Career and Education Opportunities for Mail Clerks in Anchorage, Alaska
Many educational and employment opportunities exist for mail clerks in the Anchorage, Alaska area. About 160 people are currently employed as mail clerks in Alaska. By 2016, this is expected to shrink 22% to 120 people employed. This is not quite as good as the national trend for mail clerks, which sees this job pool shrinking by about 11.8% over the next eight years. Mail clerks generally prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution.
Mail clerks earn about $11 per hour or $23,550 per year on average in Alaska and about $12 per hour or $25,100 yearly on average nationally. Earnings for mail clerks are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Postal in Alaska and not quite as good as general Postal category earnings nationally.
There are four schools of higher education in the Anchorage area, including two within twenty-five miles of Anchorage where you can get a degree to start your career as a mail clerk. Mail clerks usually hold less than a high school diploma, so you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be a mail clerk if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Mail Clerk
In general, mail clerks prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. They also use hand or mail handling machines to time stamp, open, and route incoming mail; and address, seal, and affix postage to outgoing mail or packages.
Mail clerks verify that items are addressed correctly, marked with the proper postage, and in suitable condition for processing. They also seal or open envelopes, by hand or by using machines. Equally important, mail clerks have to fold letters or circulars and insert them in envelopes. Finally, mail clerks place incoming or outgoing letters or packages into sacks or bins on the basis of destination or type, and place identifying tags on sacks or bins.
Every day, mail clerks are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.
It is important for mail clerks to affix postage to packages or letters by hand, or stamp materials, using postage meters. They are often called upon to clear jams in sortation equipment. They also lift and unload containers of mail or parcels onto equipment for transportation to sortation stations. They are sometimes expected to add ink, fill paste reservoirs, and change machine ribbons when needed. Somewhat less frequently, mail clerks are also expected to remove containers of sorted mail/parcels, and transfer them to designated areas in line with established procedures.
Mail clerks sometimes are asked to contact delivery or courier services to organize delivery of letters and parcels. They also have to be able to inspect mail machine output for defects; decide on how to remove causes of any defects and accept and check containers of mail or parcels from large volume mailers and contractors. And finally, they sometimes have to answer inquiries regarding shipping or mailing policies.
Like many other jobs, mail clerks must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Anchorage include:
- File Clerk. File correspondence, cards, and other records in alphabetical or numerical order or according to the filing system used. Locate and remove material from file when requested.
- Mail Carrier and Clerk. Sort mail for delivery. Deliver mail on established route by vehicle or on foot.
- Office Machine Operator. Operate one or more of a variety of office machines, such as photocopying, photographic, and duplicating machines, or other office machines.
- Payroll Bookkeeper. Compile and post employee time and payroll data. May compute employees' time worked, production, and commission. May compute and post wages and deductions. May prepare paychecks.
- Postal Clerk. Perform any combination of tasks in a post office, such as receive letters and parcels; sell postage and revenue stamps, postal cards, and stamped envelopes; fill out and sell money orders; place mail in pigeon holes of mail rack or in bags according to State, address, or other scheme; and examine mail for correct postage.
- Postal Service Mail Sorter Operator. Prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. Examine, sort, and route mail by State, type of mail, or other scheme. Load, operate, and occasionally adjust and repair mail processing, sorting, and canceling machinery. Keep records of shipments, pouches, and sacks; and other duties related to mail handling within the postal service. Must complete a competitive exam.
- Procurement Clerk. Compile information and records to draw up purchase orders for procurement of materials and services.
- Shipping and Receiving Clerk. Verify and keep records on incoming and outgoing shipments. Prepare items for shipment. Duties include assembling, addressing, and shipping merchandise or material; receiving, unpacking, verifying and recording incoming merchandise or material; and arranging for the transportation of products.
- Statement Clerk. Prepare and distribute bank statements to customers, answer inquiries, and reconcile discrepancies in records and accounts.
- Weighter. Weigh, measure, and check materials, supplies, and equipment for the purpose of keeping relevant records. Duties are primarily clerical by nature.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Mail Clerk Training
University of Alaska Anchorage - Anchorage, AK
University of Alaska Anchorage, 3211 Providence Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508. University of Alaska Anchorage is a large university located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 16,649 students and an admission rate of 68%. University of Alaska Anchorage has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated five students in 2008.
Charter College - Anchorage, AK
Charter College, 2221 E Northern Lights Blvd Ste 120, Anchorage, AK 99508. Charter College is a small college located in Anchorage, Alaska. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 770 students. Charter College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Anchorage, Alaska
Anchorage is located in Anchorage Municipality County, Alaska. It has a population of over 279,243, which has grown by 7.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Anchorage, 89, is well below the national average.
The top three industries for women in Anchorage are health care, educational services, and public administration. For men, it is construction, public administration, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 20 minutes. More than 28.9% of Anchorage residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.2%, is higher than the state average.
Anchorage is home to the Chugach and the Black Bear Campground as well as Baxter Bog Park and Alaska Railroad Power Reserve. Visitors to Anchorage can choose from Courtyard Anchorage, Creekwood Inn and The Voyager Hotel for temporary stays in the area.