United States Postal Service®

Quarterly Performance for Periodicals
Service Variance
Mailpieces Delivered Between 07/01/2018 and 09/30/2018

Quarter IV


Periodicals performance is measured via the Intelligent Mail® Accuracy and Performance System (iMAPS) using the documented arrival time at a designated postal facility to start the measurement clock, and an Intelligent Mail® barcode (IMB®) scan by an external, third-party reporter to stop-the-clock. Mail piece tracking from IMB® in-process scans is used in conjunction with the external data to extrapolate results to the entire volume of Periodicals with Full-Service Intelligent Mail®. Data collected by U.S. Postal Service® are provided to an independent, external contractor to calculate service measurement and compile the necessary reports.

The external contractor determines service performance based on the elapsed time between the start-the-clock event recorded by U.S. Postal Service® and the stop-the-clock event recorded by anonymous households and small businesses that report delivery information directly to the contractor. The service measure consists of two parts: (1) how long mail pieces take to get through processing, and (2) how long mail takes from the last processing scan to delivery. The second portion is used as a delivery factor differential to determine the percent of all Periodicals delivered on the last processing date versus the percent delivered after the last processing date. Service performance is measured by comparing the transit time to USPS® service standards to determine the percent of mail delivered on time.

The Service Performance Measurement (SPM) application of the Full-Service Seamless Acceptance and Service Performance system (SASP) serves as the data source for iMAPS. SPM captures data from all Full-Service Intelligent Mail® and applies business rules for service measurement before sending data to iMAPS.

Service performance measurement was suspended for mail originating from or destined to Caribbean District in FY 2018 Quarter 1 and FY 2018 Quarter 2 due to the devastating impacts of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Measurement resumed in FY 2018 Quarter 3.


Data for the delivery factor were based on a combination of Periodicals with IMB® and External First-Class Mail® (EXFC) Measurement System flat-shaped test pieces received by external reporters. The EXFC data were used to supplement the Periodicals data available during this period.

Performance Highlights

National Periodicals service performance was 88.2 percent on time, which is 1.2 points higher than the same period last year. Eastern Area led the nation with 90.3 percent on time in FY 2018 Quarter 4.

In FY 2018 Quarter 4, 95.4 percent of Periodicals were delivered within the service standard plus one day, 97.6 percent within the service standard plus two days, and 98.6 percent within the service standard plus three days. Individual areas achieved at least 94.2 percent delivery within the service standard plus one day, and as much as 98.9 percent within three days.

The FY 2018 annual national service performance score was 85.6 for Periodicals which is the same as the score for FY 2017. It represented the highest annual score since measurement began, along with FY 2017 scores.


Area Percent Within +1-Day Percent Within +2-Days Percent Within +3-Days
Capital Metro 94.2 96.7 97.8
Eastern 96.3 98.1 98.8
Great Lakes 95.3 97.7 98.7
Northeast 95.1 97.6 98.7
Pacific 95.8 97.9 98.9
Southern 95.1 97.4 98.4
Western 95.8 97.9 98.8
Nation FY2018 Q4 95.4 97.6 98.6

Nation FY2017 Q4 (SPLY) 94.6 97.0 98.1

Nation FY2009 Annual 88.2 93.0 95.5
Nation FY2010 Annual 90.2 94.4 96.5
Nation FY2011 Annual 89.8 94.7 96.6
Nation FY2012 Annual 86.1 92.4 95.4
Nation FY2013 Annual 92.6 95.9 97.4
Nation FY2014 Annual 91.2 94.8 96.7
Nation FY2015 Annual 89.3 93.5 95.7
Nation FY2016 Annual 90.7 94.4 96.2
Nation FY2017 Annual 93.8 96.4 97.7
Nation FY2018 Annual 94.0 96.7 97.9
Nation FY2018 Q1 92.2 95.6 97.3
Nation FY2018 Q2 92.8 95.8 97.2
Nation FY2018 Q3 95.6 97.7 98.6