InsideOut Online

Highlighting the Houston District

North Shepherd Station honors 7 employees

NShepherd

Houston District’s North Shepherd Station joined the rank of offices with million milers. At a recent award ceremony , seven letter carriers were recognized for 30 years of professional driving without an accident.

The ceremony held Thursday, January 31, 2013, which was the first by the station, drew loud ovations as the awardees – Rickey Perrodion (30 years), Jerome Williams (31 years), John Marshall (33 years), Judy Guy (32 years), Richard Gibson (33 years), Ronald Foy (30 years), and Zelma Williams (32 years) – stepped forward to receive their awards.

Also, North Shepherd Station received a certificate of appreciation from District Safety Manager Charlene Goffney for going through the first quarter of FY 2013 without a motor vehicle accident.

With the assistance of NALC Branch 283’s Pat Claiborne, Houston City Postmaster Jean Lovejoy handed out the awards and thanked the recipients for their dedication to safety. Lovejoy also assured all employees present that District Manager, Mr. William J. Mitchell would continue to reward excellence in performance, urging them to continue to do their job well.
Words of wisdom from our 30 year accident free drivers-

“We practice what we learned from defensive-driver training at the start of our career. Just be careful, cautious, and use your basic driving skills; not being in a hurry and remembering that both our families and employer want us home safely have been our staying power. “

March 29, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | 1 Comment

CONTEST: Be on the lookout for the upcoming issue of Houston InsideOut Newsletter for your entry form:

Over the past six months the Houston District has introduced a comprehensive communication plan that is designed to keep all employees informed and up-to-date on the latest news, good news stories and things going on around the district. Looking at each generation currently in our work force (Traditionalist, baby boomer, etc.) each piece is geared to speak directly to you the way you like to be communicated to. The plan includes three different informational pieces, provided in the following format:

Houston InsideOut – Newsletter
The Vision – Talk Show
Houston InsideOut – Blog

In an effort to make sure every employee is aware of, and consistently receives all the information, the district is spearheading a communication contest from March 1st through May 31st to bring awareness, and to see how much of the communication pieces you are receiving.

Each month starting with this Issue we will ask three specific questions about content in each of our communication pieces. You must get all three questions correct and submit them by the deadline.
March – entries must be received by April 5, 2013

Each month there will be an entry form in your Houston InsideOut Publication with three questions, one question pertaining to each of the communication pieces; answer each question correctly and submit it using the prepaid mailer provided. If you do not currently receive The Houston InsideOut at you mailing address on file, please contact the communication team.

Winning offices will be selected by the highest percentage participation; however, if we get several offices with the same percentage, i.e. 100% participation, a drawing will be held for the final selection.

All Houston District employees are encouraged to participate!

March 26, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

March is Woman History Month

Mary Katherine Goddard

goddardCelebrating Women’s History Month: Mary Katherine Goddard (1738-1816) was appointed Baltimore’s postmaster in 1775. She originally served under the leadership of Postmaster General Benjamin Franklin who oversaw the newly independent colonial postal system established by her younger brother, William Goddard.. Goddard may have been the first woman postmaster in colonial America. Not only was she in charge of a post office serving a major commercial city, but was also an accomplished printer and publisher. Goddard successfully published her brother’s newspaper, The Maryland Journal, from 1774 to 1784. Recognizing the excellence of her paper, Congress granted Goddard the honor of publishing the first copy of the Declaration of Independence with all the signatories listed, in 1777. Continue reading more about Goddard at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum.

March 21, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Postmaster General Says Technology is Making Mail More Powerful

Urges Mailing Industry to Focus on Innovation in Delivery, Digital Integration and Targeting – March 18, 2013
Release No. 13-036

SAN FRANCISCO — Technology and changing consumer expectations are helping to transform mail into an even more powerful communications channel, Postmaster General and CEO Patrick R. Donahoe told the nation’s largest annual gathering of mailing industry leaders today.

“As the mailing industry, we must continue to work to drive innovation and leverage data and technology to improve the consumer experience and grow revenue,” Donahoe said in his keynote address at the National Postal Forum. “Our challenge as an industry is to shape those moments when people are experiencing mail, and make them more powerful in the future. That’s part of getting our game on — shaping our future and building excitement about the power of mail and the future of mail.”

Mail already has an advantage over other ways of communicating, Donahoe said, because it is tactile and encourages users to interact with it. “People slow down and absorb what they receive. They process it. They retain it,” he said. To strengthen that experience, Donahoe urged the mailing industry to focus on four key ideas: making mail more personally relevant, more actionable, more functional and more creative.

“Through the convergence of data and technology, mailers can use the insights about individual interests to make mail more personal,” he said. “With imbedded QR codes and augmented reality, mail becomes much more functional and creative, creating an even more influential experience.”

Donahoe also touted the fact that American businesses are spending the same percentage of their marketing dollars on mail today as they did 30 years ago.

“Even with the emergence of cable television, social media and smartphones, marketing mail has remained constant because of the tremendous value it delivers to consumers who receive it and its ability to drive an exceptional return on investment for the businesses who send it,” said Donahoe. “The growth of our industry is going to be driven by changing technologies and customer expectations. We have to work together as an industry to anticipate these changes by leveraging the value of mail to shape new opportunities.”

