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December 11, 2015
APPROVED USPS 2016 PROMOTION CALENDAR
On December 10, 2015 the Postal Regulatory Commission issued Order No. 2861 approving the five proposed USPS Mailing Promotions for calendar year 2016. These promotions continue to build on the engagement strategies of the 2015 Promotions. The promotions focus on providing marketers with the opportunity to engage their customers by using dynamic color, new print techniques, mobile technology as well as traditional and innovative mail techniques. The promotions are designed to create excitement about mail, provide multiple opportunities for mailers to enhance the value of their mail and will offer incentives or discounts to mailers throughout 2016. Promotion highlights are as follows:
First-Class Mail Promotions:
Earned Value Reply Mail
Personalized Color Transpromo
Feb. 15 – March 31, 2016
May 15 – Dec. 31, 2016
April 1 – June 30, 2016
July 1 – Dec. 31, 2016
First-Class Mail & Standard Mail Promotion:
Emerging and Advanced Technology/Video In Print
Jan. 15 – Aug. 31, 2016
March 1 – August 31, 2016
Standard Mail Promotions:
Tactile, Sensory & Interactive Mailpiece Engagement
Jan. 15 – Aug. 31, 2016
May 15 – Dec. 31, 2016
March 1 – August 31, 2016
July 1 – December 31, 2016
Customers may find registration and promotion details on the RIBBS website under the Promotions & Incentive Programs for First-Class Mail & Standard Mail tab; postings on the website are scheduled to be available early next week. If you have any questions, please contact the Mailing Services Program Office at email@example.com .
Please visit us on the USPS Industry Outreach website. Thank you for your support of the United States Postal Service.
--Consumer and Industry Affairs
March 9, 2015
First-Class Mail 2015 Promotions
Registration Begins March 15
As part of its commitment to grow the mail, the Postal Service is pleased to announce several First-Class Mail promotions that will offer incentives or discounts to mailers throughout 2015.
Earned Value Reply Mail is designed to encourage mailers to use First-Class Mail as the primary reply means for their customers, by providing a postage credit for each returned Business Reply Mail or Courtesy Reply Mail piece.
Color Transpromo is designed to encourage mailers to increase the value of bills, invoices, and statements by combining the power of digital and color technology, which can produce greater connection and response from customers.
Emerging and Advanced Technology is designed to create omni-channel marketing opportunities by integrating direct mail with mobile technology. This engages interactive experiences and encourages mailers to use “enhanced” augmented reality, Near Field Communications (NFC), and other technologies.
Earned Value Reply Mail
March 15 - April 30, 2015
May 1 - July 31, 2015
April 15 – November 30, 2015
June 1 - November 30, 2015
Emerging and Advanced Technology*
March 15 - October 31, 2015
May 1- October 31, 2015
*Standard Mail is part of the Emerging and Advanced Technology Promotion and is currently being
reviewed by the Postal Regulatory Commission.
On February 24, 2015, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) found the Postal Service pricing proposals for First-Class Mail to be consistent with the Consumer Price Index based price cap under the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006.
Customers may find registration and promotion details on the RIBBS website under the Promotions & Incentive Programs for First-Class & Standard Mail tab; postings on the website are scheduled to be available on March 9, 2015.
March 6, 2015
PRC Remands Proposed Price Adjustments to USPS
Standard Mail, Periodicals, and Package Services Products Affected
Washington, DC – Today the Postal Regulatory Commission returned proposed rate adjustments for Standard Mail, Periodicals, and Package Services classes to the Postal Service to allow for modifications that comply with applicable legal requirements. The rate increases are proposed to be implemented April 26, 2015.
The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 provides for ratemaking flexibility and allows the Postal Service to adjust rates for Market Dominant products as long as the increase for each class of mail meets certain statutory and regulatory requirements, the most prominent of which is that such increases are kept under the rate of inflation, as determined by the Consumer Price Index.
A Commission review of the Postal Service’s proposal to adjust rates for Standard Mail, Periodicals, and Package Services found that:
- In Standard Mail, certain unequal commercial and nonprofit discounts, certain workshare discounts, and the Postal Service’s methodology for calculating certain billing determinants do not comply with applicable legal requirements.
- The Commission was unable to make statutorily required findings to determine price cap compliance due to incorrect adjusted billing determinants relating to the Postal Service’s new FSS prices for Periodicals bundles, sacks, and pallets.
- The Commission was unable to make statutorily required findings to determine price cap compliance for Package Services products due to incorrect adjusted billing determinants and incorrect price cap calculations.
The Commission’s complete analysis of the Postal Service’s price adjustments for these categories of mail can be found in Order No. 2378, under Docket No. R2015-4.
February 27, 2015
PRC Approves First-Class Mail Price Adjustments
New Prices are Scheduled to Take Effect April 26, 2015
On February 24, 2015, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) issued Order No. 2365 on Price Adjustments for First-Class Mail finding the Postal Service pricing proposals to be consistent with the Consumer Price Index based price cap under the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006.
The following actions affect domestic mail:
- The Postal Service will maintain the price of the First-Class Mail stamp, which includes the Forever stamp, at $0.49.
- The single-piece additional ounce for letters will increase to $0.22.
- The price of postcards will increase to $0.35.
Changes to prices for international mail include:
- Outbound Single-Piece First-Class Mail International Letters (first ounce) will increase to $1.20.
- Non-machinable Outbound Single-Piece First-Class Mail International Letters (first ounce) will increase to $1.42.
- Outbound Single-Piece First-Class Mail International Postcards will increase to $1.20.
- Outbound Single-Piece First-Class Mail International Large Envelopes (Flats) (first ounce) will increase to $2.38.
All PRC documents pertaining to price changes for 2015 are located at www.prc.gov, under Docket No. R2015-4.
PRC Affirms Proposal to Raise Rates
for Competitive Products
Rate Changes are Scheduled to Take Effect April 26, 2015
On February 25, 2015, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) affirmed a proposal by the Postal Service to increase the postage rates for certain Competitive products and related classification changes.
The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act requires that rates for Competitive products must produce sufficient revenues to ensure they are not subsidized by Market Dominant products. Each Competitive product must cover its attributable costs. In addition, Competitive products, as a group, must pay an appropriate share of institutional costs, currently set at 5.5 percent. The Commission determined that the proposed domestic and international Competitive products price increases appear to satisfy these requirements.
Commission Order No. 2366 outlines its review of the Postal Service’s request.
February 11, 2015
74th Postmaster General of the United States
Outlines Strategies and Names Executive Leadership Team
WASHINGTON – As she begins her tenure as the new Postmaster General and CEO of the U.S. Postal Service, Megan Brennan issued a recent letter to employees stating that the future of the Postal Service is filled with opportunity.
Outlining some key strategies for moving forward, specifically she highlighted:
- We will invest in the future of the Postal Service. Investing in our future means creating the best opportunities for long-term growth and profitability.
- We will speed the pace of innovation. The coming years will see greater focus on innovation, with pilot projects designed to test new delivery offerings, new tools to better meet the digital and mobile expectations of our customers, and new offerings designed for America’s small businesses.
- We will develop strategies to better engage and empower employees.
- We will also build the most efficient and productive network to support our growth products. We have made tremendous progress streamlining our operation footprint in recent years—allowing us to keep our products and services affordable.
PMG Brennan also seeks to advance transformative strategies that invest in the future of the Postal Service and shape growth opportunities for the organization and the industries it serves.
The PMG also announced that she will be retaining the Executive Leadership Team (ELT), and that the structure of the ELT generally will remain the same. The members of the ELT are:
- Ron Stroman will continue as Deputy Postmaster General and also serve as Chief Government Relations Officer. Ron has provided strong counsel to his colleagues and proved an able advocate for the organization on Capitol Hill.
- Dave Williams will succeed PMG Brennan as Chief Operating Officer. Dave will be leading numerous initiatives designed to improve service and streamline mail processing, delivery, and Post Office operations.
- Joe Corbett will continue as Chief Financial Officer. Joe plays an instrumental role in USPS strategic planning, leveraging best financial practices and bringing process rigor to financial decisions throughout the organization.
- Nagisa Manabe will continue as Chief Marketing and Sales Officer. Nagisa has employed strategies to drive exceptional growth in our package business, accelerate smart experimentation, and spark a reappraisal of the power of mail among America’s marketers.
- Jeff Williamson will continue as Chief Human Resources Officer. Jeff oversees all aspects of Human Resources for the organization’s 600,000+ employees and manages one of the largest Human Resources Shared Services and Human Capital Enterprise Systems nationally.
- Jim Cochrane will continue as Chief Information Officer. Jim oversees the integration of technology and innovation in all aspects of our operations, and has been the driving force behind many of our recent technology-driven initiatives.
- Tom Marshall will continue as General Counsel. Tom has provided sound advice and guidance to the Board of Governors and his colleagues on the ELT and has done a tremendous job navigating the myriad business decisions that are influenced by legislative, regulatory, and legal issues.
The PMG also announced updates and new appointments to the USPS organization chart. Included in those appointments is an officer who works very closely with the mailing industry and whose strategic direction in Processing Operations has propelled the Postal Service forward in its commitment to provide optimal networks in mail processing and transportation. Linda Malone will succeed Dave Williams as Vice President, Network Operations.
The Postal Service has been well-served by the individual and collective abilities of this team and will work, in the coming weeks, on strategic initiatives and the update of the USPS five-year business plan.
January 15, 2015
Postal Service Files Market Dominant Price Change
Proposes an Additional $0.9 Billion in Annualized Contributions
WASHINGTON ̶ On January 15, the Postal Service filed with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) a Market Dominant price change based on a Consumer Price Index (CPI) cap authority of 1.966%.
The Postal Service believes strongly in the value of mail and maintaining relevance for today’s customers, offering reasonable pricing, workshare incentives, and meeting its obligation to the American public to strengthen its financial condition.
All of the proposed price changes are based on CPI prices plus the Exigent Surcharge approved by the PRC in Docket Nos. R2013-10 and R2013-11.
Using the CPI, we estimate that this price change will generate an additional $0.9 billion in contribution on an annualized basis. If the PRC approves the filing, the proposed April 26 implementation of the prices will improve the FY 2015 financial outlook by $0.4 billion in contribution.
The key elements of the CPI case include the following:
- Above average price increases to address PRC concerns about underwater products
- Special Services simplification to reduce redundancy and improve customer ease of use
- Introduction of a separate Flats Sequencing System (FSS) pricing structure for Standard Mail and Periodicals
- Introduction of Carrier Route bundle and container pricing for non-FSS flats for Standard Mail and Periodicals
- Include four promotions (Earned Value Reply Mail, Color Transpromo, Emerging Technologies, Mail Drives Mobile)
Various industry webinars will be scheduled to offer depth and insight into the proposed changes.
In November, the Postal Service filed for the transfer of First-Class Mail Parcels to a competitive product and the elimination of Return Receipt for Merchandise as a special service. These matters are still pending with the PRC. For the purpose of this filing we are assuming that these products will remain in the Market Dominant category.
