• Project Title:
  • Management Operating Data System (MODS) Errors and Adjustments
  • Start Date:
  • Monday, August 6, 2018
  • Estimated Report Release Date:
  • January 2019

The Management Operating Data System (MODS) provides data on workload, work hours, and machine-use. In addition to supporting operational planning, MODS data are used extensively in Postal Service costing and pricing activities. Supervisors may manually enter or adjust employee work hours and mail volume.

Postal Service policy states that field offices are responsible for accurately recording work hour and volume in MODS in a timely manner. Adjustments to work hours and volumes must be verified and approved by supervisors at the facility, area, or headquarters levels, depending on when the adjustments occur. MODS errors and adjustments that occur without proper oversight and approval could impact accuracy of the data. 

We are conducting this audit to assess the impact of MODS errors and adjustments on product cost estimates, and to determine if realignment or consolidation of MODS operation numbers could improve data quality.

  • How are clocking errors occurring and what do you think are the main causes of incorrect recording of work hours and mail volume in MODS operations?
  • How do supervisors identify clocking errors and mail volume anomalies in MODS, and how do they determine when to make corrections?
  • Do you think USPS employees understand the importance of properly recording work hours to the appropriate MODS operation numbers? How does headquarters communicate the importance of this to the field?
  • Do you think a reduction in MODS operation numbers would decrease the number of workhour and mail volume recording errors? What other changes do you think would improve the accuracy of the data?

Comments (19)

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  • anon

    I have contacted several people on management changing codes and being over budget. Getting the union to do anything is like pulling teeth. Management said it was employee error that I clocked to downtime when in fact I was sitting in the break-room for 2 hours while they left the CCA on the street delivering mail. It was their choice and then she threw me under the bus. This is the constant mismanagement that I have to deal with. Our office needs auditing bad. Our postmaster is the worst and can not manage an office. She was 1000 hours over budget and not a thing was done and everyone just shakes their head.

    Sep 16, 2018
  • anon

    Reduction in MODS operation numbers may help decrease work hours and volume recording errors. However, the key factor will be proper training and emphasis on the importance of clock rings. Most of the volume recording are automated from End of run. There are few manual inputs. Also, linking the employee timecards to their regular operations may help reduce clock ring errors. For example, a clerk will have clerk operation numbers attached to his timecard in the system and a mailhandler will have mailhandler operation numbers.

    Sep 01, 2018
  • anon

    Supervisors can identify clock ring errors and mail volume report through end of run reports or MODS report or eFlash reports. Productivity will be out of normal. Either way above normal or below the average performance. They can determine how to correct the errors by finding out through TACS employee moves  reports who worked in their operation. If they identify who the employees are, they can make the corrections. If the employee did not work in their operation, then they can transfer the hours to right operation number or LDC.

    Sep 01, 2018
  • anon

    Another reason clock ring errors might occur is when the operation number EBR is not programmed in the EBR. For example, sometimes employees in a hurry, Mare swiping at different locations with different operation numbers than his/her base operation.

    Sep 01, 2018
  • anon

    Thank you for your comment.

    Sep 12, 2018
  • anon

    One of the reasons why clock ring errors occur is Supervisors/craft employees are not trained or improperly trained on different operation numbers. Maybe another reason is intentionally moving employees to another operation number to make productivity look good.

    Sep 01, 2018
  • anon

    Thank you for your comment. We will take it into consideration as we carry out this project.

    Sep 12, 2018
  • anon

    MODS = time efficient management My concern is, with centralization of main operations, what happens to the little guy? The rural carrier for instance, relying on their local managements word. Wh n say a 4003 is not corrected for over 2.5 years, and local management says they are working on it, the union says your grievance was untimely, ( younknew it was wrong and you followed your local management at their word, " we are are working on it " Eeeehhhhh. Wrong, no matter how you cover this is wrong.

    Aug 30, 2018
  • anon

    Retired from a level 20. Not even close. Postmaster, supervisor, rural routes, carriers performing clerk work in a daily basis. They are not clocking to clerk work areas. Scans are faked. Clerks there could care less, as long as they don’t have to do the work. You can’t build integrity into a system where only the numbers matter.

