USPS OIG: How Effective is the Postal Service in Reducing Non-career Employee Turnover?

The Postal Service hires non-career employees and temporary employees to supplement its regular workforce to help reduce staffing costs. The non-career employees earn lower wages than full time staff. The turnover rate of non-career employees is higher than the Postal Service wants. Reducing non-career employee turnover decreases the cost of hiring and training new employees, and lessens the related job-performance impact. Although non-career employee turnover cannot always be avoided, the root causes should be understood and addressed where possible.

We are conducting this audit to assess the Postal Service’s effectiveness in reducing non-career employee turnover and evaluating the underlying reasons for non-career turnover.

  • What do you think are the underlying reasons for non-career employees leaving the Postal Service?
  • What should the Postal Service be doing to help retain non-career employees?
  • What impacts have you seen in the Postal Service workplace as a result of non-career employee turnover?
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More hours!!!! We can’t afford our bills on one day a week AND be mandated to be on call every other day of the week!!!

Amen to that! 11 years still no route! We should be able to put into tsp have some retirement of somekind available. Because we are treated like crap! On call everyday if someone calls in sick I get a 4:30 am call to work. Doesn’t matter if I have another appointment that day. Or Carrier wants off tomorrow and I get a 8 pm phone call the night before? Give me 3 guaranteed days a week let us work 2-3 routes not just one. Make it pt job with benefits. I have seen how awful subs have been treated. 3… Read more »

Here are a couple of suggestions,
Don’t treat the RCA’s like they are useless and have no lives.
Give paid time off, and not be harassed for asking for it.
Better benefits.

We should all be career employees. We should all earn sick leave, vacation days and especially retirement!!!

Oh where to start. Let them contribute to a 401K. If we could have kept a lot of the older RCAs we would have people who actually care about doing the job with pride.

I believe new hires should receive more on the job training. There’s a lot to learn when you are hired on.
I was only allowed 3 days of training and then thrown in the office by myself. It was kind of like, “Here you go. Sink or swim”
I almost sank.

I think if RCA’s were given some paid time off and not kept as a non-career employee over a year of service folks may hang around.

Aux employees shouldn’t have to run Amazon on Sundays and Holidays. It takes their 1 day off away.

One of the main issues is pay. Why is there n step increase in place for non career employees? It is sad that someone who is hired today will make the same amount as me. I know 18 routes and a brand new RCA is making the same amount per hour as I am. Benefits are also an issue. Why are benefits such as vacation not earned by a non career employee who works as much as a regular? RCA are also treated poorly by management and made to take on the same responsibilities as a regular and receive no… Read more »

How about better leadership and treat employees with more respect.

I agree!!

In my opinion RCA’s have the worst position in the PO. I recently received a 31 hour aux rt. I have been on the job for 13 years. This is the first sign of moving up I have received. The man who had the route before me was an RCA for 30 plus years and never made regular he just quit working. The new people see this, I have been asked “You have been here how long and you are still and RCA?” I love my job but this is so wrong.

Having no retirement, no affordable health insurance, no vacation, no schedule balance ( you can work 6 days 1 week and be lucky to get 2 the next makes it hard to get a 2nd job or support your family) and low pay are just a few things that could increase retention of RCA. The time frame to become a regular is ridiculous who wants to be treated so badly for 5-15 yrs before even starting your own career. Especially when there are other jobs that have better benefits and paid time off to enjoy our families. I love my… Read more »

At my office we don’t lack hours. I’ve been working 50+ every week since beginning mid December. Don’t get me wrong, I love the hours, but management needs to do a better job at giving CCAs, at minimum, 1 day off a week. I work 7-9 days in a row and to have to that for minimum 2 years, in my office atleast, is a major reason there is a high turnover.

Give us leave, not require us to be at the beck and call of our regulars, and don’t make us wait 10-15 years to go career. We earn nothing during the time we spend trying to go full time, it’s literally all for nothing! Give us a little incentive to want to stay and a piece of mind that all those years worked account for something. Some subs work 10 years before going ful time and have nothing to show for it, someone of them start approaching retirement age not long before going full time. RCAs deserve better and that’s… Read more »

First: The RCA’s should be guaranteed the same basic benefits as other temporary employees such as accumulating time leave. Second: A certain amount of guaranteed work hours a week. Third: A pay raise for a certain amount of time they have stayed with the Post office because RCA’s should expect some incentives to staying with a job that offers little stability while still being loyal.

