U.S. Postal Service delivery points are increasing each year. Package volumes are rising steadily as well. And so are customer expectations. This paradigm tends to lead to an increase in customer complaints, especially when delivery performance doesn’t meet expectations.

Given these pressures, we are seeing an increasing risk in the areas of delivery and retail performance. Our audit teams are designed to quickly evaluate delivery and retail operations and provide meaningful results to Postal Service management and our stakeholders. Relying heavily on data analytics, teams target high-risk delivery and retail units based on a series of operational factors and trip wires, tools that let us focus on one or two data points to identify events that indicate a high likelihood of control weaknesses.

For example, we have seen an increase of delivery scanning issues at various post offices and annexes, where carriers sort mail for delivery. We found carriers were improperly scanning packages as “delivered” while still at their post office rather than at the delivery point. The carriers reported a variety of reasons for the improper scans at their locations, including saving time, fearing they’d forget to scan, following management instructions, or simply trying to be efficient when many packages were going to a single business address.

We recommended that district managers instruct unit managers on working with their staffs to ensure they follow standard operating procedures for scanning mail pieces. See recent internal control audits on delivery, scanning issues, and customer service issues:

You can find a full list of reports and white papers in our documents library.

Comments (8)

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  • anon

    Within the last 5 years, the quality of our mail delivery has drastically gone down, and it’s not due to anything but a lack of attention by the sorters and carriers. We are constantly getting mail for our neighbors, and they are getting ours. We will also get mail for the next street over, but same numerical address. Lack of accountability and failure to discipline careless employees is the real issue here.

    Aug 12, 2019
  • anon

    this pharmacy uses usps everyday, we count on your service, the pharmacy packages are very important to our patients, your post office is losing our packages and NOT scanning them out. we tried calling the post office at the number given to us from the 800 number but nobody ever answers. what should our pharmacy do as the next step. we haven't got back lost packages, and again nobody to call.

    Aug 07, 2019
  • anon

    Mailed my college son's drivers license on July 23, 2019 using 2 day priority from Wrens, GA to Cookeville TN. Tracking shows time post office took possession and departure time. After that, never scanned again. Now it is August 6th, I have filed every claim for I can. Last form was for mail recovery. Did a test and sent empty envelope with first class stamp and it arrived in TN in 3 days. Why did I pay extra for tracking when scans are not be done properly. I just want the driver's license.

    Aug 06, 2019
  • anon

    Same I recently had two packages delivered to the wrong address; I tried to intercept delivery during the process but no one responded and it was delivered any way.

    Aug 05, 2019
  • anon

    I recently had two packages delivered to the wrong address; I tried to intercept delivery during the process but no one responded and it was delivered any way.

    Jul 21, 2019
  • anon

    I recently left a note in my rural delivery mailbox complaining that I could rely on mail being delivered by approximately 2 p.m. but recently mail.has been delivered after 5-5:30 p.m. That same day, the rural carrier came to my door to respond (and, for which I thanked him). He explained the increase in mail volume, including Amazon packages, was causing delays in sorting and deliveries.

    Jul 16, 2019
  • anon

    As long as mangers demand 100% scans with no excuses the supervisors will provide 100% scans, not deliveries by any means necessary

    Jul 15, 2019
  • anon

    One factor that must be considered is simply this: "You touch it, you scan it." As a clerk who sorts mail at a carrier facility, I see the odd PSE who, unable to obtain an AAU scan on the PASS machine, simply tosses the package into a hamper (sometimes even having to look up the correct route). I see returned parcels, and forwarded parcels in which the label is stretched across the barcode -- and I can tell that I am the first person to have lifted that label (and reposition the same in a correct manner) since the label was affixed by some other non-caring clerk. Or -- and this is common -- a barcode simply cannot be read by any scanner -- PASS, IMD, ring scanner -- and so they frequently are tossed into a hamper without an AAU scan. For that matter, when the manual input feature is used on the touch screen of a PASS machine, why isn't the route number automatically given on that screen? Most of the time (perhaps 90% of the time) a package which has to be manually input then has to be manually looked up on a scheme board. Isn't this a colossal waste of human resources? Since the machine is hardwired into the national database, write a few lines of code to include the route number. Now, I'm not talking about delivery scans, but the fact that a package hasn't been scanned even once from the left coast back to Missouri should be giving us pause. Clerks need to be taught, or to be given a refresher course, on how to properly affix forwarding or return to sender labels. It needs to be stressed to one and all -- "You touch it, you scan it." One last thought. I frequently serve as the closer for our carrier station, and this means that I also handle the customer service window (we do not provide retail services). It is embarrassing to run a tracking inquiry only to find that the ONLY time a package has been scanned was to show it "available for pickup" or another carrier-input scan -- because the barcode was covered by a sticker, or it could not be read at all. I don't like having to explain things like this to the customer.

    Jul 15, 2019

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