Happy 239th Birthday to the U.S. Postal Service

July 26th, 2014 is the 239th Birthday of the U.S. Postal Service. The Post Office (which was later renamed the U.S. Postal Service) was officially established at the Continental Congress in Philadelphia on July 26th, 1775. Benjamin Franklin was named the first postmaster general and held that position when the Declaration of Independence was signed almost a year later. That makes the Post Office older than the USA. Happy Birthday!

Via PostalMag



New Pricing Strategy to Grow Priority Mail

WASHINGTON — The United States Postal Service today filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) to change Priority Mail prices, including a reduction in prices on average for businesses and other customers who use Commercial Plus and Commercial Base online shipping services. The price change will include a modest increase for Priority Mail prices at Post Offices and other postal retail outlets. The proposed changes, which would go into effect in September 2014, are intended to offer more competitive pricing and build on Priority Mail’s popularity with customers.



Get the Best Practices and Solutions in the Postal Industry from Window Book’s Complimentary Educational Webinars

If you have robust software systems with smart Postal solutions, you can get your jobs done much faster, reduce manual labor, and have various ways to reduce postage and operational expenses as well as getting postage discounts.

For those people who are just starting out – or who are considering upgrading their current software systems, attending our Webinars is a great way to get free educational information to help them make the best decisions for their business.

Visit http://www.windowbook.com/webinars to view and register for all of Window Book’s upcoming webinars.

Penelope D., a recent Webinar attendee, commented, “I’m impressed with Window Book’s commitment to education – I don’t know where else I would go to find such information. Please continue to keep us informed about these significant pending changes….”

Window Book’s webinars are presented by their in-house Postal specialists who, combined, have well over 100 years of Postal knowledge and mailing expertise, and guest speakers with expertise in various fields. Window Book is proud to have industry specialists on staff who have had hands-on experience at lettershops, print shops, transportation and logistics companies, and the U.S. Postal Service.

U.S. Postal Service Letter Carriers Delivered in the Fight Against Hunger as Stamp Out Hunger Food Donations Help Feed Needy Families in All 50 States

June 17, 2014 – WASHINGTON — U.S. Postal Service letter carriers collected 72.5 million pounds of food on May 10 from the donations of thousands of communities throughout America for the annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive. This represents the 11th consecutive year the event has surpassed 70 million pounds and adds to the more than 1 billion pounds of food collected since the Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive began in 1993. Donations of canned goods and non-perishable food items will feed countless families in need. Read more.

Via Sierra Sun Times

U.S. Postal Service Honors 14 Suppliers for Outstanding Performance

Outstanding Performers 2014

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Postal Service recently recognized 14 companies in the annual Supplier Performance Awards. The awards recognize performance that reduces costs, maintains high levels of service and provides innovative and sustainable solutions.

Companies were recognized in the following categories: Supplier Performance, Supplier Excellence, Supplier Innovation, Supplier Diversity, Supplier Sustainability Excellence, Postal Supplier Council Excellence and for the first time, the Postmaster General’s Supplier Award.

“It’s essential that we have a world-class chain of suppliers to provide consistently outstanding service to our customers,” said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe. “Each of you is a significant link in that chain. Working together, we deliver for the American people.”

“All the suppliers being recognized here today have demonstrated, in one way or another, continual growth and progress in their contractual relationships with us,” said Supply Management Vice President Susan Brownell. “Most importantly, the focus that these suppliers have placed on continuous improvement has played a significant role in helping the Postal Service deliver high quality service to its customers.”

The 2013 winners include:

Supplier Performance Award: Eligibility is reserved for the 76 suppliers designated by the Postal Service during 2013 as a “Key Supplier.” A supplier is designated as “key” based on business impact, market complexity, spend, and other business considerations. The nomination criteria for this category are patterned after the Supplier Excellence Awards category (described below), but additional factors are used in these selections, such as active involvement in the Postal Supplier Council, active diversity outreach or mentor-protégé programs, and documented progress against supplier development plans. Other factors include significant contributions to Postal Service cost reduction, service improvement and revenue generation efforts.

  • Deloitte Consulting LLC, Arlington, VA
  • Marriott Hotel Services, Inc., Washington, DC
  • Sterigenics, Oakbrook, IL
  • Wheeler Bros., Inc., Somerset, PA

Supplier Excellence Award: This award recognizes Postal Service suppliers that have demonstrated exemplary contract performance, innovation, and supply chain integration, or played a significant role in helping the Postal Service reduce costs or achieve other strategic objectives.

