USPS Office of Inspector General Learns About Nonprofit Customers

October 3, 2018

The U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General invited the Alliance of Nonprofit Mailers to participate in an interactive session with many of its staff with the goal of furthering their understanding of this important customer segment.  We responded by presenting on October 3 an all-star panel of nonprofit mailers who exemplified the breadth and diversity of nonprofit organizations and roles within them.

The panel was comprised of Trista Niswander, business relations of Our Sunday Visitor, Traci Lucien, vice president, print of AARP, Jim Horan, regulatory affairs director of the National Association of Rural Electric Utilities, Sandra Miao, membership director of the National Wildlife Federation, and Sr. Georgette Lehmuth, president and CEO of the National Catholic Development Conference.

The hour and a half session turned out to be a great way to learn and dialog about the many purposes for nonprofit organizations and their many uses of postal mail of all classes and types.  Over 40 OIG employees participated in person with over 80 following along by phone.

We discussed many important issues, including the recent Federal Register Notice and its impact on nonprofits.  Mostly, the focus was on the potential benefits of greater dialog between the USPS service provider and its rate-paying customers by segment.  Nonprofits generate over one-tenth of all mail volume comprised of First Class, Marketing, Periodicals and Packages.

Knowing what and how it mails and what is important to it—rates below inflation, meeting service standards, and no surprise or disruptive rules changes—would go a long way toward maximizing the mutual benefits of the postal system for all participants.