Trends in Print and Mail

The Berkshire Company Blog

2018 Presidential Task Force Report: Underwhelming and Incomplete

Posted by Mark Fallon on Dec 9, 2018 5:15:49 PM

 
 
On Tuesday, December 4, 2018, the Task Force on the United States Postal System released a report entitled “United States Postal Service: A Sustainable Path Forward”. The report mostly recycles ideas from the past, leaves out many key facts and initiatives, and includes one very silly proposal. The list of recommendations is very generic, with no defined path forward.
 
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U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service / Postal Reform

US Postal Workers: They Also Serve

Posted by Mark Fallon on Dec 3, 2018 11:01:00 PM

W.H. Fallon - US Army Air Corps - US Postal Service

Last week, I attended the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee (MTAC) open session. David Williams, US Postal Service (USPS) Chief Operating Officer gave his quarterly operations update. In addition to the good news of performance during the recent election cycle and planning for the upcoming holiday season, Mr. Williams talked about USPS actions during two recent disasters – Hurricane Michael and the wildfires in California.

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U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service

USPS Finances and the Unpopular Call for Higher Postage Rates

Posted by Mark Fallon on Nov 19, 2018 11:01:00 AM


On Wednesday. November 14, 2018, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) reported the financial results for Fiscal Year 2018 (October 2017 – September 2018). As expected, the USPS reported an operating loss. The reported controllable loss was $1.95 billion, or approximately 2.62% of controllable expenses.

The day before, the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) approved the new postage rates for 2019. The new rates represent about a 2.5% overall increase over the current prices for mailing, or “Market Dominant” products. In other words, next year’s increase won’t even cover the previous year’s operating loss.

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U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service

2019 Postage Rate Increase: Spenders and Savers

Posted by Mark Fallon on Oct 16, 2018 5:01:00 AM

On Thursday, October 11, 2018, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) filed the rate case for Market Dominant products with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC). Set to go into effect on January 27, 2019, the new rates represent about a 2.5% overall increase over the current prices for mailing, or “Market Dominant” products.

Despite the headlines appearing on news websites, this isn’t “the biggest rate increase”. For many mailers the increase is lower than expected. While retail customers may have “sticker shock” on the 10% increase on stamps, the nickel increase allows the USPS to achieve the “simplicity of structure” of pricing. Plus, second ounce rates go down, flats pricing stays flat, as do postcards.

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U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service

Fall Postal Customer Council Events – Education, Networking and More

Posted by Mark Fallon on Aug 27, 2018 5:01:00 AM

 

Each spring, mailers gather at the National Postal Forum, and every fall brings the spotlight to Postal Customer Councils (“PCCs”), culminating in National PCC week, which takes place September 24 – 28, 2018.

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Postal Customer Council / U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service

Contingency Plans Required

Posted by Mark Fallon on Jun 18, 2018 7:30:00 PM



“First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst.” – Dale Carnegie

In the Summer of 1997, I was the Assistant Vice President of Mail Services at State Street Corporation in Boston. My team was responsible for inbound and outbound mail for the Greater Boston area. That included shipping out hundreds of overnight packages each day – the bulk of those were handed off to United Parcel Service (UPS).

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Operations Management / United States Postal Service

Updated eBook for 2018 - 110 Tips to Improve Your Mail Center

Posted by Mark Fallon on Apr 17, 2018 5:01:00 AM

The Berkshire Company is excited to announce the publication of the 2018 edition of our popular eBook - 110 Tips to Improve Your Mail Center.

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U.S. Postal Service / National Postal Forum / Operations Management / United States Postal Service

The Postal Reform Act of 2018 – Is “Hope” a 4-Letter Word?

Posted by Mark Fallon on Mar 26, 2018 11:39:27 AM



On Thursday, March 22, 2018, a bi-partisan group of Senators filed S. 2629, “The Postal Reform Act of 2018: Improving Postal Operations, Service, and Transparency”. The bill’s co-sponsors will be familiar to mailing industry veterans – Tom Carper (D-DE), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO).

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U.S. Postal Service / United States Postal Service

Retail Counters at the U.S. Postal Service – A Modest Proposal

Posted by Mark Fallon on Mar 13, 2018 2:10:00 PM


I often visit my local post office on Saturdays. There are several reasons for this habit. First, I travel during the workweek, so it’s convenient to pick up my packages, drop off mail, and sign for any Certified Mail letters. Next, it reminds me of being a kid and stopping by the Woburn Post Office to say “Hi” to my father, who was usually working the window on Saturday mornings. And lastly, I enjoy watching my fellow postal patrons interact with the clerks.

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U.S. Postal Service / USPS / United States Postal Service

Looking Ahead – 2018 National Postal Forum

Posted by Mark Fallon on Feb 20, 2018 2:00:00 PM


There’s still snow on the ground in my backyard, but I’m thinking about the warm weather down in Texas. That’s because I just received my catalog for the 2018 National Postal Forum (NPF) – May 6 – 9, 2018 in beautiful San Antonio.

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National Postal Forum / United States Postal Service

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