Summary Report for:
43-5052.00 - Postal Service Mail Carriers
Sort mail for delivery. Deliver mail on established route by vehicle or on foot.
Sample of reported job titles: City Carrier, City Carrier Assistant (CCA), City Letter Carrier, City Mail Carrier, Letter Carrier, Mail Carrier, Rural Carrier, Rural Carrier Associate (RCA), Rural Mail Carrier, Rural Route Carrier
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Scan labels on letters or parcels to confirm receipt.
- Obtain signed receipts for registered, certified, and insured mail, collect associated charges, and complete any necessary paperwork.
- Return to the post office with mail collected from homes, businesses, and public mailboxes.
- Sort mail for delivery, arranging it in delivery sequence.
- Deliver mail to residences and business establishments along specified routes by walking or driving, using a combination of satchels, carts, cars, and small trucks.
- Meet schedules for the collection and return of mail.
- Sign for cash-on-delivery and registered mail before leaving the post office.
- Hold mail for customers who are away from delivery locations.
- Turn in money and receipts collected along mail routes.
- Leave notices telling patrons where to collect mail that could not be delivered.
- Maintain accurate records of deliveries.
- Bundle mail in preparation for delivery or transportation to relay boxes.
- Record address changes and redirect mail for those addresses.
- Return incorrectly addressed mail to senders.
- Answer customers' questions about postal services and regulations.
- Provide customers with change of address cards and other forms.
- Report any unusual circumstances concerning mail delivery, including the condition of street letter boxes.
- Register, certify, and insure parcels and letters.
- Enter change of address orders into computers that process forwarding address stickers.
- Travel to post offices to pick up the mail for routes or pick up mail from postal relay boxes.
- Sell stamps and money orders.
- Complete forms that notify publishers of address changes.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Automobiles or cars — Passenger vehicles
- Bar code reader equipment — Portable barcode scanners
- Carts — Wheeled carts
- Light trucks or sport utility vehicles — Small trucks
- Mailboxes — Mail relay boxes
- Non metallic baskets — Mail sorting trays
- Portable data input terminals — Delivery unit computers; Handheld computers
- Safety chains — Postal vehicle tire chains
- Storage racks or shelves — Mail distribution cases; Route cases
- Time card machines — Time clocks
Technology used in this occupation:
- Data base user interface and query software — Address Management System AMS; Automated Data Collection System ADCS; End of Run Report EOR
- Enterprise resource planning ERP software — Delivery operations information system DOIS
- Human resources software — Time and Attendance Collection System TACS
- Map creation software — Delivery Routing System DRS
- Operating system software — Microsoft Windows
- Time accounting software — Electronic Time Clock ETC
- Customer and Personal Service — Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Public Safety and Security — Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
- Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
- Active Listening — Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Social Perceptiveness — Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Speaking — Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Information Ordering — The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Arm-Hand Steadiness — The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Problem Sensitivity — The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Speech Clarity — The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Speech Recognition — The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
- Trunk Strength — The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public — Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
- Communicating with Persons Outside Organization — Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.
Detailed Work Activities
- Enter information into databases or software programs.
- Collect deposits, payments or fees.
- Obtain written authorization to perform activities.
- Route mail to correct destinations.
- Sort mail.
- Deliver items.
- Arrange insurance coverage.
- Prepare outgoing mail.
- Provide notifications to customers or patrons.
- Record shipping information.
- Package objects for shipping.
- Maintain financial or account records.
- Operate vehicles or material-moving equipment.
- Explain regulations, policies, or procedures.
- Sell products or services.
- Prepare documentation for contracts, transactions, or regulatory compliance.
- Report maintenance or equipment problems to appropriate personnel.
- Outdoors, Exposed to Weather — 91% responded “Every day.”
- In an Enclosed Vehicle or Equipment — 88% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 70% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 65% responded “Extremely important.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 51% responded “Extremely important.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 61% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 73% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 74% responded “Every day.”
- Time Pressure — 62% responded “Every day.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 44% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Deal With External Customers — 53% responded “Extremely important.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 54% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 41% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 32% responded “Important results.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 43% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Spend Time Standing — 29% responded “About half the time.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 34% responded “Limited freedom.”
- Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — 32% responded “Less than half the time.”
- Physical Proximity — 57% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 34% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 30% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- Spend Time Walking and Running — 47% responded “Less than half the time.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 29% responded “Never.”
- Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People — 39% responded “Once a year or more but not every month.”
- Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 50% responded “Every day.”
|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include orderlies, forest firefighters, customer service representatives, security guards, upholsterers, and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|78||High school diploma or equivalent|
|15||Less than high school diploma|
|7||Some college, no degree|
Interest code: CR
- Conventional — Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
- Realistic — Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Independence — Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Support — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
- Relationships — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
- Working Conditions — Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2015)||$28.02 hourly, $58,280 annual|
|Employment (2014)||297,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2014-2024)||Decline (-2% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2014-2024)||57,400|
|Top industries (2014)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data and 2014-2024 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Postal service workers . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition.