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Employee Review of United States Postal Service - Check out more reviews of working at United States Postal Service

3.6Rating Details
Job Security3
Work/Life Balance4
Career Growth2
Work Environment5

From Wichita, KS — 12/12/2008

I worked as a Data Conversion operator (temporary position) at the Wichita REC Center for 2 months from October through December of 2008. In this job, you sit at a computer where mail images are displayed. Based on the type of mail you are working on, you key in the information requested and move on to the next image. Here are the Pros and Cons of this job:


1. The pay is good ($14.22 if you work after 6pm)
2. You get 1 hour of Paid Time for every 20 hours you work
3. You are allowed to listen to an MP3 player while keying
4. You work an hour and get 5 minutes break, then work another hour and get 10 minutes break. The pattern repeats for additional hours worked
5. The environment is good where you are basically keying addresses throughout the shift. Time passes by fast
6. You can choose from 4 hr to 8 hr shifts, working from 20 hrs to 40 hrs a week based on your needs.


1. No Health Insurance benefits for the first year. You become eligible for this benefit after 1 year of 'temporary' service but have to pay 100% of the premium
2. Only 2 hours of work are guaranteed. If work is slow on a day and you normally work 8 hour shifts, they can ask you to go home after 2 hours. (Note: This was not an issue during the busy months when I worked)
3. Job is very fast paced. Can be overwhelming at times.
4. Some supervisors can be impatient
5. You get 5 days a year that you can request to take off without pay. You can only select days that are open for this type of time off. When I started in October, no days were available until January of next year to use for unpaid time off.
6. You get 2 personal days a year to use for unscheduled time off without getting a red mark on your record.
7. Mandatory extended hours for everyone in December (6-10 hrs each day, 6 days a week)
8. No fixed time to leave. You can be asked to stay longer if needed.

You have to take a written test (passing score is 70%) and a typing pass before you are considered for this job. I work as a supervisor for an IT company during the day and took this position at the REC Center as a second job signing up for 4 hr shifts, 5 days a week. During orientation, they were honest about letting people know that they may be working more hours than they sign up for because of the busy holiday season. Once hired, you go through 3-4 days of classroom training followed by self-based computer exams you have to pass before you can start. You get 58.5 hours to complete around 39 tests and since you are paid for these tests you only get one opportunity. If you do not pass all these tests in the available hours you will NOT be considered for this position again. The tests are not too bad if you stay focused; I finished all of mine in 32 hours. One other thing to keep in mind is that the earlier you finish these tests, the better chance you get of choosing a schedule that you need.

In my opinion, you need the following 3 skills to be successful at this job: Good memory, Accuracy, and Speed. Over the period of time, you will learn several different types of mail with their respective rules (this is where you need to memorize all the rules). Every 30 days, you are evaluated on how fast you type and how many mistakes you make.

Overall, a good place to work at if you can handle a 2nd job or do not care about the benefits. the chances of moving to a career position (full time) are also very slim as it can take several years before a position even becomes available. My supervisor was very nice but there are some that can be impatient, especially during the hectic holiday months.
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