on Oct 1st, 2012 in Post Offices & Retail Network | 29 comments
 
The U.S. Postal Service has made improving the customer experience a priority. Postal officials see a positive customer experience as a key to revenue generation because customers are more likely to return if their experience was good. As Deputy PMG Ron Stroman noted to a gathering of postal officials in August, “Our customers have choices, they don’t have to come to us. How people are treated makes all the difference in the world.” Customer service strategies could include something as simple as a menu of services and prices on display in each Post Office. Or, a quick resolution of a customer complaint can turn a negative experience into a positive one. Other efforts might require more substantial changes, such as reconfiguring the retail space or offering extended hours in some locations. In some cases, the Postal Service’s goal of rightsizing its retail network might run counter to the customer experience, at least initially. For commercial customers, a positive customer experience might be entirely different from the retail customer. A simplified or more automated mail acceptance process may appeal to bulk mailers. Changes in service standards might not please all commercial customers, while others may be able to adapt to the changes more readily. New dropship points for mail entry and the changes these can cause to internal processes might stress some mailers. For other mailers, fewer mail entry points might help them gain efficiencies. Given the different needs and expectations of customers, the first step to a successful customer experience would be to know your customers. “One size fits all” might work for the Snuggie®, but not for the Postal Service. Commercial mailers, in particular, have urged the Postal Service to get to know their businesses and operations better. The Postal Service has worked hard over the past few years to reach out to customers and engage them in discussions on improving operations. How can the Postal Service build strong relationships with its customers and encourage customer loyalty? Would consumer and business mailer online rating systems, similar to Yelp, be a useful tool for gleaning information about customer experiences?

29 Comments


I am so disappointed with the postal service. I have been mailing packages to my daughters containing several family heirlooms, packing each one carefully and with lots of padding to secure nothing getting broken. Each time I save a little money I mail a package because I can't afford to mail all at once. Unfortunately, the last package,everything in the box was broken! We have been all heartbroken. One of my daughters saw the mailman just drop the box on her porch, even tho FRAGILE was written in bold all over the package. These precious items can't be replaced, and are too broken to even glue back together. Thanks Post Office. Our faith and trust in taking care of these items for us just went out the window.

The USPS is the leader in distracting employees while driving--we are running over our customers. I think there is a solution, does anyone care?

Customer service is the LAST thing on the postal agenda. They are so busy cutting services like window hours, post offices ,mail processing plants, and employees that it's ridiculous to say they care about customer service. They even want to cut delivery service from 6 days to 5. This whole article is a sham and no one in their right mind believes the Post Office cares about customer service. A good place to start with customer service would be to fire at least half of Headquarters employees . They are a big drain on service. If an employee doesn't touch the mail they should be let go.

a supervisor in my area said my mailbox is “RURAL” re: its red iron flag to notify mail carriers of outgoing mail, and that postal employees need not respond to it, and that it is policy for them to IGNORE THE CUSTOMER if no incoming mail is going to the address. Bad policy; the Policy should always be Courtesy, relationship, doing a good turn or favor. Keep friendly rural attitudes even in the middle of the city

Commenthe post office in Ocala, Florida to San Francisco on September 28, 2012 and paid an extra 85¢ for delivery confirmation. As of today your Track and Confirm says Delivery Expected October 2nd but it doesn't indicate that the was a delivery. It's been in San Francisco since 5:05 am October 1st. I needed this envelope delivered by now. What's the problem?

Treat your employees like your customers and they will in turn treat your customer the same.

http://disneyinstitute.com/blog/blog_posting.aspx?bid=103

Postal experience for customers starts and ends with clerks and carriers. Ask them how a good customer experience is created, built up and maintained. Answers may go contrary to management's current policies.
Within the postal service we are each other's customers. How do you feel about your service and appreciation?

As business owners and advertisers, we need the USPS. The USPS still provides the only reliable and highly-visible way to deliver an offer into a prospect's hands - direct mail.

I think with some fine-tuning and cost-saving measures the USPS will continue to serve the US well. New program like Every Door Direct Mail is really helping us "small guys" stay competitive.