I’m working 6 days a week 3 when it’s slow and i cant get good insurance like the career employees, dont earn leave dont earn sick time. No vacation time. Staffing agencies offer more benefits than the usps. If I’m good enough to work 6 days a week just like career employees, so the regulars can go have off days why cant I earn leave and have the same benefits as them? I do the same job and go help other routes and dont get to spend tone with my family because I always answer when the USPS calls. I… Read more »

More Guaranteed hours for sure!!! Not so much of the yo-yo hours, overtime one week then one day the next. The hours need to be steady and not just one day a week!!!!
Some benefits would be nice; sick leave and vacation time.

From my own personal experience, I believe CCA should have more than just one day off a week IF THAT!! ive gone up two 2-3 weeks without a day off working 10-12 hours everyday back to back. This takes a huge toll on the body and on families. Cant begin to tell you have many life events i missed out on and when we request days off they never get approved anyways. When we “burn” a route and come back early (so maybe we can leave early to be with our families) we are congratulated with more work waiting for… Read more »

How does doing the same work (and usually the heavier days) deserve less pay? Most of us hire in to stay long term and be career employees (I have been waiting 2o yrs-and I haven’t ran yet) so why should we’ve classified as less? Hire us in as career employees knowing we will have benefited based on hours worked. Yes, earned sick and vacation time. Qualified for insurance w/out having to pay all out of pocket. Rom what, the measly paychecks? We are lucky to try and make ends meet on the few hours we are given. And trying to… Read more »

Underlying reason depend on the office. Not enough hours or too many hours. At some office routes are too heavy and rcas get bounced around too much to learn before Bri g reprimanded for not finishing “fast” enough.

To help retain employees there needs to be an incentive to stay, such as earning leave.
Not working Rcas consistly 6-7 days a week.
Hire enough arcs to cover Sundays, perhaps.

The impact in the turnover rate is terribly low moral of the rcas who choose to stay. They are under appreciated and again depending on the office, overworked.

The best way that USPS can reduce non career employee turnover is to hire sufficient numbers. Non career employees leave because they are overworked due to insufficient staffing. Unless you begin to hire sufficient leave replacements, regular carriers will be jumping ship too. Regulars are being forced in on days off and are having leave denied because local management is not hiring leave replacements. There has to be a reason they are not. It’s almost as if local management are being pressured NOT to hire non career employees. Is it to save money? My office has to RCAs to cover… Read more »

I work with toxic career employees who are paid and benefited better while i do the majority of the inside work.

Unfortunately the Post Office has become very dissfunctional starting at the top. I am a veteran carrier and I work just as hard, just as many off days and holidays. 7 days a week with 10 hour days is the new normal for postal letter carriers. The problem I see with the new hires is they have been misinformed about the job discritption and what to expect from working for the post office. I also have seen a lot of new hires want the same job load as a veteran employee without putting in the time. New hires are not… Read more »

What do you think are the underlying reasons for non-career employees leaving the Postal Service?
Unknown hours/schedule, on-call (though it’s not in contract), toxic management, being overworked and stressed out.

What should the Postal Service be doing to help retain non-career employees? All employees should garner the SAME rights as career employees, ie: no employee should have to wait to become “career.”

What impacts have you seen in the Postal Service workplace as a result of non-career employee turnover?
Toxic management, overworked.

Set schedules. Its 2019 people are not doing that anymore on jobs. You are grown but dont know what day you’re going to be off, where you will be working, what times you’ll be working, if you will have a week with good hours or not at all. Career and management treat you like step kids that they dont want. You are used to the max and treated badly as you do so. Stop station split shifts. Stop split off days. You wont get weekends off until you are too old to enjoy them. Having to be temp for up… Read more »

Let them contribute to a 401k, something for their retirement!! Let them earn sick and annual days!! When new hires hear how long subs are working to become a regular and start earning benefits it’s very discouraging and they leave. Some are working one day a week and maintaining a vehicle and it just isn’t worth it. BENEFITS, RETIREMENT and TREATED FAIRLY would help keep subs around.

