Archive for January 22nd, 2012

USPS NSAs and Postage Payment Clarifications

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This information was provided by the USPS to help clear up some confusion caused by recent PCC action regarding postage payment methods for NSA accounts – good info…

What is a Negotiated Service Agreement?   A negotiated service agreement (NSA) is a contract between the Postal Service and a mailer that provides customized prices and/or service terms based on the unique operations and business needs of the Postal Service and its contract partner.

The changes in prices and classification needed to implement an NSA require approval by the Postal Service Board of Governors and review by the Postal Regulatory Commission (”Commission”).
What is the background of this recent development?  On January 4, 2012, the Commission approved the Postal Service’s proposed minor classification change which clarified that the Postal Service can offer customized payment options to customers that sign an NSA with the Postal Service. The Postal Service proposed this classification change in connection with one recent NSA that provided the customer with a seven-day window within which to make payment.  Typically, prepayment of postage is required, but in this instance the nature of the agreement required an alternative payment method.  These classification changes became effective on January 5, 2012, but the underlying NSA has not yet been approved by the Commission.
What types of alternative postage payment methods are allowed?   From a policy standpoint, no payment method other than pre-payment is currently authorized.

In general, going forward, the terms of any alternate payment methods may be a feature of a specific agreement if it makes business sense for the Postal Service and the other party.

Additionally, any future NSA with customized payment terms must be separately approved by the Commission on a case-by-case basis.  The Postal Service must clearly specify the alternative postage payment method being utilized in the contract, so that the Commission may perform its review.

How do I know whether my company may qualify for an NSA that utilizes an alternative payment method?  In general, not every mailer will qualify for an NSA with the Postal Service.  Beyond that, customized payment terms might not be a feature of any particular NSA.  Each situation will be analyzed on a case-by-case basis.

Your company only qualifies for an alternative payment method if such alternatives are part of an established NSA.  Currently, there are no NSAs with this feature.  The Commission’s recent order should not be construed as a general approval of extending credit through NSAs, or any other particular terms controlling payment for services.

Any inclusion of customized payment terms in future agreements will balance the Postal Service’s current financial situation, the needs of customers, and other criteria.
My company has an established NSA, and we believe that our situation merits being reviewed to determine qualification for an alternative payment method. Who do I contact?  Please contact your USPS Sales representative for more information.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

January 22nd, 2012 at 11:14 pm

Posted in USPS

PostalOne Specification Review Time Crunches

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This from the USPS on Sunday 1/22

“The Technical Specifications and Guides (Draft) for the January and April 2012 releases have been posted to the following links for your review and feedback.

Technical Specifications and Guides for January 2012 Release (R8)

https://ribbs.usps.gov/intelligentmail_schedule/documents/tech_guides/jan2012/techspecs.htm

Technical Specifications and Guides for April 2012 Release (R9)

https://ribbs.usps.gov/intelligentmail_schedule/documents/tech_guides/april2012/techspecs.htm

Also, the Guide to Intelligent Mail for Letters and Flats has been updated at the link below.
https://ribbs.usps.gov/intelligentmail_guides/documents/tech_guides/GuidetoIntelligentMailLettersandFlats.pdf

Please provide your feedback for Release 9 by Tuesday, January 24, 2012 and Release 8 by Friday, January 27, 2012

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Sure doesn’t leave a lot of time to review anything!

And this caveat in the doc –
“Please note that the requirements in this document are subject to change at any time up to the scheduled implementation date.”

This means that software vendors, mailers, and mail owners are not guaranteed any time whatsoever to program, test, or implement changes.  This is not the way smart businesses operate.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

January 22nd, 2012 at 11:08 pm

Posted in USPS

The Measure of PostalOne! Success?

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This from the DMM Advisory today:

PostalOne! ® Release 29.0.2 Deployment Update – PostalOne! ® Release 29.0.2 successfully deployed to production on January 22, 2012. Identified known issues, with business workarounds as applicable, are on RIBBS®  under the Major/Minor Release tab/ January 2012 Release.

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Direct link to Known Issues and workarounds here
https://ribbs.usps.gov/intelligentmail_schedule/documents/tech_guides/jan2012/issues.htm

 

 

Written by Lisa.Bowes

January 22nd, 2012 at 7:05 pm

Posted in USPS

A new pledge to fix late, shoddy mail

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Written by Lisa.Bowes

January 22nd, 2012 at 7:00 pm

Posted in USPS

Important Notice to CONFIRM Subscribers

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Important Notice to CONFIRM Subscribers | News | News | Mailing Systems Technology.

USPS does right by the Confirm subscribers who Beta tested and established the program.  As it should be.

Watch for another post to come with links to the new IMb Tracing User Guide and the Mailer ID Registration Form.

 

Written by Lisa.Bowes

January 22nd, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Posted in USPS