Welcome to this week’s Postal Update. There continues to be delivering of delayed mail and packages in the US Postal Service, two plus months out from peak mailing season. This is an unprecedented historical event that is occurring and representatives from all the major national associations co-authored a letter to the PMG regarding the current state, imminent price change and reduction in service.
The landscape in Washington DC is very active with these issues and the need to fill four seats on the Postal Services’ Board of Governors. Legislative change is critical and hoping this is the year for the long-awaited Postal Reform to happen.
Hoping everyone can get involved within the industry, and be a part of the change.
Volume and revenue Q1 FY 2021(October 1 through December 31, 2020)
US Postal Service reported decline in mail volume and an increase in revenue, due to the unprecedented increase in package volume. Reported total revenue of $21.5 billion, an increase of $2.1 billion, or 11.1% in operating revenue, compared to the same quarter last year.
Shipping and Package Services growth in Q1/2021
Mail volume was down 1.2 billion pieces with First-Class volumes down by 4.1% and Marketing Mail down by 3.9%. There were estimated 2.3 billion pieces of political and election mail, which offset some of the declines in Marketing Mail.
Service Performance in 2021
Here we are sliding into March 2021, and people are still receiving mail and packages from December. The last four plus months have been challenging to say the least with the impacts from all directions.
The past peak season and pandemic has accelerated both the decline of letter volume and growth of e-commerce parcels due to an increased number of people shopping from home. Last-mile delivery companies have all scaled-up dramatically because of these volume increases. While holiday shopping season is behind us, the cultural shift and change in our society to the convenience of shopping from home, because so many of us are still working from home is here forever.
The changes and re-alignments within the US Postal Service since the arrival of the new PMG, have forced all the senior executives into first, crisis management to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their employees during the pandemic. Second, delivering the mail to the best of their ability with the limited resources and reduced staff.
The US Postal Service, since the beginning of the pandemic, have had to manage an absenteeism rate of 25% – 35% every single day.
The backlog of mail volume is moving through the system. The outcry of service performance issues and lack of visibility of the backlog volume, has force the US Postal Service to provide the industry with a current method of tracking mail.
This was released in early February to support the mailing industry with planning their service on mailing campaigns.
The USPS Board of Governors met on February 9 and unanimously elected Ron Bloom as the 24th chairman of the Board of Governors. They also elected Roman Martinez IV to serve as the vice-chairman.
Governor Bloom has served on the BOG since August of 2019, serving the remainder of a seven-year term that expired on December 8, 2020.
Pursuant to Title 39 section 202, “Nine of the members, to be known as Governors, shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, not more than 5 of whom may be adherents of the same political party.” Presently, we have six appointed and confirmed Governors with 4 affiliated with the Republican party and 2 affiliated with the Democrat party. That leaves 3 more for President Biden to nominate, with the advice and consent of the Senate, to change complete the nine positions and change the majority political affiliation to Democrat.
The commercial mailing industry continues to have an uphill climb to get to any type of solvency, so does our economy for that matter. What will be critical for mailers in the coming year is to manage their business’ with critical planning and cash/debt management.
As everyone, including our clients, adapts to the situation at hand we all realize that nobody has a crystal ball to know what the future holds. My best advice is to be patient and kind while continuing to maintain relationships, control costs and support and help clients deliver their critical communications.
Recover and rebuild stronger together.
Stay tuned for more IMPA Postal Update news you can use.
Strategic Postal Advisors
603-974-1169 o | 978-994-5370 m
Christine J. Erna, President and Founder of Strategic Postal Advisors has 30+ years of expertise and experience in Mail, Postal, Print, direct mail marketing, workflow analysis, and education/training. Christine’s background comes from a variety of leadership positions within the industry. She combines extensive knowledge of postal rates, USPS operational processes, regulations, and technology with Six Sigma process improvement strategies to help clients analyze and improve their end-to-end mailing processes.
Christine is a nationally recognized thought-leader and speaker in the print, mail and postal industries. She is a frequent speaker at various industry events, conferences and tradeshows, including the National Postal Forum, Postal Customer Council (PCC) events, Xplor19, Print19 and MAILCOM.
Christine has prepared business strategies and roadmaps to achieve client objectives, defining processes and solutions with measurable ROI and imbedded controls.
Specialties: Postal Affairs, Mailpiece Design, Returned UAA mail, expert consultant on business process improvement, workflow, mail production. Professional Speaker on Direct Mail Marketing – Mailpiece Design – Address Quality and Postal Requirements
Contact; firstname.lastname@example.org | 603-974-1169