Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Rural delivery, every other day

A reader wrote with this suggestion:

"We should establish an every other day delivery system for rural areas. Rural carriers would deliver half the rural delivery area three alternating days per week and the other half the other three days"

What do you think? Comment here.

35 comments:

Anonymous said...

That is about the dumbest thing I have ever heard!

Anonymous said...

Terrible idea! People want their newspapers to read everyday, not every other day. That also might make customers switch to newspapers that they read online since they cant get it everyday, therefore, less business for us! What about people who get their meds in the mail, one day could make a HUGE difference. Our number one priority should be customer service and it seems we are steering away from that!!

Anonymous said...

How stupid is this? I get more mail than any city route I have ever carried. That might work for people in the sticks, I deliver in a subdivision.

Anonymous said...

talk about a terrible idea, even rural areas have businesses and schools, this is a great way to lose even more business. has whoever came up with these ideas ever went to any kind of economic class. it seems the post office does the exact opposite of what a normal business would do.

Anonymous said...

Why would this be any more acceptable for rural routes than for city routes? (Not to mention that many rural routes are now in the middle of new subdivisions.) Impractical and unwise.

Les said...

Not only is it a questionable in terms of logistics but it goes directly against the Universal Service mandate. The elimination of Saturdays as a means of controling expenses is one thing but this does not provide service to our customers. Some will say neither does eliminating even one day of delivery. To those individuals I ask you to look at the future of the USPS and see that if drastic measures are not taken soon customer service will be entirely gone along with the USPS.

Anonymous said...

Well said Les.

Anonymous said...

NOT THINKING OF CUSTOMER SERVICE.
I'll bet they didn't leave their name like Mr./Mrs./Miss RUDE UNCAREing !!!
RR 17
D. Carey
Hudson Station
Modesto, Ca.

hailstone said...

Sounds like another attempt at making rural people second class citzens because there not important enough for full delivery.

Joan said...

No, why hand our competition the only thing we do great! Every day delivery to every home in America. That is the USPS.

Merk said...

Actually I know of a few offices that do have rural delivery to different parts of the route on alternating days. These are in sparsely populated areas but they are also areas that rely on the mail for meds and parts for farm equipment. The post office will notify customers if something like that arrives on a non-delivery day and the customer can come in to pick it up. I can see where this wouldn't work well in more densely populated areas but in some cases the cost of daily delivery is prohibitive. There may come a day when delivery is no longer free.

Anonymous said...

Why? We have enough issues with customer service and to deliver only 1/2 the route 3 days a week is insane. If we want to save why not start at the tip top of the organization. We'd have less reports to file and maybe we could attend to the business of delivering the mail.

Anonymous said...

There are a couple of things that could fix our financial mess almost instantly, hence, they will NEVER happen. One would be to allow corporations to have their logo on postage stamps for a few billion. As to the rural delivery question, why do we not charge a nominal fee per year for rural delivery??? I live on a rural route and would gladly pay a fee per year for delivery. The every other day half route thing makes no sense whatsoever. My biggest fear is that for that reason, it MIGHT come to happen!!!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like it would only serve to confuse and annoy our customers, resulting in a lot of complaints.

I personally think we need to get back to the basics of customer service...I'm tired of hearing stories from my customers about rude clerks and slow service at other offices!! I always tell them to come to MY office instead!!

Pam said...

I have always believed that one of the biggest ways for the Postal Service to save money is for all city delivery to be curbside delivery (except for apartments and business streets where it isn't feasible because of parking).
It would save on carrier time & # of routes needed, and especially save on the huge cost of injuries/accidents incurred because of icy & slippery walkways and steps, dog bites, and all the other ways city carriers can get injured while walking their routes. (uneven sidewalks, etc...)
Where residential parking would also be a problem - go with corner cluster boxes. It may be 'inconvenient' for those who are used to getting the extra treatment of having mail slots and mailboxes attached to their house, but millions of others have to get their mail that way.
Why not do this before going to the necessity of cutting service at all to make budget?

Anonymous said...

That won't likely save anything but perhaps a little bit of delivery time. The mileage would likely be the same or similar, so what's the point?

Anonymous said...

DUMB and DUMBER!

Anonymous said...

Part of the reason we are in so much deep water now, someone else coming up with another stupid idea to gain the eye of a higher up!

Anonymous said...

um, NO!

grannybunny said...

What was supposed to be the "up side" of this suggestion?

Carolyn said...

This is not a very good idea. For example, I am a Postmaster with a rural route and with the amount of mail boxes we serve and the volume we have, it would be impossible to arrange with that type of schedule. We have a 70 mile route with nearly 500 mail boxes. Carolyn Eastridge, Postmaster, Sibley Post Office, Sibley, MO 64088

Anonymous said...

ARE YOU NUTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Anonymous said...

I would "sentence" the employee who suggested this that they be required to delivery a rural route for 30 days during the peak of a Presidential election campaign and 28 more days during a rural mail count. They need to know what they are talking about before making such an absurd generic suggestion.

Anonymous said...

