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USPS: Customer Input, Web Site, Key To Flat Strategy

Press release from the issuing company

July 21, 2003 -- WASHINGTON –The Postal Service is seeking input from its customers on its plans to automate the delivery of magazines, catalogs, and other flat mail by encouraging them to review its Corporate Flat Strategy on the web and comment through an email address: [email protected] “Our Corporate Flat Strategy describes initiatives to provide customers with the best possible service at reasonable rates,” explained Senior Vice President Operations John Rapp. “Using what we have learned from automating letters, our plan now is to automate flats so that we can avoid costly manual sorting associatedwith our delivery operations. This will allow us to pass those savings to our customers.” Flat mail represents about 25 percent of total mail volume and generates approximately $16.1 billion annually in revenues. Yet nearly half of last year’s 51.6 billion flats were not presorted for carrier delivery and were more costly to processas they required additional sorting. The Corporate Flat Strategy identifies near- and longer-term initiatives to drive down the $4 billion annual cost associated with letter carriers spending nearly threehours daily sorting mail prior to making their rounds. Despite its name, flat mailvaries greatly in size and shape, and is sorted on various machines or presorted by mailers to carrier routes. Because there is no single machine that combines this mail, letter carriers also spend time checking through as many as five separate flat bundles at the customer’s mailbox before delivering the mail. The Corporate Flat Strategy can be viewed at www.ribbs.usps.gov. On the left column under “RIBBS Links,” click the “Corporate Flat Strategy” link. The [email protected] email address routes all comments to the Postal Headquarters.