Chapter 2: Postal Operations
O. Operations Planning
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The Postal Service’s future success as an organization will be influenced significantly by its ability to use workhours efficiently and to maintain stability in staffing relative to workload. To support this goal, the Integrated Resource Management (IRM) program was successfully implemented at 102 sites, covering 553,915 employees by the end of 2002. This success was built on the 19 pilot sites implemented in 2000. IRM entails a comprehensive process which combines two major components: leadership and technology.

Under the leadership component, a prerequisite to deployment of the technology component is the Coaching for Performance Accountability (CFPA) training. Through this training, supervisors learn to sit with each of their employees and explain what is expected of them, not only in terms of attendance, but everyday work performance as well. As part of this process, recognition for both good and poor performance is addressed. So far, at the sites that have implemented the CFPA training, productivity is higher than at non-IRM sites, and processing costs are lower.

Under the technology component of the IRM initiative is the enterprise Resource Management System (eRMS), an automated system used to assist supervisors and managers in plants and Post Offices to record, track, and manage the leave administration process. During 2002, sites implementing resource management have reduced sick leave usage by more than 1.6 million hours and sick leave dollar savings ranging from a minimum of approximately $32 million (average sick leave hourly rate) to a maximum of nearly $47 million (includes straight salary with benefits). One of the significant accomplishments for 2002 was the major deployment effort to convert the LAN-based resource management application to eRMS, a web-based application, and expand system usage nationwide. With much hard work and determination, all areas successfully completed eRMS conversions for their sites by the end of September 2002, three months ahead of schedule. An outgrowth of the resource management process was the standardization and consistent decision-making process involved with FMLA administration. As a result, administration of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was moved from a decentralized base of approximately 20,000 first-line supervisors to approximately 160 FMLA coordinators located in the attendance offices. These FMLA coordinators were provided with an intensive 24-hour training course to enable them to be knowledgeable about the complex FMLA laws and policies and allowing them to make sound business decisions on employees’ requests. With the advent of the FMLA coordinators, line supervisors had more time to perform their operational duties and allowed them to improve communications with their employees.

As the resource management process continues in 2003, the vision is to provide an integrated approach to link Time and Attendance Collection System TACS, DOIS, and other components from injury compensation databases for interface with eRMS. This will provide a robust tool to build a solid, effective management foundation to manage daily business operations and reduce costs. Further enhancements are anticipated in 2003 to provide users with even more information in a cost efficient way. As part of our 2003 vision, several attendance offices are being merged into one centralized office, to reduce staffing at the plant and Post Office levels and to maintain the flexibility to adjust staffing as needed.

Coupling an increased emphasis on attendance with a systematic approach to staffing should provide the basis for more effective workhour usage, standardization of business processes, and ultimately, enhanced operational and service efficiency to our Postal Service employees and customers.

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Chapter 2 Table of Contents

A.  Public Perceptions, Customer
     Outreach and Mailer Liaison

B.  Product Development

C.  International Mail

D.  Mail Volume and Service

E.  Mail Distribution

F.  Delivery Unit Operations

G.  Stamp Services

H.  Licensing Program

I.  Commercial Sales

J.  Retail Programs:
     Building the Core

K.  Pricing and Classification

L.  Marketing Technology and
     Channel Management

M. The Internet:
     Transforming the Way We Connect
      with Our Customers

N.  Technology

O.  Operations Planning

P.  Financial Management