Wednesday, January 11, 2006


I am retired from the Postal Service. I worked with them for 33 years. About half the time I was a data technician in the time keeper's office in Atlanta and the other half I was mostly a scheme examiner at the Marietta Post Office.

Postage went up 2 cents effective Sunday, from 37 cents to 39 cents. Do they need the money? No. This is the first time in years they are not in the red.

Of course, when I heard that they were finally turning a profit my first thought was, "Is it because I left?"

Ironically, one year they were in the red so many hundreds of millions of dollars and it just so happens that was amount of bonuses handed out to supervisors and management that year. It was their way of patting each of themselves on the back in a meaningful way.

I never could figure that out one out... for the line employee they are expected to do their job for the pay they receive, nothing more. For management, who are supposed to be the company men, you have to bribe them with bonuses to do their job.

It reminds me of the first Federal Loan Delta Airlines got to help bail them out of the red, the first order of business after they receive the money was to give all the high up executive officers huge bonuses.

Does the word GREED come to mind?

Yesterday I bought 16 - 2 cent stamps to supplement my remaining 16 - 37 cent stamps. While transacting the deal, the window clerk, who knows me, told me the Marietta Post Office will have to send back to Atlanta about 40 clerks, which is about 25% of their clerk work force. Two of those being sent to Atlanta will be window clerks where I bought my stamps. I had to stand in a line going out the door, with 6 clerks waiting on the line. It will soon be only 4 clerks - the line is sure to be longer.

I think with mail processing mostly automated now and with emails they don't need as many clerks. That is why they feel the work force should be cut down, and shifted to someplace with maybe a heavier workload. But as far as I know the supervisors are not effected. They figure it takes a supervisor to oversee every 10 to 20 line workers. Shouldn't at least two, maybe three supervisors be transferred to Atlanta as well?

It doesn't work that way. One hand washes the other.

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Blogger kenju said...

When I went to the PO to buy 2 cent stamps, the line was at least 50 people, and they only had 2 clerks working. That PO always has a line and never has enough clerks, especially at lunch time. I think they should hire more people!

8:32 PM  
Blogger ET said...

In defense of the Post Office lines, they could be shorter if people bought thier stamps while they were buying their grocries. Most large grocery story now carry stamps, around here anyway.
And I don't know about other Post Offices, but the one I go to has a computerized machine in the lobby when you enter that you can mail your package right there without even getting in line. All you need is your credit card and a fearless attitude towards computers.

3:41 AM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

I live between 2 small P.O.s and there's never much of a line. The cow population outnumbers the people, lol! However, in the town I usually work in the P.O. is larger with long lines, 3 counters but only 1 open at any given time.

6:10 PM  
Blogger ET said...

Well, there are breaks, nature calls, vacations, off days, and so on.
I think the post office I frequent has 6 slots, but it takes 8 to 10 full time clerks to cover all the time gaps.
Incidentally, the line looks worse than it usually is. When I have to stand in line at the PO, sometimes I time my stay in line, and it is rarely over 5 minutes.

6:45 PM  
Blogger Suzanne said...

I went to the world's smallest post office in the Everglades in Fl. It is in a tool shed (I am not kidding) and has one part-time clerk. Only one customer can fit in the post office with the clerk. It was interesting.

5:00 PM  

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