Saturday, July 7, 2012

Postal Workers Are Putting Off Retirement

Note: PostalNews Blog has a different interpretation of the recent USPS employment statistics that is worth noting. It points out that thousands of employees have gone from part-time to full-time. The number of part-timers, meanwhile, is decreasing faster than the number of full-timers. So much for the goal of having a more flexible USPS workforce.

Talk of early-retirement incentives for U.S. Postal Service employees may have temporarily backfired: Career employees of the U.S. Postal Service have apparently been retiring in record low numbers

The number of full-time employees shrank by only 1.6% in the past year, according to a statistical report USPS released Friday. That’s a minuscule net attrition rate in an organization that is hardly hiring any new full-time employees, where half the employees are 50 or older, and where nearly half the employees are eligible to retire.

The net loss of only 8,141 full-timers between June 2011 and June 2012 is a far cry from the decrease of nearly 22,000 the previous year and more than 38,000 the year before that. The irony is that the Postal Service has placed increased emphasis on downsizing its workforce to cope with declining revenues.

The low attrition numbers back up what many USPS employees have been saying for more than a year: They are delaying retirement in hopes of bagging some incentive money.

Perhaps the pent-up interest in retiring is why nearly one in five eligible postmasters recently signed up for a $20,000 buyout incentive at a time when the job market for older workers is especially discouraging.

Because of no-layoff clauses and low employee turnover, the Postal Service has often resorted to targeted early-retirement incentives to thin its ranks.

Such buyouts end up saving the Postal Service far more money than they cost, an Office of Inspector General study concluded a year ago. But USPS’s cash crunch may hinder its ability to offer buyouts even if they will clearly save money down the road, the study noted.

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13 comments:

Anonymous said...

I am a CSRS Rural Carrier and could have retired four years ago but for the following; 1.) My high three is being demolished by route cuts etc., so I have to build up my pension by working the extra years and adding 2% per year; 2.) They can keep paying me the big bucks if they want to be stubborn. I don't HAVE to retire in this dangerous economy so why should I if the stingy PO (that won't even give a retirement "Gold Watch") won't give me an incentive as any decent company does; and 3.) retiree checks are notorious for NOT coming on time....or arriving insufficient. So I will wait until they get that straightened out.

biscuit said...

The legal max buyout for federal employees is still 25,000. That is what they used to offer, when it was close to a year's pay.

That is less than half a year's pay now, and the USPS wants to offer a max of 15,000, roughly 3 month's pay, before taxes.

This may work for some who can afford to retire now, but not for some that will be struggling in three months...actually the day they retire, because the buyout is paid at the END of the year, divided between TWO years!

Given the small amount, that is not even paid when you need it, which is up front, no wonder there are so few takers.

Even though 25,000 is still worth less than half of what it was, it would be the best good faith offer, especially if it were to be paid immediately, so people can make do until the retirement checks come in, which is a joke, and also tidy up their finances so they can live better on retirement pay.

Anonymous said...

I am a Mail Handler with 32 Years and gross $70 - $75,00 a Year, get the normal 6 Weeks a Year Vacation; the working conditions are sooo simple it isn't funny. Why would I want to retire .. for $15 G's ??? LOL

National Whistleblower Allen Carlton said...

The Postal Holocaust tactics are and continue to be Collusion / Terrorism. Management controls the Postal Inspection Agencies. It's like Congress they refuse to police themselves. Terrorism begets terrorism. YHVH solution Mongoose Protocol.

Anonymous said...

Great Post!, really hit the mark, most where we are will not go, unless they had planned to, many are not even waiting for the possible APWU VER, we want the Congress and 25k, which will be prior to end of 2012, so seeing how voluntary retirements have gone down dramatically and add the miniscule amount of mail-handlers craft that retired, even if PMG offered across the board incentives (VER and VSIP), USPS will not see many go now.

Anonymous said...

Why retire? OVERTIME making more $$$ than in past 25 years. Employees eligible for retirement not retiring less than $25000.
Congress and PRC creating Overtime dollars playing political games.

Anonymous said...

Ready to retire.Just waiting for the morons of the APWU to accept something.I could use my social security supplement and thrift savings to get by.If the union is scared of losing more members let us non-union members go.

Anonymous said...

Some area's such as the one I work in, they are asking all the retiring postmasters to stay on as PSE's at $11.00 an hour. When are the higher levels going to understand, that folks are tired of the micro-management and are ready to go. 50 more days and I'll be out with them.

hawki said...

Just give the freakin' incentive! Also some of the $ right away! None of us want to rape our savings, etc. to get by till these a- holes decide to cut a retirement check!

Anonymous said...

anonymous said... why don't they ask the carriers i'm sure they would take it

Anonymous said...

I contributed to my 401K when I started 25yrs ago. Have not touched it since. I have a nice TSP account built up that will allow me to draw from it until i'm 95yrs old. As a Mail Handler, I took the VER and can hardly wait until my last day (aug.31). I am 56 yrs old and will get my Special Supplement and a Pension besides what I draw from my 401K. I HAVE A LIFE BEYOND THE USPS! I appreciated everthing the USPS has done for my career, but I can hardly wait for the end. Never having to go there again and seeing the same missable faces makes me almost want to pee myself with happiness!!!!!

hawki said...

Don't retire , just stay on the payroll till u drop dead. Some people actually have a life outside the post office, and don't want to be there 10/12 freakin' hours a day! Get a life!

Anonymous said...

One of the main reasons federal employees are not retiring is because OPM takes 6 months to a year to finalize retirement packages. FERS retirees only receive about 45% of their promised income for almost a year. Be prepared. Sell max annual leave and get your TSP annuity purchased early (even though interest rates are at an historical low). This is a frustrating end to a long devoted to career to our country. Thanks OPM for nothing.........