Link Extra

New prices

The Postal Service has announced price changes to take effect next year.

The USPS governors approved the proposed changes, which will be reviewed by the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) before they take effect Jan. 26. The governors believe these new rates will keep the Postal Service competitive while providing the agency with needed revenue.

The changes, if favorably reviewed by the PRC, do not include an increase in the price of a First-Class Mail Forever stamp, which will remain 55 cents.

The changes include adjustments to other Mailing Services products, as well as Shipping Services products.

Here are examples of current and proposed prices:

  • First-Class Mail letters (1 ounce): 55 cents (no change from current price)
  • First-Class Mail letters (additional ounces): 15 cents (no change)
  • First-Class Mail letters (metered 1 ounce): 50 cents (no change)
  • First-Class Mail outbound international letters (1 ounce): $1.15 (current), $1.20 (proposed)
  • First-Class Mail domestic postcard stamps: 35 cents (no change)
  • Priority Mail small flat-rate box: $7.90 (current), $8.30 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail medium flat-rate box: $14.35 (current), $15.05 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail large flat-rate box: $19.95 (current), $21.10 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail Army/Air Post Office and Fleet Post Office large flat-rate box: $18.45 (current), $19.60 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail regular flat-rate envelope: $7.35 (current), $7.75 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail legal flat-rate envelope: $7.65 (current), $8.05 (proposed)
  • Priority Mail padded flat-rate envelope: $8 (current), $8.40 (proposed)

Overall, the proposed prices would raise Mailing Services product prices by approximately 1.9 percent.

Shipping Services price increases vary by product. For example, Priority Mail Express prices will increase 3.5 percent, while Priority Mail prices will increase 4.1 percent, on average.

Although Mailing Services price increases are based on the consumer price index, Shipping Services prices are primarily adjusted according to market conditions.

USPS filed the proposals with the PRC Oct. 9.

The complete price filings are available on the PRC’s site under the Daily Listings section, and price change tables will be available on the Postal Explorer site.

The Postal Service’s news release has more information.

Certified success

The Postal Service has extended “certified engaged” status to 614 teams, a special form of recognition that is given to groups that create positive workplace environments.

To qualify, a team must have at least 75 percent of its members complete the most recent Postal Pulse employee survey.

The team must also rank among the top 75 percent of all groups that are clients of Gallup, the organization that conducts the survey on the Postal Service’s behalf.

Additionally, the Postal Service wants the leadership of each qualifying team to incorporate the 12 principles of engagement — including strong communication and timely recognition — into their daily activities.

Last year, USPS recognized 672 teams with certified engaged status.

This year, an automation team that works the evening shift — also known as “tour 3” — at the San Jose, CA, Processing and Distribution Center became the first automation team to achieve the status.

The Employee Engagement Blue page has a list of all 2019 certified engaged teams, as well as an overview of the 12 principles of engagement and other information.

To a tee

Postal Service employees can order a USPS-approved T-shirt to promote the Alzheimer’s semipostal stamp.

Employees can order the shirt, at their own expense, from Tee Luv at tee-luv.com/collections/usps. Employees must enter this passcode when placing orders: usps2019.

The shirt, available in white, sells for $13.99.

Orders will be accepted until Oct. 15 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time.

USPS is reminding employees to only promote semipostal stamp activities or events in accordance with Ethics Office guidelines.

Seeking donations or holding raffles or drawings tied to semipostal stamps is not permitted.

In September, employees could order T-shirts to promote the Breast Cancer Research semipostal stamp.

Employees who have questions can email them to Ethics.Help@usps.gov.

News Briefs

Scanning snapshot

Scanning snapshot. The Postal Service’s national scanning rating was 97.84 percent during the week ending Oct. 4, up from one week earlier.

Western (98.06 percent) led the areas, while Dakotas (99.14 percent) topped the districts.

Scanning allows customers to track their packages and mail, and it helps USPS improve efficiency and network management.

To see the latest results, go to the Informed Visibility site and select “Customer Experience,” followed by “DES 2 Scan Performance.” Employees must request access to Informed Visibility through eAccess.

Informed Delivery. Employees can sign up for Informed Delivery, a free feature that provides users with digital previews of their incoming mail, at informeddelivery.usps.com.

Increasing the number of subscribers will help USPS attract businesses that want to add interactive content to Informed Delivery emails, which will extend the “life” of the businesses’ mailpieces, keep mail relevant and boost postal revenue.

More than 19 million people use Informed Delivery. The Postal Service wants to have 40 million users by the end of 2020.

Sign-up is voluntary.

Holiday stamps update. The Postal Service will release its Holiday Wreaths stamps Friday, Oct. 25.

The stamps, which feature four wreaths made from pine cones, dried flowers, berries and other materials that symbolize winter and the holidays, will be dedicated that day in Freeport, ME.

Got news? Email your submissions to uspslink@usps.gov.