LANSING — Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced that her offices are adding appointments to serve 350,000 more Michiganders and making some changes.
The changes include adding greeters at office doors to assist in scheduling visits and priority service for residents needing a disability placard.
“We were able to do this after discussions with our frontline workers who, concerned about the chatter here in Lansing to revert back to a broken ‘take a number and wait’ system, suggested ways they could work harder and faster to be able to handle more transactions efficiently and quickly,” Benson said. “It’s an extraordinary testament not just to their dedication to the department, but their recognition that having residents schedule their visits ahead of time is a vastly superior way of doing business.”
The department is planning to increase appointments by 25 percent between now and the end of the fiscal year. Half of the more than 350,000 appointments were already released and the remaining half will be split up and released every weekday at 8 a.m. and noon between now and Sept. 30 as next-day appointments that can be made at https://www.michigan.gov/sos or by calling 888-SOS-MICH.
Residents will also be able to book appointments in person with a pilot program that will place greeters at the doors of the busiest offices this month, so that when residents arrive without an appointment the greeters will be able to tell them if any staff are available to serve them or assist them in scheduling a return visit. The same service will be available at offices without the dedicated greeters when counter staff is able to approach the door between appointments.
Residents needing disability placards can also be served as soon as possible without an appointment after arriving at any office, but are still encouraged to schedule an appointment.
“I am truly grateful to the hard-working men and women who have given years, if not decades, of their lives to public service here at the Department of State,” Benson said. “Whether the legislative leaders are with us or not, the people of this department will not give up on our mission of continuing to find new ways to provide convenient and efficient service to all Michiganders. And neither will I.”