Wednesday Update:

Wow. Thanks for the fabulous response to the brainstorm. We’ve been overwhelmed by the sheer number of thoughtful responses. To give everyone enough time to comment and us a little time to read through everything, we’ve decided to extend the period for taking comments and post a blog about the brainstorm with the poll on Monday. Until then, please keep sharing your ideas. All suggestions received by Friday morning will be candidates for the poll. Oh, a word about moderation, we moderate every comment, and our policy is not to include comments that include vulgar words (even if the words are partially obscured with other characters) or involve name calling. We have not been able to approve a few comments that were otherwise very interesting because they violated our comment policy, so please double check your comment before you submit it. Thanks again!

Original Post:

The Postal Service is facing a financial crisis and needs to pursue every option it can to improve its net income. Pushing the Envelope thought it might be a good idea to ask for your thoughts. How do you think the Postal Service can save money or raise additional revenue? To make this a bit more interesting, the blog team will review your ideas and pick the most popular or most interesting for a poll. We’ll post the poll on Wednesday. So brainstorm now, and be sure to come back on Wednesday to view the shortlist and to vote for your favorites. Share your ideas in the comments below. Describe the idea, whether it involves cutting costs or generating revenue, and how much you think it could add to the Postal Service’s bottom line. Happy brainstorming! This topic is hosted by the OIG's Risk Analysis Research Center (RARC).

Comments (558)

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  • anon

    The front line supervisor of customer service positions must be abolished/drastically changed. Carriers are only in the office until 9:30-10:00 am now. It will be even less once FSS kicks in. There is not reason to have 2-6-or even 8 or more supervisors with nothing to do the rest of the day. Solutions.1.)Hire retired supervisors to count the mail, and input it into the computer. Offer them 25 dollars an hour, no benefits, four hours per day. That is MORE than enough time for them to do everything they need to do. If they are not interested, than have TE or casual supervisors. There are plenty of people who would be happy to measure mail with a third graders ruler for 25 dollars an hour. Solutions 2.) 204B's should supervise/count mail in the morning, and carry mail in the afternoon. 4 and 4, or maybe 3 supervising, and 5 carrying. I dont have the exact figures in front of me. But doing this, the post office could EASILY cut in HALF the costs of having all the supervisors. At 100,000 dollars per year per supervisor for salary and benefits,getting rid of just 1,000 supervisors would equate to 100 MILLION dollars of savings. Think of the possibilities

    Jul 13, 2009
  • anon

    Not a comment about this, but rather just an idea. We cut lots of plastic straps every day and just throw them away. I don't work in a plant to see how the trays get strapped, but was just wondering why it wouldn't work to modify the plastic trays to accept a quick disconnect type coupler similar to used on dog collars built into plastic lids. I have some ideas as to how to actually make this work without adding weight to the trays and maybe save some carrier time. OIG email me if interested.

    Jul 16, 2009
  • anon

    Postal FSS was developed to reduce carrier office time. The project assumed 3 hours of typical pre FSS office time. I am now spending less than 1.5 hours in the office, without the help of postal FSS machines. How might this change affect the viability of postal FSS? What if we directed our energies to eliminating on the job injuries instead? Please see my YouTube videos, and remember, 'Safety Depends on Me!'.

    Jul 15, 2009
  • anon

    You must be a craft employee. Yes, some supervisor positions could be eliminated. The number of supervisors per installation is calculated by the number of employees in that facility. If all employees took more pride in the Postal Service that would help too. You know too many employees have built OVERTIME into their lifestyle so even as mail volumes drop they are still out on the street waisting time. Not all employees are like that but unfortunately too many. I believe the 5 day delivery would be benificial to all employees. Who wouldn't like to work 5 days a week instead of 6? I think it would be a win win for all employees as well as for customers. They (the Customers) may complain in the begining but aren't most of them working a 5 day week? I only hope that the choice would be to have delivery Monday through Friday. The carriers would have less worries with children playing around vehicles and customer vehicles blocking the boxes since more people are home on saturdays. Just my opinion. Oh by the way if supervisors made 100,000.00 a year I might have stayed in that position instead! But all the employee adult drama just didn't seem worth working too many hours and too many days a week.

    Jul 14, 2009
  • anon

    in response to small town pm,i (a city letter carrier/union steward) just took a survey amongst our 80 plus city carriers and found out near 75% of them thought eliminating saturday delivery would be beneficial to them and the po. as for "you must be a craft employee," we too are out to save the po and are just as sincere about doing what it takes to do so. in fact our "career 204s" were completely against us going to 5-day delivery because they are the only ones working 6 days.even our pm was encouraging us to work hard to do what it takes to save routes during the latest route adjustment...he did not want his office to drop below a level 22.

    Jul 24, 2009
  • anon

    I agree 100% with your comments. Having been on "both sides of the fence", I can relate.. Sure we have our "milkers",but in 26 years, I've more than earned my pay check. The 5 day work week would work for me.. My complaint about some of our employees.. and they are the ones who passed probation and have been on light duty almost the remainder of their career. The Postmaster hired these people and the supervisors kept them after their 90 days were up.. In our office many of the light duty employees are friends of the supervisor and walk around doing nothing. They can drive to work,but they can't deliver or take out express mail or sections to people on the o.t. list. The whole system has to be revamped.. Maybe we should carry like rural carriers? After 26 years, unless we fold, I plan on working another 10 years..

    Jul 20, 2009
  • anon

    Great idea!!! Let's throw in the facts of too many USPS Mngrs getting paid and getting bonuses (either deserved or not) and do not do their jobs on top of upper echelon USPS Mngrs creating more ways to keep the 1st line supervisors submitting reports all day and not making sure the employees are doing their respective jobs. Management is the worst position to be in due to the daily battles below and above them. How about just getting back to the basics of coming to work, do your job, and delivering the mail safely and correctly? It seems like a lot of USPS employees are looking for more ways to get out of work than actually do it. Why are there so many employees getting paid workmans comp and not working--maybe the Dept of Labor needs to be talked to before they just sign off on checks for individuals who can perform physical actions besides what was expected from them when they worked at USPS? Why isn't job accountability being reviewed for ALL USPS employees and the positions they hold? Too many financial issues and individuals that will continue to sink the USPS ship and ruin it for ALL of the respectable USPS employees.

    Jul 14, 2009
  • anon

    "204B’s should supervise/count mail in the morning, and carry mail in the afternoon. 4 and 4, or maybe 3 supervising, and 5 carrying. I dont have the exact figures in front of me.".... That would be a contract violation...but that has not stopped management from "wasting" even more money trying!!!!

    Jul 13, 2009

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