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USPS Hiring Process

Whether it's for a maintenance, supervisor, or mail carrier position, the initial hiring process is similar for the majority of USPS job positions. Applicants are required to complete and pass each stage in order to progress to the next phase in the recruitment process. We've outlined the hiring process, in order, below. 

USPS Application

This online step requires you to create an account, complete your candidate profile, and then select and apply for the job(s) you're interested in.

It's important to note that USPS highly suggests that when you complete the "Summary of Accomplishment" section, you highlight and explain how your previous job experience, skill set, education, and training relates to the position for which you're applying (as an additional document, attached to your application). Additionally, they suggest that you upload a current resume or CV.

USPS Assessment Test

The first (of two) tests is sent to you via email. This non-proctored test is essentially a personality and experience inventory. It consists of self-management, work motivation, conscientiousness, and work experience questions. It takes roughly 60–90 minutes to complete, and, once finished, generates a score that contributes to your overall hiring score.

The second test (administered at a testing center) entails content and questions regarding your job role. For example, if you're applying for a supervisor position, you will encounter leadership and situational questions, versus if you apply for a technician or maintenance job, for which you will be asked more technical or skills questions.

USPS Interview

There are typically two one-on-one interviews. During the first interview, 20–40 people are grouped together, but interviewed separately. The second interview is solely one-on-one, and if you pass, you will be given a time frame regarding how soon you will hear back from USPS.

USPS Background Check, Drug Test & Fingerprinting

If you pass the interview stage, you will be asked to complete a drug and background test. If you pass these tests, then you will be fingerprinted and asked to double check your application to verify that everything is correct and up-to-date.


US Postal Exams

In order to be hired at the USPS, you must successfully pass one of the following exams (the exam is dependent upon the position for which you are applying).

US Postal Exam 473: The most common postal exam, it is used to fill over 90% of postal positions (postal clerk, mail handler, carrier associate, processing clerk, sales, distribution associate, etc.), and is administered in two separate sections. Learn more about the 473 US Postal exam on our dedicated page.

US Postal Exam 642: This exam is used to assess supervisors, and contains two sections—situational judgment and personal characteristics. Furthermore, it is a 90-minute, online, non-proctored exam. 

US Postal Exam 955: This exam is used for mechanic and technician jobs, and has recently replaced exams 931, 932, and 933. This job-specific assessment is comprised of multi-craft and spatial reasoning questions.

US Postal Exam 230/238/240: This questionnaire is used for truck driving (motor vehicle operator and tractor trailer operator) positions. It's not necessarily an exam, but rather a questionnaire about job experience and personal background information.

US Postal Exam 916: This exam is used for custodial maintenance jobs. It covers vocabulary and reading, safety and cleaning, and following instructions and directions.

US Postal Exam 943/944: This exam is used for automotive mechanics and technicians. Previous experience in this field is crucial for a successful hire. 


US Postal Inspector Exam

As an active law enforcement branch, the U.S. Postal Inspector (USPIS) investigates violations of postal laws, policies, and procedures at state and federal levels. The USPIS exam contains three sections, but may also contain one additional (business writing test) section. The Postal Inspector Exam is multiple-choice, computer-based, and has a strict time limit. It does not require any prior training or on-the-job experience. Learn more about the USPIS exam on our dedicated page.


Prepare for US Postal Exams

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