The United States Postal Service (USPS) remains an integral part of the economy and the country’s infrastructure even as the popularity of electronic payments and digital transactions have dramatically reduced the volume of mail processed by the USPS.
Of the more than 150 billion pieces of mail delivered in 2016, the most widely used service of the USPS is its first class mail service. As the volume of all mail has been dwindling, so has first class mail, falling from over 103 billion pieces in 2000 to just over 61 billion pieces in 2016, roughly a 40% drop in sixteen years.
As the volume has decreased, so have the number of postal employees. There were nearly 700,000 postal employees in 2006, falling to less than 500,000 in 2015, a sizeable drop in a short period of time.