BEND, OR -- The U.S. Postal Service is on a hiring frenzy in Central Oregon. Like every industry, mail service is struggling with staffing shortages. "As an example," says USPS's Kim Frum, "In Bend, we don’t have enough carriers. So, what we actually have been doing: we are bringing in volunteers from other locations, sometimes from neighboring states to help get the mail delivered and help maintain that service." She acknowledges using "borrowed" carriers has led to delivery slow-downs, especially in the High Desert, "Those carriers are not as familiar with the neighborhoods as, say, a regular carrier. So, on very rare occasion, in some cases, not all deliveries may be made in one day." When that happens, Frum says, that mail is prioritized for next-day delivery. "We all want to do the best job we can and it bothers us that there are issues with the mail delivery."
"We are in very difficult staffing needs, but we’re not cutting back service or funding in our offices. We are just aggressively trying to hire staff for our offices, especially in Oregon. We are looking for good, competent people to join the postal service, to enjoy the benefits that we have." Frum says those benefits include starting pay between $19 and $20 an hour, paid holidays and room for advancement.
While there is a big push to increase staffing in Central Oregon, Frum says the agency is trying to hire more workers everywhere, "We are trying to blanket the state and get as many people as we possibly can. Our goal is hundreds of people. However, we will take more than that if we get qualified applicants." She says rural areas are the most difficult to staff.
USPS held severel job fairs in Bend and Redmond last month; Frum says there was a lot of interest from Central Oregonians and she's optimistic about new hires. The agency hosts three more hiring events in the Portland area this month. Frum says applications can also be submitted at any post office and online.
March USPS Job Fairs:
Date Location Time Saturday, Mar. 4 Oregon City Post Office
19300 Molalla Av.
Oregon City, OR 97045
10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturday, Mar. 4 Portland Processing &
7007 NE Cornfoot Rd.
Portland, OR 97218
10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturday, Mar. 18 Gresham Post Office
103 W Powell Blvd.
Gresham, OR 97030
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.