OIG Asks: Are Carriers Correctly Reporting Package Deliveries?

Today the U.S. Postal Service uses several delivery status events to create a fully visible delivery system. It has increased its tracking from five to 13 possible scanning events, and uses both active and automated barcode scanning to track packages. Package tracking events can be viewed via the Postal Service’s Track and Confirm system.

The Postal Service uses package scanning data to measure service performance so it is visible to customers. Performance is measured from when the Postal Service first accepts a package for delivery and scans it as received to the first stop-the-clock scan event. The postal carrier uses a handheld scanner to perform this stop-the-clock scan, which indicates the Postal Service’s commitment to deliver the package is complete.

The Postal Service’s goal is to provide world class visibility for its products and service. However, customers across the country are posting comments to social media sites about their experiences with Postal Service carriers. Many customers are commenting that carriers are not delivering or attempting to deliver their packages even though USPS.com tracking indicates otherwise. Carriers are required to scan packages they deliver or attempt to deliver at the point of delivery.

  • Have you received notification that your package was delivered, but not received your package?
  • Have you received notification of an attempt to deliver your package, but no attempt was made by the carrier?
  • What improvements can be made so carriers can more accurately provide delivery scans for customers?

Source: Are Carriers Correctly Reporting Package Deliveries? | USPS Office of Inspector General

  • Tired of it

    This is such a stupid comment by oig.
    1. Customers lie omg. Carriers lie omg, scanner who cares.
    2. Knock on door, tv so loud, dogs, kids.
    Now you scan attempted. But customer said they are home.
    3. Deliver, customer steals. But carrier didnt deliver.
    4. Family member steals
    5. Give it a break. Bad bar codes, other than US bar code. No delivery.
    6. Non trackable, yet bar code. Scan bar code on outside of usps box. Suddenly you have a fake barcode.
    7. Take picture of what, where you delivered it. Yet customer said. No delivery.

    Give it a break.

  • UspsLUV

    The new super do it all SCANNER!
    1. No counter for MSP SCANS. You do not know if you have scanned a msp.
    2. No counter of any kind for any scan.
    They will say, oh you can scan and check scan. Not any use after you have scanned, and did whatever.
    3. No camera
    4. No text msg

    6. ALways remember, You are not paid to think!

    7. No way to recommend anything from the end user level. Do not say union. That is such a joke.

  • 1188

    Press esc then the letter d on the scanner and will give you the list of scans completed..

  • MrZip

    Have you received notification that your package was delivered, but not received your package? Possible explanation: Carrier delivered it to the same house number on an adjacent street. Does it happen? Yes occasionally. Carriers are human and under a lot more pressure than the customers realize. Have there been carriers that have stolen packages? Yes, rarely. That’s the quickest way to end a career, union or not.
    Have you received notification of an attempt to deliver your package, but no attempt was made by the carrier? This might be done to “stop the clock” if a carrier neglects to deliver a package and isn’t afforded enough time to be able to go back and deliver it. Do I agree that it should be done? No. But, I have seen it happen and it’s definitely due the pressure from way up on the food chain.
    What improvements can be made so carriers can more accurately provide delivery scans for customers? Teach Upper Management that managing via threat of disciplinary action and intimidation is a short term strategy and causes lower management and the craft to circumvent the system by doing things like that and cutting corners other ways. If you want a long term strategy, think of Teamwork, as opposed to ‘do it, or your in trouble.’
    Just my 2¢

  • Musha the Dog

    Exactly what I would have said.

  • Zapit

    Least we forget once scanned you cannot pull it out. Good or bad. Management is sitting staring at computer, awaiting email. Watching your footsteps. Dois saying what!?. The human should deliver in xx time. Parcel delivery is going to collaspe, due to the theft issue that is brewing. Too easy to call cops away. Raid steal. Run.

  • Glenn Dwyer

    My question. Show of hands. Who has had proper q and a on how scanning works on the clock with oig and “star ” scanning employees give review and feedback. My office. 0. And with seperate foci on street dps ( addresses in question, road and weather hazards, POV maintainance, safe material handling in and out of vehicles) what priority should field craft personell give mobile data collection reasonably? Union falls far short on gathering member perspective and has own beauracratic interests and turf protection to nobodys benefit.

