United States Postal Service Essay

United States Postal Service A self-supporting agency of the U.S. government, USPS concerns itself with the provision of postal and mail services in the U.S. Being independent, this means that the agency isn't supported by tax dollars. Essentially, "it delivers more mail to more addresses in a larger geographical area than any other post in the world" (2014). In seeking to define its geographical reach, USPS points out that it delivers mail "to nearly 153 million addresses in every state, city and town in the country" (USPS, 2014).

Historical Background

The history of the USPS, as it has been pointed out on the agency's website, "is an ongoing story of enormous depth and breadth, rooted in a single, great principle; that every person in the United States -- no matter who, no matter where -- has the right to equal access to secure, efficient, and affordable mail service" (USPS, 2014). In colonial times, those who were mainly responsible, or helped in the delivery of mail, were merchants or friends. Essentially, it was not until 1639 that the very first postal service was formed. This came about due to the need for colonialists to dispatch mails to England - with the official overseas mail drop being Richard Fairbanks tavern, Boston. Slowly, a number of local authorities established distinct routes between specific jurisdictions/colonies. William Penn was the pioneer of the first official post office in 1683. It was situated in Pennsylvania. After the 1774 Boston riots that set the stage for the creation of an independent government, the Continental Congress was established, with Benjamin Franklin being elevated to the position of postmaster general a year later. As postmaster general, Franklin was in charge of operations at the newly established Post Office Department. During these early periods, mail was usually transported on horseback or by foot by carriers. Fast forward to the 1960s and there was need to enhance the efficiency of mail delivery operations. Part of the reforms adopted at the time led to the official renaming and rebranding of the Post Office Department to the United States Postal Service.

Global Dimensions and Diversity


One such partner is FedEx Express, whose business relationship with USPS is captured in the agency's Global Express Guaranteed service.
It is important to note that USPS, as per its own admission, values diversity. As it has been pointed out on its website, to the agency, "diversity means building an inclusive environment that respects the uniqueness of every individual and encourages the contributions of people from different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives" (USPS, 2014). The company's employees, therefore, are drawn from different backgrounds -- making its workforce one of the most diverse in the entire nation.

How Does USPS Operate?

USPS currently employs approximately 8 million people. These are the men and women who are responsible for delivery of billions of mail pieces across the nation every year. In seeking to describe how USPS operates, it would be prudent to, amongst other things, highlight the movement of a letter from collection to delivery. USPS highlights several steps a letter passes from collection to delivery. To begin with, we have collection, where postal carriers remove from the collection box all the letters and mails deposited by customers and destined for diverse addresses. Once they arrive at the post office, the said mails and letters are delivered to a mail processing plant. Next, we have culling and postmarking, a process that involves the separating of mail by certain characteristics (i.e. shape) and orienting letters. A machine then makes an impression of a postmark, indicating the date and place of sorting; with some cancellation lines also applied to ensure that the stamp is not recycled.

The next two processes are scanning and lifting of images, and application of barcode and sorting. With regard to the latter, individual mails get identified by a code and addresses are scanned using a special device. It is after this process is completed that a barcode is applied so as to allow for the letter to be…

Sources Used in Documents:


John, D. (2002). Organizational Learning and Effectiveness. New York, NY: Routledge.

United States Postal Service - USPS. (2014). United States Postal Service: About. Retrieved from http://about.usps.com/welcome.htm

Cite this Document:

"United States Postal Service" (2014, September 10) Retrieved April 23, 2024, from

"United States Postal Service" 10 September 2014. Web.23 April. 2024. <

"United States Postal Service", 10 September 2014, Accessed.23 April. 2024,

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