|With a continuum of increasing costs in the postal
rates, it is the obligation of every operation to achieve the lowest
rates available through automated mailing processes.
The United States Postal System defines this as Automation Rate Mailing
which ultimately is defined by the designer of the mail piece as "Dollars
in My Back Pocket."
Case in point: 1) a non-automation mail rate for a basic letter-size
mailer is currently $0.235 per piece as opposed to a mere $0.183 for
a piece that has been designed for automation, and 2) a non-profit,
non-automation mail rate for a basic letter-size mailer is $0.169
per piece as opposed to a mere $0.119 for a piece that has been designed
for automation. It becomes very evident that Automation Rate Mailing
is everyone's door to driving more dollars to the bottom line!
Postal rates can
be improved considerably if mailers are "machinable." Machinable
means that mail is of the right size and shape and made of the correct
material for transporting at high speeds through the Postal Services'
automated processing system.
Unenveloped mail pieces, or "self-mailers," prepared for
an automation rate mailing, must be tabbed to prevent an open edge
from jamming high-speed processing equipment. Standards for tabs are
based on basis weight of paper stock used for the mail piece and the
location of the folded or bound edge. Even tape and glue are permissible,
but neither are as clean or professional as a tab or wafer seal.
The description of Tabs and Wafer Seals in Section 811 of the U.S.
Postal's Quick Reference Guide provides guidelines for the most common
types of mailers and the requirements for tabbing of these mailers.
They are as follows:
1. Double cards with the fold on the top or bottom require
1 tab in the center.
2. Folded self-mailers with single sheets with the fold at
the top or bottom require 2 tabs within 1 inch from both sides of
3. Folded self-mailers with multiple sheets with the fold to
the bottom require 1 tab in the center.
4. Folded self-mailers with single sheets with the fold to
the bottom and right require 1 tab in the center.
5. Booklets with multiple sheets and a cover with the fold
to the bottom require 2 tabs within 1 inch from both sides of the
6. Accordion folded pieces with multiple or single sheets