According to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) plans to reduce its workforce by 50,000 over the next ten years to overcome financial losses.
“Right now, to get to break-even, I think we may need to get 50,000 people out of the organization,” Dejoy said to the American Enterprise Institute in Washington D.C.
“But that’s OK, because over [the next 10 years] 200,000 people leave the organization for retirement,” he added.
He further explained, that USPS will continue to be a hiring organization, and the Postal Service will “need to be good at retention” to achieve this goal.
In addition to the workforce adjustment, DeJoy says he wants to close 150 annex plants over the next four years, replacing those facilities with a small number of more efficient larger postal centers.
But USPS Headcount Keeps Growing
The desire to reduce the workforce somewhat contrasts with recent trends at the U.S. Postal Service. In 2021, USPS increased its headcount by 20,695 to 516,636 career employees.
However, some of the increase came from converting non-career employees to career employees. From 2020 to 2021, the non-career workforce decreased 11,561 to 136,531 career folks.
Still, the net result in 2021 was that the workforce actually went up over 2020 by 9,134 career and non-career employees.
This practice of converting non-career employees into career staff continues today.
For example, just a few days ago, the National Postal Mail Handlers Union (NPMHU) and USPS agreed to convert 2,702 non-career mail handlers to career status.
Similar agreements have been reached with other unions representing USPS workers throughout this year.
But last week, we reported that USPS plans to hire fewer seasonal employees for this year’s peak season.
Perhaps this is the first result of the conversions as the Postal Service continues to improve automation while adjusting its workforce mix.
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