The U.S. Post Office is a Great Place to Work

Are you looking for an interesting job, with good pay, excellent benefits, and exceptional job stability? You may want to consider working for the U.S. Postal Service. Nearly everyone is familiar with the carrier who delivers the mail to your community. However, there are many post office jobs that you may not be familiar with. In fact, the U.S. Postal Service employs approximately 750,000 people in 300 different job categories. They are an Equal Opportunity Employer, and nearly 50,000 of their employees have disabilities.

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USPS Job Requirements

In order to qualify for United States Post Office jobs, you must be 18 years old. You can even be as young as 16, if you already have a high school diploma. You must be a U.S. citizen, or a legal resident. If you are in our country solely because you have been granted asylum or refugee status, or you have conditional resident status, you cannot work for the post office.

Other requirements for postal service employment are that you must have basic competency in English, and you have to be registered with the Selective Service System.

When applying, applicants must provide the names and contact information for their previous employers for the past 10 years, including any military service. Applicants will have their criminal history checked. They receive a medical assessment and a urinalysis to determine that they are drug free. Applicants must also have a safe driving record, but only if the job they want involves driving postal service vehicles … such as mail carriers or truck drivers.

Applying for United States Post Office Jobs

Many people do not realize that you can get post office seasonal jobs. To get a job as a casual, temporary worker, you can simply apply for local post office jobs at the location where you want to work. There is usually a large demand for casual employees around Christmas, or during the summer vacation season. You will need to complete an application, but no test or exam is necessary. Casual employees can work as many as 200 work days per year.

 In order to apply for a permanent position with the post office, you will need to complete an application and take the postal exam. Your local post office can give you the necessary information to start the process. First, you will need to apply just to take the exam, either online or by called 1-866-999-8777. Then, you will receive an email or letter telling you when to take the exam. They will also send you study materials. Then, you take the exam. If you get at least a 70 on the written exam, you will be asked to complete a formal job application form on which you will list your job experience, and explain any special skills or abilities you have.

U.S. Postal Service Employment Exams

In order to become a full time postal service employee, you must first take an examination. There are two types of exams, depending on the position you are applying for. For some jobs, you may be allowed to take an un-proctored exam, which means you will take it on your own. For example, you may take it on your home computer or at the library. In most cases, however, you may be required to take a proctored exam. For these, you must apply to take the exam and, upon receiving confirmation, you will need to go to a specific test site, sign in, verify your identity, and take the exam.

If you plan to take the postal exam, it is highly recommended that you get a study guide to help you prepare for the exam.  A highly rated book that is available through this quick Amazon link is: "Post Office Jobs: Explore and Find Jobs, Prepare for the 473 Postal Exam, and Locate ALL Job Opportunities."

When you apply for a job with the postal service, they will schedule you for the correct exam. If you are to take one on your home computer, you usually have about two weeks to complete the process. The typical test on your home computer takes about one hour to complete. Before you begin the test, the instructions will tell you how much time you need to allow. Find a time when you will not be interrupted.

If you need to take the proctored exam at a test site, they will first email you a list of dates, times and locations. You choose the location and date that will be most convenient for you. They will then send you a confirmation e-mail. Bring this e-mail with you to the testing center. You will also need to bring your drivers license or other official photo I.D, your Login ID, your password, and the Candidate ID number that was assigned to you when you began the application process.

Types of USPS Careers Available

A search of the internet readily reveals a large number of open positions with the postal service. You may become a letter carrier, a clerk or you may work in mail processing. You can also work in one of the numerous post office driving jobs that are available. The post office not only needs truck drivers, but people who can maintain the trucks. Like any large corporation, there is a wide variety of essential USPS postal jobs and careers. For example, the USPS is currently recruiting people who have experience in sales to apply for their Sales and Marketing Jobs.

If you are interested in working in a temporary job, or doing holiday work, the postal service also has many job opportunities available. These temporary employees are called "Casual" employees. Many postal service employees began their career as Casual employees and, if they liked the job, they later applied for a permanent position. Casual employees can work for a maximum of 90 consecutive work days … but they can work for two 90 day terms and one 21 day term during a one year period. This means that they can work as many as 200 work days in a calendar year, which is nearly 10 months of work. NO EXAM IS REQUIRED to be a Casual postal service employee.

Postal Service Training

 The National Center for Employee Development is the employee training center for the U.S. Postal Service. That is where employees learn how to use and maintain the postal system's high tech mail processing equipment. They provide other training for new employees, as well.

Postal Service Career Development

 No matter what employee level you begin with, postal service careers offer many opportunities for advancement. For example, you can be trained and promoted to an Associate Supervisor position. The post office also trains its employees for management positions through their Managerial Leadership Program.

U.S. Postal Service Salaries

The United States Post Office pays its employees competitively. Casual postal employees earn $10.57 per hour or more. If they work the full 200 days they are allowed to work per year, this means they can $21,985 a year. Full time mail clerks, mail handlers and mail carriers start work at a beginning salary of around $40,000 a year, not including overtime pay.

In addition, USPS employees receive regular salary increases, and overtime pay, as well as extra financial rewards when they are required to work at night or on Sundays.

U.S. Postal Service Job Benefits

The Postal Service is connected with the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, which provides excellent health insurance coverage. They also receive some life insurance coverage. In addition, employees receive 13 vacation days per year during their first three years of employment, which increases to 20 days of vacation for years four through fourteen. After 15 years of working for the postal service, full-time employees will get 26 days of vacation per year … that's a full month of vacation! Employees are also allowed 13 days of paid sick leave each year. People who work for the post office get 10 paid holidays a year.

As you can see, the U.S. Postal Service is a large employer that offers a wide selection of job opportunities.

If you are looking for a new career, you may also be interested in reading these articles about other fields that may interest you:

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Preparing for Job Interviews

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