# # #
January 6, 2015
Postmaster General National Press Club Newsmakers Speech
Farewell Address offers perspective and advice for postal stakeholders/Congress
WASHINGTON — Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe was the featured speaker at the January 6, 2015 National Press Club Newsmakers news conference in Washington, DC. Speaking to reporters collectively for the last time prior to his retirement, Donahoe praised postal employees for their hard-work and accomplishments and also offered postal stakeholders some unsolicited advice for a profitable future. Below is the text of the speech. Please note that the remarks as delivered may vary from the prepared text.
Good morning. It’s nice to be back at the National Press Club. I would like to thank Herb Perrone and the Newsmakers Committee for making some room on the schedule for a lame duck.
About 40 years ago I was rousted out of my bed by my uncle Bob….because he wanted make sure I got down to the Pittsburgh General Post Office on time to take a postal job exam. If he hadn’t done that, I wouldn’t be here now.
I ended up working afternoons while I was going to the University of Pittsburgh during the day – it wasn’t so easy managing those two demands on my time. Today, I consider getting that job a very lucky start to my career.
Now….if you could talk to that younger version of myself at that time of my life, there’s no way I would ever have guessed that I would stay with the Postal Service for 40 years – much less that I would be able to lead a 630,000 person organization and serve as Postmaster General.
I was fortunate at every stage of my career: I found interesting challenges and opportunities and great mentors. That’s a testament to a special organization, and really great people who are dedicated to serve the American public every day.
However, when you have 40 years of perspective and you’re still working out of a tough financial crisis, you wonder about the young person who might be joining the Postal Service today.
What is the organization going to look like in ten or 20 years? How will we serve our customers in the future? Will that person have the same opportunities?
Those questions need to be addressed. And, the best approach is to take a broad, long-term view of the organization and develop strategies that best serve our customers and employees into the future.
Can the Postal Service operate profitably far into the future? Absolutely.
Can it continue to adapt quickly to changes in the marketplace? We’ve proved that.
Can it continue to meet its full potential as an engine of growth for the mailing industry and America’s businesses? Yes.
Can it do these things within its current business model? Not likely.
If you’ve followed my tenure as Postmaster General over the past four years, you’ll know that I spent a decent amount of time trying to push for legislation that would give the Postal Service greater operational flexibility.
- This means having greater control over the way we manage our workforce, including healthcare benefits;
• This means fully managing our infrastructure;
• This means having greater pricing and product development flexibility; and
• It means being able to solve problems and pursue opportunities without irrational mandates and legislative requirements.
Retiree health benefits are my favorite example of an absurd mandate. Unlike practically any other organization, the Postal Service is required to prefund the retiree health benefits that we have promised to our employees.
Unfortunately, Congress decided to make the Postal Service prepay a 40-year obligation in a ten-year period – which we could have been able to pay, if the Internet had never been invented.
To compound the issue, we massively overpay for retiree health insurance. That’s because our employees are in plans that don’t leverage the Medicare benefits that the Postal Service and our employees have already paid for.
Under our current mandates, we’re supposed to pay a total of $96 billion dollars into a Treasury department account. We paid roughly $48 billion prior to 2011, and defaulted on roughly $22 billion over the past three years.
The sad part of all of this is that it could be fixed immediately with legislation. If we integrate Medicare into our retiree healthcare plans we would be fully funded after just one final $3 billion payment. Done.
Rather than overspend on healthcare, we could be spending those funds on a new vehicle fleet, package sortation equipment, pay down debt, and significantly slow postage price increases.
What’s holding us up? Myopia….shortsightedness.
That may sound a little harsh, but it would be too easy to say that it’s just Congressional gridlock. To no avail, we’ve been trying to get postal reform legislation passed for the past four years.
As much as we try to have an elevated conversation about the future of the organization, we never get beyond the narrow set of interests that are determined to preserve the status quo.
The Postal Service put together a smart, comprehensive business plan and made recommendations about legislative changes to get us back on a sound financial footing.
We didn’t get much support from our unions or the mailing industry – because it threatened the status quo.
The mailing industry views the future of the Postal Service mostly through the lens of pricing – so they don’t want the Postal Service to have greater product and pricing flexibility. I’ve always found this very odd, because the ongoing lack of reform creates more pressure to raise prices – which is what happened this past year.
Our labor unions view the future of the organization mostly through the lens of preserving jobs and benefits as they currently exist. Technology is driving dramatic changes in delivery services – just look at how Amazon is offering one-hour delivery in New York City. The Postal Service needs the flexibility to be a part of those changes – and more importantly, to shape those changes.
The Postal Service is delivering packages seven days a week in most parts of the country. We don’t need to be delivering mail on Saturdays. It just doesn’t make financial sense given the drop in mail volumes, and the public supports making the change to five-days of mail delivery.
My hope is that the new Congress will find ways to build consensus. It has to start with a real willingness on the part all stakeholders to take a longer-term view of the organization. The narrow interests can’t continue to get in the way of the broader national interest.
Just last year the American Postal Workers Union mounted a protest campaign and disrupted our partnership with Staples, which was a great business partner for the Postal Service. The Postal Service partnered with Staples to provide our customers with more convenient access to a wide range of our products and services in roughly 82 Staples stores. It was successful in terms of driving greater revenue for both partners.
Unfortunately, the APWU approach is to try to keep all of our transactions in Post Offices. That’s not convenient for our customers and it’s not a smart retail strategy for our business. We’d much prefer to be able to sell our products and services with a multitude of retail partners and be in popular locations to make it easier and more convenient for people to do business with us.
It’s an example of the narrow, near-sighted view winning over the broader, long-term strategy. Unfortunately, it’s now tougher for us to find retail partners.
Attitudes have to change…..and I hope they will.
