• Reply to: Exigent Price Increase Proposed   1 year 10 months ago

    I agree, the Postal Service has few choices. It has 5 days of cash on hand and limited ability to raise sufficient funds with a price cap, or aggressively cut costs or reduce services to adjust supply with demand given the constant congressional interference. I suspect this modest "exigent" price increase will not drive customers away. Certainly, most stamp users are asking "why not just raise it to 50 cents and leave me alone for a while?" (They don't understand the price cap, nor should we expect them to. Convenience is on the mind of retail customers.) Business mailers will complain, but in all likelihood, a roughly 6% increase will not drive them completely away, although we might see volumes dip a bit initially. Perhaps this price increase results in the Postal Service losing some of those "below cost" products and ends up saving money by losing this costly mail.

  • Reply to: Exigent Price Increase Proposed   1 year 10 months ago

    Since Congress couldn't pass or even agree on a Postal Reform Plan, the USPS had no other choice but to ask for a rate increase. Will it hurt business mailers - you bet. Under the rules set by Congress the USPS is in between and rock and a hard place.

  • Reply to: Exigent Price Increase Proposed   1 year 10 months ago

    The current rate system has several problems as I discussed in this recent article on STPO: http://www.savethepostoffice.com/groundhog-day-post-office-time-exigent-rate-increase-again

    General Williams recent testimony to Congress discussed the issue of elasticity specifically and rates more generally. It seems that the current request is something of a political action designed to get the mailers upset and have them push Congress for reform legislation.
    Maintaining postal services in this country and maintaining and improving the postal network and postal infrastructure is going to require an appropriate rat system. Th current request may raise some revenues in the short term but in the long term the system still has problem. The current rate system and the logic supporting it is embedded with privilege and preference. It is a system which does not recognize the value of the postal network as national infrastructure but instead views it as capacity captured by and serving some rather narrow industry interests.
    If we want to preserve the aspects of postal services that support universal service as well as some of the intangible values inherent in universal service then we'll need to move to a rate system that reflects those values. The current request is merely tactics that don't serve any useful strategic vision.

  • Reply to: Exigent Price Increase Proposed   1 year 10 months ago

    You're not really serious are you?
    Did any of you watch the recent Postal reform hearings?

    Your mailers are the only customer/vendors you've got left?

    "Cutting off the nose to spit the face".

    "Passports"? What do you think the life expectancy of a Passport is in this age of Bit-Coins?
    Your transportation network leadership or front line personnel do not even know how to exploit the wireless networks you own and operate, in some of the most radio frequency penetrated geographic zones in North America!

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Staffing. Our station could do passports all day long, our passport office is used for storage, computer long gone. Only one passport qualified clerk, doing them by appointment, hour per day...that's just one of thousands of missed revenue opportunities.

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Fewer people are using the Post Office for passports becaue the customer service is absolutely terrible. A couple of years ago we needed to get passports for our children. So, we called the nearest Post Office that provided passport services. All we got was a recorded message that said an appointment was required. There was no option to talk to a live person at all. We left two or three messages on different days and never received any call back.

    I then found that passports could be applied for at the county government office. The service there was surprisingly good. They actually answer their phone! And, the wait time in their office wasn't long at all. I would never even consider using the Post Ofice for passport services again. Not a chance!

    Why would anyone think that a Post Office, which always has long lines, poor service, and union employees who don't care about customers, would be anyone's choice for any service when they have an alternative?

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Why does the OIG start these projects with out doing the full research? What was USPS annual passport revenue before the new reuirements went into effect? If everyone who needed new passports in 2008 and 2009 applied back then you should see a return to normal a few years after that. OIG doesnt tell us what normal was. Also when it come time to renew your passport you can not go down to the post-office and process a renewal in the same manor that you do in applying for your first passport, so there is no renewal or repeat business. Can the OIG tell us what percent of Americans now hold valid passports? If its 80% for example then your opportunity in the future is only 20%. If the postal service had that answer then they may be able to predict what percent may apply for new passports in the future.