People don’t stay in the job because it’s a dead end job. There’s little hope of being promoted even though you slave for years. Add in the lack of affordable health insurance, no time off, and no retirement….it’s a hopeless job.

It takes too long to become career, not enough hours available or benefits for waiting to become a regular! The time waiting to become career should count for something, most of us will be too old to retire by the time we make regular on the rural side! The way we are worked also makes it nearly impossible to work another part time job to pay our own bills!

We should all have the vacation, we should all have some kind of insurance that you pay for, we should all have at least 2 days off, we should all have the holiday pay, I’ve been with the post office for 14yrs and i’m still a rca. I finally got A auxiliary route but I still have to work my route and others when they call in sick we do not have enough people to do any of the routes. Sometimes I have to do 3 different routes with no Extra incentives. Yes I get paid for it but where’s… Read more »

The postal service has a high turnover rate because your not offering the RCAs anything other than a pay check. No retirement savings, no vacation/sick, and no affordable insurance. Some of these RCAs are working 10 years or more. There needs to be an incentive of some sorts to encourage people to stay with it. I mean it’s very expensive to keep up with maintenance on these vehicles. Sometimes most of my paycheck if not all at times goes to keeping these vehicles running. I get it they’ll trying to save money but we are trying to make it. They… Read more »

We have formed an RCA support group of about 10,000 members. The NRLCA blames the USPS and the USPS blames the NRLCA. We have wrote resolutions to the NRLCA. We have presented ideas on Idea Smart. We have RCA’s going to UPMA meeting trying to influence management. When new RCA’s see the enormous amount of work this 10,000 member group has done for a decade, and we see our pay rate reduced, routes manipulated down so their never reach full-time, and other adverse actions, what message does that send? The message is no hope, and people quit. Many career employees… Read more »

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I’m a former CCA from the Bronx NY. First we shouldn’t be mandated to work 12 hour days when we aren’t even guaranteed a day off. I worked for 3 weeks straight during the month of December without a day off sometimes more then 12 hours a day. How are we supposed to be safe with no rest. Converting to regular takes to long 3 to 4 years! That’s not fair we are worked like robots and have no benefits what’s so ever. We have lives other then the post office, we have families! We aren’t trained properly and are… Read more »

A lot of the issue is lack of communication. They throw you out on your own with little to no instructions then talk to you like your an idiot when you’re not doing something right. Where I am is extremely understaffed. We arent pulling staff from other offices. Yet were forcing everyone to work crazy long hours. Little to no days off. We get schedules on a daily basis then it’s your fault if you werent scheduled when you should have been. This is the most unorganized place I have ever work. I keep trying to find a reason to… Read more »

I was a rca for 14 years. At about the 12 year mark I’d have quit if i hadn’t been so close. At some point it seems the postal service decided it would try to make a go of it with as few rural employees as possible while focusing solely on the city side of hiring. Any potential recruits we had solicited were cajoled into going to city side while the very few rcas we had were worked into the ground. I myself was made to work in excess of 20days in a row. While this was great for some,… Read more »

Both RCAs and CCAs should be some type of career status. We should earn sick leave and more vacation time and our benefits should be equal to that of career status. I don’t think I need to be paid what a career employee who’s been working for 30 years makes but I strongly believe we all should be making $20 and up per hour. The post office runs ragged those good hard working employees until they get sick of it and fight back or leave to pursue something better and or more rewarding. And I guarantee you these things are… Read more »

I agree

Start by treating RCA’s like human beings. More than 1 day a week guaranteed. Annual and sick leave

Most Non career RCAs are working as much as full time. They dont earn sick time, retirement or annual leave. If you work over a certain number of hours per year you should earn leave! Also after over 2 years I make the same hourly wage as a new hire. That isn’t fair, we deserve raises!

Give the new hires and actual work schedule with set days off. Quit running people 14 day in a row without a day off. Let them have access to a retirement plan and give more benefits.