I’ve been accused of being optimistic to a fault. Perhaps I am….but I believe this new Congress will take a fresh look at the long-term future of the Postal Service and pass the legislation we need.
As someone who’s leaving his job in a few weeks, I’ll offer some unsolicited advice on the way out.
First of all, acknowledge the reality that the mailing and shipping marketplace is changing…. rapidly.
• First-Class Mail volumes have declined by 35 percent in the past ten years. That would be worth $17 billion in annual revenue today – and it’s not coming back;
• E-commerce is driving big demand for delivery services. That’s what’s driving our package business growth;
• Location-based technology is enabling tremendous new ways of adding value to delivery; and
• Integrating mail with digital technologies is creating powerful strong business opportunities for the senders of mail.
These facts about our business need to be part of the business model discussion.
Will the Postal Service always continue to fulfill its core service mission? Yes – but Congress needs to look at the Postal Service as a business that is going to be a lot different in the coming years – and it should view this as a positive, desirable outcome.
Second, Congress needs to take a broader, long-term view of the organization.
America needs a strong Postal Service. It needs a Postal Service with a business model that is profitable over the long-term so that it can continually invest in the future.
We owe our customers and the nation a Postal Service that will continue to drive the economy, help businesses grow, and provide continually improving products and services.
The discussion about the future of the organization would benefit greatly by working toward a 10 or 15-year time horizon. If you truly embrace the longer-term view, many of the narrow, special interest issues have a completely different context and become much less important.
Third, the Postal Service needs the authority and the flexibility to manage the organization more like a business. That means streamlined governance, fewer constraints on pricing and products, workforce flexibility, and freedom from irrational mandates.
We will always have strong oversight, and checks and balances. We also need to have the attitude across the industry that encourages flexibility in the way we manage the organization and adapt to the marketplace.
Fourth, I would encourage Congress to view the Postal Service as a test bed or laboratory of change that might be applied to the rest of the federal government.
When we look at the workforce we’ll need in 20 or 30 years, what we are doing today will have to evolve.
Most young people aren’t looking for a single employer over the course of their careers. In today’s world, does it really make sense to offer the promise of a government pension to a 22 year-old who is just entering the workforce? And how reliable is that promise?
Postal Service’s financial issues are similar to those facing the federal government. At some point the costs have to come down and those promises of benefits have to be paid. Just look at the unfunded liabilities with military vets and federal, state and local retirement systems.
We’ve proposed transitioning from a defined benefit program to a defined contribution program for postal employees. A thrift savings plan or IRA would give our employees much more mobility and flexibility. It may also be a much more responsible and honest arrangement when all is said and done.
I’d like to see the Congress encourage much more experimentation at the federal level. The Postal Service has the kind of management that would appreciate being at the front edge of change and would make good use of opportunities.
Healthcare reform is another important area for experimentation. I don’t think anyone would argue that the federal government isn’t massively overpaying for employee and retiree healthcare benefits. Let the Postal Service develop a more cost-effective approach. We’ve developed some promising proposals – we should have the flexibility to pursue them.
Over the past four years, I have had the privilege to lead a great management team and a tremendous organization through some challenging times.
I’m very pleased to say that our last fiscal year was our best of the past six years.
We earned a controllable income profit of $1.4 billion. Considering that we recorded a $2.4 billion controllable income loss in 2012, that profit represents a very big success for the organization. We’ve also accumulated $6 billion in cash, which gives us some flexibility to make long overdue investments.
It was pretty gloomy coming out of the 2008/2009 recession. We were facing declines in every part of our business.
We had to revamp and improve our core offerings. We significantly upgraded our product development and marketing strategies – which helped spur strong growth in our package business in particular.
If you look at the fact that we offer date-specified delivery, free insurance and free tracking for our Priority Mail offerings. That’s a great value to the sender and it continues to attract more customers to the Postal Service.
However, we couldn’t have offered those features if hadn’t taken a long-term approach to upgrading our technology and tracking systems. We’ve worked hard to put a strong data and technology platform in place to drive future innovation.
One of the reasons we’ve solidified our mail revenue over the past two years – especially standard mail – is because of the rich reporting data we now provide to our commercial customers.
We’ve also worked hard to develop a culture of risk-taking and experimentation.
We’re delivering groceries in San Francisco; we’re doing same-day deliveries in New York; we’re delivering on Sundays in many markets; we’re doing some small scale warehousing services. It’s been yielding results.
Every Door Direct Mail is a digital tool designed to bring small businesses into the mail – it was an experiment that’s now driving almost a billion dollars in annual revenue for us.
We’ve also invested in our product development and marketing strategies. We’ve revitalized our sales operations. Nagisa Manabe and her team have done a wonderful job of getting closer to our customer and competing for their business. We’ve now got a lot of momentum as an organization as a result.
We’ve been just as aggressive on the cost side of the equation. Since 2006, we reduced our cost base by almost $16 billion.
• We did that by consolidating 305 mail processing facilities.
• Our Post Plan optimized the window hours at 13,000 Post Offices.
• We eliminated 23,000 delivery routes, even as the number of delivery points rises every year.
• We’ve reduced the size of our workforce by 212,000 positions, relying on an orderly process of attrition and without resorting to layoffs.
I think from any perspective, you have to say that it was the result of developing a strong, long-term strategy, ignoring the naysayers and following through.
If we hadn’t pressed so hard and moved as quickly as we did, especially on the cost side of the equation, I have no doubt we would have run off the financial cliff by now. Had we done nothing, Congress would likely be bailing us out to the tune of billions of dollars annually.
If there’s one message I have today, it’s this:
We made a lot of tough decisions that were based on a long-term view of what was right for the organization. We used every bit of flexibility we had – as we should have.
