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What Does a Mail Processing Clerk of the USPS Do?

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The United States Postal Service started in 1775 when Benjamin Franklin established it to ensure that mail traveled freely throughout the nation. Of course, a lot of things have changed since its founding. Delivering mail has become more sophisticated and technology has improved the various services that the USPS offers to the public. Prices have increased as well.

But if there is one thing that has remained the same from the moment of its founding, it is the job of a mail processing clerk. It is an entry-level job for which prospective candidates need to pass the postal battery exam 473-e. As far as the education requirement is concerned, a high school diploma will suffice. The other usual requirements for entry-level positions also apply for this position: U.S. citizenship, at least 18 years of age, and competency in understanding, speaking, and writing in the English language, among others.

So what are the duties of a mail processing clerk? Basically, this is a position that requires you to work inside the post office building. You can either be assigned in a processing center or a local post office. If you are assigned in a processing center, your job is to unload mail, separate them, and place them in the designated processing areas. The job involves collating, bundling, and transferring processed mail. When there are heavy containers that need to be processed, your job could include lifting and carrying them.

Mail processing clerks assigned to a post office are tasked with a lot of customer relations tasks. They sell envelopes, stamps, stationary, boxes, and money orders. It is their job to receive, certify, insure, and register mail that customers send. If the customers have any questions regarding USPS services and/or about the delivery and receipt of their letters and parcels, mail processing clerks are usually the first in line to handle these queries. Most of the time, they are also the first to receive complaints even if they need to channel these to other USPS personnel.

If you are a people-person and love to interact with other people then a post office mail processing clerk position is fit for you. Working hours are normal business hours. You should also be comfortable with handling money as clerks in this position are responsible for the inventory and funds in their branch.

Mail processing clerks assigned in processing centers must be comfortable working on their own as they don’t normally get to interact with clients. Chutes, conveyor belts, and such equipment keep them company instead. If this is the position you are gunning for, be sure to remain flexible with your schedule as you may be required to work during weekends or at night with pay, of course.


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