Recent reports that the United States Postal Service may cut out one day per week of mail delivery is due, according to John E. Potter, postmaster general, to dwindling mail volume and rising costs. His announcement did not cause very much surprise among most postal customers across the nation, but did plant seeds of concern among those who rely on the post office for all their deliveries.
Although the privately-owned companies like Federal Express and UPS, continue to thrive and reinvent themselves whenever needed, while accepting only the most profitable deliveries, the postal service is mired in semi-governmental regulation, quasi-private operations and a legacy of political appointees running the show. None of which will ever lead to efficient or profitable operations.
Over the years, the postal employees and managers, to their credit, have enthusiastically jumped on the bandwagon of promotions and new programs, some good, some very bad, as they made their contributions to the future progress of their employer. In many cases, the postal employees have been the glue that has kept the postal service from falling apart long before now.
Based on a study done by George Mason University and a study also done in-house by the postal service, the agency has determined they must consider dropping one day per week of delivery in order to survive. The amounts the agency might save by doing so is disputed and varies by almost $2.5 billion between the two studies. Not the best recommendation for the accuracy of either.
It has always been a mystery as to why the postal service, with all the studies they have conducted over the years, has never really gone to their own employees and their own customers to find out what innovations or changes might could be made to improve the agency as a more efficient place to work and what services their customers really want and what services they don’t want. Those who make the postal service work day-in, day-out would seem to be the experts needed to analyze what needs to be improved and the folks who patronize the postal service could be considered a key part of any revenue analysis as well.
The nation needs its postal service, five or six days delivery schedule, to deliver its mail. An individual letter at the price of a first class stamp is probably not profitable, but to the person who mails it and to the person who receives it, it is priceless. Contact your congressman and tell him how much we need our postal service to survive.