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PFP Needs an Overhaul
By Peter Piteira
Vice President of Orlando, FL, Branch 321
For the past few years, the USPS has pushed Lean Six Sigma as a way to improve productivity and quality and reduce operational costs. It works generally in this way: A problem is identified and a team of Lean Six Sigma green belts, led by a black belt, looks into ways to fix the problem.
Part of solving the problem is to come up with a goal—a SMART goal. SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely. I propose the USPS uses the Lean Six Sigma concept to fix the EAS Pay-for-Performance (PFP) program.
The agency could start by making NPA goals SMART goals. I have worked in different states and many offices throughout my career in the Postal Service. Regardless where and for whom one works, every week there’s a different priority.
One week, POT needs to be eliminated; the next week, carriers back by 1800 is paramount. The following week, we need to reduce sick leave. Then, we must reduce overtime. Of course, STC scans on all parcels always is a goal. And at the beginning of each quarter, nothing matters except getting the Gold Star.
It would be so much easier if we could get a PFP system that we all could understand and that offered challenging, but realistic, goals. Today’s PFP is too complex, the goals are not measurable in a timely manner and they often are unattainable. Many of the goals are not controllable by station managers, postmasters or supervisors.
In sum, the whole EAS PFP system needs to be overhauled. It works about as well as today’s LLV fleet.