Centralized PC Purchasing Policy

Statement and Purpose

Table of Contents

All computers purchased by Seattle Pacific University for use by employees to conduct University business, access secured employee networks, or using Confidential Data / Regulated Data must be purchased and managed centrally by the department of Computer & Information Systems (CIS). 

Reason for Policy

This policy is designed to:

  • Ensure Supportability - Device standardization improves CIS's ability to support the University's PC fleet with limited staff. 
  • Reduce Operating Costs - The bulk purchase of standardized equipment reduces technology prices, simplifies maintenance, and significantly reduces the cost of training and support.
  • Cyber Security and Regulatory Compliance- Central management ensures that devices are properly maintained and encrypted to protect the Institution and the privacy of its constituents, ensure business continuity, and comply with state and federal regulations.
  • Manage Inventory - Keeping track of all University computing assets is important for financial planning and fiduciary responsibility.

More information on Faculty and Staff computer deployments can be found on the  Computer Deployment 

Version: 2.0

Effective Date: July 12, 2002
Last Updated:  July 1, 2023

Responsible Office:
Computer & Information Systems
Responsible Executive:  
AVP for Information Technology/CIO 

General Overview

Support Benefits

Computing devices managed in the Central PC Pool have the following benefits:

  • Equipment Upgrades - CIS will upgrade computer equipment on a designated life cycle.
  • Installation of University Software - CIS-managed devices come pre-installed with Microsoft Office. Other applications are available for installation through SPU's Software Center.
  • Full Computer Support
    • Full CIS Helpdesk Support - Email, call in, or drop off computer for technical and user support.
    • Equipment Repair - CIS manages warranty claims and the repair of equipment due to breakage under normal use. 
    • Loaner Equipment - A small pool of spare equipment is available to make sure you have a device to use while yours is being repaired.
  • Data Security - Hard drives of CIS-provided devices are encrypted to protect against data theft. CIS also facilitates the installation of regular security patches and operating system upgrades. 
  • Secure Communications - CIS-managed devices include a secure VPN (virtual private network) connection by default, ensuring your device's online communications to campus resources are private and reliable.

Computers purchased outside of policy guidelines will be treated as a Personal / Un-Managed Device, are blocked from the secured business network and may not access sensitive University resources and data.

Purchasing Equipment

Contact the  /wiki/spaces/CISHD/overview or email  CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu  for assistance with procuring a computer . Your request will be routed to the necessary individuals for approval. 

Faculty/Staff Computers

SPU provides a computer to each faculty and any staff classified as "knowledge workers". A desktop or laptop will be issued at hire. 

When a position becomes vacant, faculty and staff computers must be returned to CIS to be refurbished and re-issued.

Secondary Devices

Some employees may require a second device for their work. Secondary devices must still be managed by CIS, but are funded by the requesting department. Additionally, secondary (tertiary, etc.) device purchases must be approved by a dean, department head or VP, and follow the same add/removal process as Shared Devices.  

Shared Devices

Shared devices used by non-knowledge workers (student employees, adjuncts, etc.) and shared devices that are used as kiosks and conference room computers can be added to the Central PC Purchasing Program for a fee, covered by the department. Schools / departments are responsible for:

  • One-time costs to purchase the computer and any peripherals (the direct cost, plus taxes for the equipment cost).
  • Permanent budget transfer of  $500 per computer for inclusion and support in the Central PC Purchasing Program. This covers repairs and replacement of the device.

Removing a Shared Computer

When you remove a shared computer from the Central PC Purchasing Program, your department will be refunded the original $500 permanent transfer contributed, effective the next fiscal year. The computer being removed must be returned to CIS for resale.  Contact the    /wiki/spaces/CISHD/overview /wiki/spaces/TSS/overview or email  CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu  to remove a funded computer device from the pool.

Purchasing With Grant Funds

New computers purchased with "designated funds", such as external grants, are purchased through CIS. If the computer breaks in a way that is irreparable, is lost or stolen, or at end of life, a new computer will need to be purchased (the direct cost, plus taxes for the equipment) with designated funds. 