  • DTZ, a UGL Company, Boston, MA
  • Gable Signs & Graphics, Inc., Baltimore, MD
  • Metro Air Service, Inc., Romulus, MI
  • World Wide Technology, Inc., Maryland Heights, MO

Supplier Innovation Award: This award recognizes Postal Service suppliers for innovative efforts that benefit the Postal Service in a special way.

  • Sheehy Mail Contractors, Inc., Waterloo, WI

Supplier Diversity Award: This award recognizes suppliers for their efforts to increase the use, exposure, and development of a diverse supplier base, including efforts to improve access and opportunities for small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses.

  • MSC Industrial Supply Co., Melville, NY

Supplier Sustainability Excellence Award: This award recognizes excellence in implementing environmentally preferred business practices that help the Postal Service achieve its sustainability goals and reduce its carbon footprint.

  • Asset LifeCycle, LLC, Topeka, KS
  • Pratt Retail Specialties, LLC, Atlanta, GA

Postal Supplier Council Excellence Award: This award recognizes the supplier that made the most noteworthy contribution to the success of the Postal Supplier Council over the last year.

  • ABM Security Services, Houston, TX

Postmaster General’s Supplier Award: The inaugural Postmaster General’s Supplier Award is presented to a supplier that the Postmaster General has determined to have provided significant contributions over the years leading to the achievement of critical Postal Service business objectives and whose performance deserves special recognition.

  • FedEx Corporation, Memphis, TN

U.S. Postal Service Supplier Performance Awards — 2013

Deloitte Consulting LLC
Supplier Performance Award

Deloitte is a large global firm that provides highly trained professionals in a variety of areas including consulting, analytics, and technology services. Deloitte’s professionals augment Postal Service initiatives, allowing the Postal Service to reduce costs, improve operations, and generate revenue. During FY13, Deloitte provided significant bottom line benefits through its support of 12 of the current Postal Service DRIVE initiatives. (DRIVE is the Postal Service acronym for Delivering Results, Innovation, Value and Efficiency.) Examples of DRIVE projects that Deloitte has worked on include Network Optimization, Workforce Optimization, Secure Digital Solutions, Mail Transportation Equipment Online Ordering Project, and Federal Cloud Computing Exchange.

Marriott Hotel Services, Inc.
Supplier Performance Award

Marriott Hotel Services is a large business that provides hospitality services including lodging, food, beverage and conference center services. Marriott manages the Postal Service’s National Center for Employee Development (NCED) in Norman, OK. The NCED housing facility was initially designed to provide housing and food and beverage services to Postal Service employees attending training. In recent years, training volume decreased due to Postal Service staff reductions and the adoption of distance-learning technologies, resulting in underutilization of the facility. In FY13, Marriott marketed this unused capacity to the public, which generated revenue and helped to offset the cost of operations. The facility contracted with the Red Cross, FEMA and other organizations to provide meeting space, guest rooms and meals to relief workers of the May tornadoes in Moore, OK.

Supplier Performance Award

Sterigenics is a large business that specializes in sterilization services. Sterigenics performs mail irradiation services for the Postal Service and other government offices by exposing mail to high doses of irradiation to treat and destroy potential contaminants, such as anthrax. As part of its preemptive maintenance program, Sterigenics inventories emergency spare parts in excess of $1 million. The preventive maintenance program has been critical in minimizing downtime and achieving an on-time delivery rate of over 99.5 percent over the last three years. The Sterigenics Government Mail Irradiation process has been validated by the National Institute of Science and Technology, and approved by the Office of Science and Technology Mail Security Task Force to Irradiate Government Mail. At present, the Sterigenics Government Mail Irradiation process is the only approved and validated process and supplier for Government Mail Irradiation.