The Postmaster General also advanced themes relating to innovation in the Postal Service in the areas of delivery, digital integration and targeting to extend the delivery platform and provide growth opportunities for the mailing industry and America’s businesses.

“Innovating digital integration is fundamental to improving the consumer experience — and combining the targeting power of online advertising with that mail experience will make mail far more valuable to the receiver and the sender,” Donahoe said.

The Postmaster General also described the Postal Services’ aggressive cost reduction efforts and their impacts on the mailing industry: reducing the size of the workforce by 193,000 employees since 2006; reducing the organization’s cost base by $15 billion; reducing 21,000 delivery routes; and consolidating the network of mail processing facilities while maintaining record levels of service.

“No other organization that I can think of — either public or private — has gone through a similar downsizing so rapidly and continued to function at a high level,” said Donahoe. “It all comes down to one word for this industry: affordability. The faster we can reduce costs, the better we can avoid pressure to raise prices. That’s why we continue to seek comprehensive reform legislation to provide more flexibility in our business model to create a sustainable platform for the future.”

A video of the speech will be posted online when it is available at about.usps.com/news.

The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.

March 20, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Mail Call

Now on exhibit at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum:

Mail Call.

Mail Call explores how the military postal system works and why the mail is an important resource. Types of mail, transportation methods, and postal workers have all changed over time. Through innovations in technology and organization, mail has become more diverse and military mail services more reliable.

March 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

U.S. Postal Service Saves Nearly $12 Million With Fuel-Saving Initiatives

U.S. Postal Service Saves Nearly $12 Million With Fuel-Saving Initiatives.

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) saved $11.7 million in fuel costs through a mix of route optimization, alternative-fuel use, purchasing fuel in bulk, and by encouraging employees to adopt more fuel-efficient driving practices.

Government Fleet contacted the USPS and received responses from the organization’s Chief Sustainability Officer Thomas G. Day about these efforts.

The USPS formed 850 “green teams” that focused on driver education and other “no cost” measures as one way to reduce fuel use in addition to promoting other sustainable practices at USPS facilities nationwide. The teams tracked “eco driving” efforts by USPS drivers…..(Complete Article)

March 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Postal Facts 2013- The facts are in!

Did you know? 

PostalFACTS2013

The Postal Service has the world’s largest retail network
— larger than McDonald’s, Walmart and Starbucks combined (in U.S.).

The Postal Service receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.
— We are required by law to cover our costs.

The Postal Service can and does compete with the private sector — and it collaborates, too. UPS
and FedEx pay the Postal Service to deliver more than 400 million of their ground packages to residences
and the Postal Service pays them for air transportation
— taking advantage of their comprehensive air network.

The Postal Service delivers more mail to more addresses in a larger geographical area than any other post in the
world.

Check it out here: Postal Facts 2013

March 11, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

U.S. Postal Service Launches 2013 National Consumer Protection Week

 “Your Information Destination”

NCPWNational Consumer Protection Week, Set for March 3-9, is a national program led by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to draw attention to issues and recommendations that help customers become smarter consumers of products, materials and services, and improve their knowledge of how to combat fraud of any type.

The U.S. Postal Service Office of Consumer Advocate and the U. S. Postal Inspection Service are working to educate consumers about identity theft and fraudulent schemes. The Postal Service will provide consumers with the tools and information needed to combat these types of crimes.

Postal Service officials will host a number of events to observe National Consumer Protection Week in the Houston area. Officials will distribute information and brochures to bring awareness to identity theft and fraudulent schemes, providing consumers with valuable information about protecting their financial assets from these types of crimes, as well as ways to report suspected financial fraud.

 Monday March 4– Downtown GPO- 10AM-2PM (information booth)

Wednesday March 6 – Downtown GPO- 10AM-2PM (information booth)

Friday March 8 – Downtown GPO- 10AM-2PM (information booth)

The Alliance for Consumer Fraud Awareness conducted a survey of American adults and found the following:

 Two out of three adults say they receive at least one potential scam contact per week.

 Eighteen percent of adults say they or a family member has fallen for one of these scams.

 A majority of those surveyed believe the fraudulent check writer is responsible for the funds.

Identity theft and fraudulent schemes are the fastest growing crimes that could ruin financial investments and cost thousands of dollars.

For additional information on common schemes visit http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov  and www.FakeChecks.org websites established by the Postal Inspection Service and its business partners to help educate consumers.

March 6, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Yes, there are rules and guidelines concerning returning stamps, but could this have been handled any better?  How would you have handled it if this was your customer?

Consumerist

You can’t take back stamps. This seems like it would be an obvious thing, but it actually isn’t. Dave was sending an Express Mail package across the country, and used a flat-rate envelope. He bought a regular Express Mail stamp at a post office kiosk, the Automated Postal Center. This combination meant that the envelope, which had needed to be in Seattle the next day, ended up returned to him like he hadn’t put postage on it at all.

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March 5, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Deputy Postmaster General Ronald Stroman’s interview with KTRH-AM 740

Ronald Stroman,Deputy Postmaster General

Ronald Stroman,
Deputy Postmaster General

 

Deputy Postmaster General Ronald Stroman interviewed with KTRH-AM’s Matt Patrick on March 4, 2013, to discuss some of the fundamental changes occurring and what the Postal Service is doing to adjust.  To listen to the entire interview click here

March 4, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment