Career Definition for Mailroom Clerks
A mailroom clerk is typically responsible for processing incoming and outgoing mail. If working for a small business or other corporation, a mailroom clerk may weigh and prepare letters and packages for delivery by another source as well as sort incoming mail for inter-office delivery. Those employed by a governmental postal service may also load and unload delivery trucks and operate large machinery such as a forklift. In all cases, mailroom clerks spend most of their time indoors and may be in contact with noisy equipment.
|Education||High school diploma or equivalent; written exam required to work for the U.S. Postal Service|
|Job Duties||Processing incoming and outgoing mail, weighing and preparing packages, sorting incoming mail, loading and unloading delivery trucks|
|Median Salary (2018)*||$30,430 (mail clerks and mail machine operators, excluding U.S. Postal Service workers); $55,280 (U.S. Postal Service clerks)|
|Job Growth (2014-2024)*||-7% (mail clerks and mail machine operators, excluding U.S. Postal Service workers); -13% (all U.S. Postal Service workers)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
While no specific degree is required for a career as a mailroom clerk, those who plan to work for the U.S. Postal Service will need to pass a written examination, sometimes referred to as a Civil Service Exam. If mailroom clerks are required to operate heavy equipment, they may need specific training and certification. In the private sector, a mailroom clerk is typically considered an entry-level job, and a high school diploma is the only education necessary.
A mailroom clerk must often perform his or her job at a fast pace, so strong memorization skills and the capacity to read quickly will be helpful. The ability to lift 50 pounds may be necessary, as well as excellent hand-eye coordination. Mailroom clerks must be accurate in their work, so attention to detail is valued.
Career and Economic Outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a decline in employment of 7% for mail clerks and mail machine operators not employed by the U.S. Postal Service, from 2016 to 2026. The outlook for U.S. Postal Service workers during that same time frame was an expected decline of 13%. Mailroom clerks working for the U.S. Postal Service enjoy generous benefits similar to those received by other federal government workers. The bureau recorded the median annual salary for U.S. Postal Service clerks as $55,280 in 2018, and $30,430 for mail clerks and mail machine operators working in the private sector.
Alternate Career Options
Similar career options in this field include:
General Office Clerks
This occupation requires no formal education beyond high school, and many clerks learn skills such as filing and answering telephones while on the job. A decline in employment of 1% was predicted by the BLS from 2016 to 2026. In 2018, the median annual salary reported by the BLS for this profession was $32,730.
Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks
Some clerks enter this career with high school diplomas and on-the-job training in recording financial transactions and checking financial records, while others complete postsecondary education in accounting or even earn associate's degrees. The BLS projected a 1% decline in employment from 2016 to 2026 and reported an annual median wage of $40,240 in 2018.