6 Queue Solutions Your Government Office Can Use Today
What’s your workday like, in general? In far too many government offices, the day consists of impatient visitors, frustrating appointments, and acting as a referee while trying to appease citizens who are over it. No matter what your government agency, you can utilize queue solutions to start seeing a difference today. Whether you aim to decrease the amount of time a citizen has to wait or to streamline the start-to-finish process of assisting members of your community, implementing a system that eliminates the need for physical lines is an efficient, helpful upgrade. If you still rely on the old take-a-number system, it’s high time to update the way your agency does business.
A queueless system maximizes the efficiency of everyone in the office. QLess organizes appointments and sets up employees for success through the introduction of FlexAppointments, an aspect of the system that ensures every visitor has a place. Discover how opting out of the line can increase customer satisfaction, boost employee morale, and enhance the experience of using a government office.
One of the most beneficial queue solutions is the ability that citizens have to stand in a virtual line. Queuing up in a physical line is unnecessary, inefficient, and tedious. It’s no wonder citizens don’t look forward to booking appointments at their local government offices. Give them the option to choose their appointment time and claim their spot in the queue via an app, online platform, or kiosk, however, and they won’t hesitate to apply for a fishing license, get a building permit, or pay a parking ticket.
People hate standing in line. Virtual check-ins allow them to secure a time slot even if they’re not in the building they need to visit. Instead of showing up at one o’clock in the afternoon and waiting to be seen, citizens can reserve an appointment when they wake up in the morning, then go about their daily errands as they wait for their appointed time.
Implementing a cloud-based system that includes a virtual queue is an excellent choice for the environment of your office itself, as well. Queueing up via the cloud will clear out the waiting room. It will no longer be filled to capacity with unhappy visitors who aren’t thrilled about waiting.
Nothing is more irritating to citizens than the experience of walking into a government office and finding the waiting area crowded, with lines that snake around the room. It’s understandable that tax-paying members of the community expect a certain level of service from the government agencies in their cities and towns. They do pay for those services, after all. However, the truth of the matter is that things don’t always go according to plan. People fall behind. Appointments take up more time than expected. It’s not always possible to stick to a schedule.
Helpful queue solutions reduce the risk of falling behind, but the issue can still occur. You can’t change that, and you can’t force citizens to be all right with it, either. What you can do is to send out up-to-date notifications informing citizens that their appointments will be pushed back half an hour, an hour, two hours–whatever the case may be. It’s a small courtesy with a far-reaching impact. Being transparent about delays can soothe jangled nerves and agitated tempers, primarily because the people who booked appointments have options. They know there’s a backlog, so they won’t show up, thereby being forced to wait in a physical line. They don’t have to keep their reservation if they don’t have time. They can reschedule a later appointment or come another day.
Enhanced Communication with Citizens
Communicating with your community is crucial. It’s rare for government employees to communicate with citizens unless they’re interacting face-to-face at the office. If things are running late or the citizen is unprepared, then that can be a tense meeting.
QLess can bridge the gap between government employees and citizens. The two groups finally have the chance to reach out to each other. As discussed above, government employees can send out notifications and messages about what’s going on in the office at the moment. You can let the community know that early time slots have opened up, that the office is behind schedule, or you can inform individual citizens that their appointments are coming up within the next hour or so. The queue system has a variety of options to stay in touch. You can place a voice call, but you can also send emails and text messages, both of which are often more successful at capturing the citizenry’s attention than traditional calls.
The connection goes both ways, however. Citizens can reach out to the government employees from whom they need assistance, as well. In addition to checking the app or website for scheduling information and documentation requirements, they can also send messages regarding their schedules. People can use the QLess system to alert the office that they’re running late and need to snag another appointment slot, or they can change their reservation altogether.
On-site kiosks are must-have queue solutions for busy government offices. Citizens can visit the office and use the kiosk to book a later appointment or see what’s available that day. They can also choose the service they need. That’s where things get interesting.
Think about another problem that affects government agencies and frustrates community members. People come in all of the time lacking the proper paperwork. In the current system, they may wait in the office for upwards of an hour, and when they finally speak to an agent, they’re told that they don’t have the correct proof of address, notarized form, or signature. They have to walk away and start all over again, usually on another day. All of that wasted time adds up, resulting in frayed tempers. Can you blame citizens for feeling grumpy at government agencies?
To solve the problem, you can program the kiosks to tell citizens what forms they need for the service they require. Going a step further, the kiosks can print out the forms for them. Doing so reduces the risk of paperwork snafus stealing valuable time from visitors and employees.
Government offices can use queue solutions to analyze the behavior of their citizenry, which is a foolproof way to improve customer service. The QLess system tracks the actions of the citizens who visit your office and the staff members who work there. The analysis offers insight into the behavior patterns of your citizens. Figure out why they miss or skip appointments, whether they use the app and kiosks, and how they get along once they reach the office. Their actions may reveal a need to change your hours of operation, for example, or to implement new services.
Explore the behavior of the staff, too. You can keep an eye on lagging schedules or unexpected downtime between appointments. Learn how your employees allocate their resources and structure their workdays. You’ll have a clear picture of what works and what doesn’t, allowing you to tweak internal processes and institute changes that will result in better customer satisfaction.
Improved Disaster Preparedness
Queue solutions are often literal lifesavers following natural disasters and other problems. Whether your community is dealing with the after-effects of a massive storm or a local problem, such as a gas leak or issues with the water, you can use QLess to help the citizens in an efficient, organized fashion. Getting in touch with the people in your area is effortless since you can send out SMS alerts and emails in addition to making phone calls. Those alerts can include information about where citizens can go to get help, the locations of safe houses and emergency services, and estimates about when the most pressing issues will be fixed.
The scheduling system is beneficial, as well. You can expect to experience high traffic during times of trouble. Some people will remember to book an appointment, but you’ll probably have more than your fair share of walk-ins. The QLess system will seamlessly organize every available time slot to guard against a lock jam. Everyone will have the chance to be served, and no one will have to fight over a place in line.
Viewed separately, any of the benefits provided by queue solutions will help your government agency to run more efficiently, even as you assist more citizens each day. Taken together, the changes created by queue software can transform the reputation of your office. Citizens will no longer dread coming to visit because they know what to expect in terms of wait times, just as they know that they’ll be dealing with knowledgeable, friendly staff members who know what they’re doing. Would you consider using a queueless system in your office now that you’ve learned what it can do for you? Head to QLess to find out how to think outside the lines.