The Annual Planning Process

Establish: Each year the Postal Service selects a limited number of high-priority objectives to advance its goals and publishes them in its Annual Performance Plan. Setting annual targets allows management to focus on near-term priorities and current conditions, a practice consistent with the Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 (P.L. 103-62) and guidelines of the Office of Management and Budget. The Annual Performance Plan explains how results will be measured and describes any indicator or measurement changes from prior years.

The Postal Service publishes its Annual Performance Report for the prior year at the same time as the Annual Performance Plan for the next year. The Performance Report provides results against the prior year’s objectives and serves as a baseline for establishing new objectives. Setting objectives is the initial step of the performance management process.

Deploy: Once corporate objectives are established, the Postal Service sets goals and assigns accountability for achieving them down to the area, district, unit, and individual levels. Tailoring objectives to specific functions ensures that managers are accountable for results within their respective spans of control. Any adjustments to non-bargaining unit employees’ salaries are based on a pay-for-performance system that recognizes how their specific performance contributed to objectives. Unlike most government agencies that provide automatic pay increases, cost-of-living adjustments, and locality pay, the Postal Service’s pay-for-performance system is the sole source of pay adjustments for non-bargaining unit employees.

Implement: The various actions and strategic initiatives described throughout this Comprehensive Statement are designed to achieve the three strategic goals. With few exceptions, most achieve multiple goals and objectives. For example, the various initiatives to reduce energy use simultaneously improve efficiency by reducing cost, promote employee engagement, and help assure more sustainable operations.

Review: In the review phase, performance is monitored against objectives. Resources and processes are adjusted as needed to assure success. This is a continuous process. The Postal Service’s record of progress against its strategic goals stems from its use of process management to define and replicate best processes, intensive data analysis to target improvement opportunities, and insights provided through continuous employee and customer outreach.

The Postal Service’s Annual Performance Management Process

graphic of the postal service's annual performance management process

Based on Malcolm Baldridge Quality Award Criuteria