Intelligent Mail Barcodes (IMb) will be required beginning May 2011 on all automated mail. The best part is that if you have been sending mail with us, you have been using IMb for the last two years!
One aspect we have not asked clients to do is to prepare their Reply mail for this change. It is relatively easy to get your new Business Reply Mail (BRM) barcode, it’s just 2 steps!
1) You need to apply for a Mailer ID, which you can do on-line at the USPS. (Instructions are in the Quick Download Links box to the right)
2) Once you have your Mailer ID, you request new BRM art. Done.
Any new BRM pieces with the Intelligent Barcode on it will have to go to the USPS for approval. If you are printing them here, our mailing staff can help take care of that.
More about IMb
The Intelligent Mail barcode is the next generation of USPS® barcode technology used to sort and track letters and flats. Intelligent Mail barcode technology, among other things, combines the capabilities of the POSTNET™ barcode and the PLANET Code® barcode into one unique barcode.
The Intelligent Mail barcode:
- Has a greater overall data capacity than existing barcodes.
- Provides more accurate and detailed information about mailings which can enable better decision making.
- Increases mailpiece “real estate” by eliminating the need for multiple barcodes.
- Allows for participation in multiple USPS service programs with a single barcode.
When used to qualify for an automation price, the Intelligent Mail barcode follows the same placement rules as POSTNET barcodes. On letters, it can be placed in the address block or in the barcode clear zone found on the lower right corner of the envelope. On flats, the Intelligent Mail barcode can be placed anywhere on the address side as long as it is at least 1/8 inch from any edge of the piece.
Will I need to complete CASS™ or MASS™ certification again?
The Coding Accuracy Support System (CASS) certification enables the Postal Service to evaluate the accuracy of address-matching software programs. The CASS process is applicable to mailpieces with the Intelligent Mail barcode, but there is no need to redo this certification.
The Multi-line Accuracy Support System (MASS) certification is an extension of CASS. It has an annual certification requirement and the Intelligent Mail barcode certification is now incorporated into this process.
Accurate and Detailed Information Reporting
The reporting aspects offered by the Intelligent Barcode are available for any mailing. However, they are generally cost prohibitive for small mailings. If you are interested in this type of reporting, ask your salesperson and they can get you more information based upon your mailing.