Bringing Certified Mail into the 21st Century
Certified Mail, a service that provides a mailer with a receipt and verification that an item was delivered or that a delivery attempt was made, was launched by the Postal Service in 1955. Today, nearly 200 million pieces of Certified Mail are delivered each year.
Certified Mail serves a critical legal purpose as proof that documents were mailed and notices were received. For many mailers, using this service is still a manual process. They fill out each form, place the barcoded sticker on the envelope, and then collect and store the forms when they are returned. Certified Mail is expensive to prepare and difficult to track.
According to the U.S. Postal Service Office of the Inspector General’s Delivering Piece of Mind: Certified Mail and the U.S. Postal Service report, the time has come to focus on enhancing Certified Mail. The challenge is that many of the standard actions around Certified Mail still involve physical process, and the OIG’s report states that modernizing the service to better meet mailers’ needs is necessary.
The Postal Service is bridging the gap between physical services and customers’ needs for digital information. For example, Informed Delivery, which provides users with digital previews