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Mail Clerks and Mail Machine Operators, Except Postal Service - 43-9051.00

O*NET-SOC Description

Prepare incoming and outgoing mail for distribution. Time-stamp, open, read, sort, and route incoming mail; and address, seal, stamp, fold, stuff, and affix postage to outgoing mail or packages. Duties may also include keeping necessary records and completed forms.

Sample of Reported Job Titles

  • Insert Operator
  • Inserter Operator
  • Mail Clerk
  • Mail Handler
  • Mail Machine Operator
  • Mail Processor
  • Mail Reader
  • Mail Sorter
  • Postal Clerk

SOC Occupation Groups

Related Occupations


  • Accept and check containers of mail or parcels from large volume mailers, couriers, and contractors.
  • Add ink, fill paste reservoirs, and change machine ribbons when necessary.
  • Adjust guides, rollers, loose card inserters, weighing machines, and tying arms, using rules and hand tools.
  • Affix postage to packages or letters by hand, or stamp materials, using postage meters.
  • Answer inquiries regarding shipping or mailing policies.
  • Clear jams in sortation equipment.
  • Contact delivery or courier services to arrange delivery of letters and parcels.
  • Determine manner in which mail is to be sent, and prepare it for delivery to mailing facilities.
  • Fold letters or circulars and insert them in envelopes.
  • Insert material for printing or addressing into loading racks on machines, select type or die sizes, and position plates, stencils, or tapes in machine magazines.
  • Inspect mail machine output for defects and determine how to eliminate causes of any defects.
  • Lift and unload containers of mail or parcels onto equipment for transportation to sortation stations.
  • Mail merchandise samples or promotional literature in response to requests.
  • Operate computer-controlled keyboards or voice recognition equipment to direct items according to established routing schemes.
  • Operate embossing machines or typewriters to make corrections, additions, and changes to address plates.
  • Place incoming or outgoing letters or packages into sacks or bins based on destination or type, and place identifying tags on sacks or bins.
  • Read production orders to determine types and sizes of items scheduled for printing and mailing.
  • Release packages or letters to customers upon presentation of written notices or other identification.
  • Remove containers of sorted mail or parcels and transfer them to designated areas according to established procedures.
  • Remove from machines printed materials, such as labeled articles, postmarked envelopes or tape, and folded sheets.
  • Seal or open envelopes, by hand or by using machines.
  • Sell mail products, and accept payment for products and mailing charges.
  • Sort and route incoming mail, and collect outgoing mail, using carts as necessary.
  • Stamp dates and times of receipt of incoming mail.
  • Start machines that automatically feed plates, stencils, or tapes through mechanisms, and observe machine operations to detect any malfunctions.
  • Use equipment, such as forklifts and automated "trains," to move containers of mail.
  • Verify that items are addressed correctly, marked with the proper postage, and in suitable condition for processing.
  • Weigh packages or letters to determine postage needed, using weighing scales and rate charts.
  • Wrap packages or bundles by hand, or by using tying machines.

Detailed Work Activities

  • Adjust office equipment to ensure proper operation.
  • Analyze shipping information to make routing decisions.
  • Attach identification information to products, items or containers.
  • Collect deposits, payments or fees.
  • Coordinate shipping activities with external parties.
  • Explain regulations, policies, or procedures.
  • Inspect items for damage or defects.
  • Maintain office equipment in proper operating condition.
  • Monitor equipment operation to ensure proper functioning.
  • Obtain written authorization to perform activities.
  • Operate computers or computerized equipment.
  • Operate office equipment.
  • Operate vehicles or material-moving equipment.
  • Package objects for shipping.
  • Prepare outgoing mail.
  • Read work orders to determine material or setup requirements.
  • Receive shipments.
  • Route mail to correct destinations.
  • Sell products or services.
  • Send information, materials or documentation.
  • Sort mail.
  • Unload materials or equipment.
  • Verify shipping documentation.
  • Weigh parcels to determine shipping costs.

Military Crosswalk Titles

  • Administration (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Administration Apprentice (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Administration Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Administration Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Administration Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Administration Superintendent (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Independent Duty Postal Clerk (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Inventory Management Specialist (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Knowledge Management (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Knowledge Management Apprentice (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Knowledge Management Craftsman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Knowledge Management Helper (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Knowledge Management Journeyman (Air Force - Enlisted)
  • Logistics Specialist (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Logistics Specialist (Submarine) (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Postal Clerk (Marine Corps - Enlisted)
  • Postal Clerk (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Storekeeper (Coast Guard - Enlisted)
  • Yeoman (Coast Guard - Enlisted)
  • Yeoman (Navy - Enlisted)
  • Yeoman (Submarine) (Navy - Enlisted)

Apprenticeship Crosswalk Titles

  • Mailer

DOT Crosswalk Titles

  • Addressing-Machine Operator
  • Direct-Mail Clerk
  • Express Clerk
  • Folding-Machine Operator
  • Inserting-Machine Operator
  • Mail Clerk
  • Mailer
  • Mailer Apprentice
  • Mailing-Machine Operator
  • Office Copy Selector
  • Parcel Post Clerk
  • Sealing-and-Canceling-Machine Operator
  • Slot-Tag Inserter
  • Wing-Mailer-Machine Operator