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Strategic Sourcing

Stretch your department dollars by taking advantage of UC's Strategic Sourcing initiative.

Strategic Sourcing combines the buying power of all UC campuses, medical centers and labs to negotiate procurement agreements with suppliers.


It benefits your department through savings in money, time, and resources:

  • Products and services valued at over $100,000 and purchased through Strategic Sourcing agreements do not have to go through the competitive bid process, saving time and resources.
  • Strategic Sourcing agreements provide greater savings through larger discounts.
  • UCSD's online buying site offers one-stop shopping via online catalogs featuring many of the goods and services negotiated through Strategic Sourcing.
  • Volume sales generated when your department buys from Strategic Sourcing suppliers, make it easier for the university to negotiate even better prices when contracts are renewed.
  • Focuses on the total cost of ownership (PDF), not just the purchase price.

Current Agreements

Review the Listing of Commodities by Procurement Teams for more information on the procurement team assigned to the commodity or to inquire about UC Systemwide Strategic Sourcing Agreements available for campus use.

Additional Information

As part of its dedication to sustainability, including promoting a shift to greener markets and more environmentally friendly communities, the university will incorporate its commitment to Sustainable Procurement Guidelines into existing Strategic Sourcing efforts.

Support for Strategic Sourcing: The University of California Office of the President gives high priority to the Strategic Sourcing initiative, and UC chancellors and vice chancellors endorse it.

Examples of UCSD Strategic Sourcing Agreements

Fisher Scientific (Fisher First)

The University of California’s Life Science Center of Excellence is making laboratory purchasing more efficient for you! During a recent Reverse Auction, Fisher Scientific led the pack with the greatest overall value and was awarded a Prime Agreement to become the primary distributor of life and science chemicals, consumables, equipment, and laboratory supplies.

Benefits of Fisher First

Fisher First and the Prime Agreement brings you…

  • Savings – The new Fisher First pricing is based on the combined spending power of the 10 UC campuses for a total savings of $10 million dollars across the UC system in the first year!
  • Same Day Delivery – Fisher First items are delivered to you by our Receiving and Distribution the same day they’re received.
  • Cleaner Search Results – Items rarely ordered are being removed from Oracle search results, based on feedback from laboratories, making it easier to filter, compare, and favorite those items you really want to see.
  • Corning – Fisher is the exclusive distributor of 1200 Corning-brand plastic and glassware items
  • Attention – With the largest team of dedicated representatives that focus on serving you at the bench, Fisher First has the greatest capacity to assist UC’s research and clinical pursuits.
  • Variety – Choose Fisher First for day to day lab purchases, New Lab Startups, and Fisher brands to see the value for yourself!

The Fisher Scientific offering is complemented by agreements with VWR, Sigma, and other critical manufacturers that supply the unique laboratory reagents and breadth of products that the UC laboratories require. These suppliers will continue to be valuable partners to UC laboratories for the items that Fisher does not provide.

In addition, UC San Diego’s Core Bio Services is partnering with Fisher Scientific to stock the most frequently ordered products on campus. This includes products from a wide breadth of popular brands such as Corning, EMD Millipore, Fermentas, Pierce, and Thermo Fisher’s Life Technologies, all of which can be found in Core’s catalog in Marketplace. 

Benefits of ordering through Core Bio Services:

  • Free shipping & handling - All orders through Core Bio Services have no shipping or handling fees attached!
  • Waste & emissions reduction - Core Bio Services consolidates hundreds of orders into only a few orders to suppliers.  This results in less packaging waste and a reduction in emissions from delivery vehicles to campus.
  • Receive products faster - Most popular products are available for immediate pickup or next day delivery!
  • On-site customer service - Core Bio Services has a full staff located on campus dedicated to helping you with all of your lab essential needs and requests. 

The Fisher First program will provide labs with better value from more precise and relevant search results, along with optimized access to specialty items from your favorite research brands like VWR, Illumina, Sigma, New England BioLabs, and Corning.

Office Depot

UC San Diego utilizes the system-wide Contract with Office Depot for office products. Office Depot was selected as the primary vendor to provide office supplies through a competitive bid process. Departments are encouraged to place larger orders once a week to help eliminate frequent deliveries.


  • Order office supplies directly from Office Depot through Oracle
    • Use the Ink & Toner tab on the Office Depot Punchout to easily find the toner for your copier/ printer.
  • Average savings of 16% or more on office supplies with this UC preferred contract
  • Hundreds of green and recycled products including Office Depot brand toners (certified zero landfill products) at 30% savings
  • Aspen 30% recycled paper at great prices (for use in copier and multifunction devices not supported by Imprints)
  • Orders received by 5 p.m. are delivered to UCSD Receiving by 10 a.m. the next day
  • Track orders on the Office Depot punchout in Oracle
  • Return policy is 30 days from invoice date for office supplies, 14 days for furniture, and 15 days for technology products.

Helpful Information

  • Learn how to recycle your toner cartridges.
  • Call Office Depot Customer Service, (888) 777-4044 if
    • You need help finding a product
    • You want more information about a product (size, case, qty., etc)
    • Your delivered order contained an error (wrong item, quantity, ect) 
    • You need to make a return
Need help? Contact our team via the UC San Diego Services & Support portal.