By Reg Chapman

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — The United States Postal Service is hanging out the help wanted sign.

Just like many other employers, the post office needs more people before the busy holiday season begins.

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Last year, the U.S. Postal Service hired 100,000 people. But retirements are forcing them to recruit like never before.

For five years Adam Petrie-Stahlmann has delivered mail in the area of St. Paul where he grew up. Petrie-Stahlmann is grateful his office is actually outside in the community he loves.

“Spend about an hour and a half in the office sorting our mail and then we spend six and a half hours doing customer service on the street and you’re thanked for it, you love it, keeps you in good shape. It’s the perfect place to be,” said Petrie-Stahlmann.

He is even more grateful others now have an opportunity to become a U.S. postal carrier.

“We’re looking for over 100 carriers right here in the Twin Cities metro, statewide we are looking for a lot more. We are trying to prepare for our peak season and to make sure that we have the staffing to support our customers throughout the busy time,” said Nicole Hill.

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Hill says the days of taking the civil service test to qualify for a job at the post office are long gone.

“All of our applications are done online at USPS.com/careers. Once you get through that application you can use that same application to apply for anything that you are interested in. After you provide us that application … you will receive an email with a test. So that test is something that you take from home,” Hill said.

Once that’s done, emails are sent to ensure you are eligible for hire.

Starting pay is almost $19 an hour, with increases once you are on the job for more than 18 months.

For carriers like Petrie-Stahlman, this is a good job that provides a pathway to retirement.

“To buy into the federal benefits, which are top notch. We get to buy into federal retirement and pension, which is huge,” said Petrie-Stahlmann. “And that’s one of our big selling points with, say millennials, these days is maybe the the pay is not as good as Amazon on the front side but the long-term benefits are amazing.”

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The postal service will be hosting job fairs. It is also recruiting at county fairs and plans to be at the State Fair, too.

Reg Chapman