  • One-time costs to purchase the computer and any peripherals (the direct cost, plus taxes for the equipment cost).
  • One-time charge for software licensing, currently at $150.00
  • Grant funded devices are not refreshed or upgraded as part of the Central PC Purchasing Program.

When the computer is at its end of life, it must be replaced at the department's expense or it will be treated as a Personal / Un-Managed Device.

Instructional Classroom Podiums

The initial purchase of instructional classroom podium computers must be funded either by the department or the project's capital budget. CIS will provide the podium hardware upgrades for existing classroom podiums using funds from the Student Technology Fee.

Contact the  /wiki/spaces/CISHD/overview with further inquiries.

Academic Computer Labs

Additional computers specifically for student use in classrooms or lab spaces are paid for by different pedagogical funding sources.  Adding a new Academic Lab machine may first require a budget enhancement to CIS.

Contact the CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu with inquiries.  See also: CIS Support for Computer Labs

Device Choice

Device Standardization

The campus standards for computer form factor, operating system, and hardware configuration are used to meet functional requirements, regulatory requirements, ensure long-term support, and equipment durability. While a computer may cost only $1,500 to purchase, the industry average total cost of ownership (software, security, management, etc.) over 5 years is close to $5,000.  Each CIS Technology Support Analyst is responsible for supporting 300+ computers. This volume of devices per person is only possible through management at scale of a uniform fleet of machines. Each exception dramatically increases overall operating expense. 

Mac / PC Options

A variety of Apple Mac and Windows PC options are provided.  See /wiki/spaces/HKB/pages/36571380 for details.

High Performance Options

Device options include high performance configurations. These devices are generally higher cost, which is passed onto the department. See /wiki/spaces/HKB/pages/36571380 for details.

Non-Standard Device Exceptions

Exceptions to device choices require approval from a Dean, VP, Provost, or President. CIS will also charge an assessed fee between $500-$1000, based on required software licenses and labor estimates to support the unique device over its lifespan.

Computer Peripherals and Accessories

Contact CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu with your department budget information and supervisor approval for any peripheral or accessory purchases.

  • Additional Monitors
    Additional external monitors for laptops or desktops may be purchased through CIS.  
  • Storage / Memory
    Standard devices can be purchased with larger hard disk storage or additional RAM memory at the department's expense.   
  • Docking Stations
    A docking station will be provided by CIS for laptops. Additional docking stations may be purchased through CIS.
  • Other Peripherals
    If any other computer peripheral items are required, please contact the /wiki/spaces/CISHD/overview . A selection of frequently requested items (mice, keyboards, etc.) and provided to employees at no cost. Additional computer peripherals and accessories can be purchased through the /wiki/spaces/CISHD/overview.

Upgrade / Refresh Cycle

CIS uses funds from the Central PC Purchasing Program budget to refresh old equipment each year, starting with the oldest equipment. Devices are updated as budget allows.

Equipment End of Life

Security risks and labor support costs increase significantly as equipment ages. Equipment deemed "end-of-life" must be replaced.

When the computer as reached its "end of life", it must be replaced or it will be treated as a Personal / Un-Managed Device.

Replacement Cycle Goals

Windows Laptops and Tablets

The upgrade goal for Windows laptops and tablets is every four years.

Windows Desktops

The upgrade goal for Windows desktops is every five years.

Apple Mac Computers 

The upgrade goal for Macs and Apple computers is every four to five years.

No PC Pool-supported computer is guaranteed to be upgraded within a specific frame of time. CIS keeps inventory records on all equipment in the Central PC Pool and can provide an estimated refresh cycle if requested.

Early Upgrade

It may be possible to upgrade a device prior to its goal replacement date.  This generally requires the department to pay $400 for each year remaining on the device's lifecycle, including partial years. Contact CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu to request a quote.

Device Resale

All computing equipment purchased and funded in the Central PC Purchasing Program is managed by CIS from the time of purchase until the time of disposal. Used equipment is sold and proceeds from the sale of end-of-life equipment are reinvested into the Central PC Purchasing Program budget to fund new equipment. The majority of surplus equipment is sold in bulk quantities through a fixed bid process. 