That should be seen as a strong argument for allowing the organization to have the additional flexibility it needs to deal with some of our bigger structural issues.
If given that flexibility, I have no doubt the Postal Service will continue to aggressively adapt to a changing world and a changing marketplace, and do so profitably. That would be the best way to meet the expectations of the American public.
Let me conclude by recognizing the performance of our employees over the holiday season.
We saw package deliveries increase by over 18 percent and our on-time performance was the best ever. Our employees were delivering in some tough weather conditions – as they always do – and….on Sundays for the past eight weeks in all the major markets.
That’s a testament to an incredible organizational effort and employees who are highly dedicated to their public service mission.
With all of the technology changes and disruptions…the Postal Service still remains a critical part of the American economy and American society.
It has been a pleasure to serve the organization and the American people for almost 40 years.
As I leave, I do so with a lot of optimism and confidence. My successor, Megan Brennan, is going to be a tremendous leader of the Postal Service. She’s been vital to our recent successes and will do a great job of leading the organization in the coming years.
It makes it a lot easier to pass the baton knowing that the organization will be in such good hands.
Thanks for the invitation and the opportunity to speak with you today. I’ve enjoyed getting to know many of you over the past few years.
And with that, I’d be happy to take any questions you may have.
# # #
November 14, 2014
Postal Service Board of Governors Selects Megan Brennan as 74th Postmaster General and CEO of the United States Postal Service
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors today announced the appointment of Megan J. Brennan, the current chief operating officer of the Postal Service, as the 74th Postmaster General and CEO.
Speaking at a public meeting of the Board this morning, Mickey D. Barnett, chairman of the Postal Service Board of Governors, praised Brennan – who will become the first woman to be Postmaster General – as the ideal choice to replace the current Postmaster General, Patrick R. Donahoe, who will be retiring in early 2015.
“Megan has demonstrated outstanding vision, leadership and executive ability in her role as chief operating officer, and has been extraordinarily successful in managing the operations of the Postal Service,” said Barnett.” She is highly regarded throughout the Postal Service and among the broader community of our major customers and business partners – and rightly so.”
As chief operation officer, Brennan is responsible for the day-to-day activities of 491,000 career employees working in more than 31,000 facilities supported by a fleet of more than 200,000 vehicles. She is responsible for all Postal Service operations, including mail processing, transportation, delivery and retail operations.
“As the head of operations, Megan has led important initiatives to provide Sunday delivery services, improved tracking, and greater predictability and reliability,” said Barnett. “She has also been highly successful in rationalizing our mail processing, delivery and retail operations.”
Barnett also commended Brennan’s role in maintaining a high delivery performances in the face of a significant and continued reduction in workforce and resources. “Megan has managed some very large, complex organizational changes and the Postal Service never missed a beat in terms meeting customer expectations,” said Barnett. “She instills great confidence in the ability of the organization to succeed and achieve its business goals.”
“I am deeply honored and humbled to take on this role at such an exciting time for the organization,” said Brennan. “The Postal Service plays a vital role in America’s society and economy and I’m looking forward to strengthening that role and meeting the demands of a rapidly evolving marketplace in the years ahead.”
Megan J. Brennan was named Chief Operating Officer and executive vice president in December 2010. Reporting directly to the Postmaster General, Brennan has led the continuous improvement of the postal network operation as well as the allocations of people and resources.
Previously she was vice president of Eastern Area Operations. As the senior postal official she oversaw an area that encompassed Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Delaware, Kentucky, Central and South Jersey, Western New York and parts of Virginia and Indiana. A 28-year veteran of the Postal Service, Brennan served as vice president of Northeast Area Operations from May 2005 until being named vice president of Eastern Area Operations.
Brennan joined the Postal Service in 1986 as a letter carrier in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and began her management career as a delivery and collection supervisor. Brennan is a graduate of Immaculata College in Pennsylvania. She is a Sloan Fellow and holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
# # #
Postmaster General Donahoe to Retire February 2015
Praised highly by Postal Governors for leading organization through financial crisis
WASHINGTON — The United States Postal Service Board of Governors announced today that Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer Patrick R. Donahoe has decided to retire February 1, 2015, after 39 years with the Postal Service.
At a public meeting of the Board of Governors this morning, Mickey D. Barnett, Chairman of the Board, called Donahoe a visionary leader who worked tirelessly to move the organization forward during one of its most difficult periods.
“Pat was the calm in the financial storm. He ignored the naysayers and went forward with his team and built a comprehensive plan for the future of the organization, made tough decisions, and executed against those decisions,” said Barnett. “That’s a testament to the great team he built and his own personal leadership.”
Donahoe became Postmaster General during a severe financial crisis, the result of an inflexible business model that limited the organization’s ability to respond to declining First-Class Mail volumes. Donahoe created an integrated financial plan and took aggressive measures to control costs – including the rationalization of mail processing, delivery and Post Office operations. These changes have significantly lowered the cost base of the Postal Service.
Commenting on the fact that the Postal Service has roughly 220,000 fewer employees today than it did in 2004, Barnett noted that “no other organization has restructured itself so dramatically and on such a large scale, and continued functioning at such a high level. And it did so without relying upon employee lay-offs.”
“That’s the result of Pat taking responsible steps to ensure that changes don’t come at the expense of those who have made their career at the Postal Service,” said Barnett. “There were plenty who argued for layoffs and other dramatic steps and Pat was always the voice that argued for doing the right thing for the organization and the employees – and that’s a tremendous legacy.”
“Pat’s leadership and advocacy for the organization has been remarkable,” said Barnett. “He has been an excellent strategist for the organization and the mailing industry it serves.”
