Seasonal work ordinarily refers to either the summer season or the holiday season. Companies bring in help for those months in which they experience higher volume. However, the pandemic gives new meaning to the phrase. While many industries face downturns amid social distancing orders, the US Postal Service finds itself busier than ever. As a result, the USPS is looking to hire.
Since most retail stores closed under Governor Gavin Newsom’s executive order, people resort to online shopping. They receive their purchased items in the mail, delivered directly to your door. Companies like FedEx, UPS, and Amazon all provide shipping services that compete with USPS. Despite that competition, however, USPS struggles to keep up with its influx of packages.
“The volume that we’ve experienced here at L.A. is more than any place else in the country,” says Daniel Hirai, a plant manager with USPS. He says the jump exceeds 40 percent the usual workload.
USPS Seeks to Add to Thinly Stretched Workforce
Hirai also said employees at the South Los Angeles facility work beyond a normal 8 hours to accomplish their task. Some work up to 12 hours a day to facilitate the processing of packages.
Presently, the facility processes in excess of 700,000 packages a day. On a day earlier this month, they nearly surpasses 800,000. For comparison, busy days during the holiday season see roughly 600,000 packages processed at that facility.
Total across the month of April, Hirai said they processed 14 million. Currently, about 2,000 employees handle that workload. Hirai says he want to add another 500 to ease the strain. While seasonal, he says those hired could attain full-time status after the busy covid season finishes – at an uncertain future date.
Governor Newsom recently unveiled his phases approach to reopening the economy. While some businesses may reopen in the coming weeks, it looks like months before a full recovery. And with a potential second wave this winter, USPS probably isn’t slowing down anytime soon.