Postal Service tests system for human resources

The Postal Service is testing a knowledge management system that would let employees access personnel information themselves, rather than calling on a human resources official for answers.

By implementing the system, the agency hopes to eliminate 800 positions, said Robert Burmester, a USPS program manager. He spoke today at FOSE 2004 in Washington.

The Postal Service is testing software from Authoria Inc. The Waltham, Mass., company specializes in HR software.

Postal employees can enter personal data, such as how many years they have been employed, and through a session of questions and answers, the software will provide detailed HR data.

The agency bought the software last year and has started a pilot for the service's top executives. Ultimately, the Postal Service would like to roll out the app to all its 750,000 employees by next year, Burmester said.

The issues that remain in implementing the system for all employees aren't technical but rather policy-driven, he said. The agency must develop the rules needed to govern all the possible transactions available through the system. Additionally, USPS must negotiate the details of the system's use with labor unions and district offices.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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