Donahoe served as a constant cheerleader for mail as a marketing channel and pushed for more integration between mail and digital communications in the mailing industry. Under his leadership, the Postal Service launched several new mailing products and enhancements including Every Door Direct Mail which has generated more than $1 billion in new revenue. Donahoe also guided the organization’s shipping and package strategies to capitalize on the rapid increase of e-commerce. In the last few years, the Postal Service has seen double digit growth each year in its package business.
Speaking this morning, Donahoe said he believes the organization is headed in the right direction, but still has a long way to go. “The organization has a lot of momentum right now, and we’re doing a lot to innovate and improve the way we serve the public and our customers,” stated Donahoe. “The nature of delivery is changing dramatically and the Postal Service will continue to be an important part of those changes.”
Appointed Postmaster General by the Postal Service Board of Governors in October, 2010, Mr. Donahoe began his 39-year USPS career as a clerk in Pittsburgh, PA while attending college at the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to his appointment as the organization’s top officer, he served as Deputy Postmaster General and Chief Operating Officer.
“Working for a brand that touches every citizen of this great country every day has been a tremendous honor,” stated Donahoe. “It’s always difficult to walk away from something you love and have a lot of passion for, but knowing that the organization is moving forward with a strong plan and lot of momentum makes it easier.”
A native of Pittsburgh, Mr. Donahoe and his wife have two children and two grandchildren.
# # #
October 22, 2014
Important Updates on
Address Correction Service, Mailer Scorecard Reports &
Full-Service Electronic Verification Assessment Period
Address Correction Service (ACS)
An issue was encountered with Full-Service Address Correction Service (ACS) that decreased the number of records provided to mailers. A fix was implemented and data is currently being provisioned as expected. Data not previously supplied will be provided by October 31, 2014.
Mailer Scorecard Reports
Recent messaging from the Postal Service advised customers not to use the Mailer Scorecard until further notice. Since then, the Postal Service has been working with the mailing industry to validate the accuracy of the Full-Service Electronic Verification reports (Mailer Scorecard) to help identify system issues when they occur and to validate when those issues are corrected. We are continuing to work aggressively to address issues with the reports that are impacting a small percentage of mailings and specific mailing scenarios. The mailing industry is encouraged to start using the reports again beginning November 16, 2014.
Full-Service Electronic Verification – Assessment Period
Based on feedback from the mailing industry the Postal Service is delaying the deployment of Full-Service electronic documentation (eDoc) postage assessments until April 2015 to allow for the issues to be resolved and allow time for mailers to review the data.
October 1, 2014
U.S. Postal Service to Maintain Current Product and Service Prices
Oct. 1, 2014--The Governors of the U.S. Postal Service have decided not to seek a price change for mail and shipping products and services in January in part because of the uncertainty regarding the exigent price increase. This means that the current pricing of postal products and services will remain in effect through the holiday season and early part of 2015. The Board will continue to evaluate pricing strategies and will communicate about any potential price change filings in early 2015. As always, the Postal Service will provide customers advance notice of any price changes.
August 18, 2014
PRC Affirms Priority Mail Price Changes
On August 15, 2014, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) affirmed the Priority Mail® price changes proposed by the United States Postal Service® on July 1, 2014. These prices will be implemented on September 7, 2014. For additional details, go to Postal Explorer® at pe.usps.gov for pricing files (look in the blue navigation bar for September 2014 Price Change Information) and to the PRC website at http://www.prc.gov/Docs/90/90202/Order%20No.%202156.pdf to download Order No. 2156. A Postal Bulletin article will be published on August 21, 2014.
August 18, 2014
Electronic Product Fulfillment
By October 2014, all Address Quality and Address Management products will be provided via the Electronic Product Fulfillment (EPF) method. CD/DVD fulfillment will no longer be an option for product fulfillment. An Electronic Product Fulfillment Form must be completed and submitted prior to October 1, 2014 to avoid interruption in service. If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact the AMS Support group at 800-331-5747 or via email to AMSSupport.firstname.lastname@example.org.
For Additional Information: https://ribbs.usps.gov/index.cfm?page=mtac Look Under Important Updates
August 11, 2014
U.S. Postal Service Reports 2.0 Percent Revenue Increase,
$2.0 Billion Loss in Quarter 3
· Shipping and Package Services Revenue Up 6.6 Percent
· January Price Increase Offsets Continued Volume Loss in First-Class Mail, Driving All Mail Revenue
· Up $424 Million
· Need for Comprehensive Legislation Remains Urgent
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Postal Service ended the June 30, 2014, quarter with a net loss of
$2.0 billion, compared to a net loss of $740 million for the same period last year. The Postal Service
has recorded a loss in 21 of the last 23 quarters, the excepted quarters being the two in which
Congress rescheduled the Retiree Health Benefits prefunding payments.
Revenue continues to improve as a result of the Postal Service’s January mail price increase,
successful sales and marketing initiatives, and continued success in growing the package business.
Total operating revenue of $16.5 billion increased by $327 million, or 2.0 percent, compared to the
same period last year.
Shipping and Package revenue was up 6.6 percent. Standard Mail revenue was up 5.1 percent,
driven by a 0.9 percent increase in volume and the January 2014 price increase. First-Class Mail
volume was down 1.4 percent, but the January price increase offset this decline, resulting in a 3.2
percent revenue increase.
“We’re seeing momentum in our package business and continued use of direct mail as an
advertising medium,” said Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Donahoe. “We’ve
been effective in developing and marketing our products, and we’re improving how we leverage data
and technology—all providing a higher return on mail for many customers and causing them to take
a fresh look at the Postal Service.”
