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Postal carriers handle job with care

Registration open to take the Civil Service exam

Staff Writer

June 13, 2005 - Even though they say it's a "man's job," two U.S. Postal Service women say that they have seen big men who couldn't handle the job. "The job's both mental and physical," said Columbus mail carrier Linda Morris. But 50-year-old Gary Wilbourn, a Postal Service employee for 30 years, is apparently up for it -- he hasn't taken a sick day since 1980.

"I love to come to work in the morning," Wilbourn said. "Not everybody can do this job, but it's like any job -- you have to be dedicated to doing your best."

The Postal Service offers good pay and job security, and many applicants will be registering to take the test this week throughout Georgia. The Civil Service exam is for mail carriers, mail processing clerks, mail handlers and sales associates. Mail carriers make up the bulk of jobs in the service.

Wanda Thompson, a Columbus letter carrier since 1983, starts her day at 7:30 a.m., sorting mail until she gets on the road by 10 a.m.

"You are out on your own and the day goes by quickly, but you are expected to do your job efficiently," she said.

"If the volume (of mail) is light, they add to it. It's not a cushy job," Thompson said. "I am thankful I have the job, though. I am thankful that I make the pay."

The day seems to be constant action for Thompson, starting and stopping at some 600 mail boxes on her route. She electronically scans her first mail box and the last box on her route, just as she scanned a card when she left the building "so they can tell where you are," she said.

Thompson certainly thinks the job suits her.

"You are moving all the time," Thompson said. "I was always hyper as a child."

And Thompson's truck has no air conditioning. Her windows are open so she can reach out the window to deliver the mail.

"When it's hot, you sweat; they say it's healthy to sweat."

She has a choice of three designated places to take her 30-minute lunch break; she can't go anywhere she pleases.

The pay is good -- it starts at $16.65 to $17.69 per hour, or $666 to $700 per week -- but there are trade-offs. Even after 23 years, Thompson still works Saturdays with one three-day weekend every four weeks. She is off Sundays, and her second day off rotates depending on the week.

Before coming to the Postal Service, Thompson, 48, was a purchasing agent at Fort Benning, also a Civil Service job. She'll be able to retire at age 55 using her time in Civil Service, combining it with 30 years as a letter carrier.

Her favorite part of the job? "I guess being out every day, and not being stuck in where you got people on you. I like the freedom to just do my job."

Letter carrier Keith Ogletree, 47, said the primary qualification is to be in good shape. Ogletree -- who recently retired from the Army after 24 years -- has been delivering a rural route for two years.

"You have to deliver wheel rims sometimes, or exercise equipment," he said. Trays of mail can weigh 35 pounds, he said.

Applicants may need to show that they can lift mail bags of 70 pounds, and carry bags up to 35 pounds.

Thirty-year veteran Wilbourn said he knows why his job is important: "I deliver letters from loved ones -- from soldiers in Iraq, money market accounts, refund checks from the government. People know the day their bills come."

The United States Postal Service Engages Servigistics To Transform Service Parts Operations

ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 13, 2005-- Award-Winning Service Parts Management Solution Selected to Reduce Inventory, Maintain High Service Levels and Achieve Service Network Visibility for Nation's Postal Service

Servigistics, the leading provider of service parts management solutions, announced today that The United States Postal Service ("USPS") will implement the Servigistics solution to manage its nationwide service parts network, as part of the company's new Enhanced Spare Parts Initiative ("eSPIN Initiative").

With more than $350 million in service parts inventory supporting approximately 500 field stocking locations around the country, the USPS is replacing its first-generation service parts planning software with the Servigisitcs Service Parts Management Solution to maintain its high rate of mail processing equipment uptime, critical for the movement of postal mail product, while reducing excess inventory, increasing inventory turns, lowering costs and improving visibility across its service parts network. With the Servigistics solution, the USPS will also avoid new purchases for service parts, while increasing forecast accuracy and parts availability nationwide.

"The USPS is one of the most visible service companies in the world, touching the lives of millions of households and businesses every day," said Eric Hinkle, Servigistics CEO. "They join a growing list of companies who are replacing their first generation service parts planning systems with Servigistics, and to say we are thrilled the USPS has selected Servigistics as their partner for eSPIN is an understatement. We are confident in our ability to help them achieve their service-related goals, and look forward to a deep, lasting relationship."

In January of 2005, the USPS issued an extensive Request for Proposal (RFP) and evaluated several service parts management solution providers to replace its existing technology, a process that culminated in the selection of Servigistics. Some of the requirements included a web-based architecture, ease of use and multi-echelon optimization capability.

About Servigistics

Servigistics is the leading provider of service parts management solutions, and enables companies to transform their global service operations by dramatically increasing profitability, cash flow, and customer loyalty. Servigistics solutions have been deployed and proven globally by market-leading companies across industries in high technology, aerospace, automotive, telecommunications, medical equipment, consumer durables, and heavy industrial.

Servigistics clients are 100% referenceable, and include companies such as Agfa, Akibia, Avaya, Axcelis, CNT, Credence, Cray, DaimlerChrysler, Dainippon Screen, Dell, EMC, Ferrari, GM, Hamilton-Sundstrand, Honeywell, Hyundai, IKON Office Solutions, Infocus, KIA, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Motorola, MTD, NACCO Industries, PartsNow!, Patterson Dental, Radiant Systems, Saab, StorageTek, Subaru, Sun Microsystems, Suzuki, Synstar, Toshiba, Toyota, Unisys, the United States Postal Service, Volvo, and VW. Servigistics is a privately-held company headquartered in Atlanta, with regional headquarters in London and Tokyo and sales and service professionals around the world. Please contact Servigistics at 1-888-942-8623 or +1-770-565-2340, via e-mail at or at


Servigistics Public Relations
Valerie Holpp, +1-770-565-2340 ext. 250


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