Mail, postal and related workers (NOC 1511)

About this job

Mail, postal and related workers process and sort mail and parcels in post offices, mail processing plants and internal mail rooms. They may also serve customers and record transactions at sales counters and postal wickets.

People in this occupation:

  • are employed by Canada Post Corporation, courier and parcel express services and establishments throughout the public and private sectors
Common job titles
  • assistant, mail room
  • clerk, express mail / registered mail
  • clerk, filing - mail / letter sorting
  • clerk, sub-post office
  • inserter, address-plate
  • mailer
  • assistant, mail room
  • clerk, express mail / registered mail
  • clerk, filing - mail / letter sorting
  • clerk, management services clerk
  • clerk, railway station mail / shipping
  • clerk, search / mail tracing

Duties

Mail, postal and related clerks carry out a variety of tasks in order to get mail from a sender to a receiver.

Postal clerks, mail sorters and mail room clerks perform various duties outlined below:

  • Postal workers calculate and affix the correct postage on letters, parcels and registered mail and receive payment from customers; sell stamps, prepaid mail and courier envelopes and money orders; route mail to the proper delivery stream; sign or obtain signatures from recipients for registered or special delivery mail and keep records; answer inquiries and complete forms regarding change of address, theft or loss of mail; and record and balance daily transactions.
  • Mail sorters sort mail according to destination; bundle, label, bag and route sorted mail to the proper delivery stream; and search directories to find the correct address for redirected mail.
  • Mail room clerks receive, process, sort and distribute incoming and outgoing mail, faxes, messages and courier packages manually or electronically; maintain address databases and produce personalized mailings; print and photocopy material, and address and stuff envelopes; weigh outgoing mail, calculate and affix proper postage, and bundle by postal code; and may operate and maintain print shop and mailing house equipment.

Work environment

Postal workers work inside post offices or in postal outlets located in stores, while mail sorters and mail room clerks may work in post offices or in mail processing plants. Work may be full time or part time, and may include evenings and weekends. Shift work may be required and workers might be required to work alone in smaller postal outlets.

Mail, postal and related workers use computer workstations to ship parcels and courier items, and to track sales. Much of the work is routine and these workers often have to lift heavy bags of mail. Workers are required to stand for the majority of their shift and some may be required to wear a uniform supplied by the employer.

Sorting and delivery jobs are often located in large urban centres. Postal wicket jobs are likely to be for private retail postal outlets, while entry-level postal wicket jobs in rural areas are most likely to be located in Canada Post Corporate post offices.

Insights from industry

Technological advances are resulting in a more automated industry. In addition, more people are opting to use electronic forms of correspondence, such as e-mail. As a result, the demand for workers in this occupation has been decreasing, and is expected to substantially decrease in the near future.

However, there will be some job openings available to replace workers who retire. In addition, due to the entry-level nature of these positions, there will be openings available due to people quitting or being promoted.

As noted above, advances in technology have had a significant impact on this the postal industry. As well, computer workstations are used more than ever as shipping is done with real time tracking. This allows mail and postal clerks to go online to trace where mail items are in the system.

There is some organizational change underway as Canada Post actively tries to streamline work processes to remain competitive and make the service more efficient for customers as well as the people who work in the organization. Postal wicket clerks are required to use more sales, marketing and customer service skills than in the past.

Canada Post is offering training within the organization to individuals in this occupational group who are interested in supervisor or management positions. Corporate postal jobs are highly sought after and may be more difficult to obtain due to high levels of competition.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

This occupation is considered an entry-level job and individuals can expect to work on a part time or casual basis prior to obtaining full-time work. Workers can progress to supervisory or facility management positions with additional training or experience.

Additional resources