Guidelines for Acquiring Information Systems at MUSC
The process of identifying, evaluating, and selecting
an information system must take into consideration a number of business
issues and needs prior to the solicitation process – not only
for the requesting department, but also for MUSC as a whole. The following
processes and approval mechanisms should be used as general guidelines
to follow when information systems purchases are pursued. These processes
DO NOT negate or function in place of existing solicitation and purchasing
processes employed by University and/or MUHA purchasing. These guidelines
are intended to help clarify those processes further for purchases
of IT-related equipment.
What is an IT-related purchase? Basically, any thing relative to
“data processing” (i.e. CPUs, peripheral equipment, software
hardware, scanners, operating systems, etc.), telecommunications,
office systems technologies, and technology services.
The Office of the CIO desires to work closely with MUSC departments
in evaluating new information technology initiatives in order to achieve
the following goals:
- Prevent duplication of effort or expenditures
- Review feasible alternatives for addressing needs, including available
- Achieve consistency with standards & guidelines to maximize
information and IS integration
- Assess effect on the information infrastructure, institutional
staff, and other MUSC resources
- Monitor performance and results, sharing lessons learned throughout
The governance structures of the Information Management Council (IMC)
and its associated subcommittees are relied upon heavily in the purchasing
evaluation process for discussion and approval of purchases.
In all cases, the consideration and acquisition of new systems or
applications can be significantly facilitated by working closely with
the designated OCIO Director for your area. These Directors are listed
Suggested Purchasing Thresholds and Processes for Proposal
Remember: The value of the system includes software, hardware, implementation
services, personnel costs, annual software & hardware maintenance fees,
among other miscellaneous costs. We generally look at a five year value
of a system.
Confer with your OCIO Director and present to appropriate governance
committee, (such as FAIC, Infrastructure, etc.). Assuming there are
no major hurdles identified and funding is available, generally, the
purchase or acquisition can proceed.
Between $25,001 and $249,999
Work with the designated OCIO Director in preparing an Executive
Summary and financial plan of the business case supporting the acquisition
of new technology or systems. This information will then be presented
to the appropriate governance committee within the IMC framework and
may subsequently be presented to the full IMC for final approval and/or
information. University purchases over $50,000 must also have IT Planning
approval from the state CIO's office; this can be coordinated through
the appropriate OCIO Director.
Greater than $250,000
Any purchase over $250,000 ultimately requires approval from the
Board of Trustees. Prior to submitting the item to the Board, however,
there needs to be a detailed business plan and financial analysis
developed which is presented and reviewed in the IT governance structure.
The requestor should work closely with their designated OCIO Director
to develop a detailed business plan and determine the necessary approval
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