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27 January 2011 Postal Bulletin – FSS options

Today’s bulletin includes just two DMM revisions:

  • Alternate Postage Payment Method for Greeting Cards Market Test
  • New Preparation Standards for Flat-Size Mailpieces Destinating in FSS Zones

The first item will not affect Presort but you may be interested in participating in the market test if you’re a greeting card company.

The new FSS (Flats Sequencing System) options don’t change how the FSS bundles are prepared, they just offer additional pallet levels where the bundles may be placed, since PostalOne has evidently been allowing FSS bundles put on non-FSS pallet levels anyway, and they even extend the usage to sacks, but only when there is not sufficient volume to make any pallet level (so only if there is less than 250 pounds of bundles to an FSS facility destination).

When these 5DG FSS scheme bundles are placed into sacks (or approved alternate containers), these containers must bear an Intelligent Mail (IM) tray label (really a tray/sack label but always referenced as a tray label).

As we speculate a little about why these rules came about, it almost reads as if someone were thinking of making the bundles by hand. I can just imagine someone thinking “After making FSS sort plan and facility pallets, if there are FSS bundles left do they need to be taken apart and remade as other bundle types? That’s not good! We should let those go into sacks, too!”

In a system using software, of course no bundles are physically built until after the sort is determined, so that’s not really an issue. And maybe that was not the thinking when the rules were created, but it does read that way to me.

Here at SAP, we will be assessing the interest level in these new options, so if you’re a customer interested in them be sure to let us know!

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