  • Reply to: Does a Virtual PO Box service appeal to you?   1 year 10 months ago

    I love the idea of this but don't agree that the USPS should take a project like this on since they are already hemmoraging at the expense of the tax payers . . . leave this to private industries that have to show a profit to stay afloat.

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    When the post office started doing passports my office jumped on line. We did very well, we had three window stations.
    Almost every day we had many appointments, and at times we did walk ins. Then the reduction in force started , three clerks were excessed, the middle window station was eliminated. With the shortness in staff, management did not want to pay overtime to process the passport applications. When time came to renew or take the the online training again, conveniently it was overlooked. The online renewal training process could not be taken again until it was offered again in the future. Fast forward now to current time, our office is still on the website as a passport office. We have not done a passport application in almost two years. People come in everyday or call, wanting to make an appt. for a passport and we have to send them to another office. It's a shame when something was working so well and customers liked it, then the rug was pulled from under them. It seems like the post office is creating it's own demise. What happened to service, giving the customers what they want not sending them somewhere else. I want to keep my job not give it to someone else.

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    postal management feels passport work is a waste of time.

    REMEMBER IT IS ALWAYS MANAGEMENTS FAULT,MANAGEMENT MAKES THE RULES!!!!!

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    If we can have carriers out delivering mail till 11pm in Newport News Virginia then we can keep the lobby open as well and service those patrons needing passports. .....we had carriers out deliving mail till 11pm on 9/23/2013

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    I totally agree with, James Bookman, and Mark Jamison. We do everything half hearted. {substitute another body part for heart if you wish} It is almost as if everytime the decision is made to do something new, there is someone all too anxious to make sure it doesn't work. When you see a program work in isolated places, you will find dedicated workers that quite often invested their own money, and took on extra responsibility to complete the job. Usually there is some curiosity as to why this area was succesful. Instead of endorsing the succesful methods, we will beat them back with the rule book, until they are "normalised".

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    The economy definitely had a negative impact on the number of passports issued. A larger cause is that the Postal Service doesn't do a good job advertising this service. Sure - there is a link at the bottom left of usps.com but without creating awareness that the Postal Service offers this service many people wouldn't know to look there. The Postal Service does an excellent job promoting Priority Mail. It needs to have an advertising campaign to introduce/reintroduce all the products and services (including passports) it offers .

  • Reply to: Do you agree with the Postal Service’s decision to change the name of Express Mail and rename Parcel Post?   1 year 10 months ago

    Another attempt to simplify has become another bane to the average user of the Postal Service. Having two unique options to send your mail combined into one package!!!!! On one hand we have the very popular Priority mail option and then we have the Express mail option, both unique in their own ways. Now we go and combine the two names together on packaging that will further confuse the customer when they come to mail their products. If this is not another way to keep our customers away from using the Post Office, I don't know what is. This idea goes hand in hand with the idea of doing away with the blue and orange Express bags and using regular tyvek bags and slapping an express label on it. If we want to bring our delivery numbers up we have to keep a way of differentiating our services so they can be shipped correctly, not by combining names of our popular mailing options so as to confuse our wonderful customers into using the wrong mailing boxes! Here sir, Try one of these Priority Mail Express Standard Media Mail 2-Day boxes.....is this the next big idea????????

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Could it be that in the areas where people would be most likely to need passport services from the Postal Service that hours and access have been cut?
    It might also be that the increasing presence of untrained non-career personnel at offices reduces the confidence people might have in these sorts of services. Post offices are increasingly short staffed and postmasters are increasingly bogged down with mandates such that in many places any service that requires a bit of effort or time becomes a bother.

    By the way, OIG Williams was quite impressive in his appearance before the Senate last Thursday.

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    I greatly suspect that at least a major factor for the decline in pass port revenue it due to most American's, as I have, are fearful of foreign travel because of the threat of terrorism.

  • Reply to: Do you agree with the Postal Service’s decision to change the name of Express Mail and rename Parcel Post?   1 year 10 months ago

    Hey moderator, thank you for the "full disclosure". It does reassure me that you're paying attention and taking us seriously. And thanks for fixing it.

