The Washington Post

Postal Service hiring administrator to oversee firing

Empty crates sit next to a U.S. Postal Service mail box in New York on Thursday, Nov. 15, 2012. (Victor J. Blue/Bloomberg)

The struggling U.S. Postal Service is hiring someone to do its firing.

But if you’re hoping to channel your inner-George Clooney the job is only open internally for employees who want (?) a job laying off their colleagues. It pays as much as $104,000.

According to the job application note, the RIF (reduction in force) Administrator is, as the title suggests, someone who “Administers all reduction-in-forces.”

Or, as Clooney so eloquently put it playing a professional soul crusher in the movie “Up in the Air,” “We are here to make limbo tolerable, to ferry wounded souls across the river of dread until the point where hope is dimly visible. And then stop the boat, shove them in the water and make them swim.”

The Postal Service, which has sustained financial losses, is preparing for a reduction in its workforce in the beginning of 2015 as efforts to make big changes to mail delivery have eluded Congress (as most reforms do).

“The Postal Service maintains a “RIF ready” system developed in accordance with federal law,” Darlene Casey, a postal service spokeswoman said in an e-mail. “As the Postal Service’s business model continues to change, there will continue to be a need for the reduction-in-force process for the foreseeable future. Having a dedicated, qualified individual in this position will ensure that the RIF process continues to be administered accurately and efficiently.”

There are, according to Casey, just under 4,000 postmasters being offered a one-time payment of $10,000 to voluntarily leave.

So far, the Postal Service has avoided layoffs, instead reducing its workforce through buyouts and attrition. “We have been extremely responsible in our downsizing, using all RIF avoidance options, and attrition, not to lay off employees,” Casey said. “It’s really an American workforce success story.”

Colby Itkowitz is the lead anchor of the Inspired Life blog. She previously covered the quirks of national politics and the federal government.

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