Looking at Product Cost Changes

There are many ways to cut costs. Ask any company that has tried to reduce costs. Or even look at your own household situation. You can cut down on take-out dinners, cancel a vacation, or drop a gym membership you aren’t using anyway. But at a certain point, you realize some costs are just not in your control. You can’t do much about what the utility company charges you or what it costs to fix your car when it breaks down.

The same is true for the U.S. Postal Service.

 

Diagnostic Tools Drive Service Improvements

The U.S. Postal Service recently reported that its third quarter delivery service performance results marked “all-time record service performance” across all mail categories. In particular, the Postal Service had significant improvement in delivery performance for its commercial mail products in First Class and Standard Mail. Periodicals’ on-time performance topped 80 percent for the first time since 2010, a major improvement over the 46 percent score from earlier this year.

 

Business Mail Acceptance Entry Points

Mailings that meet minimum volume and preparation requirements to qualify for reduced postage rates are called business mail. Properly accepting business mailings is critical for the Postal Service since it accounted for $25 billion in revenue in 2010. Several types of Postal Service facilities accept business mail. Business Mail Entry Units have acceptance clerks with specialized training and systems for accepting business mail. Local Post Offices can also accept business mail.
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Periodicals

Since the earliest days of the Post Office there has been a public policy goal of promoting the dissemination of information throughout the country. This goal was also part of all 14 of the rate cases conducted under the Postal Reorganization Act. By law, rates had to consider “the educational, cultural, scientific, and informational value to the recipient of mail matter.” This provision generally tempered the increases for Periodicals, or at least kept the “institutional cost burden” for Periodicals to a minimum.