2007 Year in Review
New postal law
The Postal Act of 2006 was the first major legislative change to our organization since 1971, when the Post Office Department became the U.S. Postal Service. Its provisions set us on a new path with new opportunities for growth. The new law gives us flexibility to adjust prices and product offerings promptly in response to dynamic market conditions and changing customer needs. In addition, many of the provisions of Sarbanes-Oxley now will apply to the Postal Service.
We delivered our best service ever. National on-time performance scores for the delivery of First-Class Mail were at all-time highs for all categories. Overnight service reached 96 percent, as measured independently by IBM Global Business Services.* We also achieved our eighth straight year of positive total factor productivity, which measures the growth in the ratio of resources we use to the products and services they produce.
We worked closely with our mailing industry partners through the Mailers Technical Advisory Committee, Postal Customer Councils, the National Postal Forum and other groups to better align customer mail preparation with postal operations. We shared with mailers our vision for the future of processing flat-size mail and bringing the same efficiency to the sorting of flat-size mail that now exists for letter mail.
For the third year in a row, Americans rated the Postal Service as the No. 1 agency they trust to protect their privacy, according to a national study by the Ponemon Institute. The Postal Service was one of the few federal agencies to increase its customer satisfaction and trust scores. In a separate Ponemon Institute survey, consumers ranked the Postal Service as the No. 1 company in the package and delivery category. In addition, Forbes.com ranked the Postal Service among the top 30 U.S. businesses.
Employer of choice
For the fourth straight year, the Postal Service was named one of the best places to work in information technology by Computerworld magazine. Our commitment to a diverse workforce was reflected in being named one of the best companies for Hispanics, an honor from Hispanic Business magazine. And the nation’s first and only career-guidance and recruitment magazine for people with disabilities, Careers & the disABLED, named the Postal Service a publicsector employer of the year. We’re committed to fostering a business culture that provides an inclusive work environment for all employees.
We introduced new shape-based pricing that reflects the costs of handling letters, large envelopes, and packages. Consumers can save money on future mailings by buying Forever Stamps, the value of which always will be the 1-ounce letter rate. We streamlined international products, and consumers now can use the same Priority Mail and Express Mail packaging for shipping in the United States and to other countries.
We expanded use of the Intelligent Mail barcode, providing a wealth of information to mailers, including the ability to track mail end-to-end. Business mailers in increasing numbers turned to this next-generation technology. One out of every 100 pieces of mail sorted daily now contains this barcode. We also made it easier for our business customers to do business with us through electronic documentation, such as status of mailings and account balances.
We are committed to providing a safe workplace for our employees. Through the Voluntary Protection Program, we bring management, employees and union representatives together to work to reduce injuries and illnesses. More than 130 postal worksites earned certification in this Occupational Health and Safety Administration program, more than any other employer, public or private. Since the effort began, postal worksites entering the program reduced injury and illness rates by half.
Protecting the environment
We consider safeguarding the environment a corporate responsibility. More than a half billion Priority Mail and Express Mail envelopes and boxes provided to our customers each year now meet higher environmental standards. We earned Cradle to Cradle Certification based on the quality of raw materials used to produce this packaging. They’re fully recyclable and more than 15,000 metric tons of carbon emissions will be prevented annually.
Our ongoing commitment to the communities we serve is reflected in programs like ADVO’s “Have You Seen Me?” flyers that feature missing children’s pictures and profiles. The program has resulted in the safe return of 145 children. Our semipostal stamps address important social concerns. Since 1998, the Postal Service has raised more than $57 million for breast cancer research through the sale of a semipostal stamp. Another semipostal stamp raised nearly $3.2 million for programs to prevent family violence. And, more than 30,000 Postal Service employees have joined the National Marrow Donor Program Registry, surpassing all organizations — public or private sector.
* The process measures First-Class Mail from the time it’s deposited into a collection box until it’s delivered to a home or business.
For the third year in a row, Americans rated the Postal Service as the most trusted federal agency...