Procedures for Contracting for Professional Services


The Institution will in all cases comply with Federal and State regulations and guidelines with regard to classification of individuals as "employees" or "independent contractors." This Procurement procedure, Contracting for Professional Services, provides information regarding independent contractors. Should the determination be made that an individual does not qualify as an independent contractor, refer to the Institution's hiring procedures in the Personnel Practices and Procedures Manual and the Appointment and Promotion Procedures for the Scientific and Technical Staffs and Department Assistants.


The process for contracting for professional services is as follows:

  1. Determination of status of proposed service provider is analyzed by WHOI based on the information obtained through the following form:
  2. Procurement will notify you if the service provider is determined not to be an independent contractor. If desired you can refer to WHOI hiring practices to pursue employment of the service provider.

  3. If the service provider is determined to be an independent contractor then the following documentation is required:
    • A purchase requisition form completed by the requisitioner and appropriate approvals obtained.
    • If the requisitioner has already performed competitive analysis, detailed documentation should submitted with the purchase requisition. Where competitive analysis is not obtainable and the purchase requisition is for $10,000 and over, a "Sole Source Justification" form must be provided.
    • The "Contract for Services" form shall be completed for professional services when the total contractual commitment during the calendar year in which issued is in excess of $100.
    • There are two Contract for Services forms, a 2-page short version which may be used if the contracted service will be less than $10,000 during a calendar year, and a 5-page version when services are expected to be $10,000 or more during the same period.

  4. Upon reviewing the supporting documentation for appropriateness, Procurement will assign the contract for professional services a WHOI purchase order number.

    Prior to the commencement of any service arrangement, a WHOI Purchase Order Number must be granted. Without a purchase order there is no contract, therefore the Institution holds no legal obligation to pay the supplier for any services rendered.

  5. Service by the Independent Contractor may commence.

Last updated: June 10, 2015