USPS submits network plan to Congress

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The US Postal Service submitted its network plan, which outlines the agency's initiatives to produce better and more efficient operations and customer service, with Congress last week.


The network plan is a requirement of the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006. It was developed following consultations with the Postal Regulatory Commission initiated in February.


According to the USPS, the plan “positions the postal service to pursue achievement of the newly established service standards, and better ensures the long-term financial stability of the postal service and the mailing industry.”


The document addresses the USPS's performance goals, which include the establishment of baseline performance targets for various market-dominant products. It also lists a number of initiatives designed to improve the consistency of internal mail flow management practices, including software advancements, value stream mapping and data system enhancements.


Proposed changes to the USPS's infrastructure and workforce, including the continued closure of “redundant” postal airport mail centers and changes in air mail transportation operations, are summarized in the document. The plan also identifies places where nearby mail processing operations could be consolidated and outlines the “transformation” of the USPS's national network of 21 bulk mail centers into “state-of-the-art processing facilities” designed to meet future needs.


According to the USPS, the proposed institutional changes “will involve numerous site-specific employee impact determinations which cannot be quantified until the changes proposed for the particular facilities have been identified and thoroughly analyzed.”


Plans for alternative retail options are also outlined in the document. “Whether through traditional bricks-and-mortar post office locations, other retail locations, or online, the postal service will continue to actively promote increased customer use of efficient and easy-to-use retail access channels,” the USPS wrote.

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