Career summary

Details for Mail Clerks and Mail Machine Operators, Except Postal Service


Description

Prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. Use hand or mail handling machines to time stamp, open, read, sort, and route incoming mail; and address, seal, stamp, fold, stuff, and affix postage to outgoing mail or packages. Duties may also include keeping necessary records and completed forms.

Tasks

  • Wrap packages or bundles by hand, or by using tying machines.
  • Verify that items are addressed correctly, marked with the proper postage, and in suitable condition for processing.
  • Remove containers of sorted mail or parcels and transfer them to designated areas according to established procedures.
  • Sort and route incoming mail, and collect outgoing mail, using carts as necessary.
  • Affix postage to packages or letters by hand, or stamp materials, using postage meters.
  • Determine manner in which mail is to be sent, and prepare it for delivery to mailing facilities.
  • Accept and check containers of mail or parcels from large volume mailers, couriers, and contractors.
  • Seal or open envelopes, by hand or by using machines.
  • Weigh packages or letters to determine postage needed, using weighing scales and rate charts.
  • Operate embossing machines or typewriters to make corrections, additions, and changes to address plates.
  • Inspect mail machine output for defects and determine how to eliminate causes of any defects.
  • Remove from machines printed materials, such as labeled articles, postmarked envelopes or tape, and folded sheets.
  • Release packages or letters to customers upon presentation of written notices or other identification.
  • Operate computer-controlled keyboards or voice recognition equipment to direct items according to established routing schemes.
  • Answer inquiries regarding shipping or mailing policies.
  • Lift and unload containers of mail or parcels onto equipment for transportation to sortation stations.
  • Contact delivery or courier services to arrange delivery of letters and parcels.
  • Place incoming or outgoing letters or packages into sacks or bins based on destination or type, and place identifying tags on sacks or bins.
  • Clear jams in sortation equipment.
  • Mail merchandise samples or promotional literature in response to requests.
  • Adjust guides, rollers, loose card inserters, weighing machines, and tying arms, using rules and hand tools.
  • Read production orders to determine types and sizes of items scheduled for printing and mailing.
  • Sell mail products, and accept payment for products and mailing charges.
  • Start machines that automatically feed plates, stencils, or tapes through mechanisms, and observe machine operations to detect any malfunctions.
  • Insert material for printing or addressing into loading racks on machines, select type or die sizes, and position plates, stencils, or tapes in machine magazines.
  • Stamp dates and times of receipt of incoming mail.
  • Add ink, fill paste reservoirs, and change machine ribbons when necessary.
  • Use equipment, such as forklifts and automated "trains," to move containers of mail.
  • Fold letters or circulars and insert them in envelopes.

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

Education, training, experience

  • Education - These occupations usually require a high school diploma.
  • Training - Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.
  • Experience - Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

Knowledge

Skills

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