Audit Report -  DR-AR-14-003 - 02/28/2014

Address corrections worth about $14 million were not made in the Postal Service’s Address Management System (AMS) in FYs 2012 and 2013, the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General (OIG) found.

The reported address errors increased from 267,478 in FY 2011 to 430,843 in FY 2013. This occurred primarily because carriers did not consistently update their edit books during street delivery to note address changes and supervisors did not regularly review carriers’ work in this regard. Our audit noted the Postal Service has reduced its emphasis on address accuracy, cutting the number of address management specialists by nearly 40 percent and reclassifying the specialist position.

Poor addresses are costly for business mailers, who must pay for returned mail. Address inaccuracies also erode mailers’ confidence in the effectiveness of mail, which could significantly reduce postal revenue.

We recommended the Postal Service set specific deadlines for carrier edit book updates, submissions of those updates to supervisors, and submission of error corrections to the AMS. We also recommended formal AMS training for carriers and supervisors. Effective controls over address correction could save $16 million in FYs 2014 and 2015 and strengthen business mailers’ confidence in the Postal Service.

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