King Louis XIV of France did more than usher in a golden age of art and literature and preside over a dazzling royal court at Versailles in the 17th century. He also introduced the world to the inspector general concept, appointing agents to review his military and report back what they found.
Our Semiannual Report to Congress is a record of our work over a 6-month period that reflects our mission of ensuring efficiency, accountability, and integrity in the U.S. Postal Service. As required by law, we publish the SARC – as we affectionately call it – twice a year.
Twenty years ago, E.R. was the number one TV show, Macarena topped the pop music charts, and Independence Day (the original) was the highest-grossing movie of the year. A stamp cost 32 cents, and, oh yes, the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General (OIG) was created.
On September 30, 1996, President Clinton signed the amended Inspector General Act of 1978 to establish a separate enforcement and oversight agency for the Postal Service, moving that responsibility to the newly created and fully independent OIG.
On July 26, 1775, all you needed to deliver the mail was a strong back and a fast horse. In 2013, the tools required to move 40 percent of the world’s mail sound more at home in science fiction. Robots, supercomputers, 23 petabytes of digital storage (that’s 24,117,248 Gigabytes), and one of the world’s largest computer networks help deliver letters and parcels across the globe. Like any organization of its size and profile, the Postal Service regularly sees malicious activity directed at its network.
The U.S. Postal Service spent $12.3 billion on supplies and services in FY 2011, which made up about 17 percent of its total operating expenses. Suppliers to the Postal Service range from large integrators, such as FedEx and UPS, to individuals responsible for cleaning offices and transporting mail between postal locations. With thousands of suppliers, the Postal Service needs a procurement process that is agile, yet transparent and secure.
To encourage employees to contribute constructive ideas to enhance customer satisfaction, generate revenue, increase productivity, and improve competitiveness, the Postal Service offers the web-based eIDEAS program. Postal employees can submit ideas online or at a mail processing plant kiosk.