    Now about that "branding" :)

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Honestly the post office just like other big corporations and companies .Always attempt to do this under the guise of helping but you do it half way . What you should do is really dedicate yourselves to doing it .hire part time people to operate kiosk style booths in the post office that speak the languages of the community they serve and allow those kiosk to be totally dedicated to passports only you can have 2 four hour shifts this way it is cost effective for your company . Also you can run commercials on you tube offering the services along with videos explaining what you need to expedite the process thus making the lines move quicker . It will work and increase revenue if your offices dedicate themselves to really doing it .

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    I think this isone of the services the USPS does well. We needed to get passports for our kids, which you can't do by mail, so we made an appointment and were seen right at our appointment time. The clerk was well-versed in the process and even helped us fix our applications, which we'd filled out wrong in one spot. One downside was that the PO didn't have a camera for pictures, and the people in front of us had to leave to get a picture and come back. But this seems like the ideal way to structure things: make an appointment by phone or online; meet with a clerk who is an expert on the process; then wait for your material to arrive at home. (We actually got the passports sooner than expected.)

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    Correct me if I am wrong but, isn't part of the slow down due to the huge influx of applicants, that occured a few years ago, as a result of people desiring to beat the rate increase?

  • Reply to: A Happy Customer is a Loyal Customer   1 year 10 months ago

    Whenever the media mention the mass layoffs affecting the USPS I feel bad for them until I go to the post office to mail a package, then that feeling changes. I live in Massachusetts and I have yet to encounter a clerk that is polite. They're cold, do not smile or say anything and frankly that's the same service I can get from an automated machine. It may not be warm and fuzzy but it isn't as aggravating. Next time I mail a package, I will go to UPS.

  • Reply to: Passing up Passport Revenue?   1 year 10 months ago

    It is very difficult and inconvenient to use the USPS to renew/get new passports. The hours are very restrictive and the cameras are often inoperable. Past experience has taught all of us to go someplace else.

  • Reply to: Great Expectations of Online Shopping   1 year 10 months ago

    I love online shopping because it is extremely convenient and it allows you to buy things from brands with no actual store around you. But unless I can go to a store and easily change what I got online, I only buy cheap things or things I know I won't be returning.

  • Reply to: To Award or Not to Award: What’s the Postal Service to Do?   1 year 10 months ago

    Yes...i too lost a very aluable item..or actually..the USPS lost it..or an employee stole it. It was my wedding band..all diamonds..2 1/2 carats...i insured it for what we pd ..which was $1200. I couldve insured for what it was worth..but i was not out to gain from the usps. Well..i. Got my pkg back..envelope opened..with a stamp saying"damaged"! When i sent in a claim..with all documents and reciepts and even pictures...they only gave me $400.00 and thats after a year of calling, getting hung up on, and sending multiple letters. Why do they even ask us how much we want to insure for..if they have NO intention of fullfilling their end? The USPS is a lying, cheating ripoff! Im using ups and fed ex for my packages now.

  • Reply to: Great Expectations of Online Shopping   1 year 10 months ago

    Once the USPS decides it wants to actually deliver packages, letters, and everything else it's supposed to, I'd gladly stop pestering Amazon about never using USPS to deliver to my residence in Seattle. However, with e level of abuse, mis-deliveries, non-deliveries, and other nonsense, not only can I not trust the USPS for online ordering, I actively engage with online retailers and will not do business with them if an alternative can not be used at my own expense. You guys need to start looking REALLY hard at why "It's not the problem of the USPS for mis-delivered, non-delivered, mishandled, or otherwise problematic service" as I hear not only from my local "Postmaster" but also from "Customer Service". I'm using quotes, because my "Postmaster" is not a master of his post in any sense of the term, and "Customer Service" only issues false promises, abusive conversations, and doing everything in their power to pass the buck and provide the most disservice possible. Accountability would be a good place to start looking.

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