the responsibility for the practices stated in this policy.
- Aggressively identify and remove barriers to entry for small and diverse firms.
Let us help you!
We can help prospective suppliers by helping them better understand UVA policies and procedures and by helping them identify potential opportunities. We are proud to serve as a liaison between the diverse supplier community and the UVA community. Don't hesitate to reach out to us if we can be of help!