Better management i have seen offices with bad management and all the Rcas leave either quit or transfer and district doesn’t blink an eye… There is a reason people leave an office, also benefits would be nice as well

I’m a current RCA. Been with the poatal service going on 3 years now. I’d love to earn health benefits, retirement and vacation days. Seeing how CCAs are awarded all this and go full time in a year after their 90 days. But despite wanting that I would sacrifice all of that if you did a management overhaul most of thwm are abusive and dont know how to do their job moat dont know specifically how to pay rural carrier associates especially if its green card time and aplitting a route between them and the evaluated pay the route generates.… Read more »

CCAs don’t get health benefits, retirement or sick leave nor do we go career in 90 days or a year.

I myself have been a RCA for 15 years. In that time I have seen so many newer employees in different crafts come and move right into career positions. They sometimes choose to work hours at another office so im here doing their job!They may have been with the post office 2 years and promoting right into management. I get to hear all about their insurance, tsp and plans of retirement having their life all planned out. Then there’s me. I can’t even make an appointment and keep it. Its been hell on my personal life and I’ve disappointed countless… Read more »

Give RCAs the same benefits as city CCAs.

Even part time clerks get better benifits than a RCA working 6 days a week

More hours to work are needed. It is a sink or swim thing, know the route but if you only train for 2-3 days how well can you know the route? If I don’t get steady work I would leave, I fill in now with some other work available to me now but that’s not forever. There should be almost full time work for RCA relieving other carriers but it doesn’t happen. It’s not a good program, mgmt expects timely and quality delivery but treating RCA s like disposable is no good. If it was food we would starve with… Read more »

Maybe the postal service should offer all bid positions that go unbid locally to the nation for transfers before hiring and training new people. There are a lot of people wamting to transfer bit short sighted managers prefer to hire new people that are basicly slaves for years until they become career employees. Nation wide bidding would create more opportunity for career employees and save the postal service money training new employees.

Do away with contract routes and give it to your dedicated Rca that has been working years for a career position.

No one should be working with zero benefits! The insurance is impossible to afford for a family when you’re guaranteed one day a week. The insurance is the worst I’ve ever had. Zero retirement. You have to have your own car, pay for your insurance and repairs …off that one guaranteed day a week. McDonald’s pays $15 an hour PLUS benefits, yet we make $17.78 with NONE?! Our Thanksgiving & Christmas is ruined because of amazon packages & lots of overtime. We’re expected to sit by the phone in case we’re needed. It’s impossible to get a second job because… Read more »

Consistency. Have you ever had to have multiple jobs? Say, a full time and time as an RCA. When we are working our full time job, we are expected to drop everything to assist the USPS….threatening our position with our other employer. The USPS expects us to bend over backwards, usually in a povertous state because we can’t afford a single guaranteed day of work a week.

The USPS is playing a game of tug-of-war with our other employers, and RCAs are the rope.

I’m fortunate to be an RCA that gets work, actually it’s too much at times…some weeks we never see days off. It would be nice to have sick days & benefits for RCA’S that work just as much, if not more than career carriers!! I think lots of money could be saved by eliminating some of the middle management. As an RCA, I know what is expected of me…and I do my job…WELL. When you treat an employee with respect & dignity, you’re more likely to retain them!!

In our area it is because they are overworked and mistreated. No regulation on amount of days worked. No rest. You complete your route and have to go back out and help slower carriers. Not enough training and expectations are too high. No support ir encouragement. Service time is wasted rather than being applied to years of service. The list goes on…

The POV requirement is incredibally daunting. Combined with lack of benefits AND time as RCA dosent count as time when we finally do go full time? Deff makes it understandable why there is such a high turnover rate. Overworking can be handled, but the investment in a job you are scared into how quick you can be fired and no benefits for who knows how many years? I would say needs a full rework imo.

PSEs in our stations do not know their schedules. Their schedules are day to day and they cant plan daycare doctors appointments or even special events that come up in life. Bring back the PTF and let them earn sick leave annual leave and put money towards retirement. I started as a PTF in 1993 and in 1994 was converted to full time. I love working for the postal service and working for our customers. I think the generation of new hires do not look at the Postal Service as a career.