Total operating expenses for the third quarter of 2014 were $18.4 billion, an increase of $1.5 billion
from the same period last year, driven mainly by the Workers’ Compensation fair value adjustment.
Compensation and benefits expenses increased by $15 million, or 0.1 percent, compared to the
third quarter of 2013, as contractual pay increases were offset by work-hour reductions and more
efficient use of available labor flexibility.
“Due to continued losses and low levels of liquidity, we’ve been extremely conservative with our
capital, spending only what is deemed essential to maintain existing infrastructure,” said Chief
Financial Officer and Executive Vice President Joseph Corbett. “To continue to provide world-class
service and remain competitive, we must invest up to $10 billion to replace our aging vehicle fleet,
purchase additional package sorting equipment, and make necessary upgrades to our
Corbett also said that the organization will be unable to make the required $5.7 billion retiree health
benefit prefunding payment to the U.S. Treasury, due by Sept. 30, 2014. Comprehensive postal
legislation is necessary to eliminate this liability and provide a basis for the Postal Service to return
to long-term financial health.
This quarter’s results were improved as a result of implementing the exigent price increase, which
the Postal Regulatory Commission has ruled should be reversed in 2015. The Postal Service has
petitioned the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to review the PRC’s
order on the exigent price increase. Among other things, the Postal Service’s position is that the
PRC improperly and artificially limited the amount of relief to which the Postal Service was entitled
as a result of the Great Recession.
Following is a summary of third quarter results of Operations compared to same period last year.
· Total mail volume of 37.7 billion pieces compared to 37.8 billion pieces
o Shipping and Package volume increased 7.7 percent.
o Standard Mail volume increased 0.9 percent.
o First-Class Mail volume declined 1.4 percent. This was the 32nd consecutive
o quarterly decline for First-Class Mail volume.
· Operating revenue of $16.5 billion increased $327 million or 2.0 percent.
· Operating expenses before non-cash Workers’ Compensation and Postal Service Retiree
Health Benefit Fund expenses of $16.5 billion increased from $16.3 billion, a 1 percent
Complete financial results are available in the Form 10-Q, available at http://about.usps.com/whowe-
June 30, 2014
United States Postal Service
Dear Valued Customer,
The United States Postal Service is planning to resume the rationalization of our network of mail processing facilities which began in 2012. To provide adequate time for planning and preparation, the Postal Service is providing this six-month advance notice of consolidations, for up to 82 facilities, which will begin early January 2015 and be completed by the fall mailing season.
The Postal Service will provide detailed information about its network rationalization planning in the coming weeks. As with prior network rationalization efforts, the Postal Service will work closely with customers to mitigate potential issues associated with transportation and logistical requirements.
In 2012 and 2013, the Postal Service consolidated 141 mail processing facilities. This rationalization was highly successful, resulted in negligible service impact, generating annualized cost savings of $865 million and required no employee layoffs. The Postal Service expects the completion of this phase of network rationalization will generate an additional $750 million in annual savings.
Why are we taking this step now?
Over the past three years, the Postal Service recorded financial losses of $26 billion. The Postal Service receives no tax-payer funds to pay for operating costs and derives all of its revenues from the sale of our products and services, and continues to face significant financial challenges associated with the decline of First-Class Mail volume and revenue, wage and benefit inflation, increasing operating costs, as well as legislative mandates and significant debt pressures. Moreover, the uncertainty regarding legislative reform and review of postal rates in the courts continues to delay needed capital investments to acquire package sorting equipment and replace an aging mail delivery fleet.
We believe strongly that this phase of network rationalization will establish the low-cost, technology-centric delivery platform necessary to serve the mailing and shipping industry for decades to come. We look forward to discussing our specific plans for our network in the coming weeks.
The list of facilities to be consolidated after January of 2015 is available at http://usps.com/ourfuturenetwork .
June 5, 2014
DMM (DOMESTIC MAIL MANUAL)
STREAMLINING INITIATIVE UPDATE
Postal Explorer® (pe.usps.com) is your source for up-to-date mailing standards. The Mailing
Standards of the United States Postal Service, Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) is fully searchable on Postal Explorer and features fly-out menus
(menus that when moused over drop down to the side displaying subsections of
the DMM), cross-reference links, and an extensive subject index.
Effective June 4, 2014, we introduced a streamlined version
of the DMM. This is the first step in an initiative to reduce the size of the
DMM without changes to content to make it quicker, easier, and more convenient
200, 300, and 400 have been consolidated to create a revised Chapter 200,
“Commercial Letters, Flats, and Parcels.” We have eliminated redundant language
and reorganized the remaining language for consistency and to improve flow and
ease of use. Chapter 100, “Retail Letters, Flats, and Parcels,” has also
the applicable Quick Service Guides (QSGs) have been renumbered to align with
new Chapter 200 and updated with new DMM reference information. Applicable
Customer Support Rulings have also been updated with new DMM reference
next scheduled DMM update is July 7, 2014.
The Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) and DMM
Advisories are available on Postal Explorer® (pe.usps.com)
Please visit us on the USPS Industry
Thank you for your support of the United States
--Consumer and Industry
June 5, 2014
IMb™ Services Update
PostalOne!® Release 38.0 Postponed — PostalOne! ® Release 38.0, previously scheduled for
July 2014, has been delayed until August 24, 2014, with an implementation date
of September 7, 2014. The release notes posted on RIBBS under Major/Minor Release/August/September 2014 Release describe
the software upgrades with this release and the new functionality that will be
available on August 24, as well as additional items that won’t be ready until
September 7. Beginning August 24, mailers will be able to submit files with new
specifications for mail.dat 14-2 and mail.XML 16.