Wheeler Bros., Inc.
Supplier Performance Award

Wheeler Bros., a subsidiary of VSE Corporation, is involved in manufacturing, engineering, inventory management, and distribution of automotive, truck, heavy equipment, industrial parts, and supplies to the Postal Service, Department of Defense and other government agencies. Wheeler Bros. supplies repair parts for all makes and models of more than 211,000 Postal Service vehicles and equipment. It catalogs almost 22,000 items for Postal Service vehicles, including heavy trucks and trailers. Its inventory program is completely Web-based, greatly reducing the clerical workload involved with maintaining a vehicle maintenance facility stockroom. Wheeler Bros. provides proven processes and procedures to ensure customer satisfaction. With the average age of Postal Service vehicles exceeding 20 years, Wheeler Bros. fights a daily battle against obsolete parts. It has responded with outstanding performance to provide the parts necessary to keep the fleet running. Under the Green Purchasing National Strategic Initiative, the Postal Service vehicles management center collaborates with Wheeler Bros. to identify environmentally preferable products (EPP) under the category of “Rebuilt Vehicular Parts.” This is the seventh supplier performance award for Wheeler Bros.

Supplier Excellence Award

DTZ, a UGL Company, is a large business that provides facility management, custodial, landscaping, and operations and maintenance services. DTZ became a Postal Service supplier in December 2012, providing cleaning services for 21 districts covering 539 facilities totaling 3.3 million square feet of floor space. Although not required by the contract, DTZ scheduled floor stripping and waxing upon contract award at all sites, providing immediate improvement in facility appearance. DTZ has consistently met challenges head on with open and honest communication, even in difficult circumstances. As an example, when another contractor failed to perform, DTZ stepped in and provided service to approximately 50 sites within one week. Without hesitation, DTZ worked diligently to contact all sites and partner with subcontractors to provide service as soon as possible.

Gable Signs & Graphics, Inc.
Supplier Excellence Award

Gable Signs & Graphics is a small business that specializes in the development, production, delivery, and maintenance of custom designed interior and exterior signs and architectural graphics. Currently, the Gable signage contract supports more than 32,000 Postal Service facilities, as well as 250 Contract Postal Unit locations and 600 Village Post Offices, providing signage that is sustainable and cost effective. To date, more than 45,000 signs have been deployed to more than 80 mail processing facilities. Gable Signs created a Web portal for ordering and fulfillment, significantly streamlining the process. It has donated signage to the Postal Service in support of fallen U.S. military members honored in Post Office renamings.

Metro Air Service, Inc.
Supplier Excellence Award

Metro Air Service is a large business that provides a full range of logistics services including public warehouse, truck transportation, distribution, and terminal handling services at 12 U.S. airports. It acts as a conduit between the Postal Service’s air transportation and ground network services, providing scanning services, container preparation and surface transportation. Metro Air Service has repeatedly shown an ability to adapt to quick-changing volumes and a willingness to schedule the right mix of skilled workers to get the mail processed.

World Wide Technology, Inc.
Supplier Excellence Award

World Wide Technology is a large minority-owned business and one of the largest African American-owned companies in the United States. WWT provides the Postal Service with telecommunications hardware, hardware maintenance, installation, wiring, and telecommunications services. Hardware quotations for Postal Service telecom customers are provided quickly, and wiring and installation projects are completed timely, often ahead of schedule. In 2013, WWT provided the Postal Service with 10,000 wireless access points that improved operational performance of its delivery units, generating increased revenue from additional package business and enabling the Postal Service to provide package delivery on Sundays.

Sheehy Mail Contractors, Inc.
Supplier Innovation Award

Sheehy Mail Contractors is a small, family-owned trucking business that provides equipment, personnel, and technology to address transportation demands, ensuring products are delivered safely and on time. As trailblazers in alternative fuel usage, Sheehy spearheaded a compressed natural gas (CNG) pilot with the Postal Service. It is currently operating 10 CNG vehicles with plans for 10 more. Sheehy Mail Contractors is helping the Postal Service meet its sustainability goals. It has been an active participant in the Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Program.

MSC Industrial Supply Co.
Supplier Diversity Award

MSC industrial is a large business providing a full range of commercial, off-the-shelf maintenance, repair and operations products in four categories: building and equipment maintenance, custodial, electrical, and industrial products. MSC supplies products to 220 processing facilities and more than 32,000 Postal Service offices, achieving an on-time delivery rate of more than 99 percent. MSC has continued to exceed agreed-upon supplier diversity goals in their subcontracting plan for small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses (SMWOB). MSC’s SMWOB purchases exceeded $4.2 million in FY13, representing more than 17.25 percent of FY13 contract sales to the Postal Service. It has established relationships with 244 SMWOB businesses and continues to add small business supplier partners.

