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June 29 2009 10:55 AM

Founded in 1983, Address N⬠Mail is based in Melbourne, Florida and dedicated strictly to mail processing. Our staff is very knowledgeable about postal regulations and keeps abreast of USPS developments to provide our clients with a high level of postal expertise. For the most part we are early adopters and like being on the leading edge of technology.

About a year ago, Address N' Mail decided to look to additional technology to further capitalize on discounts and efficiency in processing mail for our clients â¬" in this case, flats. For processing flats we wanted a cost-effective solution to obtain postal discounts in processing a relatively small mail volume.

We decided on a flats sorting system that we found to be the most cost-effective for earning the maximum discounts on first class flats. We also liked the fact that the system incorporates software from a leading OCR/ICR provider. With the combined solution, we were able to achieve address recognition and interpretation rates of 95 percent, including machine print and handwritten addresses.

Some solutions that we looked at were much more costly and not practical for our flats volumes. Return on investment is very important anytime, but when you have small quantities of flats, it is the difference between go and no-go. The solution was implemented in April of 2008. Training took place at the sorter providerâ¬s facility in Lafayette, Indiana in the dead of winter. (It was cold for a Florida boy, but I lived through it.) The training was very thorough and made me feel very comfortable with the system. One real innovative training approach, the entire system was packaged as I would receive it, and I had to unpack, assemble, and bring up the system. The training paid off, as self installation went smoothly and performance has been outstanding.

The transport that we decided to go with can process 700 to 1,000 flats per hour, and is able to easily accommodate Address N⬠Mailâ¬s 2,000 to 4,000 flats per week, while giving us the capacity to grow in the future. The system tracks every mail piece to its maximum discount level for easy verification and billing.

Before implementing the solution, we were manually metering flats and were not able to obtain any discounts. After deploying the solution, we were able to get a postal discount of $900 per week on average and a return on investment within nine months of operations. We were also able to increase customer satisfaction with faster processing times, while maintaining a low degree of investment risk.

The systems support is phenomenal. When necessary the transport vendor can link up directly with the system, pinpoint the problem, or help clarify the â¬Å"cockpitâ¬â issue that is causing difficulties.

We are happy with our decision and believe that it is absolutely the most cost-effective system for earning the maximum discounts on First Class Flats. With discount on First Class Flats now as high as 46.6 cents, we can earn more on a weekly run of 4,000 mixed-weights flats than on 40,000 letters. As we continue to grow our business there is comfort in knowing that as quantities increase we can easily expand what we have into a more automated system. Hopefully, we will need to do so in the near future.

If you would like additional info or details, drop me a line.

Chuck Green is the owner of Address N⬠Mail, online at He can be reached at