More packages and fewer letters to more addresses each year. That’s the daily drill for U.S. Postal Service city carriers and city carrier assistants (CCA), the non-career carriers who make up a growing segment of the workforce.

As we’ve noted in past blogs, customers are feeling negative effects of this changing mail mix. Complaints of late delivery or missed deliveries have increased in some areas.

Our latest audit report on delivery delays looked at select post offices in the Richmond District, where residents have complained of poor mail service. Our analysis of delivery performance indicators, including carriers returning after 7 p.m., overtime hours used, and customer complaints, identified 16 delivery units with poor performance.

We reviewed city delivery operations and customer service data in these 16 units and identified several issues, including:

  • None of the 16 units achieved their goal of distributing mail to carrier routes by 8:30 a.m., known as the Distribution-Up-Time (DUT), during September 2018. A late DUT means carriers start their routes later, which can affect delivery performance.
  • More than 18 percent of city carriers returned to their units after 7 p.m. and as late as 10 p.m. in fiscal year 2018, well short of the Postal Service’s goal of 95 percent of city letter carriers returning from street operations before 5 p.m., and 100 percent by 6:00 p.m.
  • None of the 16 units adequately addressed customer complaints logged in Enterprise Customer Care, the tool used to track customer complaints that cannot be handled immediately, such as “where is my package?”

Carriers returning from their routes after 6:00 p.m. remains a nationwide problem for the Postal Service. We have chronicled this in past audit reports and recommended that USPS improve mail flow within and between the processing centers, as well as develop a plan to review package data and make route adjustments as needed. In the Richmond report, we also recommended that supervisors utilize operational and reporting tools to monitor delivery operations. We also recommended that supervisors follow customer service policies and procedures to resolve customer complaints timely and to the customer’s satisfaction.

Comments (23)

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  • anon

    My mail is constantly not being delivered. I will check tracking on a pkg and it will show it was received and sorted and is "out for delivery" but then it doesn't get delivered till the next day. I have never had this happen anywhere else I lived and it's happened more than a dozen times in the past 8 mos (only lived here 8 mos so far) and also we have had our outgoing priority mail pkgs not picked up several times and our mail going to the neighbors box and have also gotten their mail. Worst service ever and although I have filed more than 5 complaints nothing has been done about it. Very frustrating for me as I have a small business and give the post office $300+ month in business.

    May 20, 2019
  • anon

    I am very annoyed with the mail delivery service in the United States. My parents sent me a Priority Mail package and it took a week for it to arrive and what they sent was spoiled. It is not easy to see your parents make sacrifices and that the money invested is lost, since the product did not arrive in good condition due to the lack of delivery capacity. In my opinion, a Priority package must arrive in three days, I can not find it right and I think that you have to work with these points where you receive and send packages.

    May 15, 2019
  • anon

    I go to post office every day to drop off pre-paid shipments. I go in-line to get an acknowledge receipt because that is the only way to protect a seller that they drop-off on time. Some employees are mixing the small barcoded packages with regular stamped mail that resulted the package to be late delivery or not being scanned at all. It happens to me a lot of times already. All barcoded packages should go to a separate bins since it can go straight to your conveyor. Not all of your employees at a local post office do that. Maybe it's time to separate the handling and delivery of barcoded packages since the volume is increasing each year. From dropping off the package, sorting and way of delivering the packages. Lastly, I'm not sure how much revenue USPS gets from Money Orders but it takes so much time of an employee at a local Post Office. Focus on delivering mails and packages. I really hope that the USPS can keep up with the changes. Before it was so bad that we fear of closing offices. But now that there's a lot of packages, it can't be handled well. I hope the system improves.

    May 09, 2019
  • anon

    Thank you for all the comments on this blog. Your input around delivery and other service issues are valuable and help inform future work. If you have commented about missing or delayed packages, please file a complaint with the Postal Service directly. You can do so by phone at 1-800-275-8777 or online at emailus.usps.com/emailUs/iq/usps/request.do?forward=emailUs. Just choose the tab marked "Where is My Package" or "Where is My Mail." If you’ve already filed a complaint with the Postal Service and your issue has not been resolved, please file a complaint with our Hotline. You can access the online complaint form by clicking on the red “Report Fraud, Waste, and Abuse” block at the top of this page. This will allow us to look into the matter for you.

    May 08, 2019
  • anon

    I hope I'm not breaking any rules by asking this on here but I had a package shipped to me from the Ukraine 11/29/18, it shows it got to ISC New York NY (USPS) on January 2, 2019 and that's where it still shows. I filed a missing mail form with USPS 3/19/19 and received an email 4/12/19 that they were checking into it. I've talked to our local post office but they can't offer any help. Can you tell me where I need to try next, what I need to do?

    May 07, 2019
  • anon

    (1) Last week a client called to confirm receipt on a certified envelope. We advised we hadn't seen it. END: We found the USPS staff had tried to Deliver Certified to our Office on a Saturday (Business Office M-F only). Certified was sent back to post office, where it was put aside for when/if we came in to request it. NO notice of missed delivery was left for us at physical address or PO Box. Our carrier was kind enough to track it down and return (Contract & large check payment) to us. (2) Skip forward a week, today we received back a letter Postmarked SEATTLE, 14 SEP 2018, and an Unable to Forward dated 19 MAY, 2019, THAT IS 7 MONTHS, 7 MONTHS. This envelope was covered in black and pink mold! I placed it inside a plastic sleeve, the Post Office didn't do that!! Black mold is very bad, but no warning to us prior to delivery. It is also clear that there were other items in the box as the back of our envelope has a cleaner section, in the shape of another article. Wish I could post pictures, it is gross!

    May 06, 2019
  • anon

    The post office in Bryan TX gave me the go around in 2016 they lost one of my packages and gave another one to some stranger. I am mad , because they still owe me for my loss.

    May 05, 2019
  • anon

    I am waiting for my package. It has been received by USPS NY on wednesday, April 24,2019. There is no other transaction yet. I am about to move another city I wonder when I am going to get my package?

    May 04, 2019
  • anon

    This is because the offices are poorly managed. My husband is a CCA and works 6 days a week. The is modern day slavery. Employees who work for the service abuse time off and call ins and in turn this leaves all the rest of the employees to carry the weight of being 6-8 routes down on a daily basis. This is why you cannot deliver or get employees back to the office by 5p. I have first hand experienced my husband missing family gatherings or late. Don’t get me started on the discrimination that goes on daily. Never in my lifetime have I witnessed such mis use and disrespect to employees. There is a rare occasion when he arrives home before 6p. Typically he is on the job from 8a to 7p or later. This union run operation grieves things but there is NEVER any results or resolutions for grievances. People get talked to yet they continue to do the things they know they shouldn’t as there are NO consequences. More often then not my husband works 8 or more days with no time off. The money invested in Researching why your not meeting your obligations would be better spent on investing in your employees and fixing the problems. New post masters are not the answer. Promoting by seniority is not the answer. Putting people who are qualified to be leaders in leadership positions is what needs to happen. People who will hold people accountable.m should be in leader roles. Seniority should mean nothing. It should be the best man or woman gets the job. Listed above are multiple reasons why your office is unable to deliver as expected. If you want to be a productive company take a look in the mirror and evaluate your role in the demise of the company. It starts at the top and the misuse of resources rolls down hill.

    May 04, 2019
  • anon

    It's time to formally investigate the Jacksonville, FL Distribution Center. Even with accounting for human error and an increase in the number of packages, there's no possible way they could lose as many packages as they do. I think it's time to start looking at employee theft.

    May 04, 2019
  • anon

    Every package is late or doesn't show up. My daughter medication for her seizures still has not shown up. We pay for next day or 2 day shipping and the 50.00 for insurance on the package. Maryland post office are rude, liars, and thieves! Thanks for nothing!

    May 04, 2019
  • anon

    Against what the owners wanted I went out on a limb and took it upon myself to send a fuel sample from a very important piece of equipment we run every day out for testingfrom PA. to Indiana thru USPS instead of Fed-Ex. I dropped the package off on the 24th of April as priority package. I explained to lady behind the counter the importance of the sample and was told if would have to go ground mail because it was diesel fuel but shouldn’t take more than 3-4 days. I said that’s fine and sent it but got a tracking number. So here it is 9 days later and I keep checking for updates and all I keep getting is your package will arrive late and in transit!! Not where it is in transit or how much longer.. I put my job on the line because I wanted to give the business to my local PO, I guess I made the wrong choice !

    May 03, 2019
  • anon

    Hi! I paid for a Priority Mail Express for my package going to Australia and was assured it will arrive May 1. Until now tracking says it still in ISC LA (USPS). What is going on? No update anymore. When is my package shipping out?

    May 03, 2019
  • anon

    The attempt to beat the internet and get "every piece, every day" instead of managing and holding a firm cutoff time has caused the centralized processing plants to hold for "just in time" delivery. So stations getting mail "just in time to meet a noon express receive their "just in time every piece" ever later in the day. Since carriers get out barely in time to deliver express and automation has changed their day from 4 hours to over 7 hours on the street instead of finishing routes around 3 PM, the printed time on international express mail, and that is no coincidence, they now finish the base routes at around 5 PM. Add in the non career carrier retention problem and never knowing if the carrier who is not protecting a career thinks today is a good day to quit and we have carriers just getting to their overtime assignments at 5 PM. And due to the contract carriers who wish overtime along with the non career carrier has to work 12 hours before those not wishing to work overtime are mandated extra hours their base day is until 9 PM. And the only way out of that pickle is to stop every piece every day nonsense and roll out the dispatch trucks at a cut off time with that late processed mail going the next day. A simple matter of changing the reporting day to 5 PM like the postal pay week starts on Saturday will stop the pressure to get something out "today" when "today" could mean 10 PM, or the record in my zone was 1 AM with that carrier working 16 hours,but reported as going out that day.

    May 02, 2019
  • anon

    Glad you have noted that late to post office means late to customer... It also means added overtime for city side... On the rural side you should see more wait time expense but often you don't. Pressure is put on rurals not to put in for wait time with threats that their start times will just be later. So late that getting back by dispatch is impossible. So rurals (you know how their pay is computed, don't you) are caught between a rock and a hard place and some decide to cut corners to survive.. Accidents waiting to happen... So 99% of delivery problems can be traced to poor delivery to post offices... When are you goping to REALLY look into this nationwide? Thanks for digging and please dig further.

    Apr 30, 2019
  • anon

    An international parcel was shipping via DHL in Frankfurt, Germany, to me in CA. It arrived a month ago at the ISC-NY. (That is JFK airport). All scans stopped after that. Nobody knows where it is, where it went, or more importantly, what the procedures are in this facility for tracking mail. With all the lost mail I read about in the USPS system, you would think that an effort would be made to address it. Even if 1% of mail were lost, that is likely 100,000 packages or far more. Where are they? On the floor, in a dumpster, in Atlanta being auctioned off? I have spoken with at least 15 USPS employees in the past 3 weeks. I get the same answer from all: "I don't know"...................... Is this anyway to run a business?

    Apr 30, 2019
  • anon

    What did customs say when you talked to them?

    May 01, 2019
  • anon

    Followup to my previous post - My package, magically, appeared at my local post office today, after 30 days of being 'lost in postal space'. I am thankful but note that the tracking jumped from ISC-NY, to my local PO today with no tracking in between. Not sure how this happens but again, I am happy and relieved but had to spend countless hours on the phone and filled out lots of missing mail forms........... I don't think all the worry and work had any affect on this delivery. Not knowing or having the PO also not knowing the status of this parcel was the headache.

    May 01, 2019
  • anon

    You took my 25.50 for next day delivery....now you tell me that the overnight letter is not out for delivery....maybe 2 days ! usps is truly lying thieving union scumbag dogturd filth !

    Apr 29, 2019
  • anon

    As usual when I see my item has been sent though the PONTIAC MI DISTRIBUTION CENTER, DAYS and DAYS and DAYS and DAYS go by and either I get it a month later or never. This time around my package has sat in Pontiac for a week and who knows if I will ever see it. The US Postal service is possibly the worst run government agency there is. Will you ever get your **** together, EVER?

    Apr 29, 2019
  • anon

    Same problem recieving packages from anywhere in California. I order a package from say...Florida, its recieved at the post office and bam..3 days later it shows up at my door in western Washington state. I'm tracking a package that was received at the Irvine California post office at 5:30pm Monday the 29th of April...its still there over 50 hours later waiting on 'approval'. Its showing an expected delivery of May 16th. Over 2 weeks to get from California to southwest Washington state???????? Why?

    May 03, 2019
  • anon

    As long as they are reducing staff and closing distribution centers the mail will continue to be stuck in the bottle neck it has created.

    May 01, 2019
  • anon

    But they then gave you your money back. So other then they fact that it was slowed down in the distribution bottle neck, you were out nothing. As for union management is not union. Management is who is closing distribution centers causing the bottle neck.

    May 01, 2019

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  • 1 day 7 hours ago
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