  • BigBob

    Back when scanners first came on the scene, I scanned all parcels as ‘Delivered” as I loaded them into the truck. Most of the carriers in my office did the same thing
    2 things to note – all parcels scanned as delivered were, in fact, delivered that day.
    And most important, these were the days before USPS became the delivery unit of Amazon, when the most parcels you got in a single day never exceeded about 30. Now it’s about 30 parcels per stop!

  • TeflonPalin

    I have a package. Porch is blocked by dog. I scan the package as ‘attempted’ and it asks for me to scan a ‘left notice’? How can I leave a notice if I can’t get to the box??

  • MrZip

    Agreed. The USPS is the most “Reactive” (as opposed to proactive) business that I’ve ever seen (not that I’ve had much experience with other businesses). I never received any training for DPS, FSS and very little for the scanners. Over the years, I’ve submitted suggestions like letting the delivery offices know, in advance, how much mail was going to come in the next few days. I mean it’s not like it all gets dropped off the night before. Everything is counted. With today’s technology, it should be relatively easy to plan ahead. Or spreading the workload over the 6 day week. There seems no reason to kill yourself on Monday (delivering a bunch of BBM) and then get done early on Tuesday or Wednesday. But there too busy disciplining and intimidating to really make the business work.
    Sorry for going off on a tangent.

  • Eamon Doherty

    The new scanners actually have an option called Animal interference. If you scan the package and scroll down on the first screen you will see it as an option. I don’t know if Animal interference is a “Stop The Clock” scan or not though. The training that was received was piss poor on the scanners

  • Garry Kroeger

    The new scanners are equipped with GPS. After the parcel is scanned, the coordinates can be checked with Google maps to see exactly where the carrier was at the time of the scan.

  • Kevin Rose

    I’ve witnessed managers going around the office at the end of the day scanning parcels with the event code “business closed” just to stop the clock. Even had customers (I’m a SSA) wonder about where their package is when they check tracking and find the same event code. This tells me that some carriers are using the same “business closed” event even though it’s a residential address.

  • frank n

    What pressure are they under. The get paid by the hour. That’s what the union is for. Too many carrier want the old days back of running the route and going to a fast food restaurant and chill. Remember the saying “eight hours work for eight hours pay” After 15 years the base salary is $56,000 for putting a letter in a mail box. Also 90 percent of the mail is already in order. they rarely have to case mail

  • MrZip

    Your attitude is ‘case and point.’ First, I believe the saying goes more like ‘a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work.’
    Now days, management uses a computer program to try to “estimate” how long it should take a carrier to complete their workload, but neglects to take into consideration the actual number of packages there are, or the amount of “mail (that) is already in order.” No, there’s not much mail to case, but the computer has added a set amount of more deliveries to the routes, which it believes equals the, variable, time that not having to case mail saves. An eight hour day is a rare occasion (and it has nothing to do with money). So, to finally get around to answering your question, “What Pressure are they under.” They are expected to squeeze 9 (or more) hours work into an 8 hour day, on a daily basis. While being 100% accurate & 100% safe.

  • Frank N

    Listen Mr Zip what were you taught. If you cant come back in the eight hours call BACK. Let them make the decision. Like stated above if you were out there like your supposed to be this wont be a problem. The computer is just a guide That’s why you fill out a 3996 and make a copy Let them give you instructions if you cant make it back in time CALL BACK its that simple Your union has your back!!!!!!

  • Postal Pete

    You are right about management refusing to negotiate a contract with the unions, the APWU and NRLCA had to move to arbitration with the USPS on the next contract and next year it will be the NALC and NPMHU getting the ridiculous last proposal from the USPS next May and forced to go to arbitration

  • MrZip

    Yes, that is what we do. We submit a 3996 requesting the time we feel we need to do the job properly. Then we are given the time the computer says we should be done by, and are threatened with ‘road supervision.’ Therein lies the pressure. So we call later and tell the supervisor that we can’t finish in the allotted time. What is the response, “Complete the assignment and be back in the allotted time.” Yes, we should be protected by the union, But we are dedicated and DO attempt to comply with the unreasonable request (IMHO). So we rush, under the pressure, and inevitably mistakes are made.