    Aug 24, 2018
  • anon

    Wow :) I love this information. I did not know how important it is to the USPS - The Management Operating Data System (MODS) and the benefits(Pro-Cons) that come with it by having and doing an accurate use. I do recall ,as a clerk employee ,clocking with different codes. I had wonderful supervisors and managers letting me know to clock in with the proper codes. I know that not all the employees are aware why it is important to clock in with the correct code and manage their time properly. I think that we should always remind our staff the importance of MODS. Thank you for sharing this information and reminding us about the importance of MODS. Warmest Regards, Rosa Oviedo

    Aug 20, 2018
  • anon

    Thank you Rosa! It is very helpful for us to know that staff and supervisors are doing their part in improving the accuracy of the MODS data. Do you have any suggestions of the best way to remind staff of the importance of MODS or how to clock into the correct code?

    Aug 21, 2018
  • anon

    is this why mngr will deduct 30 minutes lunch from rural carriers whether they take any or not?

    Aug 19, 2018
  • anon

    That is management falsifying time records.... OIG has done many an audit on management shenanigans just like this.....Grieve it and makes sure the grievance requires full monetary compliance to make you whole... ps....OIG Perhaps you should look into this Rural Carrier abuse by management.

    Aug 25, 2018
  • anon

    Hello Laura. Our team is currently focused on the clocking of MODS operations numbers at facilities. So we do not have an answer for you. However, someone else read this may be able to answer your question.

    Aug 21, 2018
  • anon

    Your proper answer to Laura would have been... Thank you Laura for bring this to our attention. Because of the seriousness of what you describe, we will put your concern to the top of our list. The integrity of all USPS operations is the mission of OIG. We are on it and will get you an answer.... Instead you punt.... Maybe somebody else can tell you why management is falsifying time records and stealing income from employees..... Oh, why is employee engagement so low?...Look in the mirror. Your response would be welcomed.

    Sep 12, 2018
  • anon

    EBR vs. 1261 ..... Base vs. operation .... Why does a facility's sole EBR need to be 90 feet from an operational area and out of view of any supervisors. Why must SSA's be required to complete 1261's daily because the EBR's location prohibits efficient change of operations. Why can't employees grasp what their base operation is. These are among many questions I've had for more than 14 years.

    Aug 16, 2018
  • anon

    Hello Terry, thank you for commenting. We are very interesting in understanding why employees would input the wrong base operation number. Do you have any suggestions as to why this happens?

    Aug 21, 2018
  • anon

    RE; OPERATING PROCEDURES AND TIMEKEEPING REFLECT AN ACTUAL PROCESSING AND DISTRIBUTION, Yes, the updates in softwares for operating procedures and timekeeping, with the total numbers of processed mail pieces does control the pieces and down times. Having employees return to their work places on time from breaks, staff and safety meetings and lunches are usually the biggest obstacles in controlling the "work processing" and time losses. Controlling time cards by supervisors and staff would be a "personnel placement of the manager involved" when dealing with balancing budgets and actual time on the line of duty. If we have a 8 hour work day, we surely would like to see the hours reflected on the computers up times with the total number of mail pieces sorted and processed. In fractions, by "08 clicks or 1 minute" should bot be apart of the balancing act. The formula for an eight hour work day would simply mean that there is 8 hours of work to fulfill the work schedule. And not, someone that on the job sitting or standing without the mail to be processed nor distributed. Form 3971 would be submitted for employees to fill when their is not enough work for the contract they fulfill. With this form, the contract employee is allowed to take time off by "annual leave or leave without pay, LWOP" to fill in the missing work hours by this procedure. Take Care, Myrtle C Ferrell, USPS pret. PM

    Aug 16, 2018
  • anon

    Hello Myrtle. Thank you for your comment. In your experience, what operations number was used for "wait time"? Do you believe wait time to be an issue?

    Aug 21, 2018

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