The Postal Service Can Substantially Reduce Its Cleaning Costs

AFMD-83-23: Published: Dec 28, 1982. Publicly Released: Dec 28, 1982.

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GAO reviewed Postal Service cleaning operations and compared the cost of using in-house staff to contracting for the cleaning of postal buildings of 10,000 square feet or less.

GAO found that the Postal Service saves several million dollars annually by using contractors in the regions reviewed and that it could save more by cleaning all of its buildings of 10,000 square feet or less in those regions with contractors, or by otherwise reducing its cleaning cost per square foot to the average cost of contract cleaners. Cleaning costs could also be reduced by adopting new methods and procedures to increase productivity. The sooner Postal Service management can reduce its cost to that of contract cleaning, the sooner it can begin to reap savings.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: When we confirm what actions the agency has taken in response to this recommendation, we will provide updated information.

    Recommendation: The Postmaster General should take action within the framework of existing and prospective national collective bargaining agreements to update the housekeeping cleaning requirements and practices to reflect the use of new cleaning methods and procedures.

    Agency Affected: United States Postal Service

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Potential savings will not be known until about June 1985. A change was made in the new contract that is now in arbitration, increasing from 4 hours to 32 hours the limitation on use of contract cleaners.

    Recommendation: The Postmaster General should take action within the framework of existing and prospective national collective bargaining agreements to convert, where economical, to contract cleaning or otherwise reduce cleaning costs to a level comparable to that of cleaning done under contract.

    Agency Affected: United States Postal Service

 

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