Vendor Maintenance

The vendor maintenance team is charged with the maintenance of the university's vendor database, an electronic means of storing information about vendors who supply goods and services to the university.  A vendor's record (M-Pathways "vendor ID") must exist in the database before a procurement transaction can be completed for the vendor.

University of Michigan units initiate requests to add or update a vendor record in the M-Pathways vendor database.  Requests from vendors are not accepted. Vendors seeking information on how to do business with the University of Michigan should visit the Information for Suppliers web page.

Request to Add a Vendor Record (Online Method)

Requests to add a vendor record for a new vendor are completed by unit staff through an online request form in M-Pathways.  The online process is not available for modifications to existing vendor records.

The online request to add a new vendor allows you to:

  • Validate if a vendor record already exists for a vendor
  • Attach the supplier's completed Substitute W-9 form, if available
  • Check the status of your vendor request
  • Receive a confirmation email with the vendor ID number for approved requests.

To learn more, see the Request a vendor ID in M-Pathways step-by-step procedure in My LINC.  Note: Staff must have the PR EPRO USER or the PR NONPO VOUCHER USER role in M-Pathways to access the online request form.  Visit the ITS website for information on requesting system access or contact the ITS Service Center at (734) 764-HELP or email

While the preferred method for requesting new vendor IDs is the online request form, requests may also be submitted via secure fax (see below Request to Modify a Vendor Record).

Request to Modify a Vendor Record

Email Method
The email method can be used only if a social security number is not contained as part of the email or any attachments.  Due to privacy concerns regarding sensitive data, vendor maintenance does not accept any type of request via email message or email attachment if a social security number is present.  Messages or attachment(s) received that contain a social security number(s) will be deleted immediately, and you will be required to resubmit the information via fax request (see below). 

Email requests may be sent to with the subject line:  Modify Vendor

To ensure modification of the correct vendor record, the email request must contain the following information:

  • M-Pathways Vendor ID Number
  • Vendor Name
  • Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN):
          For Companies: the entire Employer Identification Number (EIN)
          For Individuals:  the last four digits only of the social security number (do not include the full social security number
  • Reason for the modification (e.g., ordering goods; PeoplePay; reimbursement)
  • Detailed information regarding the requested modification to the vendor profile (e.g., ordering address; payment remit address; phone number; fax number)

If additional information is needed, a member of the vendor maintenance team will contact the requester.

Secure Fax Method
This method can be used for any request type (add/modify/reactivate vendor) and must be used if a social security number is included with the requestDue to privacy concerns regarding sensitive data, vendor maintenance does not accept any type of request via email message or email attachment if a social security number is present.

To ensure the correct vendor record is modified, the fax request must include a completed Supplier Request Form, identifying the requested  modification(s).  Subsitute W-9 form(s) may also be submitted for processing.

Fax completed form(s) to the vendor maintenance secure fax number at (734) 615-5704.

Request to Reactivate a Vendor Record

Vendor records in M-Pathways may be inactivated (not available for procurement transactions) due to various reasons, such as the vendor not being used for several months.  To request reactivation of an inactive vendor ID, email with the subject line: Reactivate Vendor.  The email message must include the following information:

  • M-Pathways Vendor ID Number
  • Vendor Name
  • Reason for reactivation (e.g., ordering goods; PeoplePay; reimbursement; etc.)

Note:  If you request modification to any part of the vendor record other than reactivation, this method is not acceptable.  See above - Request to Modify a Vendor Record - for requirements.

Substitute W-9 Form 
New vendors must complete and return a Substitute W-9 form.  This form is a method of collecting tax information for the IRS and other information that the university is required to report.  It can cost the university tax penalties or cause contract violations if the university is unable to report required information in a timely fashion.

Substitute W-9 Form submission guidelines:

  • Online (M-Pathways) - forms with either an EIN (Employer Identification Number) or SSN (Social Security Number) can be submitted.
  • Email - forms with an EIN (Employer Identification Number) can be submitted.  Forms with SSN (Social Security Number) will not be accepted via email.
  • Fax - forms with either an EIN (Employer Identification Number) or SSN (Social Security Number) can be submitted.

International vendors (foreign vendor reporting)
Specific actions must be completed when entering into a transaction with international vendors. The Internal Revenue Service requires withholding and reporting on applicable foreign vendors for services performed within the United States.

To ensure compliance, if the vendor is classified as foreign according to their substitute W-9 form, all transactions with that vendor are reviewed prior to releasing payment. As part of this process, departments entering into these transactions may be required to submit a completed Foreign Transaction form with signature.  The vendor may also be required to submit Form W-8 if requested by the U-M Accounts Payable vendor reporting team.

These documents aid us in determining whether the vendor requires a 30% withhold and/or Form 1042-S reporting to the IRS. If the withhold is performed, these monies are forwarded to the IRS and a Form 1042-S is issued to the vendor at the end of the tax year.  If these documents are not received in a timely manner, payment will be processed and 30% will be withheld.

Step-by-step job aids and training for the following M-Pathways procedures are available in MyLINC at

  • Locate a Vendor ID
  • Request a Vendor ID in M-Pathways

Links to Forms: