• Reply to: What Does Apple’s New iPad Mean for the Postal Service?   5 years 6 months ago

    the ipad is going to revolutionize a lot of mediums. hopefully the Postal Service will embrace the new technology.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    I am a stamp collector and purchase a large number of stamps which never see postal use and which thus are an important source of revenue for the postal service. I could accept a reduction of the number of some denominations, especially the very expensive and rarely used ones.

    Postage stamps are art in miniature and important for promoting America across the world. They should not be abandoned.

    Fewer stamps would be destroyed if commemorative stamps were sent to all post offices. Many only sell definitive stamps. Commemorative stamps should be publicized and promoted, thus avoiding the need for destruction. Destruction could also be avoided if all stamps were forever stamps--sales could continue until all were sold.

    Please use water soluble gum on all stamps. Soaking is an important part of building a collection of used stamps. I know that this is not a source of revenue but failure of stamps to soak off paper may generally discourage stamp collection in general including the collecting of mint stamps.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    I am a stamp collector and I definitely do not think that stamps should be discontinued. I purchase each new issue of US stamps for my plate block collection, often saving full panes. This is pure gravy for the USPS -- I require no service for these stamps that I put in my albums. I also think our stamps serve as great educational tools about our country's history, art, literature, science, etc. I led a children's stamp club for many years and the children found the stamps of great interest and fun. I myself have learned a great deal about art, literature and history from postage stamps as well as enjoyed their beauty. Post offices should have the current commemoratives available for purchase -- let people see and buy the variety of stamps we have. I am a retired postmaster and many of my customers would ask me about the new issues and enjoyed learning about them. It is frustrating for postmasters now who would like to sell more commemoratives but cannot get them. How can you operate a business when you do not have the product to sell? Not everyone goes online, not everyone has other options for purchasing postage. Keep the post offices supplied with stamps and encourage their use.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    1. We need stamps in several denominations to cover the cost of handling, transportation and speed of service desired by the customer.
    2. The price of the stamp should reflect the actual cost of "mailing" the piece. A "Forever" stamp is convenient for mailing letters but if it actually costs less to mail something, such as a post card, then the customer should have the choice. The cost should be borne by the size, weight, shape and speed of service desired by the customer.
    3. We need stamps!
    4. A better system of ordering and distribution of stamps is needed to meet the needs of every community. It only makes good business sense to "sell" the product rather than look for ways to "cut back" or "reduce service" to contain costs.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    I really do not know why stamps must be destroyed - They all should be sold - overproduction can be changed.
    Put the seperation backing on stamps and allow them to be bundled and sold to collectors, kids and whoever.
    Rather than the cost of destruction and overprinting - cancel the stamps, bundle them and sell them at a lower cost.
    Additionally, close some non-profitable locations - change the number of delivery days. I can live with 5 days of mail.

  • Reply to: A Look at India Post   5 years 6 months ago

    The following link is more precise in tracking USPS mail in INDIA.

    http://ipsweb.ptcmysore.gov.in/ipswebtracking/

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    1. Limit commemoratives to at most 12 per year (one a month). Make commoratives commemorate something important in US history. (THis eliminates cost of designers, etc.)
    2. Limit regular postage as well. Don't need a dozen different regular issues at same price. Use KISS method.
    3. Make the stamps attractive (for example - Lewis and Clark) and not Homer Simponish. Attractive = people wanting to purchase the stamp.
    4. Advertise each stamp with a newspaper or web announcement.
    5. Cut Saturday service.
    6. Cut the cost of postage for a year. Drop price down to 40c or even 30c. Just like when lowering taxes the income in fed goes up, so with stamps - lower cost, watch the usage increase and usps coffers actually bulge.
    7. That's a start!

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    I think stamps are a necessary part of postal service. In addition to their obvious utilitarian use, the have always been used to celebrate and commemorate. I don't think, though, that the USPS should issue 90 different stamps each year. I think the reduction in the number of issues, along with an expansion of the forever concept would help reduce costs. It would be foolish, though, to think that this is going to solve all of the post office's financial problems. A leaner, more efficient work force, cost controls and an emphasis on taking back some of the market from UPS and FEDEX should be higher priorities.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    Many of the smaller post offices could, and should be closed down. Also, Saturday delivery is a joke: eliminate it.

    Do away with all of the cheap and junk mail, or subsidize the invention of a combined mail box/incinerator. We don't need this litter!

    Finally, one new stamp a year, issued in booklet form, and available in many venues would serve the purpose quite nicely, thank you. There is absolutely no reason to print so many meaningless stamps each year.

    It should be noted that I have been a stamp collector for 30+ years. There is enough older and foreign material already in existence to keep me busy for a long, long time, without the annual "dumping" of new issues by the USPS.

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    We all know the OIG is just another mouthpiece for upper management. The craft employee is always going to be the target. If you really want to save the USPS some money, make management follow the agreement that they signed. Another thing, how about going after some of the abusive supervisors. Instead of promoting or finding them other jobs, put them in jail where they belong.

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    I agree with the earlier post, it appears obvious the USPS is just positioning itself for privatization. And it is also true management violates the collective bargaining agreement constantly, and knowingly. Management is also doing craft work on a regular basis, while craft positions get cut. This comes from a P&DC. They most certainly do not earn the money they are given. It is well known. Do not assume this comes from disgruntled staff of craft, investigage the EEO de-merits of management, look at their files for a change, how many grievances were filed and LOST on their behalf. As far as offering a vote to assist in streamlining postal operations, how about flexibility with employees? If we can take some time off to attend to matters, just how efficient do you think that would be? To much paperwork? at $70,000 plus per supervisor, dont you think they can learn to earn it? Taking time off for sick leave MUST be under the FMLA or we're toast. How about an unexpected situation, 3 days notice and MAYBE you'll get approved. Im greatful for the job, and there is a job to be done, but I feel it can be looked at from a better angle.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    1. Stamps serve an important role in promoting a country's cultural identity, political goals and in its citizens' shared nationalism. Like its currency and coinage, stamps convey a sense of identity.
    2. The problem is not the stamps or the number of new stamp issues, but rather, the distribution of the stamps, the administration of stamp inventory at each USPS location, and consumer confusion. That should be simplified and streamlined.
    3. So-called "forever" stamps are useful to the public, but the real problem is a confusing collection of rate rules that the public cannot understand and that perplexes the USPS clerks. The typical citizen is forced to deal with increasingly complex rate stamps solely because the business communityhas insisted, rightly, on cheaper mail rates.
    Reduce the rate confusion, and you will reduce the need for so many stamps.
    4. Abandon the print-your-postage on-line experiment. Have you used it? By the time I enter all the information, and paid extra for a special label to print it on, I have actually wasted more time than if I has dimply bought a stamp at the post office or taken one from my drawer.
    5. Panes of stamps should probably disappear. All stamps should be printed in coil or booklet form. Stand in line at the post office and you will see that is all people want: "I'd like a book of stamps." Panes of stamps haven't made sense in years.
    6. Postage meters make sense for large and medium sized-companies, but they have never made economic sense for the rest of us. Rental of the equipment is expensive. My secretary could steall $120 worth of postage from me a year, and I'd still break even.
    7. There is much more low-hanging fruit for the OIG to pay attention to. Why suffer the political firestorm of fussing with America's stamps? Instead, ask yourself why people prefer UPS and FedEx to Priority and Express Mail. Ask yourself why businesses have slashed their workforces and the USPS is bloated with redundancy and too many employees.

    Leave the stamps alone.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    YES WE NEED STAMPS - as someone else said not everyone has a computer or for that matter the ability to get to the post office. Stamps in more than 2 Denominations since the postal service has An extreme pricing matrix there need to be stamps to cover all or most of the pricing points. Now as for the forever stamps I dont feel that ALL stamps need to be forever , But take clues from the UK and others where they have made some Commemerative stamps forever stamps this would I feel increase interest in stamps and Stamp Collecting of which I am a Huge fan

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    A follow up to my earlier post, regarding the USPS and its budget:

    I never fail to be annoyed by the proliferation of excessive "junk mail" shipped in bulk--and at big discounts. The USPS is a government agency, but not everyone is given equal treatment. If I want to mail a letter to a friend, I pay full price (currently 44c). If some junk mailer wants to send the same size and weight of letter to everyone in the state, they'll pay...what, 10c each?? Ironic that "good" mail costs more to send than unwanted junk!

    To fix the budgetary problems facing the USPS, management should equalize the rates--maybe lower the rate for the "ordinary" customer and raise the rate for bulk mailers--so everybody pays the exact same rate! If a bulk mailer has something he wants to send to me (and to you, and to your neighbor...), it should be worth the regular First Class rate to him. If not, he thinks twice and reconsiders sending the avalance of junk mail clogging the system--and my mailbox!

    On a similar note, a return to an AirMail-like service would be nice. Right now, regular letter mail is 44c. The next step is straight up to Priority Mail at $4.95! That's too big a jump in price between two adjacent levels of service. In the U.K., postal customers select First- or Second-Class postage. A little extra for slightly better service would be a nice touch. Remember domestic AirMail service in the US? Advertised as adding "prestige" to mailings, this incurred a small additional cost per mailing piece, but it made the recipient feel like the piece so mailed was "special" somehow. Wouldn't it be nice if we could, for say, an extra 50% (which would currently be 66c), send grandma's birthday card with a little extra flourish while not breaking the bank at Priority Mail rates?? A point to ponder.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    The convenience of postage stamps is without dispute. The clunky, inconvenient online procedure to purchase postage is no answer to this situation. Several thoughts:

    To lower costs, print stamps with ordinary gum on the back--that's right: lick-n-stick! This must be less expensive than self-adhesives, and they're better for collectors as well. If the USPS is concerned about reuse by unscrupulous persons (of inadvertantly uncancelled but postally used stamps), the use of difficult to soak gum is an option (think of the 11c printing press from the 1970s "Roots of Democracy" series and all of the "Transportation" coils of the 80s/90s).

    As to the "waste" of stamps returned for destruction, there's a solution, one that collectors might not like, but certainly a way to recoup the cost of production (and maybe a little extra to boot): cancel-to-order! Many other countries do this, maybe the US should get on the bandwagon. Those extra stamps remaining unsold are returned as usual, but instead of burning them, these stamps are "postmarked" and sold at lower prices as collectibles. This would be a great way for collectors to get full sheets of commemoratives for their collections (imagine a CTO sheet of twenty of the $17.50 Express Mail stamps!!), and the USPS would be able to sell excess stock to break even--or better. To work best, gummed stamps would be nice, though self-adhesives would be okay.

    In order to stimulate interest in collecting, encourage clerks to sell the many issues produced--not just those ridiculous "forever" booklets! No wonder the USPS whines about excess inventory--customers always get the same design over and over and over...

    Finally, stamps could be wonderful public service tools--to educate users about...almost anything! Imagine a series (or a booklet set--even rendered as "forever stamps!) with images of poisonous snakes, or a set with plant names under images of common plants native to our fair land! As so many people would potentially see commonly sold stamps, these little bits of paper are under-utilized as information vehicles in and of themselves. Let's dispense with the "Liberty Bell" and use that space in the faces of stamps for something constructive instead!

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    Print less stamps and have more variety in less quantities for collectors. This will create more demand.

    Do not destroy the remainder.

    Raise the price of stamps to 54 cents.

    Cancel stamps to the order like other countries do instead of destroying them.

    After rate changes continue selling the stamps.

    Stop providing envelops, labels, etc. for priority mail.

    Dont offer discounts for metered mail, etc.

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    - 1800 UPS managers to be retired or layed off with incentives and serverance pay...
    - 11,000 workers of Walmart's Sam's Clubs to be layed off.
    The news is full of options the private sector is practicing to cut cost. The USPS did try an incentive program but the results did not yield the numbers that were hoped for.
    It's time to target management for a retirement incentive and trim the redundency of positions.
    This incentive need not be monetary. An arrangement with the Office of Personal Management to credit additional years to service time may cause thousands to opt for retirement. Also an option to invest unused sick leave in an annuity to fund Health Benefits in retirement would be an attractive incentive. I feel retirement incentives are the USPS first option for savings as the 5 day delivery option is not as popular with the public.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    - print way fewer for each issue.
    - make glue soluble for collectors to soak
    - stress quality design
    - issue fewer stamps each year
    - make more stamps available in booklets for convenience of mailers.
    All of these will make them more desirable to collectors
    Remember most collectors buy stamps and in most cases the post office doesn't have to provide a service in exchange because the collectors don't use them on mail.
    Stamps are an expression of a country's culture and a celebration of its accomplishments. Do Not get rid of stamps.

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    the postal mgmt here in st louis is removing all collection label in apartments and high rise office bldgs with no explanation other than its a courtecy to get the mail whenever we get there. even if its nine in the morning.most secrateries dont come down till around 5 pm.the people now have to either leave it with stale meter date for the next day,or drive to the P.o. whre the last collection time is five p,m. and when you take inside its to late as well even though the truck leaves at 6 p.m. the postmaster and district managers are destoying the st louis P.o. and when there done they will goback to chicago where that i place is one of the worst rated P.O. in the country. Remeber hymn 43

