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

For those living in the Vancouver, Washington area, there are many career and education opportunities for postal service mail sorter operators. About 3,590 people are currently employed as postal service mail sorter operators in Washington. By 2016, this is expected to shrink by 1% to about 3,540 people employed. 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%. Postal service mail sorter operators generally prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution.

The income of a postal service mail sorter operator is about $24 hourly or $50,170 annually on average in Washington. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $24 per hour or $50,020 annually on average. Incomes for postal service mail sorter operators are better than in the overall category of Postal in Washington, and better than the overall Postal category nationally.

There are forty-eight schools of higher education in the Vancouver area, including three within twenty-five miles of Vancouver where you can get a degree to start your career as a postal service mail sorter operator. Given that the most common education level for postal service mail sorter operators is less than a high school diploma, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become 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 Vancouver 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

Mt Hood Community College - Gresham, OR

Mt Hood Community College, 26000 SE Stark St, Gresham, OR 97030. Mt Hood Community College is a medium sized college located in Gresham, Oregon. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,251 students. Mt Hood Community College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated eight and zero students respectively in 2008.

Portland Community College - Portland, OR

Portland Community College, 12000 SW 49th Avenue, Portland, OR 97219-7132. Portland Community College is a large college located in Portland, Oregon. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 26,657 students. Portland Community College has a less than one year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated one student in 2008.

Clark College - Vancouver, WA

Clark College, 1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA 98663-3598. Clark College is a large college located in Vancouver, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,378 students. Clark College has a less than one year and a one to two year program in General Office Occupations and Clerical Services which graduated eight and three students respectively in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Vancouver, Washington

Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver, Washington photo by Matthiasb

Vancouver is located in Clark County, Washington. It has a population of over 163,186, which has grown by 13.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Vancouver, 98, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Vancouver are priced at $95,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred eighty new homes were built in Vancouver, down from four hundred twenty the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Vancouver are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 21.7% of Vancouver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

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

The percentage of Vancouver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 27.9%, is less than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Vancouver is home to the Vancouver Square and the Vancouver Plaza as well as Leverich Park and Wintler Park. Shopping malls in the area include Arbours Shopping Center, Millport Shopping Center and Vancouver Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Vancouver can choose from Comfort Suites Vancouver, Homewood Suites Portland-Vancouver and Best Western Hotel and Suites Vacouver Mall Dr for temporary stays in the area.