I have been working at US Postal Service full-time (More than 10 years)
As a 34 year employee I've seen many changes. You get exercise and meet people as you work. Customers, perhaps half of a route, will gift a regular carrier during the holidays. Benefits are ok, but not like they used to be. Availability to move up after 1 year of work, or transfer to another town.
No recognition of your hard work. You are followed by GPS and questioned about your time and why you are slow. Management are complete idiots who failed at their entry level jobs. Postmaster's are political placements and don't care about you or your family life. Starting as a CCA, the pay is much lower than it used to be, and health benefits will eat up you salary. We have no future...
Advice to Management
We are not robots.
I applied online. The process took 4+ weeks. I interviewed at US Postal Service in January 2015.
The entire process took just over a month, and about a month and a half till the start of orientation (Remember this is a government job so there's always extensive screening processes). I did an online application on December 10th, 2014. Following my submission, I was emailed a link to complete an online assessment. They both were fairly easy; it seemed more or less to see if you were competent (the second was more personality based questions).
A week later on December 17th I was emailed a link to sign up to do a proctored exam. This you have to complete within x amount of days (I think it was complete it within 5 days). I was worried since I obviously was working a different job and it was a week before Christmas. Luckily there was a date and time that I was available for. I signed up for Exam 473 Delivery, Distribution and Retail and took the exam on the last available day: December 22nd, 2014. There's plenty of practice exams and examples online so research it! Its not a typical exam and not a good one to walk into blindly. They will email you your results before you get home from the exam. I think the passing grade that qualifies you for the CCA position is 82%
A week later on December 29th, 2014 I was emailed an invite to interview face-to-face. Along with this email, they also send you links to complete a background check and to go in to a place to do a drug test (urinalysis).
They do mass interviews/orientations so they tell you a date and time and there's not much leeway. Mine was for January 6th, 2015. I walked into a conference room with 50 other people there for the same position. (I live in a large city with many cities/post offices so there were plenty of positions open). We filled out paperwork (In case we were offered a position it would be done already) and then the HR rep gave more details about the position to weed out any weak ones (which some people actually got up and left). Then we all were individually interviewed (5 at a time and my luck I was the last round of interviews...it took over 2 hours until my turn).
On to the actual interview:
It was easy...really easy. Whenever I do any job interview I always find something to connect me with my interviewer. Luckily this happened immediately. I like finding a connection because then you can mostly talk about that (instead of the job) and build a relationship getting them to really like you. My advice: be the one to ask questions and lead the interview. Anywho, the questions were so simple, mostly just to see if you are willing to battle the weather. Since I live in a region that gets bombarded with blizzards in the winter and extreme humidity in the summer, they just wanted to see if you were up to being outside and walking in the extreme conditions. It was basically just a compatibility interview to see if you grew up with a strong work ethic and if you can handle the outside world. At the end of the interview my interviewer told me she was going to recommend me for the position ( I don't know if they typically tell people that; I was just the last one of the day and we had good report so I think she told me to lessen the pain of being there all day).
2 days later on January 8th, 2015 I received another email giving me a conditional offer for the position contingent on passing a medical assessment. The medical assessment consisted of 3 questions just asking if you're on any current medication, if you have any current injuries, and if you have any past injuries that will prevent you from doing any functions of the job. I printed it out and emailed it back within 5 minutes.
Then on January 13th, 2015 I received my final email congratulating me on the position and confirming that I was actually being hired. In the email I received instructions on my week long paid orientation that starts January 26th, 2015.
Hope this helps. I will post another review after my orientation!