Obviously none of you agree with this idea but that's no reason to get so offensive and call the person who suggested it names. We need new ideas to survive and, though some of them may not be the best ideas, reacting with hostility will only serve to discourage anyone from trying something new. As noted in one of the comments this is a practice in some places those it is rare. Kudos to those who made other viable suggestions like curbside delivery for city routes (this is being implemented in some places, too, though sometimes customer complaints prevent it)and nominal charges for delivery. How about bringing back the small nominal bos rent customers used to pay for "e" boxes (the free PO Boxes in small towns without city delivery)? Customer service is very important but we all know without changes to the way we do business we will only lose more money. Customers resist change even more than employees but, in my experience, after a little time they adapt. Almost every company and public service has made changes to service, prices, etc. and most have resorted to layoffs. So far USPS hasn't laid off employees but if we aren't open to new ways of doing business that is a real threat to all of us.

PMBIll said...

Anonymous above is correct, we need fresh ideas to create new services and products. BUT this must be the same guy who offered early outs right before Christmas. The true problem is the people who come up with ideas like this one, live in a fantasy world, that is not in the real postal world. I do suggest to all the critics of this or any other ideas to do what I do, submit your ideas into the e-ideas system and allow your voice to be heard.

Anonymous said...

Why would you charge Rural Customers to get their mail but not in town? What do you mean that so far the Postal Service hasn't laid off any employees? What area are you from? RIF is what they are calling it. I think if your job is gone and they offer you a job but it is more than 300 miles from where you live and if you do not accept it you no longer have a job that is being laid off.....

Anonymous said...

I am the Author of every other day rural delivery.

One of my points was to redefine "rural". Right now there are so many "rural" routes in the middle of many city/suburban areas that there is nothing "rural" about them. Those "rural" routes should be converted to what they really are; "city" routes. The affected "rural" carriers should be offered employment as "city" carriers with their original date of seniority. I suggested that a true "rural" route should meet the definition of "rural" found in any dictionary. Those are the "rural" routes I was referring to when I suggested every other day delivery. These are the places the for profit companies, UPS and FEDEX don't service because it's not profitable. Well, it's not profitable for USPS either and we should recognize that simple fact. It's no stopping universal service, it's facing the reality that delivery must somehow at least meet expenses.

Anonymous said...

To the author of this idea, you make some valid points. I still think it would be hard sell, but I've heard for years that we'd never be able to go to 5-day delivery and now it's under serious consideration. But I, for one, appreciate you making a suggestion so don't be discouraged. Rural FREE Delivery didn't exist at one time, neither did FREE (no-fee) PO Boxes. Would the public prefer a small fee for delivery (rural, city, box service) or would they rather rates increase? Recent polls say elimination of Sat. delivery is favored over rate increases so who knows? What about charges for mail forwarding? There are so many things we and customers assume should be free because that's the way it's been, but HQ and Congress may change some of that. Other countries are facing the same problems and are doing a lot of unique things. As for the "lay-offs" and "RIF", everyone I know who's lost their job was simply told "sorry, but you have no job here anymore." Being offered another position in another town may not ideal, but at least it's better than no offer at all. I know people who have accepted those offers and now like their new job. It's one of the difficult decisions we face because the days of assuming you will work for one employer your entire career are gone.

Anonymous said...

I'm a RURAL carrier with an LLV that has a long route 20 miles (for my office) and 750 houses, does that sound like standard rural delivery to you?????

Real City Carrier said...

To Rural carrier with LLV:

So you have an LLV with a 20 mile delivery radius and 750 houses, I have a city route with an LLV and 24 mile radius and 848 deliveries. What is your point???

Anonymous said...

I have a "Rural Route" with 13 miles and over 800 customers that I deliver daily in my postal jeep DJ5. It is a mix of cluster boxes and curbside delivery. I'm sure to be paid less after count, because volume goes down prior to count and resumes after. Is this the way to do business?

Anonymous said...

My rural route has 495 deliveries. It is the small route in an office of 49 rural routes. The only savings would be of some delivery time. The vol. would be such that we would still have to come to work daily to case. It would be more cost effective to remove the upper two tiers of mgmt. The mail would still get delivered. We cant "hand off an hour or two to another carrier. We have to take it all to the street, one carrier for the entire route.

Anonymous said...

Why agrue about city routes vs city routes? They both do the same jobs, so why are they treated totally different? They're all mail carriers. As far as saving some money, why not have all mailboxes located on the main line of travel instead of having to drive down a dead end road a ile or two to serve a couple boxes? Put some of the burden on the customer (yea, I know - customer service) to retreive their mail. The world is more mobile nowadays and most people have some one who leave's their house every day who could pick it up. You could also install the equivalent of CBU's/PO Boxes at various points along a route in densly populated rural areas and let people come to the mail box. This would also apply to city routes and subdivisions.

Ken said...

Another bad idea. We are the United States Postal SERVICE. We provide a service to our customers. If we cut more services, we will loose more customers. We have many small businesses operating out of owners homes. They mail parcels through us every day. They buy stamps from us every day. They receive orders in their mail every day. If we reduce services to them we reduce their chances of survival, and we loose another source of income. It is very easy to loose customers and very hard to gain customers. We need to keep what we have and build from our service.

Anonymous said...

Yes the USPS should do this to greatly reduce costs. To little mail is now being delivered. I only get 3rd class mail on Tuesday.

USPS should also invest in mail box clusters for every 4 blocks to drop the mail verses individual boxes that are located at every house. What a waste of time and energy

If costs are not greatly reduced, you will likely not have a local post office.