You cant complain about the u.s. postal service because you dont get any

Early in the year, I had a large letter go no more than 75 miles away. It had important Id info on it and it never arrived to a state organization destination. It has left me wondering were is my personal information and letter. I never received it back either. Also I sent a package of a gift of music to Portugal On the 10 of Sept. It is now October 11 and the package was apparently still in The Usa. Small letters get there very quickly as a package takes over a Month? What is happening to our postal service? It is certainly not like it used to be!

USPS sucks. You used to have a page that simply listed the first class postage rates by type of mail (postcard, letter, large envelope etc) and weight. Where did it go? I hate the post office.

The OIG appreciates your feedback regarding the customer service blog. Please continue to provide any additional feedbabk you may have in response to this blog.

Perhaps you should work on the bullying by some of your postmasters to loyal employees that have risen every morning to bust their butts for a company that's letting itself fall apart from the top. Way to be a bunch of jerks. Happy employees make happy customers.

The OIG appreciates your feedback regarding the customer service blog. Please consider filing a complaint with the Postal Service regarding your issue.

1st thing to make customers happy is to delete the mind numbing ritual of clerks having to ask a list of rote questions which waste time and piss off the customer. Forcing your clerks to act like they and their customers are children is another sign of how untrusting management is. Loyalty only works when it is a 2 way street. Customers see the stupidity of the system and clerks can only shrug their shoulders when asked for a reason for this nonsense.

You might want to read the forum at http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/archive/1908203
A lot of Aussie customers (Yes - we are customers of USPS also) are very unhappy about the Chicago USPS processing facility. It should not take 2 months to post an item marked 'Priority Mail International'. Why has my item been sitting at Chicago for 5 days now? Why have other customers had items sit there for 3 weeks, only to be sent to Mexico?
Your customer service is pathetic & I will be advising all my Ebay colleagues NOT to use USPS when posting items.

The OIG appreciates your feedback on this blog. Based on your comment, what are some alternative measures you believe should be put in place to inform customers of the various services that are avaialble in a time efficient manner?

The OIG appreciates your feedback on the customer service blog. Please consider filing a complaint with the Chicago USPS processing facility regarding your issue. We appreciate your business and look forward to additional feedback you can provide for this blog.

The Happy Customer is A Loyal Customer blog provides an opportunity for our stakeholders to provide feedback on their experiences with cusotmer service within the Postal Service. We would greatly appreciate additional feedback you can provide for this blog.

Seems you have the cart before the horse. Cannot provide customer service if you are understaffed. Offices in our area are and have been understaffed for several years. Example: our office is F4 staffed with 2 PTF clerks (that have worked each full time for over three years). Postmaster is lent out for various needs at other offices due to their shortages. One clerk lent out to other offices to staff shortages and another clerk has to work the office by theirself. Its a 3 person that most of the time has 1.5 people for the day. Postmaster gone more then in office.
So customer service is low on the list. EDDM is just an illusion of what we would like to have as extra revenue in our office, but cannot acquire as we cannot keep our heads above water now.
Cannot keep PSEs in our area (a problem of its own for another blog).
Customer service issues are embarrasing as our excuse is we are understaffed and doing more for less. Thats a poor excuse.

So asking should we have rating systems set up? Oh my gosh, that is a sign that one hand in the USPS has no idea what the other hand is doing. We are losing business and yet someone wants to set up a rating system??

Here is another example: The Friday and Saturday following Thanksgiving is our kick off for increased WIR (walk in revenue) due to holidays. Our office in comparison to others in our area of equal size will bring in 5 to 8 times more then these other offices in WIR that Friday and Saturday. The staffing in our office will reduce.
Friday we will be short one person less then these other two offices. And Saturday we are only going to have one person working. Instead of making sure we have the staff, the decision has been made to reduce the staff. We will have less staff then these other two offices and yet past data will show we bring in 8 times more.
You don't need a survey to see that customer service is NOT an issue, it is an afterthought.

The Office of Inspector General appreciates your feedback on this blog. We value any additional feedback you can provide.

