Package visibility is important to consumers, as many ecommerce surveys indicate. “Real-time tracking” often tops lists of consumers’ preferred features.

So, it’s critical that U.S. Postal Service scanning information be accurate. Yet we continue to find shortcomings in this area. Our recent audit work found employees were sometimes improperly scanning packages at the post office rather than at the point of delivery and not following scanning policies. We flagged this activity in a recent Management Alert.

Carriers are supposed to scan a package at the delivery location after either delivering or attempting to deliver the package. This scan “stops the clock,” indicating USPS has met its delivery commitment. Anyone tracking a package would see that delivery was made or attempted. Two years ago, our comprehensive audit on USPS’s package delivery scanning process in city delivery operations found carriers were sometimes making improper “stop-the-clock” scans at a location other than the designated delivery location (house, business, apartment building).

If a carrier makes a “stop the clock” scan at a location other than the delivery point – before delivery is even attempted – a customer would see package delivery made or attempted when none has actually occurred.

Last year, we reviewed package scanning procedures at 25 delivery units and found USPS employees were not always following package scanning procedures at 21 of the 25 units. Specifically, 38 percent of the more than 1,100 packages that were selected at these units and that were in the facility before the carriers arrived for the day had been improperly scanned. For example, 191 packages had been scanned as delivered but were still at the unit, and 113 packages that were not delivered had no scan indicating why they weren’t.

The purpose of our Management Alert is to bring these issues to the attention of the Postal Service so immediate corrective action can be taken. We recommended USPS enhance ongoing strategies to improve scanning accuracy and enforce compliance. Prior recommendations focused on reinforcing adherence to package scanning guidelines and policies, as well as updating the Scan Data Integrity report to track improper scans performed at delivery units. We also recommended USPS develop a process that would allow carriers to scan multiple packages to a single delivery address.

Management was receptive to our findings and is implementing corrective action on all the recommendations.

Comments (138)

We welcome your comments related to the topic on this page. Complaints about the Postal Service, including lost, stolen or mishandled mail, that are unrelated to the content on this page, will not be posted. Please visit the Contact Us page for information on where to file formal complaints with our agency or the Postal Service.

Leave a comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
  • anon

    Sick and tired of this!! USPS DO SOMETHING ABOUT THIS ISSUE!!! My packages still continue to be scanned as non deliverable!! This has been going on a year now! I absolutely hate USPS!! It is frustrating and annoying that carriers scan packages when I am home EVERY SINGLE DAY!! Waiting for my packages only to receive a email saying once again NON DELIVERABLE!!!! This is fraud on all levels!!!

    Oct 19, 2020
  • anon

    The mail carriers in my neighborhood routinely mark packages as “delivery location unavailable” when they are running late - which is a lie because the mail area for my condo building is never locked. Now however they are just marking undelivered packages as delivered. I don’t even care that much if things are late but the outright lying is too much.

    Oct 17, 2020
  • anon

    While I was sitting in my living room watching TV, a very valuable (several thousand $) package I was expecting was scanned as undeliverable - allegedly because the carrier could not access the location. I live in a single family house in an unobstructed neighborhood. We have no dogs and nothing blocking the driveway, mailbox, or street. I was sitting near the door and would have heard the carrier if he had actually arrived - particularly since our Ring doorbell picks up motion anywhere in front of the house. This is more than just an annoying lie / mistake, since I now have to worry about whether I will get the package tomorrow. I’m glad you’re collecting this information and hope the USPS can fix this. The service levels have been horrible recently. I use USPS a lot for my business. I just had one article sent from Atlanta on 9/28 not make it to Miami until 10/14. Thank you!

    Oct 15, 2020
  • anon

    Our USPS office has been scanning packages as delivered while still in the post office. Two of us in the neighborhood have received emails as packages delivered by sellers; yet tracking says the item was picked up at the post office window! When contacted the excuse was so many packages, not enough handheld scanners, and having to make duplicate runs to deliver. Watch; we won't get our packages until tomorrow. Prices go up; service goes down. Sad affair.

    Oct 13, 2020
  • anon

    The mail carrier scanned my package as delivery attempted when they absolutely did not attempt anything, I was sitting right by the front door all day. I saw the mail carrier sitting there talking to one of my neighbors for almost an hour instead of doing her job. I am absolutely irate. The usps expects us to trust them with our mail in ballots but they can’t even deliver the mail when they’re supposed to.

    Oct 10, 2020
  • anon

    Amen to that!!!

    Oct 14, 2020
  • anon

    So is there some way that we can get the post office to actually deliver packages? It's nice to know that you're aware of the issue, but it means literally nothing if I can't get packages delivered the way that they're supposed to. Who am I supposed to follow up with? I'm only getting automated emails and an automated voice center. I don't care if managers are receptive to your findings; they're not doing anything about it. So many people are relying on this service and no one involved seems to care.

    Oct 07, 2020
  • anon

    I was awaiting a package that said it was arriving on Saturday. And then it was updated with attempted delivery and no access.... I haven’t left my house in months, and I’m receiving all other packages and mail. It was patient and hoped it would be resent yesterday on Monday. But again at the end of the day after receiving other mail and packages and being home all day my tracking again says attempted with no access to delivery location (7:59pm). This is a tracked and insured package And I am receiving notifications from my informed delivery that it will be arriving. There is obviously something not being scanned properly.

    Oct 06, 2020
  • anon

    I have the same problem with u right now. I've been waiting at home whole day and they said no access location. But did you get your package the next business day? or Can I go to PO get it directly ?

    Oct 08, 2020
  • anon

    I agree with the other comments. Many times lately my packages weren’t delivered due to no access, animal interference, etc. which is entirely untrue. I have actually seen the carrier fly by our mailbox and not deliver. Today, I got confirmation e-mails that stated packages were delivered in mailbox at 5:51pm. It is now 6:25 and nothing has appeared in the mailbox. So carriers are scanning items to show delivery perhaps to make it look like they did. If carriers were more honest and admitted to not being able to handle their route, I would halfway understand. Our past regular carrier had no issues with getting all the mail delivered in a timely manner. He delivered the same time every day around 3:30 p.m. Now we have to wait and see if delivery will be at 5:00 or even as late at 7:30. So why are packages scanned without delivery? Or just pass us by if something actually has to be carried to the porch? I don’t get it.

    Oct 05, 2020
  • anon

    I am so beyond sick of USPS. I was waiting for an amazon package today, which contained 3 door security alarm bars, which protects your door from being kicked in by burglars. I was sitting on my couch from 12-6pm. My package was out for delivery since 7am. At 3:50pm, I received a notice that USPS attempted a delivery but the mailbox was blocked. LIES! I live on a quiet block in a duplex, with no obstructions and no gates. These postal employees are so crooked and should all be fired. Period!

    Oct 05, 2020
  • anon

    This seems like a fairly easy issue to resolve with commodity hardware and software tools. Coupling GPS to the system with a rule that states when the scan code is submitted, the location of the Carrier is checked against the Geocoded address. If the Carrier is greater than ~300 feet from target address, scan result is rejected and attempt is flagged for management review.

    Oct 01, 2020
  • anon

    The service actually turned that system back on last week after disabling it. It is still wonky and way above any acceptable error rate alerts when we are at the location. However this is not carrier generated, this is management that has to show no failure. So if they can't bully a carrier to enter false information on a scanner they will take an old style scanner without GPS capability and "stop the clock" on it themselves with different reasons for non delivery. In the end they might get caught gaming the system, if you call and complain. But they will get on the failure report even if the root cause is the lack of available carrier hours and truck space. Every route on an average day, carriers will claim based on a light day takes about 8 hours. The more stuff that comes in the more time it takes and eventually the station runs out of carriers and time.

    Oct 18, 2020
  • anon

    Still going on. Said I had a package delivered thur and Friday showing scanned by my address but I was hold all day and home security shows no one approached my house either day. Local office was rude and would not take my complaint told me to report to Amazon (sender) and they'd replace it. They have declined to do so as it's been a multiple account issue. One package did arrive 4 days later and the carrier wouldn't speak to me as he walked to his vehicle. One of the same packages they claim was scanned by my house 4 days earlier as delivered..... Scam and fraud.

    Sep 29, 2020
  • anon

    All post offices scan stop the clock

    Sep 26, 2020
  • anon

    I have been having this issue EVERYTIME I have something delivered through the post office. I try my best to use other delivery companies because it puts so much stress on me. I call to NEVER get a answer on the phone, sends you to operator, I go to the location stand, in line for hours with a bunch of other angry people having the same issue, and leave empty handed knowing my package is behind that wall, and the clerk has just given up searching for it. I right now have Live Stock sitting in the post office on 83rd and Ashland. On my phone it says delivered, but at the office it says attempted delivery with no access, BOTH ARE LIES!

    Sep 23, 2020
  • anon

    Once again, West Bend Wisconsin USPS does not scan tracking packages in the blue box. This is an issue that must be brought to the Inspector Generals attention. Supervisors state that all blue box packages do not get scanned as they are thrown in the truck to ship right away. As some may think this is acceptable, it is not. Small businesses rely on USPS and it has been proven this is an ongoing issue. Please start thinking of the small business owners that rely on USPS.

    Sep 23, 2020
  • anon

    Sold an item on facebook marketplace, the package made it to the cities post office where it was scanned, then scanned out for delivery but whoever delivered the package never made a final delivery.. you get PAID when you shipment says delivered so now i need to figure out with FB how im going to get paid.. even messaged the person to make sure the item was delivered and it was just no delivery scan.. you have 1 job. Walk scan a frigan label and drop the package off

    Sep 23, 2020
  • anon

    I'm waiting on 4 packages. One was accepted on 9/14 by USPS with no further scans so far, one has been in pre-shipment since 9/9 and two were "attempted" at the same time on 9/18 with the "delivery attempted - no access" scan. A house with a clear street, no fence, no outdoor dogs or anything blocking a single mailbox. A couple of weeks ago a package was marked as "delivered" but I didn't receive it. It was delivered to the wrong address. Lucky for me that recipient returned it to a USPS location. This is ridiculous!

    Sep 19, 2020
  • anon

    Four packages in one week have been lost. Tracking says “delivery attempted” but that is a complete lie. I have video proof. Did everything online, called, created a search (once you I created a search I got an email confirmation from the station manager with a non working FAKE number). Make sure you vote in person folks.

    Sep 18, 2020
  • anon

    This seems to be a trend now. I have been getting the same message "Delivery Attempted - No Access to Delivery Location.“ I've had a package marked as this twice so far with multiple attempts made with the same message even though we have received our regular mail and delivery from other providers. This is fraud in my opinion since it's obvious that no attempt was made. I agree that someone from the USIOG office needs to look into this. How are we to trust USPS with our mail?

    Sep 16, 2020
  • anon

    Same thing here, this week 4 packages where marked Delivery attempted which is a lie and have video proof that the mailman didn’t even show up. Still waiting....

    Sep 18, 2020
  • anon

    Hello, Emily. Thank you for your comment. Please file an online complaint with our Hotline. You can access the online complaint form at www.uspsoig.gov/form/file-online-complaint

    Sep 17, 2020
  • anon

    This seems to be a trend now. We've now been getting the same message "Delivery Attempted - No Access to Delivery Location.“ We had three packages so far that went into this black hole of multiple attempts made with the same message even though we have received our regular mail and delivery from other providers. This is fraud in my opinion since it's obvious that no attempt was made. What frosts me the most is that I am paying for all of this in the form of shipping charges from the vendors sending this to me. Also, any attempt to reach the USPS to research this just returns an automated message saying the delivery was attempted. Someone from the USIOG office needs to look into this. How are we to trust that a) our regular mail is coming b) to trust vote by mail in the upcoming elections. FYI - I'm in 60660 area code if the USIOG is actually reading the message boards.

    Sep 16, 2020
  • anon

    I have been receiving this message for two days regarding packages from multiple senders. And this is not the first time in the past few months either. My neighbors as well. I've been home and there is direct access to my building. Other people on my street have had their packages marked this way as well with the exact same date and time. The post office isn't even attempting to deliver these packages to any of us. It's ridiculous.

    Sep 16, 2020
  • anon

    Yesterday (sep 15th, 2020)at 650am ish there was a destination scan here in San Antonio. Then later in the morning the information disappeared. The status changed to “your package is on its way, but arriving late”. And of course the previous information about the package being in San Antonio is gone. Hope it arrives today. Not cool USPS

    Sep 16, 2020
  • anon

    Also got the “ Delivery Attempted - No Access to Delivery Location “ lie today. I live on a major numbered street in one of the biggest cities in the country with zero obstructions to the street or my front door. For some reason Amazon has been sending my Prime deliveries with Parcel Select and I’ve had issues with 3 of 4 packages since then — one had this message, and 2 were “undeliverable” I just don’t understand why this is happening all of a sudden. If it’s delayed, fine, tell me that. Don’t make it sound like my stoop is inaccessible.

