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Career and Education Opportunities for Postal Service Mail Sorter Operators in Seattle, Washington

Many educational and employment opportunities exist for postal service mail sorter operators in the Seattle, Washington area. Currently, 3,590 people work as postal service mail sorter operators in Washington. This is expected to shrink 1% to about 3,540 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for postal service mail sorter operators are expected to shrink by about 30.3%. In general, postal service mail sorter operators prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution.

Income for postal service mail sorter operators is about $24 hourly or $50,170 annually on average in Washington. Nationally, their income is about $24 per hour or $50,020 yearly. Compared with people working in the overall category of Postal, people working as postal service mail sorter operators in Washington earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Postal nationally.

The Seattle area is home to sixty-five schools of higher education, including twelve within twenty-five miles of Seattle where you can get a degree as a postal service mail sorter operator. The most common level of education for postal service mail sorter operators is less than a high school diploma. It will take only a short time to learn to be a postal service mail sorter operator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Postal Service Mail Sorter Operator

Postal Service Mail Sorter Operator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, postal service mail sorter operators prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. They also examine, sort, and route mail by State, type of mail, or other scheme.

Every day, postal service mail sorter operators are expected to be able to see details at a very fine level of focus. It is also important that they lift, push and move large and heavy objects.

It is important for postal service mail sorter operators to serve the public at counters or windows. They are often called upon to distribute incoming mail into the correct boxes or pigeonholes. They also sort odd-sized mail by hand, sort mail that other staff have been unable to sort, and segregate items requiring special handling. They are sometimes expected to check items to insure that addresses are legible and correct, that sufficient postage has been paid or the appropriate documentation is attached, and that items are in a suitable condition for processing. Somewhat less frequently, postal service mail sorter operators are also expected to operate various types of equipment, such as computer scanning equipment, addressographs, mimeographs, optical character readers, and bar-code sorters.

Postal service mail sorter operators sometimes are asked to direct items in line with established routing schemes, using computer controlled keyboards or voice recognition equipment. They also have to be able to rewrap soiled or broken parcels And finally, they sometimes have to bundle and route sorted mail to designated areas depending on destinations and in line with established procedures and deadlines.

Like many other jobs, postal service mail sorter operators must be thorough and dependable and believe in cooperation and coordination.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Seattle include:

  • Mail Carrier and Clerk. Sort mail for delivery. Deliver mail on established route by vehicle or on foot.
  • Mail Clerk. Prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. 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. Duties may also include keeping necessary records and completed forms.
  • 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.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Postal Service Mail Sorter Operator Training

Pierce College at Fort Steilacoom - Lakewood, WA

Pierce College at Fort Steilacoom, 9401 Farwest Dr SW, Lakewood, WA 98498-1999. Pierce College at Fort Steilacoom is a medium sized college located in Lakewood, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 6,632 students. Pierce College at Fort Steilacoom has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated three and five students respectively in 2008.

Clover Park Technical College - Lakewood, WA

Clover Park Technical College, 4500 Steilacoom Blvd SW, Lakewood, WA 98499-4004. Clover Park Technical College is a medium sized college located in Lakewood, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,781 students. Clover Park Technical College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated one student in 2008.

Pierce College at Puyallup - Puyallup, WA

Pierce College at Puyallup, 1601 39th Ave SE, Puyallup, WA 98374-2222. Pierce College at Puyallup is a small college located in Puyallup, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,101 students. Pierce College at Puyallup has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated three and four students respectively in 2008.

Tacoma Community College - Tacoma, WA

Tacoma Community College, 6501 S 19th St, Tacoma, WA 98466-6100. Tacoma Community College is a medium sized college located in Tacoma, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,942 students. Tacoma Community College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated one student in 2008.

Highline Community College - Des Moines, WA

Highline Community College, 2400 S 240th St, Des Moines, WA 98198-9800. Highline Community College is a medium sized college located in Des Moines, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 6,267 students. Highline Community College has a one to two year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated one student in 2008.

Everett Community College - Everett, WA

Everett Community College, 2000 Tower Street, Everett, WA 98201. Everett Community College is a medium sized college located in Everett, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 5,765 students. Everett Community College has a one to two year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated eight students in 2008.

Green River Community College - Auburn, WA

Green River Community College, 12401 SE 320th St, Auburn, WA 98092-3622. Green River Community College is a medium sized college located in Auburn, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,544 students. Green River Community College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated eighty-six students in 2008.

Bellevue College - Bellevue, WA

Bellevue College, 3000 Landerholm Cir SE, Bellevue, WA 98007-6484. Bellevue College is a large college located in Bellevue, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 11,748 students. Bellevue College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated thirty-eight students in 2008.

Lake Washington Technical College - Kirkland, WA

Lake Washington Technical College, 11605 132nd Ave NE, Kirkland, WA 98034-8506. Lake Washington Technical College is a small college located in Kirkland, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 3,010 students. Lake Washington Technical College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated one student in 2008.

Cascadia Community College - Bothell, WA

Cascadia Community College, 18345 Campus Way NE, Bothell, WA 98011-8205. Cascadia Community College is a small college located in Bothell, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,385 students. Cascadia Community College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated three students in 2008.

Seattle Vocational Institute - Seattle, WA

Seattle Vocational Institute, 2120 S Jackson, Seattle, WA 98144-2219. Seattle Vocational Institute is a small school located in Seattle, Washington. It is a public school with primarily less-than 2-year programs and has 270 students. Seattle Vocational Institute has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated thirty-two students in 2008.

Edmonds Community College - Lynnwood, WA

Edmonds Community College, 20000 68th Ave W, Lynnwood, WA 98036-5912. Edmonds Community College is a medium sized college located in Lynnwood, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,823 students. Edmonds Community College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated fourteen and one students respectively in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington
Seattle, Washington photo by Dschwen

Seattle is located in King County, Washington. It has a population of over 598,541, which has grown by 6.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Seattle, 126, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Seattle are valued at $206,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, five hundred ninety-five new homes were built in Seattle, down from seven hundred seventy-five the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Seattle are health care, professional, scientific, and technical services, and educational services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, construction, and educational services. The average commute to work is about 25 minutes. More than 47.2% of Seattle residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 17.3%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Seattle is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of Seattle residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 37.3%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Seattle is home to the Berth 5 and the Akli Point Lighthouse as well as Lincoln Park and Myrtle Edwards Park. Shopping centers in the area include Lake City Shopping Center, Westwood Village Shopping Center and Oak Tree Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Seattle can choose from A-1 Motel, Arlington Suites and Marriott Sea-Tac Airport for temporary stays in the area.