The Domestic Mail Manual (DMM®) and DMM Advisories are available on Postal
May 23, 2014
Sharing of Mailing Industry Information about Abusive Patent
Like many businesses in America today, the
Postal Service is very concerned about the burgeoning costs of patent
litigation. The defense of a patent litigation matter can be extremely
expensive, regardless of whether the case has any merit.
troubling in this regard is the litigation brought by so-called “patent
trolls.” Patent trolls are typically companies that obtain vague or loosely
described patents without any intent to manufacture, utilize, or sell the
underlying invention. Instead, they are in the business of making money
by extorting licensing fees from alleged infringers of their patents by
threating litigation which their targets know will be time-consuming and
expensive to defeat. Due to the costs of fighting such suits, companies often
settle and pay a nuisance licensing fee even when a company could mount a
meritorious defense to the infringement claim. This conduct subverts the
patent system and retards technological progress and innovation.
Recently, a wide
range of companies in the mailing industry, who are customers of the Postal
Service, have asserted to us that they have been targeted by a non-practicing
entity, a type of patent troll, with patent infringement lawsuits pertaining to
the functionality of a barcode on their mail. The Postal Service is very
interesting in knowing how the practice of patent litigation, or threatened
litigation, is impacting your business. To help us understand the extent
of the problem, we are requesting business mailers let us know the following:
Are you currently
in any patent infringement lawsuits pertaining to the functionality of a
barcode on your mail or similar allegations?
Have you been
threatened with such litigation?
Please send your
information to email@example.com.
Please visit us on the USPS Industry
Thank you for your support of the United States Postal
--Consumer and Industry Affairs
March 26, 2014
PRC Issues Advisory Opinion Analyzing USPS Load Leveling Plan
"The Postal Regulatory Commission today issued its analysis of the Postal Service’s Destination Sectional Center Facility (DSCF) Load Leveling Plan, designed to facilitate workload equalization throughout the week for processing and delivery of DSCF entered Standard Mail. While the Commission recognizes the potential benefits of the Plan, the limited testing completed thus far is inconclusive regarding the effects of the Plan on a nationwide basis. The Commission is also concerned that the Postal Service has not generated more support within the mailing community for its Plan."
March 6, 2014
Published in the Federal Register
CFR Part 121-Service Standards for Destination Sectional Center Facility Rate
The Postal Service is revising
the service standards for Standard Mail that is eligible for Destination
Sectional Center Facility (DSCF) rates. These changes will allow a more
balanced distribution of DSCF Standard Mail across delivery days.
pieces that qualify for the Destination Sectional Center Facility rate
generally are delivered in three days. With its new rules, USPS is extending
to four days for mail entered on Friday and Saturday. This change will
improve delivery efficiency and reduce the traditional heavy Monday workload by
spreading the delivery of these Standard Mail pieces across the week. This change does not affect First-Class
Mail or Periodicals Mail and the Postal Service is not proposing any other
revisions to its service standards at this time.
final rule is available on the Federal Register. The effective date is April 10, 2014.
table below summarizes the impact on DSCF Standard Mail with delivery in the continental
DSCF Standard Mail Dropped
before 4 pm* on
Delivery Days Meeting
Service Standard Current
Delivery Days Meeting
Service Standard Proposed
Friday, Saturday, Monday
Friday, Saturday, Monday
Saturday, Monday, Tuesday
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday
*The current Critical
Entry Time (CET) for Standard Mail is 4 pm
Please feel free to send questions to: IndustryFeedback@usps.gov. The Standard Mail DSCF Load Leveling
Frequently Asked Questions document located on RIBBS
(under Important Updates) will be updated as needed.
February 20, 2014
Intelligent Mail Parcel Barcode (IMpb)
Effective January 2014, the Intelligent Mail® package
barcode (IMpb) requirements changed for parcels entered through commercial
channels including, but not limited to
· Parcel Select®, and
· Parcel Select
To receive commercial prices beginning
January 26, 2014, mailers must use a unique Intelligent Mail parcel barcode
(IMpb) on their packages. The IMpb contains delivery information such as the
destination address, ZIP Code™ routing and payment information.
Mailers are also required to submit an
electronic Shipping Services File (SSF), version 1.6 or higher. The Shipping
Services File is an electronically submitted document that contains mailing
information about each package being sent. The Shipping Services File must
contain delivery information which is the correct destination delivery address
or ZIP+4® Code. The Shipping Services File Transaction ID must be
provided either in the mailer's electronic documentation (eDoc) or on the
postage statement when presenting mailings with a hard copy postage statement.
Mailers presenting IMpb mailings that are not
in compliance will be charged the 20 cent per piece noncompliance fee.
Mailers who are not able to make these
changes should contact their Business Mail Entry Unit (BMEU) for guidance.
Mailers can locate their District Business Mail Entry Unit using the locator
tool on RIBBS at https://ribbs.usps.gov/locators/find-bme.cfm.
Mailers may also contact the PostalOne! Help Desk at 800-522-9085 with
January 24, 2014
Network Rationalization Phase II
The Postal Service has postponed
moving forward with Phase II of Network Rationalization.
Postal Service filed a Federal Register notice on Jan. 17 announcing the postponement of the
implementation date for the revised service standards that were scheduled to
take effect on Feb. 1, as part of Phase II of the Network Rationalization
new implementation date will be announced by the Postal Service in the Federal
Register at least 90 days
before it takes effect.
Postal Service will continue working with its mailers and customers on this
issue to ensure a smooth transition and to give customers ample time to make
Please visit us on
the USPS Industry Outreach website.
Thank you for your
support of the United States Postal Service.
and Industry Affairs