    Sep 14, 2020
  • anon

    This is exactly what has been happening to me for month now, I’ve made several complaints but nothing has gotten done about this.

    Sep 14, 2020
  • anon

    I arrived home today at 4 PM. I then look at track my package and it says the package was attempted delivery but was undeliverable at...4:07 PM. Well, that's a lie. The package does not require a signature, i have no outdoor dog, and no gate. It is wide open. I know they lied and scanned it as such because they didn't feel like delivering it today. I understand if you're backed up but JUST SAY THAT! Don't lie to me and assume I'm an idiot. It's clear this was done as a measure to push it a day further.

    Sep 12, 2020
  • anon

    My contract mail carrier regularly scans packages as delivered however they don’t come until the next day. What is he doing with my mail?? Does he take them home?? He is also dirty and his vehicle looks like it’s ready to catch on fire! I’m not joking! If my mail carriers goal to be like the mailman in the movie Funny Farm then he has reached his goal! They don’t like to drive all the way down our street to drop off mail for just 4 boxes. :( lived here almost 10 years we’ve become accustomed to not any getting mail for days sometimes 1 week and then our boxes are stuffed. Like he’s a mythical creature, or if you see him it’s like spotting a unicorn. I’d just like to get my mail from the person getting paid to do so. I’m waiting for a package today and am going out of town early Monday. I can guarantee it will not arrive even though it shows out for delivery. He’ll mark it delivered and it’ll come Sunday or Monday

    Sep 12, 2020
  • anon

    Received “no access to location” message when there is no lock on my gate and zero obstruction to my front door. Was home all day and did not see any delivery attempts. Not the first time this has happened. Tired of the lies!

    Sep 11, 2020
  • anon

    I received- Delivery Attempted - No Access to Delivery Location 09/10/2020 5:56pm....I have cameras on my front door and I checked there was NO mail carrier 15 minutes before or after the time noted and I don't have a gate, nothing blocking the stairs to my front door and nothing in the mail box so why lie about it.

    Sep 10, 2020
  • anon

    This is the second day in a row that I was lied to about attempted delivery. I was at my house both times and even saw the mail truck drive by without stopping at our house. Those responsible should be punished

    Sep 07, 2020
  • anon

    I received a 'Delivery attempted - Front door/Driveway was not accessible' message today.It is a lie. I have video footage that I reviewed from one hour before to one hour after the stated time. There was no blockage and there was no USPS delivery attempt during that time.

    Sep 06, 2020
  • anon

    At our office, we are told by supervisors to scan miss-sorts and packages that we cannot get delivered by 8PM as No Access/Business Closed as just our SOP. I have seen Sundays were close to 500 packages were scanned No Access/Business Closed due to mistakes where we were unable to even attempt deliveries due to large numbers dropped off by Amazon/UPS. All management cares about is stopping the clock so that there are less failures on whatever reports get made.

    Sep 06, 2020
  • anon

    This is crazy & against protocol. Why would they tell you to do such a thing? What city are you in?

    Sep 13, 2020
  • anon

    I've had several instances of false "No Access to Delivery Location" alerts when, in fact, there was no delivery attempt. USPS loses credibility and future business when you appear to lie about your delivery performance. In the age of Trump you simply must do better. Your very existence is really at stake here. For the good of the country, get your act together.

    Sep 06, 2020
  • anon

    Today I was home and can prove there was no attempt made at or around 7:58PM. Yet when I look online at the tracking it states they tried to deliver. Why lie about an attempt that wasn’t made. Just move the date. I don’t appreciate the lie. Simply change the date. I don’t even need an explanation. Just be upfront. September 5, 2020 at 7:58 pm Delivery Attempted - No Access to Delivery Location

    Sep 05, 2020
  • anon

    This is exactly how I feel!

    Sep 13, 2020
  • anon

    My package went from “out for delivery” to “available for pickup” in the same day. I went to go pickup my package and USPS told me it would be delivered to me that day. Here we are 1 week later and I still have no package. They have no idea where my package is only that a supervisor scanned or because it was on the wrong route but after that they don’t know anything. Highly frustrating and disappointing.

