Computerworld magazine recently profiled Chief Information Officer Jim Cochrane and digital innovation at the Postal Service.
Cochrane, a 40-year USPS veteran, began as a clerk and worked his way up to CIO, a position he accepted in 2013.
“I’m a nontraditional CIO. I don’t write code, and my background isn’t IT,” he said.
Computerworld cited Cochrane’s “appreciation for streamlined operations,” which is allowing him to “tackle new digital initiatives … and redefine the agency’s IT shop.”
One example: the Intelligent Mail bar code, which the Postal Service uses to manage cycle times and predict mail volumes.
“I can sit here in Washington, DC, and look at cycle times in a plant anywhere in the country and get a sense of how fluid their processing environment is, and how predictable their service is going to be,” said Cochrane.
USPS also employs computer models and data analytics for dynamic routing, which allows delivery routes to be mapped more efficiently. Additionally, letter carriers are now being equipped with Mobile Delivery Devices that help them perform their jobs more effectively.
“We are not just an enabling function anymore,” said Cochrane. “There’s not much going on in technology that we don’t keep our eye on.”