Post Office Jobs

Qualification Requirements

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The Book of U.S. Government Jobs - 11th edition

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Government Employment Update

The federal sector hired 162,839 new federal employees nationwide and overseas in 2013. Almost a third, 31 percent, were veterans. The Department of Defense and the Veterans Administration were the two largest hiring agencies. The Affordable Health Care Act includes over 100 new regulatory agencies and commissions and more federal regulators will be needed to administer new EPA and OSHA regulations and to manage the many other federal programs that have been implemented by the current administration. Immigration reform will potentially increase hiring of Border Patrol Agents and Customs Officers. Even with the projected growth and hiring some agencies continue to offer voluntary early retirements to address budget shortfalls.

There is considerable competition for anyone seeking federal employment and those interested in working for Uncle Sam must develop a professional federal style resume and application to remain competitive and start the process early to improve their chances of success.



Post Office Job Qualification Requirements


Page updated 10/27/2014

Post Office Job Qualfications | Age Limit, Citizenship, Exams, Physicals, and Driver's license

Various Post Office job qualification standards from age restrictions to physical requirements must be met before you can take one of the Postal Service exams. Applicants must of of a certain age and they have to pass a wrtten exams for most occupations, meet phsysical requriements, have a driver's license, and all applicants must pass a drug test. When you first apply all of the requirements for the positons will be posted with the job announcement and the Posal Service will coordinate and schedule the requried testing as necessary.
All Post Offfice job applicants must be at least eighteen to apply. Certain conditions allow applicants as young as sixteen to apply. Carrier positions, requiring driving, are limited to age 18 or older. High school graduates or individuals who terminated high school education for sufficient reason are permitted to apply at age 16. 


Entrance Exams


Clerks, carriers, rural carriers and other mail-handling job applicants must pass an Post Office exam. Specialties such as mechanic, electronic technician, machinist, and trades must also pass a written test. The overall rating is based on the test results and your qualifying work experience and education. Professionals and certain administrative positions don’t require an entrance exam or written test. They are rated and hired strictly on their prior work experience and education. The clerk and carrier exam are the 473 and 473 C and 473 E Battery Exams. The only difference among the three is the occupational title and the methods of taking the exams. The 473 Major Entry Level Jobs Exam covers the following positions:

✔ City Carrier
✔ Rural Carrier
✔ Mail Processing Clerk
✔ Sales, Service, and Distribution Associate
✔ Mail Handler

This Postal exam, also referred to as the 473 Battery Examination, covers the vast majority of entry-level hiring. Custodial positions are reserved for veteran pre-ference eligibles by federal law. The USPS also requires motor vehicle and tractor trailer operators, and highly skilled maintenance positions such as Building Equipment Mechanic, Engineman, Electronics Technician, and General Mechanic to successfully pass an entrance exam. All of the skilled maintenance positions require examination 931. A separate announcement, examination 932, is required for Electronics Technician positions. A list of exams is included on page 23, and Chapter Four provides sample tests for major occupations.


Applicants do not have to be U.S. citizens. If you have permanent alien resident status in the United States of America or owe allegiance to the United States of America you can apply for Postal Service jobs.


Physical Requirements

Physical requirements are determined by the job. Carriers must be able to lift a 70-pound mail sack and all applicants must be able to efficiently perform assigned duties. Eyesight and hearing tests are required. Applicants must have at least 20/40 vision in the good eye and no worse than 20/100 in the other eye. Eyeglasses are permitted.

State Driver’s License

Applicants must have a valid state driver’s license for positions that require motor vehicle operation. A safe driving record is required and a Postal Service road test is administered for the type of vehicle that you will operate.

Drug Testing (Substance Abuse)

The Postal Service maintains a comprehensive program to ensure a drug-free workplace. A qualification for postal employment is to be drug free, and this qualification is determined through the use of a urinalysis drug screen. When you are determined to be in the area of consideration for employment, you will be scheduled for a drug screening test.

The all new 6th edition of "Post Office Jobs" by Dennis V. Damp includes a comprehensive 473/473E study guide and job finder. You will also find qualifications requirements, where to find jobs in your area, test preparation and interview guidance, including pay and benefit information. This book is available at all bookstores, through, and many libraries have this title in their reference section. It is the perfect book for those seeking postal employment.
Post Office Jobs - 5th edition

Explore and apply for all job vacancies in the government and private sectors to improve you chance of employment. Post your resume online at no cost to expand your job search.

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