The biggest news: I am hearing rumors of a possible postage increase as soon as April 26, 2015.  It could be 1.7% – 2%.  It will be based on the increase in the consumer price indexm as usual. The exigent rate may or may not stay in place, but it unlikely they will lift this price increase. The First-Class Forever stamp would go to $.50.

Mark this date – Feb 1, 2015 – the first female Postmaster General of the US takes over from Pat Donahoe. Pat’s COO & Executive VP, Megan Brennan (right) will assume the role of PMG.  Thank you to Pat Donahoe for not only 4 years of Postmaster General but for your 40 years of Postal Service.

Currently, Sample Verification is used with MERLIN for verification.  With Seamless Acceptance, the USPS will use Census Based and Performance Based verification as the mail is sorted on the USPS equipment.  The quality of the data will be measured over 30 day period.  There are several checks that will need to be below the threshold level, for the month for that measurement, or will result in an invoice going to the eDoc presenter.  Move Update (verifying that addresses are correct using an appropriate method) will also have to be less than .8%, currently or will be invoiced.

Data quality will be imperative.
The way the invoice is to be generated will be if you mail 100,000 pieces and the threshold is .8% and you are at 1.0%, you will be charged on .2% or 200 pieces.  They have not determined what the price will be for the Move Update portion.  But remember there are many other different types of thresholds that are being measured.

The USPS has started Phase II of their Network Rationalization Program.  The Service Standards for First-Class Mail has changed.  Part of this change eliminates overnight (or next-day) service for much of First-Class Mail.  2 Day delivery will be limited to within the SCF where the mail is entered.  After that all other First-Class Mail will be 3-5 days.  This 3-5 day standard has actually been in effect for several months. These changes make having a mail tracking solution more important than ever for time-sensitive mailings.