WCER has a multitude of projects that offer Fee-for-Service products and services which support UW-Madison’s mission of instruction, research, and public service. Fee-for-Service activities in the Center include educational products, evaluation services, language assessments, learning games, mentor training, and career development services.
Self-supporting operations within the University are known as auxiliaries. Examples of major auxiliaries at UW Madison include University Housing, University Health Services (UHS), Wisconsin Union, Intercollegiate Athletics, Recreation Sports, and Transportation Services. Minor auxiliaries are commonly known as 136 Funds or Fee-for-Service (FFS) activities. Examples of minor auxiliaries include campus copy centers, UW Veterinary Hospital, child care centers and other specialized centers across campus.
FFS operations are established for the purpose of producing and selling goods and/or services to University departments and/or external customers. Sales must comply with the University’s mission, federal uniform guidance and the fair competition policies.
The University has a responsibility to consider very carefully any decision to provide products and services to students, faculty, staff, private organizations, or the public at large, particularly when the products and services to be provided might compete with similar products or services offered by the private sector. Some degree of competition between the University and the private sector may be unavoidable, even when the University is engaged in the narrowest pursuit of its instructional, research and public service missions. However, in all cases where a potentially competitive situation exists, the University must consider the concerns of affected private businesses and act with sensitivity and good faith regarding those concerns.
The Board of Regents policy on “Competition with the Private Sector” defines criteria to be used in evaluating the appropriateness of sales activities and establishes principles for pricing those products and services that UW institutions offer. It also establishes a process for reviewing new activities that may compete with the private sector as well as ongoing activities whose pricing or appropriateness has been questions.
Fee-for-Service work is a technical or immediately usable deliverable in a form that is ready to be applied and used. FFS can be a commodity available for sale or it can be routine work that involves standardized procedures. The outcome of the work is not likely to result in the development of new knowledge or publishable information, and any data collected is to be provided without significant interpretive analysis. Fee-for-Service activities do not include any research activities.
Fee-for-Service Activities typically have some or all of the following characteristics:
- The scope of work describes routine or repetitive services.
- The work will require little or no intellectual or scholarly contribution on the part of WCER employees.
- No new intellectual property is expected to be developed in performing the work.
- Does not require and is not defined by adding to the body of knowledge in a discipline
- There is no scientific uncertainty regarding the University’s ability to perform the work and provide the stated deliverables.
- WCER employees will not engage in significant interpretive analysis of resulting data or provide conclusions.
- The work provides an “answer or solution” that is typically beyond the scope or capacity of the entity that is supporting the fee-for-service work.
- There is no expectation of publishing on the work or the data.
- A guarantee (quality of service) is expected, and there may be negative consequences for products or services that do not meet the requirements of the agreement.