Good system overall but could use some improvements.
August 07, 2020

Good system overall but could use some improvements.

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Chrome River EXPENSE

Chrome River is used campus-wide for Travel Pre-Approvals and ALL reimbursements (travel and non-travel). Only employees have access to Chrome River and employees can delegate to others. Employees enter on behalf of students and guests if reimbursements or travel pre-approvals (under circumstances where travel pre-approvals are required). We made password-protected videos (available 24/7 as it suits their schedule, especially if they're on sabbatical overseas) to help users navigate because the system is not intuitive if the person doesn't use it often.
  • Allows for single sign-on (universal password ease)
  • Contains good reporting features
  • Chrome River help desk usually responds quickly and helps resolve problems
  • Allows for individualized processes (warnings and violations)
  • Once a report is created, Chrome River has nice visual tiles that help a user intuitively navigate
  • Functionality fails without warning or reason. We do not trust Chrome River because of this. For example, a rule works fine...until it doesn't. And you figure it out "by chance" (such as when a final AP review is happening, it's clear it allowed a report to be submitted when the REQUIRED "pay to" field for a guest or student is BLANK, but the system allowed it to submit). Really bad because the EMPLOYEE who entered it is the payee when the GUEST or STUDENT should be the payee. Resolving that issue took over a month. That issue is only one of many. Again, we don't trust the system, and that's not good.
  • The only way to give a review of a problem is to say "satisfied" or "not satisfied." Every issue we've had has been (eventually!) resolved, so of course, the answer should always be "satisfied." The user can add comments but it just seems misleading to anyone at Chrome River trying to interpret results to see all satisfied. It seems it would present a false representation of what really happened when it takes weeks to get an issue resolved.
  • The system is starting to seem "old." It has a lot of fancy technology such as reading receipts, but it seems "old" for the following reasons: Either it doesn't have (or I just don't know about it, which is possible!) simple technology to copy an existing report to save all that time of entering the report header information. We have had many experiences where the office manager is a delegate for a professor and enters a reimbursement "for the professor" BUT under the office manager's name. They will get through the ENTIRE report and submit it under their own name. When we see it on the AP final review, we return it (because the payment will be made to the office manager and not the professor for whom she has entered). At that point, the office manager has to RE-DO the ENTIRE report. It seems she should be able to Edit it OR I, AS THE CHROME RIVER MANAGER, SHOULD BE ABLE TO "OPEN THE REPORT UP" to simply either copy the whole report and "plop" it into the correct user. It's particularly an utter waste of time when it's a long, multi-city, international reimbursement. If you know a way to do this, please let me know.
  • Along the same lines as the item immediately above, when an office manager has 10 students who went on the same trip, it seems she should be able to simply copy the report and edit the report to include each different student for the reimbursement INSTEAD OF having to create 10 different reports that are essentially the same with the exception of the traveler.
  • When you delete a line item that has a receipt attached to that line item, it would be nice if the receipt would revert BACK into the receipt gallery instead of being "lost".
  • It's frustrating that once report headers are created, there is no way to edit/change it. We have had a few times where the start/end dates were entered incorrectly and only when the user tries to submit the report, he sees that the start/end dates are not correct and we have our system programmed to NOT allow submission until the trip is over. We want to keep that rule in place, but it seems the AP Chrome River manager could open the report up for editing so the report could be submitted INSTEAD OF the office manager having to re-enter an entire report.
  • I wish the first two "report header" pages could be combined so we can see all the information on one page.
  • The system should allow the same change on multiple line items (without the user having to click and Edit EACH line item) such as with per diem--if the wrong location was chosen for 7 nights, instead of having to click on 7 line items and click Edit and Save 7 different times, it would be nice to click on the multiple line items at the same time and make the change for all 7 line items with one action.
  • We used to print TONS and now we don't.
  • Even if the amount spent on the system is more than paper/ink used previously, it's greener and better for the environment.
  • We can see where each report is sitting so things are never "lost"!
It was not easy but we had Cori D. at Chrome River and she was WONDERFUL!!! We also had a GREAT team at our organization where the IT person was totally "on-board" and helpful to us. We could not have done it with the IT person and it would have been EXTREMELY frustrating to have tried to implement without the insight Cori had with our state regulations.
It's more efficient because even though there are some manual processes, most of it is done with systems feeding other systems and allows us to see any report at any time.
The intuitiveness needs to be improved, especially for people who do not often use the system. As people use various systems, we know some are far more intuitive than others, and I think Chrome River could be improved to "walk the person" through the process better. We created videos to help users navigate it, but it seems a system should be intuitive enough to walk someone through, just as when you check out walks you through the process.
I was very nervous to be totally online for help, but the help desk has always resolved my problems. Even though we're told we have an account representative, we seem to have very limited contact with that person. I've called one of the people we've met at conferences, and he was most helpful, but I don't really feel we have an actual account representative. Again, usually, the help desk can provide answers for us.
Chrome River is well suited for reimbursements. We also use it for Travel Pre-approvals, and it's well suited for that purpose. We tried to use it for Business Meal pre-approvals, but we could not easily configure it to work, as we would need the "said" meal per diem to calculate for the number of people in attendance and it (understandably!) wants to give per diem for only one person.