The United States Postal Service (USPS) is an autonomous agency within the Executive Branch of the government. The USPS agency holds the distinction of being one of only a small number of federal agencies sanctioned by the US Constitution.
Many people wonder how to get a job at the post office – find out more about the post office and different tips to use to get a job with the post office.
Summary: Learn about USPS jobs and how to get one below. For help preparing for the exams you may need to complete, take our USPS practice test.
Requirements for Post Office Employees
If you are applying for a post office job, there are some minimum requirements you must meet.
You must be 18 years old to apply for a job at the post office. However, there are exceptions to this age requirement. Those who have already graduated high school, or ended their high school education for acceptable reasons, are permitted to apply at 16.
Applicants for postal worker jobs are required to be a citizen of the United States, American Samoa, or any other U.S. held territory. Applicants are welcome to apply if they hold a resident status as a permanent alien resident (Green Card). A Green Card grants non-citizens the legal right to work and live in the U.S.
Each post office job applicant is screened to establish if they meet the suitability mandates of the postal position. This suitability assessment includes a review of the applicant’s –
- Application Interviews
- Employment History
- Selective Service Enrollment Status, if it applies
- Criminal Background Check
- Residency Requirements
Medical assessments begin after a job offer has been made. This is because the United States Postal Service is not allowed to ask about an applicant’s medical history due to provisions set forth by The Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Postal Worker Physical Requirements
Each postal work position dictates the physical requirements of the postal worker who fills this position. For instance, letter carriers must demonstrate the ability to lift up to 70 pounds.
Most jobs require a hearing test and an eyesight exam. Applicants can meet eyesight requirements with eyeglasses.
Driver’s License Requirements
United State Postal Service job postings requiring the operation of a motorized vehicle are obligated to have a valid state driver’s license (from within their state of residence) for those job openings.
Applicants are advised of how important it is for them to maintain a safe driving history, and that they will be required to pass a road test.
Drug Testing For Substance Abuse
The United State Postal Service seeks to ensure it maintains a drug-free work environment.
According to rule 518.2: A pre-employment drug test is ordered for applicants recommended for selection by the interviewer when the applicant is within reach for selection. Only applicants determined to be drug-free as a result of the urinalysis are eligible for appointment.
A drug screen test that results in a qualified status is good for 90 days from the date of the result. Applicant names are entered on a Hiring List before expiration of the 90-day qualification period are eligible for employment consideration regardless of the date of appointment from that list.
USPS Hiring Process
The following step-by-step guide you can follow when going throught the USPS hiring process.
#1 – Visit the USPS Website to set up an account
- Pay special attention to the requirements outlined in the USPS job posting. The best applications will show how your training, education, experience/skill set matches each of the requirements
#2 – Begin to research available postal job openings. Click the apply button when you find a post office job that interests you. This action will redirect you to your USPS profile to apply for the position.
#3 – Complete the online job application. Be thorough when completing the online application, as it is best to include all of your education, work experience, and any other previous accomplishments.
- A job application can take up to a couple of hours to complete entirely.
- Job applicants should plan to use a Windows-based computer. Apple products are simply not compatible with the United States Postal Service’s digital application process.
- The USPS application system works best with either the Firefox or the Internet Explorer search engine.
- Application fields that have been identified with an asterisk (*) are mandated fields. You will not be able to move forward to the next part of the application until they have been completed.
- If you would like more information on post office jobs, go to this resource.
#4 – Successfully pass the examination.
Exam-takers must generate a score that exceeds 70 to pass the test. The higher you score, the better chance of nabbing that postal job.
You can prepare for your exam by taking our free postal practice exam.
#5 –After the exam, you may be called to participate in a pre-employment interview. This interview may be a group interview or a solo interview. The USPS interviewer is tasked with evaluating you on the following personal characteristics, attitudes, and skills –
- Your Communication Skills.
- Your Ability to be Adaptable to Changing Situations.
- Your level of Dependability.
- Your level of Cooperation.
Ultimately, the interviewer forms a hiring recommendation that is passed along to the final decision makers.
USPS Jobs FAQs
Does the post office drug test?
The post office may drug test candidates during the hiring process. This decision is made by the interviewer.
The drug test will include a urine sample.
Do you have to take a test to apply to the post office?
Some positions at the USPS will require you to take an exam. Some common exams include the postal 474, 474, 476, 477, and 955 exams.
You can prepare for those exams by taking our free USPS practice exam.
Do you need to be a U.S. citizen to work for the USPS?
Applicants are required to be a U.S. citizen to work for the post office. However, you can also qualify if you are a citizen of any other U.S. held territory.
In addition, you can also apply if you hold a Green Card.