Purchasing Goods

The finance team assists faculty and staff with purchasing goods used for UC business and that are paid for using UC funds. Some goods can be purchased using the campus purchasing system BearBuy. Flights, airbnbs, and some other ground transportation can be purchased through ConnexUC. Other goods can be purchased using the department’s BluCard and Events card. Purchasing items through the department avoids faculty and staff needing to pay out of pocket for expenses and allows the department to ensure its members are compliant with UC policies. 


BearBuy is the primary application used for making direct purchases (office supplies, computer equipment, books, and more). BearBuy allows staff and faculty to avoid using personal funds to make purchases and to proactively manage our purchasing activity.

  • You can shop for goods from contracted vendors using BearBuy by adding items you would like to purchase into your cart. Once you’re finished shopping, you can assign your cart to the financial coordinator who will process and submit it. To assign a cart to the financial coordinator search for them by name, the current financial coordinator is Karen Shuker. Orders will be delivered to the department unless otherwise requested. Please note that if you are working from home, you will need to connect to a VPN to be able to log into BearBuy. While you can only shop from one vendor (Amazon Business, CDW electronics, Blaisdells etc.) at a time, your shopping cart can include items from multiple vendors.
  • Although a bit dated, this video provides an overview of some of the ways that you can shop using BearBuy. 
  • This department guide provides a step-by-step tutorial on how to shop and assign a cart in BearBuy.
  • Please be in contact with the financial coordinator if you would like a more detailed tutorial for how to shop on BearBuy. 
  • Since all purchases made with UC funds are the property of UC Berkeley, the department tracks some items such as higher value items, furniture, and technology (e.g. computers, tablets).  Some items, such as furniture, are only allowed to support work on campus.  All purchased items must be returned upon separation from UC Berkeley. 
  • Items over $5000 need to be inventoried by the Property Management Office. Please be in touch with the financial coordinator if you’re planning to purchase items over $5000.

Campus Ergonomic Matching Fund Program 

The UCB Computer Ergonomics Matching Funds Program offers up to $1,000 per employee* in matching funds to modify on-site and remote computer workstations according to campus ergonomic guidelines. Funding for this program is limited. Applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis. Funding reimbursement will be delayed or denied for applications that are incomplete or provide insufficient supporting documentation. Please note, the matching funds program does not apply to computer workstation furniture for new construction, renovation, and relocation projects.

*Must be a UC Berkeley employee with an active appointment of 50% or greater at the time the workstation evaluation and recommended products are purchased.  

To apply for matching funds, please follow the following steps. 

1) Take the online version of Computer Health Matters, a free training promoting safe and healthy work practices and the effective use of workstation furniture and accessories. Enrollment for both workshops is online at the Ergonomics Workshops webpage or UCB Learning Center.

2) Schedule a workstation evaluation. Email history-hr@berkeley.edu to schedule an appointment with our department’s ergonomic assessor. 

3) Review this information about pre-approved furniture and equipment that is eligible for fund-matching. Delivery times vary and will depend in part on what's in stock. You can arrange an appointment for a chair fitting in UCB's showroom by calling 1-877-722-9090 or by emailing Greg Ryan (gryan@berkeley.edu). 

4) Send the financial coordinator the names of products you would like to buy, the date of your ergonomic assessment, and the fund you would like to charge your purchase to. The financial coordinator will assist you in submitting your Ergonomics Matching Funds Application Form and supporting documentation. You can also work with the financial coordinator to remove old furniture and equipment from your office.


ConnexUC (formerly Connexxus) is the UC systemwide online travel portal used for arranging business-related travel for faculty, student field study, staff, and hosted guests. Travel booked through ConnexUC is automatically registered with the UC Travel Insurance program. 

It also allows certain travel expenses to be booked directly onto a chartstring so that you do not need to wait to seek reimbursement after the trip is over. 

If you are planning to travel and would like to use a Direct Bill ID and ConnexUC to book your transportation, please be in touch with the financial coordinator ahead of your trip. 

Departmental Credit Cards

Some goods that are not available on BearBuy may be purchased using one of the departmental credit cards. The financial coordinator is authorized to use the department BluCard and the events coordinator is authorized to use the department Events card. Please be in touch with the appropriate staff if you would like to make a purchase using a departmental card.  

  • BluCard— Allowed for purchases including conference fees, professional memberships, and supplies not available on BearBuy. 
  • Events Card— Allowed for purchases related to departmental events including catering. 

Please note that all purchases made with departmental credit cards require the following supporting documentation: 

  • What was purchased and how much it cost (invoice, receipt, or similar documents from the vendor)
  • Business purpose (a description of how the item will be used to forward the mission of your work in the History Department)
  • What was received (packing slip, in-house receiving system, or an email or note from the receiver indicating what was received). 
  • Order approval (request or approval for a purchase from an individual responsible for the fiscal management of the chartstring used)