Asset LifeCycle, LLC
Supplier Sustainability Excellence Award

Asset LifeCycle is a small woman-owned business that recycles the Postal Service’s excess electronics and waste materials through a no-cost, revenue-generating contract. It shares the majority of the profits from recycling or reselling excess electronic waste. ALC was a key contributor to the Postal Service’s winning four Environmental Protection Agency awards for the Federal Green Challenge in 2013. For FY 2013, ALC secured, data-cleaned, sold or recycled more than 2.5 million pounds of Postal Service eWaste, avoiding more than $15 million in the disposal costs and generating more than $1.25 million for the Postal Service. This is ALC’s second Supplier Sustainability Excellence Award.

Pratt Retail Specialties, LLC
Supplier Sustainability Excellence Award

Pratt Retail Specialties is a large business that produces corrugated boxes and packaging supplies for the Postal Service’s ReadyPost and Expedited Packaging supply programs. During FY13, Pratt provided 8,000 tons of products, including 4,300 tons of expedited packaging and 3,700 tons of Ready Post products. Postal Service specifications allow many products to contain from 70 percent to 100 percent recycled material. Pratt established an innovative recycling program for the Postal Service that recovered obsolete materials and converted them into packaging substrate for new Postal Service packaging.

ABM Security Services
Postal Supplier Council Excellence Award

ABM Security Services, a subsidiary of ABM Industries, is a large business that provides security trained personnel to Post Offices across the country. It has provided security services to the Postal Service since 2004 and has been an active member of the Postal Supplier Council since 2005. As a Postal Supplier Council member, ABM volunteered to participate on a task force to improve performance reviews done between suppliers and the Postal Service. ABM helped create a comprehensive Postal Service Key Supplier Performance Survey, which provided valuable data regarding the selection and improvement of various Key Supplier performance metrics. The updated performance metrics will allow the Postal Service to leverage best practices to drive quality, efficiency, and best value.

FedEx Corporation
Postmaster General’s Supplier Award

FedEx has provided expanding domestic air transportation for Priority Mail, Priority Mail Express, and First-Class Mail since 2001. In FY13, FedEx carried approximately 90 percent of Priority Mail, 99 percent of Priority Mail Express, and 75 percent of all mail that was transported domestically by air transportation for the Postal Service. In 2013, the Postal Service awarded a new seven-year contract to FedEx that is expected to benefit Postal Service customers by providing for increased service requirements, flexibility for changing capacities throughout the week, reduced minimum contractual commitments, and significant financial benefits.




How many people would be ‘out of work’ if USPS eliminates Saturday delivery?

“The loss of jobs resulting from eliminating Saturday mail delivery would not be limited to the private sector, as approximately 80,000 full-time and part-time middle-class postal workers, including rural letter carriers, would find themselves out of work.”

Read more.

The Washington Post



PMOD: Drop Ship the Priority Way

Have you ever wanted to drop ship your mail to additional entry points, but you just didn’t have enough volume to fill a truck or even enough to send to a consolidator? Did you ever wonder what to do with those last few residual sacks or trays from a larger mailing that you are drop shipping using your normal methods? Do you have pesky mail delivery complaints in certain areas of the country? How about wanting to improve the delivery time for your Standard Mail, but not being able to afford bumping it up to First-Class Mail®? If you have ever pondered any of these questions, Priority Mail Open and Distribute (PMOD) just might be the answer you’re looking for.

What is PMOD?
Priority Mail® Open and Distribute is a USPS® service offering that provides an alternate method of transporting drop-shipped mail. Rather than using traditional transport methods (truck, rail, airfreight, etc.) for drop shipping, this service allows mailers to use the expedited delivery service offered by Priority Express or Priority Mail to transport the smaller volume mail to additional postal entry points. Mailers can place their prepared mail sacks or trays into special PMOD sacks or tray boxes, and tag these sacks or tray boxes with special PMOD tags. These tags indicate to the USPS that the mail inside the sacks or tray boxes is drop ship mail, and that it needs to be opened and then distributed as it would normally be processed, hence the name “open and distribute.”