Faculty/Staff Purchase of Used Computers

Faculty and staff have the option to purchase the laptop or desktop that was issued to them from SPU when it is, a) replaced with new equipment, or b) when they separate from the University. In doing so, ownership is transferred from the University to the individual, institutional data is removed from the computer, and the hard drive is decrypted.  The computer is no longer supported by the University and may not be used for University business or to store Institutional Data.

If you would like to purchase your old device, please refer to the following steps:

  1. Email CIS-Purchasing@spu.edu with the name and/or serial number of your device to learn its age and eligibility to be purchased from the University. If you're device is eligible for purchase, CIS will provide you with a purchase price of the system.
  2. To purchase, you must provide a personal check addressed to SPU for the total amount and fill out a Transfer of University-Owned Equipment form. The form will need to be signed by yourself and your department head.
  3. Before taking ownership, your the device must be given to the CIS HelpDesk. All university data and university licensed software will be removed, and the hard drive will be decrypted. When these steps are completed, the HelpDesk will return the device to you.

After resale the device is considered a Personal / Un-Managed Device and should not be used for work purposes.

Lost, Stolen, or Damaged PC Pool Devices

Lost or stolen SPU-issued devices includes refers to devices that are workstations, shared devices and loaners. The employee who uses the device to complete the functions of their position is the reporter of the device. If the reporter is found to be negligent in their care of an SPU-issued device, then they are liable for up to or more than $500 for the cost of device replacement and/or repair. If the reporter is found negligent in the event that the device is lost or stolen, then their department will be responsible for the replacement of the device. Their department must also cover the cost for an employee to receive an additional device. 

Lost or Stolen Device

In the event a laptop or desktop is lost or stolen:

  1. The employee responsible for the device must immediately notify Safety and Security, their department head, and the CIS HelpDesk.
  2. If the device is not recovered:
    1. The department head must provide the CIS HelpDesk with the budget number from which they would like to purchase a replacement computer.
    2. A temporary loaner device may be provided.
  3. After funds are transferred, a replacement computer will be issued.

Costs to replace lost, stolen, and accidentally damaged equipment are not covered by CIS. 

Damaged PC due to Accident or Negligence

If an SPU-issued device becomes damaged due to wear and tear caused by normal use, then CIS will cover the cost to repair and/or replace the device, at no cost to the employee or the employee’s department.

In the event an SPU-issued is physically damaged due to an accident and/or employee negligence, then the employee may be liable for the cost of repair and/or replacement of the device, up to and more than $500, and their department for the remaining cost of repair or replacement. 

If a device is damaged, please follow the steps below:

  1. The employee responsible for the device should notify their department head and the CIS HelpDesk and/or bring their device to the CIS HelpDesk to assess damage.
  2. A permanent replacement computer will be provided to the employee. 
  3. The CIS Accounting Team will submit the damaged device to the vendor for repair.
  4. In the event the employee is found to be negligent in their care of the device, the employee and their department head will be informed of the final costs for the repair, and must provide a budget number from which they would like to pay for the repair. 

The hardware warranty purchased for all faculty and staff workstations does not cover accidental damage repairs.

Employee Responsibility

SPU employees are responsible for stewardship of University data and equipment entrusted to them.  If a University-owned computer provided to a faculty or staff member is lost, stolen, or damaged, the faculty or staff member may be required to pay up to $500 or more towards the replacement and/or repair of the computer. The employee's department is also responsible for bearing the remaining cost of repair and/or replacement of the device. 

  • For repeated instances of computer theft, or loss, or damage, especially if reasonable precautions have not been appropriately taken, the faculty or staff member may be required to pay $500 or a higher amount, up to the cost of the replacement or repair of the computer and/or may be denied replacement equipment of equal value. The individual will be notified of these potential costs by the University as appropriate.
  • University funds may not be used to pay penalties. If the loss is covered by the individual's homeowner's or other insurance policy, the coverage amount received should be provided in full to the University towards the cost of a replacement computer.

Related Policies and Procedures

Permanent budget funds are allocated for each device in the Central PC Pool to fund software licensing, hardware maintenance, and future upgrades/refreshes for each device. CIS maintains standard configurations for these computers.