OIG: S&DCs Fare Well, Communication Could Improve

The U.S. Postal Service’s newly launched Sorting and Delivery Centers (S&DC) have generally been successful, according to an agency watchdog audit, but pre-implementation communication with stakeholders could be better. 

The audit, released Sept. 12 by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) for the USPS, focused on the first six S&DCs opened in November 2022 and February 2023, with site observations conducted at each. 

These six locations were Athens, Georgia; Gainesville, Florida; Panama City, Florida; Woburn, Massachusetts; Utica, New York; and Bryan, Texas. During the site visits, inspectors found that overall facility operations were running smoothly. 

The report does state, though, that “opportunities exist to improve communication with other external stakeholders.” Specifically, USPS didn’t give “sufficient details” for consolidations caused by these S&DCs, according to the OIG, and when information was provided, it was often at the last minute. 

In its response, USPS management stated it provides information on S&DCs 30 days prior to launch but agreed there are opportunities to engage additional stakeholders. 

One other issue detailed within the report is that scheduled improvements were not completed prior to the facilities opening, with construction still ongoing. Management attributed this to the compressed schedules surrounding S&DCs.