Graphic Arts Online has written an interesting piece about the Census Bureau’s use of Intelligent Mail barcodes (IMb) — at a cost of only $25,000 – which will save the Census Bureau more than $40 million in the long run. H/t to Lisa Cross, Senior Editor of Graphic Arts Online for the following:
The 2010 Census mailing, arriving in boxes this week, marks the single largest use of Intelligent Mail barcodes on any mailing to date, says the U.S. Postal Service. The Census Bureau will mail 426 million pieces in its effort to gather data on more than 120 million U.S. households.
Including an Intelligent Mail Barcode (IMb) added $25,000 to the 2010 Census tab, but it is estimated to save $41 million in postage, reports the Wall St. Journal. The IMb enables speedier mail processing, and when combined with other USPS services offers tracking and address correction information.
The printing of 2010 Census materials was done by more than 120 printing firms that won contracts from the Government Printing Office after bidding on the $110 million job.
Some of the contracts awarded include: RR Donnelley, who printed the main Census packages consisting of questionnaires, letters and envelopes. Tabs Direct in Texas produced the advance letters and reminder postcards. Freedom Graphic Systems in Wisconsin produced questionnaires that will be used by enumerators going house to house. GPO Print Procurement employees participated with Census employees in a comprehensive quality control program to monitor the printing, addressing, inserting and envelope manufacturing at these facilities.
“Supporting the 2010 Census program has been a huge success for GPO and the print procurement staff,” said Public Printer Bob Tapella. “These procurements are an example of how the partnership between GPO, federal agencies and the printing industry can serve the American people and support the local economies where the printing of these materials took place.”