Whenever the media mention the mass layoffs affecting the USPS I feel bad for them until I go to the post office to mail a package, then that feeling changes. I live in Massachusetts and I have yet to encounter a clerk that is polite. They're cold, do not smile or say anything and frankly that's the same service I can get from an automated machine. It may not be warm and fuzzy but it isn't as aggravating. Next time I mail a package, I will go to UPS.

I am very disappointed in the mail service in my communities. I say communities because I live in a rural area, and my post office has been closed within the past two years so that I can no longer mail packages or buy stamps from my small town, but instead must drive 15 miles one way to do so. The next larger town is 25 miles in one direction and their post office today told me that because I had a box of fresh fruit to mail, they would have to call the usda to inquire about their policy. ? So he looked up their phone number in the phone book, (their office is another 25 miles away from my home, one way) and was told by someone in that office that I needed to bring my package to them to have it inspected!? So the postal clerk would not mail my package. I have looked up the usps policy on this and see that #53 states, "Fresh fruits and vegetables are nonmailable unless they are in a dry condition", (which mine are), "and in a strong and securely sealed package as required in DMM 601. 1-8" (whatever that is) Which again mine were in a large flat RATE PRIORITY POSTAL BOX PROVIDED BY THE POST OFFICE. I am so put out by this, I will never again patronize this particular post office in Raymondville Texas because apparently they would rather work against the customer than for them. Either I will drive even farther to mail packages, or will use a private company such as UPS or Fed Ex. No wonder the postoffice is in such poor working order with this sort of silliness.

I am sure you have remedied this already but, you contridicted yourself in your post. You state you have "fresh fruit" but then say it is "dried". Dried they mean all moisture removed, not just dry to the touch. If you have "dried fruit" then mail it. You do not need to tell anyone what is in the box......

She did not contradict herself, she said her fruit met the postal requirements. Dried fruit is not considered "fresh" fruit. You can definitely mail fresh fruit. It just can't be overripe and leaking, etc.

I am very disappointed with another government agency, the USPS NOT RECOGNIZING CHRISTMAS, with this years Holiday stamps-You got Hannukah, Kwanzaa and a lousy gingerbread house to represent Christmas. What is the problem, you are afraid of being sued for separation of church and state. Read the constitution, it never said that. Oh yea all of you in government dont follow the constitution because you don't even know what it says. That's what you get for taking critical education out of the school curriculum and put in things like Common Core so you can get everyone marching to the tune of Hitler. Did you forget how many people lost their lives for the freedoms you have to include freedom of religion, one being Christianity which this country was founded on. Oh yea you didnt learn that either because another government agency, the Dept of Education took that out of the history books. Keep it up you think you are losing money now.. I see a boycott in the future. Oh and Merry Christmas to all of you... let you be reminded of what Christmas represents... the birth of a savior we all need. Perhaps you need to read the Bible.

Am I missing something? I just bought Christian Christmas stamps at my Post Office. Were they left over from last year? In any case, I asked for them and got them. Karlene, there have always been at least two choices of Christmas stamps, one religious and one not, calm down---and yes Hannukah, Kwanzaa, and don't forget the EID.

Those who are responsible for the US post offices, and those in New York City in particular, should take a good look at the reviews of the one at 432 East 14th Street, NY 10009. Every negative comment is not only true but understated. It must be the most abysmal PO in the whole country. The shabbiness of the physical building and lack of supplies sets the tone for the type of employee - the laziest bunch you can imagine, and the manager is no-where to be seen or heard from. Packages lost, 2 weeks mail completely lost and on and on. I dare not send my holiday packages from there so I need to carry them some distance to find another PO. There has been talk of shutting it down for cost savings. It can't be too soon for me as I already walk to others. With one exception and my wonderful mailman, Bill, the whole bunch should be fired, beginning with the manager. There are hard workers who are out of work. How can these do-nothings continue to hold onto their jobs?

On January 9,2014 I awaited the mail carrier because I waited for important documents.I waited throughout the day and no one delivered in the 1400,1500 nor the 1600 block of norwood.I waited till long after 5pm.They delivered to 1600 Oakwood,walked pass 1600 norwood to deliver to 1400,1500 and 1600 fernwood and palmwood.The usual mail carrier was off so the replacement decided to just skip us.

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