Sacramento, California

Consulate Turns to Qmatic to Guarantee Customers Shorter Wait Times and More Efficient Service

The Consulate General of México in Sacramento, California serves constituents in 24 surrounding counties. The office processes minor diplomatic issues such as consular ID’s and passports, notary services, registry of births and marriages, visas for foreign citizens, and temporary vehicle permits. While providing representation for the Mexican state, the consulate serves 900,000 Mexican migrants, tourists and expatriates located within its constituency each year.

The consulate also fosters trade relations and local economies, and encourages cultural and scientific relations between Mexico and the U.S. In January, 2011, the Consulate moved to a new, state-of-the-art, 30,000 square foot facility with modern features to improve public access to consular services. The modern facility reflects the Mexican Government’s commitment to foster Mexico-California relations with a long-term perspective and for the well-being of Mexican communities across northern California.

The consulate faced various challenges

The previous facility was structured with multiple lines for a single process, requiring customers to stand and wait in several different lines for service. The confusing environment oftentimes resulted in customers waiting needlessly in the wrong line and creating unnecessary delays in service. Additionally, consulate personnel received complaints when customers were processed out of turn. Without any certainty of wait times and with poor customer direction, Consulate staff served customers in a tiring and chaotic environment where customers were required to stand and wait, sometimes for hours at a time. Consulate directors quickly determined the need for a solution that would allow employees to actively manage their customer flow, as well as properly and efficiently guide customers with a variety of service requirements through the facility

Customer gets guided through Qmatic 

Consulate IT staff turned to Qmatic for a Customer Journey Management solution that would address their customer tracking and data needs. Upon arrival, customers now check in at an information desk where they are entered into the Qmatic system and issued an alphanumeric ticket. The Qmatic system instantly places the customers in a virtual queue according to the services they requested. Unlike the old system that required customers to stand in multiple lines for service, customers can now sit and wait comfortably until called. Staff members at fifteen service counters call customers forward for service using the Qmatic system. They trigger the system to call the next customer, which in turn triggers an audio announcement and monitors and LED displays, all of which project the customer’s ticket number to inform them of their turn. The monitors and displays are strategically placed for maximum visibility among the waiting customers, including by the individual service counters. The counter displays serve to direct customers to the correct counter, eliminating hesitation time. The Qmatic system collects statistical data such a wait times and transaction times with which reports can be run and analyzed by management. This data provides tangible evidence about the productivity of the facility that management can use to make procedural and operational improvements such as staff schedule changes. Seemingly simple changes like to the staff schedule ease high customer volume while ensuring a more streamlined customer flow and a less stressful environment.

Providing quality services to customers

Once a stressful experience where customers defended their spot in line, the Consulate now provides a relaxed and pleasant environment. “Our improvements in service are not only because we installed Qmatic, but also because we analyze the data it provides,” noted Carlos Otero López, IT Regional Manager. “From these measurements we make decisions regarding necessary service windows, appointment scheduling and service efficiencies. We can better distribute our appointments throughout our business hours and make staffing and procedural decisions based on hard numbers instead of guessing based on subjective parameters.” No longer restricted by long customer lines or a confusing environment, Consulate staff can instead focus on providing quality service to customers.

The end result is a more streamlined customer journey with an increase in productivity across the board. “The government of Mexico is making huge investments in the U.S. and around the world in order for embassies and consulates to offer better service to our nationals abroad,” said Gutiérrez. “Solutions like Qmatic help to offer better service in a friendly and neat environment, and our customers are guaranteed efficient service.”

Benefits of utilizing Qmatic

Access advanced, state-of-the-art technology at your fingertips. One click of a virtual button does it all: the next customer in queue is called forward for service, audio announcements are triggered in English and Spanish, and LED displays flash customer ticket numbers at convenient and easy-to-see locations, all resulting in efficient and instantaneous audio and visual customer notification and customer management. Eliminate customer stress and confusion.

Regular, clear communication reduces customer anxiety and decreases customer hesitation as to what they need to do, when and at what location. There is a clear order that customers quickly and easily recognize, which results in decreased wait time, while clear knowledge of when it is their turn decreases their perceived wait time. Improve customer service processes. Personnel can make informed decisions about customer service processes for appointment scheduling, peak service staffing, and customer service efficiencies. By recording milestone data on every customer transaction such as wait times for each queue, the Qmatic system provides insight into daily operations and supplies hard data needed to make procedural improvements.


“Our improvements in service are not only because we installed Qmatic, but also because we analyze the data it provides.”

Carlos Otero López, IT Regional Manager, Consulate General of México in Sacramento