Get Off the Treadmill

Do you ever end some work days feeling like you have traveled the same steps, over and over and over, and not really gotten anywhere? We’re not talking about footsteps here, but process steps. Performing the same mind-numbing processing steps, one after another. As in the physical fitness world, walking those same steps repeatedly can really wear you out, but in your mailing operation, that does not improve your fitness. In that case, the total opposite is true: the fewer process steps you perform, the more productive you are – and this is especially true for routine, redundant tasks. Reducing the amount of these tedious, repetitive tasks is the key to freeing your time for more valuable efforts. Alright, so how does this apply to your mailing operation?

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Fun Postal Facts

Time once again for us to devote one of our e-Tips to fun, fascinating facts regarding the United States Postal Service® (USPS®).

Famous Postal Workers

Many famous people actually got their start working for the USPS – or if not their start, they worked for the USPS somewhere along their journey to fame. Of course, we all recognize that Benjamin Franklin was the first Postmaster General, but who are some of the other famous folks?

Why Aren’t You Using eInduction?

The USPS program eInduction has been around since 2013, but we continue to see many mailers who are still not taking advantage of it. eInduction is intended to replace the old hard copy PS Forms 8125 and 8017 clearance documents used for drop shipments of origin and destination mail – part of the continuing effort by the USPS to convert hard copy postal documentation into eDoc. Since the program began, the USPS has equipped acceptance facilities with scanners, which scan the container barcodes to ascertain that the containers have been properly verified and paid for at the origin post office. eInduction may be used for any drop ship entry facility, even if they are not yet equipped with these scanners. Mailers can even use it for origin mail.

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Where Is Your Mail Headed?

Mail Service Providers (MSP’s) spend a lot of time and money making sure that mailings are addressed and presorted properly. They also check that their mailing facilities have bundled and trayed/sacked the mail according to postal regulations. Finally, MSP’s understand the need to be sure mail is palletized properly, all the tray/sack/pallet tags are correct, and that mail was shipped to the correct entry points. Or was it?!

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Shelter from the Storms

You don’t need to look very far these days to see reports regarding disasters impacting thousands of people here in the United States. Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, the many fires devouring acres of land in the upper Northwest. Our thoughts are with the many people impacted by these disasters, as well as the emergency responders and volunteers providing assistance. Situations like these also prompt us to pause to consider how well our businesses would withstand such emergencies. Do we have a disaster recovery plan? Do we have a back-up plan for our business data? In too many cases, the answers to those questions is “no.”

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Mail Anywhere 101

The USPS® offers the Mail Anywhere program as an added benefit for Full-Service® customers, allowing them to use a single permit to present Full-Service or mixed Full-Service mailings at any Business Mail Acceptance site. Not only does this greatly simplify permit management, but it also saves permit application and renewal fees for customers who mail at numerous locations. We continue to receive a lot of questions regarding participation and mail preparation under this program, so thought it appropriate to provide a Mail Anywhere primer as this week’s e-Tip.

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Don’t Forget – PostalOne! Mandatory Software Update This Weekend

The United States Postal Service (USPS) is issuing a mandatory software update for the PostalOne! production system this weekend. This update will be implemented on Sunday, August 20, 2017. The PostalOne! Production (PROD) system will not be available during this update process, on Sunday morning August 20, 2017. PostalOne! will then be updating the Test Environment for Mailers (TEM) on Monday, August 21, 2017 and TEM will be unavailable during that update period.

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2017 Mobile Shopping Promotion

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) 2017 promotion and incentives program is offering another promotion, this one running from August 1 through December 31, 2017. The Mobile Shopping Promotion is designed to encourage mailers to integrate mobile technology with direct mail to create a convenient method for consumers to do their shopping. Eligible mailings will receive an upfront 2% postage discount. Register now!

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Seamless Acceptance

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) recently re-opened the Seamless Acceptance program to new participants. Seamless Acceptance is designed to streamline the verification, acceptance, payment and induction of mail. This program has benefits for both mailers and the USPS. To participate in this program, mailers must have 90% or more of their mail volume submitted as Full-Service® mail. The mailpieces must be uniquely barcoded and submitted electronically (eDoc). If the mailer is preparing Detached Mail Unit (DMU) verified origin entry or destination entry drop shipments, participation in eInduction is also required. Prior to participating in Seamless Acceptance, mailers must participate in an intermediate step called Seamless Parallel. This is essentially a testing period, during which time the mailer works with the USPS to insure the volume and mail preparation and submission requirements are being met.

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USPS Proposes Move Update Price Change

The United States Postal Service® (USPS®) filed a request with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) on June 30, 2017, for Move Update price and classification changes. The proposed implementation date for these changes is January 21, 2018. The proposal would increase the Move Update postage assessment for non-compliance from $0.07 to $0.08 per piece, change the Move Update verification method, correct erroneous information subjecting USPS Marketing Parcels to the Move Update requirement, and extend Full-Service® Address Change Service (ACS) to certain non-Full-Service mailpieces.

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