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September 21, 2023

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Maintenance Selection System - MSS
Updated On: Oct 22, 2010



Important Information -- October 22, 2010
When an employee takes the unproctored portion of exam 955, in order to move forward to the next step, the employee must receive a notification by email of the scheduling of the proctored portion of exam 955.  A problem arises when the notification is treated by an email server as spam or junk mail.  Please see the message from Maintenance Director Raymer.


Clarification on RMSS PER Update Process -- April 14, 2010
Some employees seeking to update placement on a PER apparently have been required to retake exam 955, regardless whether having passed the exam before or not.  If an employee has previously received a passing score on exam 955, but was rated ineligible as a result of the 'Structured Interview' panel, the employee is not required to retake the exam 955 when seeking an update.  This has been clarified by a recent policy statement issued by the Postal Service and agreed to by Maintenance Craft Director Steve Raymer.

Update - February 08, 2010
At the end of January the Postal Service issued yet another revised version of the Maintenance Selection System (MSS) handbook, EL-304.  This EL-304, Issue 3 incorporates agreed upon corrections.  However, it does not make substantive changes from the handbook the parties agreed to in negotiations last May and June that concluded in implementation of the 'Revamped' MSS.

Update - August 12, 2009
The newly released Question and Answer agreement between the parties is now available.  It should clarify some points of confusion.

Update - August 07, 2009
As many of you already know, the Service suspended scoring of the new exam 955.  This occurred because the Service became alarmed by the high pass rate -- gee, surprise, Maintenance Craft employees know a lot about maintenance . . .  The Service has now announced that it will rescore examinations already taken and issue new results -- Notice of Result -- for tests already taken.  This may result in some who have received passing result receiving new notice of having failed.  If the result yields an 'ineligible' score, the candidate will not be scheduled for an interview but may have an opportunity (120 days after receiving result) to seek an update.
The Service is stil obligated to complete Open Season and update processes consistent with the contractual 150-day and 37-day, respectively, time frames.  No concessions have been made by the Union on these deadlines.

Update - June 04, 2009
As expected the parties have completed negotiation of the "Revamped Maintenance Selection System" (RMSS).  The MSS Handbook EL-304 has been revised to correspond to what the Postal Service sought and what the Union has agreed to.  The parties also entered into an agreement to alter specific terms of Article 38; agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding that spells out the transition between the previous MSS and the new RMSS -- vis-a-vis Open Season, updates to PERs, and other matters; and settled two pending national level grievances filed early this year on the Service's proposed changes.  We now have the newly revised EL-304 available.  Also you will find of some interest the letter of June 04, 2009 from Postal Service HQ to field managers concerning implementation of the terms of the parties' sign-offs and the new EL-304 -- especially of interest for processing applications now pending.

 Update - May 29, 2009
It has recently been disclosed that, not only was the Postal Service working on plans to make revisions to the MSS, but also the APWU Maintenance Craft HQ officers have been engaged for several months in negotations over these changes.  The Postal Service began administering its "psychological profile" examination 955 for entrance register purposes in December last year.  It clearly had already been working for months on developing the changes it wanted.  While two national disputes were intiated early this year, it now appears both those grievances will be closed with an agreement on all elements of the Postal Service's "Revampted Maintenance Selection System".




Revised MSS - RMSS  The Postal Service has begun the process of attempting to revise the Maintenance Selection System (MSS), possibly affecting the written examinations and the qualification standards for most (if not all) Maintenance Craft positions.  Presently, the Service seems to anticipate major changes in the way candidates for positions will be evaluated and selected; however, no changes have yet been made.

While it is possible this effort by the Postal Service will cause highly significant changes in what we have come to know as the process for being evaluated and selected into Maintenance Craft positions, the present system remains in place.  Some isolated instances of local managers asserting that examinations cannot be scheduled or that updates cannot be processed have arisen.  Those local managers are (suprprise!) completely wrong.  If your local managers assert anything about present changes in the MSS process, contact your NBA immediately to have this misunderstanding corrected.

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