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Do Mailers Really Need Post-Presort Software?

February 29, 2024

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a mail service provider (MSP), commingler, or you handle your own mail. Anyone who submits Mail.dats to PostalOne!® — whether they’re a mailer of one million mail pieces a year or one billion — already uses data-cleansing and presort software to optimize data and workflow while maximizing postage savings. Presort creates your Mail.dats so you can submit jobs up to the Business Customer Gateway (BCG). Also, if you’re not in Full Seamless Acceptance yet, you likely will be soon.

So why would you need more software if presort creates your Mail.dats?

Post-presort solutions help to simplify, automate, and improve how jobs are processed. This can be a real game-changer because with a good solution, you don’t need a Mail.dat expert to make changes, confidently submit jobs, and you’ll significantly reduce the likelihood of costly errors occurring.

If you answer YES to any of the following questions, a post-presort solution can help you as your business evolves:

  • Do you receive Mail.dats from customers and find that they consistently provide files with missing or incorrect data?
  • Do you ever create Mail.dats and then find out that things like piece weights, dates, thickness, or tray sizes are not correct?
  • Are there times when, for any number of reasons, you can’t mail an entire job in one day (or are directed not to); is there an easy way to process a partial job?
  • Would it be helpful (and cost-effective) to be able to view and quickly combine trays, change destinations from SCF to NDC (or vice versa) and otherwise manipulate jobs?
  • How many times do you need to create courtesy pallets and/or sibling trays but find it’s in no way easy or simple?
  • Do you use drop shippers and have to wait 24-48 hours (or longer) to get pricing?
  • Have you looked at using Priority Mail Open and Distribute (PMOD), but it seems like too much of a hassle?
  • What if you could submit many jobs up to the Gateway simultaneously (without having to directly use the MDR Client)?
  • Do multiple people have to log into the Gateway to retrieve the USPS statements that they then have to copy, hand out, and file? Would an automated way to download statements and reports to a network folder be helpful?
  • Would it save you time and effort if the MDR Client was updated for you every time a new version was available?
  • Is there an easy way to check that all of your pallets make it onto the right trucks, and that the IMbs always match back to the eDoc?
  • Do you go to the Gateway daily to retrieve your Mailer Scorecard? Weekly? Or do you check only after you’ve had issues with errors?

Without a post-presort solution, you can’t update or add even basic information without having to run the whole file back through presort. This creates multiple versions of Mail.dats and exposes you to possible mismatches between the Mail.dat and the eDoc that’s submitted, resulting in undocumented piece errors.

Additionally, if you aren’t checking your scorecard at least weekly, you are missing an opportunity to correct issues early and pinpoint where they occur. Here are some of the ways a good post-presort solution helps you simplify tasks, avoid errors, and expedite processing:

  • Before producing your mail, check for any mismatches between CRID/MID/STID data and ensure that you’re using the latest labeling list and have applied incentives correctly. This saves you the time and cost of reprinting when you find out there are issues after the fact.
  • Make changes and update Mail.dats – not having to run files back through presort, saving time and removing the potential major issues due to multiple versions that are created.
  • Quickly compare drop shipping costs on-the-fly (vs. waiting 24-72 hours to get pricing from each vendor).
  • Easily calculate pricing for each entry point along with drop ship savings prior to purchasing postage, so you can easily comparison shop. Then, process PMOD shipments with or without using a Mail.dat.
  • Create necessary paperwork, submit jobs to PostalOne! automatically, so you don’t need to waste time and effort babysitting jobs in queue.
  • Automate the downloading of statements using a consistent naming convention so it’s quick and easy to find and forward statements to clients.
  • Provide additional QA at the end of the process to check that piece, tray, and pallet IMbs on the warehouse floor match your eDoc to avoid costly errors.
  • Offering a repository for all Mail.dats (and commingle data) makes it much easier to research and create documentation, should you ever get an assessment.

If you ever struggle with processing jobs or wonder if there’s an easier, faster way, the good news is that today’s post-presort solutions are equipped to help you improve your workflow and your bottom line.

Written by Lisa Leslie, Strategic Account Manager, BCC Software, a BlueCrest Company.

This article originally appeared in the November/December, 2022 issue of Mailing Systems Technology.

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