Archive for March, 2010

USPS System Interruptions

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From the RIBBS latest news page:

USPS System Interruptions:
Updates as of March 31, 2010 4:00p.m. ET

The Postal Service® is experiencing interruptions to several of its internal IT systems. This interruption is NOT impacting business systems such as PostalOne!® or the Product Tracking System (PTS). Should there be any change to this status we will immediately notify our customers. Please contact the PostalOne! helpdesk at 1-800-522-9085 should you experience any problems accessing the PostalOne! or FAST systems. Please contact the Confirmation Services helpdesk at 877-264-9693, option 1 if you experience any problems accessing the PTS system.

The Point-of-sales systems in postal retail units are currently experiencing slower response times and some online applications have been interrupted. All Post Offices remain open. We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused. We are hopeful that full service will be restored shortly.

The following online applications are affected:

* Hold Mail Service
* Carrier Pickup
* Redelivery Service

Please continue to check the website for updates. We appreciate your business and your patience.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 31st, 2010 at 6:53 pm

Posted in USPS

USPS 8125s and Bill of Lading Disconnect Continues

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Problems and confusion created by the newly-enforced USPS policy of refusing to sign transportation Bills of Lading are still being reported.   The policy has still not been adequately explained or communicated. The Postal Service did present the policy at a couple of Plant-Verified Drop Shipment Webinars, where the USPS reiterated the stock response that “the USPS does not recognize any other form besides the 8125 form, and will no longer recognize, accept, or sign Bills of Lading”.

From Wikipedia:  “[A BOL] is .. a document of transfer, being freely transferable but not a negotiable instrument in the legal sense, i.e. it governs all the legal aspects of physical carriage, and, like a cheque or other negotiable instrument, it may be endorsed affecting ownership of the goods actually being carried. This matches everyday experience in that the contract a person might make with a commercial carrier like FedEx for mostly airway parcels, is separate from any contract for the sale of the goods to be carried, however it binds the carrier to its terms, irrespectively of who the actual holder of the B/L, and owner of the goods, may be at a specific moment.”

To transportation service providers, mailers, and mail owners, the Bill of Lading serves as their proof of delivery to a postal facility.

The 8125 is an internal USPS document.  The bill of lading is a standard transportation industry legal document, widely used and widely accepted.  Both FedEx and UPS recognize, receive, and sign Bills of Lading.

The USPS has caused a great deal of confusion and frustration with this change.  There is a seeming lack of respect for any industry practices or concerns outside of USPS mandates and restrictions that only makes the situation more difficult for transportation companies and mail service providers to swallow, and to then explain to their own customers.  By neglecting to engage and work with transportation companies and mailers PRIOR to implementation, in order to come up with a common understanding, the Postal Service attitude makes it seem that the USPS is restrictive, inflexible, and not very customer-friendly at all.  Mandating unpopular practices without adequate advance discussion and timely communication serves only to drive more mail out of the mail stream, a situation the USPS should be trying to avoid at all costs.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 31st, 2010 at 4:25 pm

Posted in USPS

PRC Sets Docket on USPS Five Day Delivery Plan

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PRC Sets Docket on USPS Five Day Delivery Plan_770.pdf application/pdf Object.

Postal Rate Commission sets docket for 5-day delivery plan.  To comment, go to http://www.prc.gov

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 31st, 2010 at 1:45 pm

Posted in USPS

Patrick Donahoe: Delivering Morale Amid USPS Cuts – BusinessWeek

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Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 31st, 2010 at 12:07 am

Posted in USPS

PRC Report: Shortfalls in Some Products, Services Cost USPS $1.7B In FY 2009 : PostalReporter News Blog

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Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 30th, 2010 at 1:10 pm

Posted in USPS

National Postal Forum

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I will be manning intelisent’s booth #422 at the upcoming National Postal Forum in Nashville.  From the Forum website:
“The National Postal Forum is the premier educational event/experience and tradeshow available to mail professionals today. Attend the National Postal Forum to get a complete education in the “Business of Mail.”

If your business or profession has anything to do with using mail, or any of the products and services available through the United States Postal Service… then this is the place you need to be!”

…which is a good summary.

If you will be in attendance, please be sure to stop by and say hello.  If you have any questions on MTAC, Intelligent Mail, OneCode Confirm, or OneCode ACS, I would be happy to help get you some answers.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 30th, 2010 at 1:08 pm

Posted in USPS

USPS OIG » Blog Archive » Guest Blog: Automation Refugees

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USPS OIG » Blog Archive » Guest Blog: Automation Refugees.

Interesting guest blog on the Office of the Inspector General blog site, by Jim O’Brien.  “Automation refugees” are excess USPS employees that manually sort mail, mainly becuase there is nothing else for them to do.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 30th, 2010 at 1:02 pm

Posted in USPS

Postage Statement Receipts

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Even though the USPS has a good communication up at RIBBS on the subject, located here
http://foxyurl.com/QCw
there still seems to be a lot of confusion.

First and foremost – there are details in the document about a transition period through June 13, 2010.  Mailers who wish to continue to receive stamped postage statements can request an exception from their local postmaster and get those receipts.  This should make the transition a bit easier for mailers and mail owners.

Without an exception in place, and/or effective in June, there are two ways to show proof of mailing –

> Upon a customer’s request, acceptance personnel will provide PS Form 3607-R as a receipt for the mailing. Mailing Transaction Receipts must be hand-delivered to the mailer at the acceptance site. Receipts will be mailed only if the mailer provides a self-addressed stamped envelope.

> The PostalOne! system provides two proofs of the mailing transaction: The PS Form 3607-R, Mailing Transaction Receipt, is available only from the acceptance unit, and the final Postage Statement is available only through the Business Customer Gateway.

Have you made the transition yet?  How is it working out for you?  Comment this blog, or contact me privately.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 26th, 2010 at 9:57 am

Posted in USPS

USPS – Five-Day Delivery:- Information Page

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Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 24th, 2010 at 4:08 pm

Posted in USPS

New Optional Booklet Designs Coming Tomorrow

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Per the DMM Advisory, there will be 10 new booklet design options published in the Postal Bulletin tomorrow.   These options will include lighter covers, modified glue closures, and tabbing choices.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

March 24th, 2010 at 11:29 am

Posted in USPS