Full Service Compliance Step 5: Feedback / Special Services

Long after you've built your IMb™ infrastructure, gotten your Mailer ID, produced your mailings and logged your eDocs, so-called “feedback” services provide enhanced value to IM barcode jobs. These services are made possible with the unprecedented data depth of the Intelligent Mail barcode – and represent the true untapped potential of postal commerce in an Intelligent Mail future.

Feedback is the information the USPS® returns to you concerning address accuracy and scheduling. It answers questions like:

  • When did the USPS® assume responsibility for the mailing?
  • What addresses were undeliverable?
  • What addressees moved without sending notice?
  • What addressees' mail forwarding has expired?

The United States Postal Service views these feedback services as the biggest value associated with Full Service Intelligent Mail – right now, more than even the enhanced discounts allowable for Full Service IMb™ jobs.

Before Intelligent Mail, the USPS® offered mail-tracking services for a fee through products such as Confirm. With Intelligent Mail Full Service, the USPS® offers free mail tracking and address correction services, Start the Clock and Full Service ACS (Address Correction Service).

Section 4 of A Guide to Intelligent Mail for Letters and Flats describes the differences in output format between Full Service, ACS, OneCode ACS, and Traditional ACS.

Obtaining Reports

Once granted access to Full Service ACS, use the following procedure to obtain reports.

  1. Log in to the Business Customer Gateway
  2. Select Mailing Reports
  3. Select Full Service Reports
  4. Select the desired report
  5. Enter search criteria and download format


Bear the following notes in mind as you plan your migration to Intelligent Mail Full Service.

Full Service ACS

For Standard Mail, the issues that Full Service ACS identifies must be resolved within 30 days. The corresponding deadline is 60 days for Periodicals. If corrections are not made within the deadlines, charges will apply. This does not apply to First Class Mail.

A COA notice will be considered a duplicate if the name and address on the COA record matches the name and address of another COA record previously sent to the Mail Owner (or the designated recipient of the Mail Owner) of the mailpiece as identified in the electronic documentation.

A Nixie record will be considered a duplicate if the delivery point of the Nixie record is the same as the delivery point of another Nixie record previously sent to the Mail Owner (or the designated recipient of the Mail Owner) of the mailpiece as identified in the electronic documentation.

First Class and Standard mailings must meet MoveUpdate requirements.

Start the Clock/Container Visibility

To achieve a target Day 0, the Start the Clock event must meet the deadlines corresponding to the method of induction (handoff) into the USPS® system. The verification deadline (Critical Acceptance Time or CAT) and the entry deadline (Critical Entry Time or CET) are set by the facilities performing the verification and entry. A Customer-Supplier Agreement or CSA provides an alternative. It is often designed to circumvent peak processing hours, so its deadlines are often earlier than those of the CAT or CET.

Start the Clock is not end-to-end tracking; its reports are limited to the time a mailing enters the USPS® mailstream. Complete tracking till requires a paid subscription to OneCode Confirm.

Day 0 Determination

The following table displays the relationship between induction methods, Start the Clock events, and Day 0 determination. If the Start the Clock event meets the appropriate deadline, Day 0 is the day of the Start the Clock event, otherwise, Day 0 is the following acceptance day.


Induction Method Examples Start the Clock Event Determines Day 0
  • BMEU or Post Office
  • Origin Entry
Time of Arrival
  • CAT the day of the Start the Clock event
  • CSA
  • PVDS
  • Destination Entry
Large catalogs / periodicals If late, unload start time. If not late, earlier of

  • FAST appointment time
  • Unload start time
  • CET the day of the Start the Clock event
  • CSA
  • DMU
  • USPS® transported
  • Origin Entry
First-Class Mail Mail Ready time per electronic documentation
  • CSA
  • DMU
  • Mailer transported
  • Origin Entry
Expedited Plant Load If late, unload start time. If not late, earlier of

  • FAST appointment time from CSA
  • Unload start time
  • CSA