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H.S. Diploma
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What is a Postal Service Worker?

Also known as: Mail Processing Machine Operator, Postal Service Mail Sorter, Mail Carrier, Mail Processor.

A postal service worker is someone who collects, sorts, and delivers mail, as well as sells postal products. They include such positions as clerks and mail sorters, mail carriers, processors, and processing machine operators.

What does a Postal Service Worker do?

Postal service workers typically do the following:

  • Collect letters and parcels
  • Sort incoming letters and parcels
  • Sell stamps and other postal products to customers
  • Get customer signatures for registered, certified, and insured mail
  • Operate various types of postal equipment
  • Distribute incoming mail from postal trucks

Postal service workers receive and process mail for delivery to homes, businesses, and post office boxes. Workers are classified based on the type of work they perform.

Mail carriers deliver mail to homes and businesses in cities, towns, and rural areas. Most travel established routes, delivering and collecting mail. They cover their routes on foot, by vehicle, or by a combination of both. Some mail carriers collect money for postage due and COD (cash-on-delivery). Others, particularly in rural areas, sell postal products such as stamps and money orders. All carriers, however, must be able to answer customers’ questions about postal regulations and services.

Postal Service Clerks sell stamps, money orders, postal stationary, mailing envelopes, and boxes in post offices throughout the country. These workers register, certify, and insure mail, calculate and collect postage, and answer questions about other postal matters.

Postal service mail sorters, processors, and processing machine operators prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution at post offices and mail processing centres. They load and unload postal trucks and move mail around mail processing centres. They also operate, and occasionally adjust and repair, mail processing, sorting, and cancelling machinery.

What is the workplace of a Postal Service Worker like?

Most career postal service workers work for the post office full time. However, overtime may be required for workers, particularly during the holiday season.

How can I become a Postal Service Worker?

Although there are no specific educational requirements to become a postal service worker, all applicants must have a good command of the english language. Workers typically receive additional training on the job. Postal service mail carriers must be at least 18 years old. They must be citizens or have permanent resident status.

All applicants must pass a written exam that measures speed and accuracy at checking names and numbers and the ability to memorize mail distribution procedures. Jobseekers should contact the post office or mail processing centre where they want to work to find out when an exam will be given.

When accepted, applicants must undergo a criminal-history check and pass a physical exam and a drug test. Applicants also may be asked to show that they can lift and handle mail sacks weighing 50 pounds. Mail carriers who drive at work must have a safe driving record, and applicants must get a passing grade on a road test.


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