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    Well, I guess we'll see what the new Board of Governor
    appointee's will do to "streamline" the footprint.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    A few more thoughts: put the water soakable layer back. Give kids a chance to collect US stamps. It will only lead to more mail later and more stamps purchased.
    Make the APC's more friendly. When they first came out I purchased 10ea 1's, 2's, 3's, all the way to 20's.Then was told nothing under postal card rate. I enjoyed using these APC's to friends, collectors and myself, all profit without the "Clerk" overhead.
    Stop treating the American public like fools. At least 100 million of us know there's such a thing as First Class Mail, that bulk rate stamps can be used with a permit, that letters can be insured, etc. Instruct your clerks that these things do exist. Your campaign of "Shipping Ain't Complicated" is turning many an American to no longer regard Postal People as friendly, knowledgeable Government workers into money grubbing thieves, only interested in squeezing every penny out of this monopoly. Besides, you advertise this stupid commercial, over and over and over. Have pride in what you do, turn out a good product and service. Have pride in the Post Office, as I have had pride to be a American Stamp Collector for over 40 years.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    One though is to track the number any given stamp produced, then track the number ultimately destroyed. Then adjust the next production accordingly, we’ll never get it perfect but maybe we can reduce the waste. Case and point the USPS makes series of stamps yearly; Flags of our Nation, Nature of America, Legends of Hollywood, Madonna & Child just to name a few. Do we know specifically how many were manufactured verse how many were destroyed for each stamp? If there’s a large gap, then reduce the number manufactured; continue the process until we get right. We honor distinguish American’s that nobody knows who they are. Ask 100 people on the street have they ever heard of William Hart, Joseph Story, Mary Lasker, Edna Ferber, heck ask anybody your office have they heard of these people. You got to ask, are we in the field to promote supposedly famous people, or to sell stamps? I’d love to see the destruction numbers on these stamps. We have the Citizens Stamp Advisory Stamp Committee which are the people who decide what stamps are going to be chosen in any given year. How many philatelic collectors are on the board? Is there any major mailers on the board? What is the average age of the committee member? What is the average age of a customer who purchases stamps at the post office? Are the two even remotely close? Have you ever seen stamps produced from other countries? We look like and are behind the times compared to them. Every year we produce a holiday stamp, a reproduction of a painting with the subject of Madonna and Child. Now this is because Christmas is a Christen holiday, and the stamp sells well. But why not change the subject matter, how about a Manger, or the three Kings, or a Nativity. Can you imaging going to ice cream shop then finding out they only got two types soft serve vanilla, and also regular vanilla! Sure it will sell, but will there sales increase if they offer more verities? We’ve had blue Panthers, blue Big Horn Sheep, and blue Polar Bears, what’s next pink Elephants? Why does the subject of the second ounce rate stamp, not relate to anything of the first rate stamps? These stamps must be used in tandem. Do you wear stripped pants and plaid shirts? One thing I’ve always found funny, is that everybody states the Elvis was the number one seller of all time. There was a contest, people voted for which stamp they wanted, and the design that got the most votes was made into a stamp. Well if that’s true, here’s an idea, why haven’t we put the one that came in second on a stamp? We have had a lot of subject matter that sold very well, Carousel Horses (animals), Ballet Dancer ( black background, pink dress), pretty much anything with flowers on it, same with sports (and it doesn’t have to be famous people) puppies, kittens, Disney, Rail Road -Steam Engines, Baseball’s Legendary Playing Fields, and Lighthouses just to name a few. But we’re now selling the fourth in a series State Flags on a coil of, and the only way we’re getting people to buy them is to hold back on the normal coils of a 100! This year’s subjects include Cowboys (what does that tie in with?), Abstract Expressionists (you call that art?), and Julia De Burgos (who?) and for Christmas we’ve got Holiday Evergreens (we’ll corner the market on those botanists) We used to sell a book of stamps that came in a folded over in cardboard booklet which was about the same size as a credit card, it sold well. What happened? Are people no longer carrying wallets? Nobody has ever seemed to figure it out in Washington that the larger the stamp, the worse the sales, how did Star Wars sell? My final thought is when we take stamps off sale pretty much nobody knows about it, we should have posters now on sale, and last chance, or going, going, almost gone. Less stamps to send to stamp destruction.

  • Reply to: Postal Service Network Streamlining   5 years 6 months ago

    Post Offices that are in ZOT to downgrade could be posted and filled at the lower grade if incumbent Postmasters were offered incentive to retire.

  • Reply to: For Better or For Worse   5 years 6 months ago

    I reviewed the website listing the best places to work - particularly the employee reviews. Most of the highly rated organizations did well in the areas of: respect and fairness, great senior leadership, and employee recognition & morale. This is where the USPS is listed as needing the most improvement, based on the above survey on the work environment.

    As one blogger stated earlier, and I concur - that the Postal Service should learn what the highly rated companies do to maintain quality organizations and high employee satisfaction.

    Doing so would increase employee productivity,and attract better employee and management prospects. This will increase the Postal Service's overall productivity and viability.

  • Reply to: How Can the Postal Service Reduce the Costs Associated with Postage Stamps?   5 years 6 months ago

    Stamps educate, illuminate, they are ambassadors to the world, plus they produce a very real profit for the Post Office.20 million stamps collectors (The Post Office's figures) will start using their stamps, thereby eliminating a large profit for the PO. How about not destroying existing stocks. How about using up these stamps on each window. Various denominations are needed every day by clerks. Want to cut back? Cut back not on services but higher level, overpaid, execs. The American public needs good mail service, business requires it. Get the Post Office back into the Government, stop this wasteful outsourcing, we deserve the best Postal Service in the world.

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