Centennial College
Centennial College selected Chrome River for its user-friendly mobile design, automatic routing capabilities and custom configurations. The result: happier travelers that get reimbursed more than twice as fast.
Industry:
Education
Employees:
1,200
Service:
EXPENSE

The Challenge

Centennial College is a growing institution with an increasing number of traveling staff and corporate credit card users, and its finance team recognized expense management as a key area for process improvement and scalability. 

The college previously used paper travel request forms, requiring manual entry and approver sign-off, while its home-grown expense system posed numerous challenges of its own. Most notably, without automatic routing and approval workflows, expense reports often took well over a month to be processed and reimbursed. Not surprisingly, travelers were less than impressed with the wait time. 

Another issue was double data-entry from travelers and finance, as the AP team had to manually key each expense into the financial system and validate that it was within policy, correctly allocated, and accompanied by a receipt. This manual process was extremely inefficient, and resulted in additional work for an AP team already stretched to its limits. 

Overview

Centennial College, established in 1966, was Ontario’s first community college. Today it operates five campuses and several satellite locations, primarily in Toronto, and with an international presence in Asia.  The college offers over 100 full- and part-time programs and thousands of continuing education courses. It prides itself in being one of the most culturally diverse institutions in Canada with more than 80 languages spoken on campus, and a student body representing over 100 ethno-cultural groups.

The Chrome River Solution

Knowing there had to be a better way, Centennial College set out to modernize the expense management experience for travelers, approvers, and finance alike, with the primary goals of improving mobility, compliance, and overall efficiencies. 

The institution selected Chrome River EXPENSE because of its user-friendly design, automatic routing capabilities, and mobile features like email approvals, direct receipt upload with Chrome River’s SNAP mobile app, and automated transaction data extraction. The solution’s custom configuration and integration capabilities were also distinguishing factors, as Chrome River seamlessly integrates with the college’s Ellucian Banner ERP system and corporate credit card to effectively streamline the expense reimbursement process from start to finish. 

Chrome River makes submitting expense reports not only easy, but fun; and it allows us to reimburse travelers more than twice as fast!

Isaac Salameh,
Sr. Project Manager

The Results

Chrome River automated the entire expense management process, eliminating manual data entry and the need for policy validation by approvers. With built-in rules and compliance warnings, travelers rarely have expense reports returned, since policy issues are resolved before they are even submitted. Furthermore, corporate credit card transactions are automatically matched for faster reconciliation. As a result, expense reimbursement processing times have drastically improved, going from 4-8 weeks down to just two weeks.

Centennial College travelers are delighted with the solution, find it intuitive to use from any device, and revel in the fact that they’re getting reimbursed so much quicker. Approvers are also impressed with the solution’s agility, and appreciate the ability to easily review and approve expenses via email. 

Additionally, by integrating with the institution’s ERP system, the AP team can easily generate ACH payments to employees with just a few clicks of a mouse. By eliminating manual bottlenecks, the team is able to focus on more strategic tasks to support the institution’s growth, and is confident that Chrome River will continue to evolve with them for many years to come. 

Our in-house system was not efficient or scalable. We needed a solution that could streamline and automate our expense management process, integrate with our other systems, and grow with us.

Jenny Savvides,
Accounts Payable Officer

Why Chrome River

Centennial College selected Chrome River EXPENSE to automate, centralize and scale its expense management processes.

  • Streamlined approval workflows, cutting reimbursement time in half.
  • Increased mobility with Chrome River SNAP and email approval features.
  • Optimized AP resources by eliminating manual data-entry.
  • Centralized processes by integrating with the financial system and corporate credit card.

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