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Cutting the line

Mobile devices helping reduce customer wait times

Bozeman, MT, Postal Support Employee Katie Marsh uses an mPOS device to help a customer with a package.

Postal retail employees are continuing to use new mobile technology for routine transactions, reducing the amount of time many customers spend waiting in line.

The mobile Point of Sale (mPOS) devices are modified iPods that come with a portable receipt and postage printer. Employees use the devices to scan and accept prepaid packages and sell stamps and other products.

“I really liked being able to pull someone out of the line, take care of them and make it easier on everybody,” said Bozeman, MT, Postal Support Employee Katie Marsh, who began using mPOS last fall.

The Postal Service began testing the devices in 2013. The technology is now being rolled out to more Post Offices, part of a broader effort to provide employees with tools to better perform their jobs.

Layton, UT, Postmaster Shane Stricklan said mPOS frees up retail employees to assist customers with more time-consuming transactions, such as money orders and international packages.

“Traditional retail clerks only have access to the next person in line, while mPOS clerks have access to the entire line,” Stricklan said. “A clerk with mPOS can pull customers from the line, sell them some quick stamps [and] send them on their way.”

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