Semiannual Report to Congress

Two times a year, we publish a report of our work and activities for a just-ended six-month period. This Semiannual Report to Congress (or SARC, as we affectionately call it) is required by law, but it’s also a chance for us to share our record of work with our many stakeholders.

The work reflects our mission of ensuring efficiency, accountability, and integrity in the U.S. Postal Service. We also help maintain confidence in the postal system and improve the Postal Service’s bottom line through independent audits, investigations, data analytics and research.

 

Open or Closed: Now You Can See

If you are a regular visitor to our blog or any part of our website, you are probably familiar with our mission: to ensure efficiency, accountability, and integrity in the U.S. Postal Service. Our work also helps to maintain confidence in the postal system and to improve the Postal Service’s bottom line.

We achieve the mission by performing independent audits and investigations and conducting in-depth research and analysis on postal issues to identify opportunities for revenue growth and increased operational efficiencies.

 

A Veterans Day Salute

On Veterans Day, we reflect on the service that more than 21 million men and women have given to our country. About 1.3 million of them served during multiple wars, dating as far back as World War II.

Many veterans now work in a wide range of fields, from manufacturing and retail to transportation and the entertainment industry, as laborers, managers, and executives, according to U.S. Census data. The largest contingent of veterans, about 14 percent, works in public service or administration, which isn’t really surprising given its close relationship to military service.

 

Chart Toppers and Late Bloomers

Elvis is back in the building! Earlier this month, the U.S. Postal Service previewed the new Elvis Presley stamp that will be released in August as part of the popular music icons series of commemorative stamps that include the likes of Ray Charles, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix. 

 

Who We Are and What We Do

Sometimes it can be confusing to keep track of who does what in this postal world. The U.S. Postal Service has a wide range of stakeholders, including a few entities with oversight responsibilities. We, the Office of Inspector General (OIG), are one of those entities.

 

Season's Greetings

 

Pushing the Envelope wishes our readers a joyful holiday season and a prosperous new year. We will take a break this week, but we encourage you to read over the past year’s blogs and let us know what you think on any of the wide range of topics we covered in 2014. We post comments as they come in, even if you comment on a blog that ran years ago.

On January 5 we will share our annual list of the Top 10 Postal Stories of the Year – one of our most popular blogs. As always, we look forward to your comments and insights. 

 

Six Years and Still Going Strong

As we celebrate our sixth year of blogging, you might think we’ve covered it all. Surely we’ve hit on every postal topic and angle there is, right? Well apparently not. We have a backlog of issues we want to share and people keep giving us excellent insights and feedback.

 

A Package of Opportunity

The Internet may have eaten into the U.S. Postal Service’s First-Class Mail volume and revenue, but digital devotion does bring good news, too. Package shipping is on the rise, due in large part to the ever-increasing popularity of online shopping. The Postal Service’s future could brighten considerably because of this expanding market, but is the Postal Service prepared to compete effectively in it?

 

Big Data — The Next Big Postal Thing?

If you are even remotely digitally hip, you probably know that “big data” is a hot topic. But it is far from a mere fad. Big data — which refers to large, complex datasets combined with sophisticated, powerful analytics — has definitely been having a big impact on not just scientific research capabilities, but commercial activity as well. Amazon, Walmart, and eBay are just a few businesses using big data to better target products and services to consumers.

 

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