I have had the opportunity to review many of the official comments made in response to the Intelligent Mail Federal Register Notice. The comments submitted by PostCom, the Association for Postal Commerce, were also signed by MFSA Mailing & Fulfillment Services Association, Printing Industries of America, The Direct Marketing Association, IDEAlliance (keepers of the Mail.dat specification) , the American Catalog Mailers Association, and the Alliance of Non-Profit Mailers. These groups represent virtually all mailers, in one capacity or another. The emphatic recommendations can really be summed up in three little words, words that the USPS must heed in order for the important Intelligent Mail initiatives to be a long term success — Apply Common Sense!
The USPS must apply some common sense to their vision. Clear direction is required – clear direction as to technical specifications and mailing standards and requirements. Proper decisions and future direction cannot be made or taken without a complete picture of what is to be required, why, and what the benefits are. Probably the most important recommendation is that the USPS needs to have a realistic, manageable, implementation schedule. The USPS needs to recognize their own readiness, and respect the readiness of the industry as a whole.
Intelligent Mail is coming, and it will be a good thing – eventually. Hopefully the USPS and the mailers will be able to step back, apply common sense, and move forward in a direction that benefits all.
PS Drop me a note with your Intelligent Mail questions anytime