OIG Intelligent Mail Report and Recommendations

without comments

Yesterday Dead Tree Edition published this post on Barriers to Intelligent Mail, identified by the Office of Inspector General here. I am referencing the same OIG doc below, but focusing on the OIG Recommendations and the USPS Reponses. My comments included throughout.

OIG Recommendation:
Re-emphasize Full Service Intelligent Mail benefits to Postal Service Business Mailers
USPS Response:
Mainly consists of a yeah, we’re on it. Don’t worry about it.
My comments:
The problem isn’t that the benefits haven’t been communicated. It is that, for many mailers and mail owners, there is no return on investment. It is simple. It costs more to implement and maintain than the value that is placed on the benefits. And this is not because mailers don’t understand the benefits. Should program benefits be difficult to understand in the first place?

OIG Recommendation:
Consider offering program incentives to business mailers to offset program start up costs.
USPS Response:
The Postal Service already offers discounts for Full Service – three tenths of a cent for First-Class mail and one tenth of a cent for Standard Mail, Periodicals and Bound Printed Matter. The current adoption rate indicates that these discounts have been effective.
Final paragraph of the USPS Response:
Management agrees with the need to increase adoption, but disagrees with a concept that direct incentives are the only strategy to achieve this objective. Management has adopted a more sophisticated approach that blends multiple efforts to achieve this objective.
My comments
1. “Agrees with the need to increase adoption”? After a few paragraphs earlier stating that the current adoption rate is fine?
2. Nobody said anything about incentives to mailers as the “only strategy to be considered.
3. Has any study been done by the USPS to see what the adoption rate could possibly be, if the burden of start up costs were shared fairly between the USPS, who needs the data for Service Reporting, and the mailers, who need a return on investment.

OIG Recommendation:
Provide continuing training for Business Mail Entry Clerks and PostalOne Help Desk employees on important Intelligent Mail issues
USPS Response:
This recommendation states the obvious and recognizes what management has been doing and will continue to do to support the Intelligent Mail program. While management does not disagree with this recommendation, there is nothing new or unique about it. The recommendation simply states what was already happening.
My comments:
Two things. First of all, if you read the entire report, it can be deduced that the recommendation was made because the current efforts are not working. Hence the recommendation.  Secondly, the level of arrogance, and the borderline disrespect for the OIG in this response, as well as others, is palpable. And distasteful.

Written by Lisa.Bowes

November 29th, 2010 at 10:30 pm

Posted in USPS

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