Why use PMOD?
Drop shipping mail can result in some nice postage discounts, or it can be an effective way to better control the in-home delivery time of mailings. But some mailings just don’t lend themselves to the more traditional methods of transporting drop-shipped mail from the original entry point to the destination entry post offices. Drop shipping traditionally involves the use of over-the-road or rail transportation to get the mail closer to the destination point. It works very well for many types of mailings, but smaller mailings make it tougher to take advantage of drop shipping benefits without paying high minimum charges to logistics providers. Since Priority Express has next day delivery service and Priority Mail has 2- to 3-day delivery service, PMOD can be a very quick way to transport the mail to the additional entry points. This is ideal for time-sensitive mail or for delivery trouble spots.

Uses for PMOD
Some typical users of PMOD are small volume mailers, who just do not consistently have enough mail volume to meet the minimum shipment requirements of most logistics providers. Another common use is a mailer sending time-sensitive mailings that just doesn’t have the budget for First-Class Mail prices. This type of mail can be prepared and paid for at Standard Mail prices, but using PMOD drop shipping can closely approximate the delivery service of First-Class Mail at a much lower price. Mailers who experience repetitive delivery delays to more remote areas, such as Alaska or Hawaii, often use PMOD for this mail to help improve delivery times. The same is true for Periodicals mail that encounters subscriber delivery complaints to certain geographic areas. Using PMOD for these cities can help eliminate those subscriber complaints. Even large mailings that use traditional drop ship methods use PMOD to handle those remaining few sacks or trays that would normally get entered at the origin.

The USPS provides many resources for PMOD information, including both Priority Mail Express and Priority Mail options. Window Book offers our DAT-MAIL™ post-presort software solution, with its PMOD export option, along with our Postal Package Partner™ solution to generate the special PMOD labels and tags. These solutions can make using this USPS service very quick and easy. We can even analyze your mailing files to determine how PMOD can benefit your mailing operation.

Window Book is here to help
Window Book is currently celebrating its 26th year helping clients manage their operations more profitably. Why should you talk to Window Book? Because we help you to: Streamline mail processes to reduce operational costs! Implement Full-Service and Seamless Acceptance to minimize the risk of downstream quality issues and be in a better position to defend your preparation processes. Grow with Emerging Technologies. Automate Your PostalOne! Submissions. Move to the Cloud to Optimize Your Operations. Use Your Data to Make More Money. Are you Keeping Up With Your Competition? Learn the KEY Shifts You Can Make… We Can Help YOU in Ways No Other Company Can! Call and talk with a Postal Expert Now


Color Print in First-Class Mail Transactions Promotion and Emerging Technology Promotion

2014 USPS Mailing Promotions Registration Starts June 15

Mailers and mail service providers can register via the Business Customer Gateway (https://gateway.usps.com).  Please note that participants are required to register for each promotion separately.

The Color Print in First-Class Mail Transactions promotion provides an upfront 2% postage discount to mailers who use dynamic/variable color print for marketing and consumer messages on their bills and statements to create a greater connection and response from consumers.

The goal of this promotion is to grow the value of First-Class Mail and encourage mailers to invest in color print technology.

The Emerging Technology promotion provides an upfront 2% discount to mailers who include “enhanced” augmented reality or Near Field Communication on or in their mailpieces.

The goal of this promotion is to encourage mailers to adopt and invest in new technologies that can be integrated into their mailing campaigns

Questions? Contact FCMColorPromotion@usps.gov or EmergingTechPromo@usps.gov

Hot Rods Forever Stamps

Limited-Edition on Sale at Post Offices Today

ORK, PA — Today, the U.S. Postal Service celebrates the fast, powerful vehicles thrill-seeking enthusiasts have been modifying for nearly a century by dedicating the limited-edition Hot Rods Forever Stamps. The stamps depict two 1932 Ford “Deuce” roadsters — a black ’32 Ford with orange flames running down the car’s body — and a red ’32 Ford.

The first-day-of-issue dedication ceremony took place at the National Street Rod Association (NSRA) Street Rod Nationals East Plusat the York Expo Center in York, PA. Available in booklets of 20 stamps, customers may purchase the stamps at usps.com/stamps, at 800-STAMP24 (800-782-6724) or at Post Offices nationwide and on eBay at ebay.com/stamps.

“These Hot Rods stamps mark the beginning of America’s fascination with customizing fast cars,” said Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe in dedicating the stamps. “And they’re just as popular today as they were decades ago. Just like the cars they celebrate, these stamps are timeless in that they’re good for mailing First-Class letters anytime in the future.” Read more.

Via USPS.com

Hot Rods Forever stamp