80 USPS Mail Processing Centers to Close, But Path Ahead Unclear
The U.S. Postal Service is consolidating to save money. That much is clear. However, what remains hazy is how that consolidation will affect service, reports The Washington Post.
More than 80 mail processing centers will close and 95 facilities will start absorbing their work in January, but federal auditors found USPS customers don't know what that means regarding the service they'll receive, writes Josh Hicks on Thursday in "Report: Postal Service Leaves Areas in the Dark on Changes to 95 Facilities."
The report and Post article get into how "a large portion of First Class mail and periodicals" will no longer be eligible for overnight delivery and will instead shift to 2-day delivery, with 2-day delivery items moving to three days.
"The Postal Service has not analyzed the impact of planned service standard changes or informed stakeholders of the changes related to Phase 2 consolidations," reads the conclusion of the memorandum dated Oct. 6 (Opens as a PDF).
The report is signed by Robert J. Batta, the deputy assistant inspector general for mission operations at the USPS Office of Inspector General, and is addressed to David E. Williams, Jr., VP of network operations for the USPS.
"Without completing and disclosing the analysis of planned service standard changes, the Postal Service may experience," the memo reads, "Degradation of service to communities, including delayed mail, carriers delivering mail after 5 p.m. because of [an] unexpected workload, [and] customer dissatisfaction, which could harm the postal service's brand and affect future revenue."
The report recommends Williams complete feasibility studies and "evaluate the impacts that revised standards will have on each affected community before implementing the consolidations."
Asked for comment on Thursday, a USPS spokeswoman referred Target Marketing to Williams' 3-page, Sept. 25 response to the USPS OIG recommendations. In part, Williams says the postal service is acting properly and updates are on usps.com.