What I’ve Learned About People By Working At The DMV

ZOOTOPIA – FLASH, THE FASTEST SLOTH AT THE DMV -- When rookie rabbit officer Judy Hopps (voice of Ginnifer Goodwin) has only 48 hours to crack her first case, she turns to scam-artist fox Nick Wilde for help, but he doesn't always have her best interests at heart. Their investigation takes them to the local DMV (Department of Mammal Vehicles), which is staffed entirely by sloths. Directed by Byron Howard and Rich Moore, and produced by Clark Spencer, Walt Disney Animation Studios' "Zootopia" opens in U.S. theaters on March 4, 2016. ©2015 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

We live in a society today where people want things, and they want them right now. We don’t want to have to wait an hour or more for something we may need or want. When we have to wait numerous hours, it annoys the hell out of us. We get angry, frustrated, and upset. We yell and we complain about the companies and organizations that make us wait a long time for something.

However, the world’s population continues to grow every single day. That means more and more people have to go to this type of place and wait for a long time for service.

This is a place almost everyone in the general public has to go to sometime in their life. It’s the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles!)

I remember the time that I went for my first driver’s license renewal, and I left because the systems were down for that day. I went back the next day, but they were too busy. I didn’t want to have to wait in line just to get my photo taken.

However, a few years later, I ended up getting a job at that DMV as a photo license technician. What a coincidence! I never thought I’d be working there after being an annoyed customer.

Considering the good customer service skills I’ve developed over the years in my college education and at my previous job, and my college education, my bosses felt I was a good fit for this job. I decided, “Why not? Let’s try it out.” I didn’t think I’d last, though.

However, I’ve now spent 3 years working at the DMV. This is the perspective you may get out of working at the Department of Motor Vehicles.

You’re behind the counter as customers ask how long the wait is going to be. You’re the one who gets yelled at when the wait times are too long. You’re dealing with the general public 5 days a week. Some people are nice, some are very mean, some are crazy, and some people who come in just don’t want to be there. Some DMV customers are just having a bad day to begin with… That’s why they tend to yell at the DMV’s workers.

As an employee at the DMV, I’ve dealt with it all. Honestly, though, you may love working at the DMV and get good, comical stories out of it instead of taking annoying customers to heart! I remember a time a customer asked my colleagues and I, if he could get his permit today, then take the test and pay for it another day. That same day, I remember a customer asking me if this is the driving school. I also remember a time a customer coming in the building and taking a number when we weren’t open for the day yet. He walked mad when I told him to wait outside. You’ll get a lot of good times and funny stories from working at the DMV.

You’ll also understand that the DMV isn’t McDonalds. It provides services, so you have to understand that if you want to benefit from those services, you may have to wait an extensive period of time with the same people who want the same things as you. You can go up to the DMV employees all you want while waiting for your number to be called asking how much longer you have to wait, but it won’t make the wait time less for you unless there’s really a mistake or something.

Every state’s Department of Motor Vehicles is different. You’ll learn that residents who transfer their licenses from one state to another state tend to hate how their new state works when it comes to driver license services. Their feelings are be understandable, but when you move to a new state, you have to follow the new state’s laws. That’s just the way it is.

There is one other thing you get a new perspective on as an employee at the DMV. Sometimes, Immigrants who qualify to get a driver’s license in the United States come to the DMV. You have to be patient with them, even if you think differently than they do about them getting a license in the States. A beneficial part of being a DMV employee is that you’ll learn where the other DMV locations in your area are.  If some DMVs are slower than others, you’ll learn secrets like when it is best to go to the DMV and which location to visit if waiting in line is still an issue for you.

No matter what situations you get in when working at the DMV, your life won’t be the same once you start working there.

I know going to the DMV can be a pain, but it makes employees much happier when you try to make the best of it. It’s not a place you have to go to every day, every week, every month, or even every year, depending on your driving situation, so try to enjoy your time there and be respectful to the DMV workers.

Featured image via Zootopia


  1. I just took the test and have no idea where they pulled the policy and procedure questions.. Or the methods and procedures questions.

  2. I’ve been working at Dmv for 2 months and I can’t believe how much stress it is but at the end of the day I feel accomplished to have helped all those people.


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