    Sep 04, 2020
  • anon

    This happened to me today. I received a "No Access" alert, which makes no sense. I have no gate, the mailbox is empty, and I was standing by the front door when the alert came in. There was no impediment to delivery, sidewalk clear for the entire block, and no mail carrier in the vicinity. Why lie?

    Sep 02, 2020
  • anon

    This happened to me literally today. I have a ring camera and I also happened to be talking to my neighbor during the alleged “delivery attempt” This is wrong and shady practice. How a package goes from “out for delivery” to this at the last minute tells me the worker wanted to cut his or her day short. What else can I assume when I never saw a postal worker, and my doorbell camera can back that up. Irritating.

    Sep 08, 2020
  • anon

    Our business shipped over 200 books Friday August 28, 2020 at approximately 12:30 PM. We hand delivered to the USPS Distribution Center 1301 Marshall Ave Lancaster PA. The shipping was a combination of prepaid International, priority mail and media mail. It is now Tuesday evening, September 1st and none of the 111 Media Mail book shipments have been scanned into the system. PLEASE HELP. The status is still Pre-Shipment! This delay can destroy our reputation because it looks like we never shipped the books.

    Sep 01, 2020
  • anon

    I've had upwards of 10 instances with a "No Access to Delivery Location" alert when, in fact, there was no delivery attempt. I understand and appreciate that the US Postal workers have it extremely tough right now, but please give a legitimate reason for the package not arriving. If the message is "Postal Worker did not have time make it to your location" that is understandable. I don't mind the delays I just disapprove of the flat out lies.

    Sep 01, 2020
  • anon

    Doing more training

    Aug 31, 2020
  • anon

    With what money? When you have an Inspector General purposely sabotaging an entire industry to benefit the person who hired him, this is what you get.

    Sep 14, 2020
  • anon

    USPS has twice in the last day said they attempted delivery and "business was closed" then "delivery location could not be accessed" however I live in a high rise with 24 hour doormen and receiving room and there was definitely someone there at 4:01pm yesterday and 10:55am this morning. Saw my postal carrier at 2pm and she has no idea why that would happen, doesn't have my package and agreed it's Amazon dumping packages on the Post Office and someone at the Post Office not wanting to deliver it or put it on the route because it's too heavy. Why take it all then?

    Aug 29, 2020
  • anon

    I've lost several hundred dollars because of lies about delivery attempts. The only solution was a mailbox alert device. The expression on my carrier as he rang my bell for a signature was priceless.

    Aug 28, 2020
  • anon

    look people i really feel for all of you, and i for one try to do the best i can for all my customers. What most dont understand is that unlike ups and fedex we also have mail to deliver. Our routes were not created, our vehicles were not designed to handle the amount of parcels we are seeing these days. This does not by any means make up for poor postal practices or lies in which you are being told, all i am asking all of you to understand is that our routes were created in the days of 12 parcels being over 2 pounds and maybe 30 being under 2 pounds. We now have over 280 scans that we make on packages in a single day on the route, and our routes were never adjusted to take on that load. The post office never created positions to help manage that extra work load. I feel your frustration, i will be the firstto admit there are times packages shift and i find a parcel for a delivery i did earlier that day in my truck hours later. Which we are instructed to call if this happens to get instruction from management as to how we handle this since we are not allowed to "waste time" going back for missed deliveries. 9 times out of 10 we are instructed to bring that package back to the post office at the end of day to take it out the next. I myself will not scan the package since the mail delayed scan on our scanners does not "stop the clock" and hand it back to management to scan however they feel it should be scanned. Just a note as i know that it is so much easier to complain and post blame online, but i for one would be much happier if my customers came to me to ask questions about an incident. Thank you all, and i hope this brings a little enlightening.

    Aug 27, 2020
  • anon

    They scanned my Amazon package at 10:30AM saying no one was home. I waited all day, no one came. Went to my mail box at about 11:30AM to check for the slip, no slip. BUT when the mailman came at 4:30 they put the attempted delivery slip in my box with my mail. VERY SLICK! You and I know what they are doing. They scanned the package at the post office as attempted, no one home. That way they “showed” Amazon they delivered on-time. Customers are not stupid. It must be difficult for caring employees to work for USPS.

    Aug 26, 2020

Pages

Recent Comments

Share this post


Monthly Archive