In the states and overseas, drivers must register their vehicles to enjoy the privilege of driving on and off post. It’s a box to check when settling in as a newcomer, and a task that not many enjoy.
Over the past couple of years, Mike Jungmann, the operations officer for the Directorate of Emergency Services, has been working with his team to make the vehicle registration process less cumbersome for U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden.
“I’ve been through the process myself, and now I oversee the process,” Jungmann said. He also responds to comments from the Interactive Customer Evaluation service for DES.
According to ICE, the customer satisfaction rate for Vehicle Registration was at almost 20 percent. Based on manpower limitations and system requirements, the wait to register a vehicle could be almost 6 hours – all for a 20-minute process.
DES began making changes to their processes beginning with dedicating one clerk to focus on customers with appointments. With the help of a few volunteers, the office was able to dedicate a person to taking appointments via the phone and then moved to an all-appointment system.
In February, the office moved to an online appointment system customers can access using their common access cards. When prompted to choose a CAC certificate, users should choose their email certificate, or they may receive an error message when logging in to the system.
Appointments can be made online for new registrations, plate turn-in, replacement of lost or stolen plates and registrations, transferring or selling vehicles, and other registration-related items. DES also offers checklists on its webpage to help guide customers through the various vehicle registration processes.
One tip Jungmann stressed for customers who will be re-registering their vehicles is to remember they can update their registration well in advance of its expiration.
Notices are sent to vehicle owners 75 days prior to registration expiration. Some people think if they re-register their vehicle on day 74, they are losing time on their new registration. That is not true, Jungmann said. In fact, the sooner vehicles are re-registered, the easier it will be if the owner faces any issues with the inspection.
If a vehicle needs to be repaired before it passes inspection, that can hold up the registration process. Making sure inspection and repairs are completed in a timely manner will cut down the chances the vehicle has to be parked because the registration has expired.
If owners re-register their vehicles early, they will just have two registrations – one, which will expire on the original date, and the new one, which will expire a year from that date.
Changes in the Vehicle Registration appointment process have taken the office’s customer satisfaction rating from the mid-teens to around 85 percent, Jungmann said.
“The garrison as a whole is a customer-service business,” Jungmann said. “If we can make something like this that is required a little easier to deal with, it helps the whole community.”
For more information on Vehicle Registration and a link to the online appointment system, visit www.wiesbaden.army.mil/vehicleregistration.