Requirements for the quality of the universal service
According to the Act No. 324/2011 Coll. on Postal services, § 41, the Postal Regulatory Office issues the Requirements for the quality of the universal service (hereafter referred to as “the requirements”) that are relevant in full extent also to the performance the postal payment service if this obligation is imposed in the postal licence.
a) Principles to ensure the quality of the universal service (hereafter referred to as “the universal service”),
b) Basic characteristics of the universal service quality and their required values (quality standards):
1/ accessibility of the access and contact points of the public postal network, 2/ time accessibility of the universal service, 3/ on-time performance of transport of the items, 4/ security of the items, 5/ information on the universal service, 6/ handling of complaints, 7/ customers satisfaction,
1. The universal service provider shall observe the set requirements.
2. The universal service provider uses the STN EN standards for postal services adequately,
on behalf of users of the universal service. 1)
3. The post means for the purposes of these requirements:
a) the access point for the collection and distribution of postal items and for the sale of postal stamps,
b) the contact point, which is the person entitled under a contract with the provider of the universal service for the collection of postal items, dispensation of announced and carried off items and for the sale of postal stamps,
c) the access point or the contact point for the collection of postal items and for sale of postal stamps.
4. Sub-region of the post office is a summary of the municipalities, parts of the
municipalities and cities for which the designated post office provide universal service.
5. Separated settled place is the settled place which border is distanced from the border of
the built-up part of the municipalities at least 400 m and has less than 50 inhabitants with permanent stay on the place with orientation number or registered number 2).
6. The crucial time is determined time (hour and minute) when the post office is still able to
process the selected items and deliver for postal transport, to observe the transport deadline.
7. Recorded item is the postal item with proof for the sender at its posting and with required
a) for items addressed to a physical person is the family house, apartment in apartment house and etc.,
b) for items addressed to the organization is reception, reception room, office, shop, etc.
9. Characteristic of the universal service quality is the particular differential feature of the
universal service, deduced from the requirements 3).
1. The level of assurance of the universal service quality comes out from:
a) objective public needs, b) objective possibilities of its providing:
1/ geographical and weather conditions, 2/ technical possibilities of public postal network, 3/ economic capacity.
2. For providing the universal service the uniform principles are valid for the whole territory
3. Any interested group in the universal service may not be favoured or disfavoured.
Accessibility of access and contact points of the public postal network
1. Principles for the placement of the access and contact points of the public postal network:
a) access and contact points must be available for the population without
If the distance of residential place is shorter, the place is part of village,
if the residential place has more inhabitants and the distance is bigger, so it is separate residential unit,
3) Definition according to ISO 9000:2000, usually it is used also quality attribute or quality indicator.
b) it is necessary to regard the extent of the demand for the universal service.
2. Particular cases of non-observance the articles 4 and 5 of the requirements are allowed
after individual consideration of the Postal Regulatory Office depending upon the local geographical, technical, economic and safety conditions.
3. The requirements of paragraphs 4, 5 and 6 of this article shall apply only to the post
offices, under art. 2 item 3 (a) and (b).
4. The distance of any inhabited place of the residential unit with at least 25 inhabitants to
5. The post office is in every residential unit which
b) has less than 2 500 inhabitants and at the same time the sub region has more than 3
6. In the residential unit with more than 20 000 inhabitants is at least one post office for
7. To improve the universal service accessibility beyond those requirements may be set up
for more access and contact points, which may provide even narrower package of postal services than determined extent of the universal service.
8. The letter box is publicly accessible self-service technical equipment intended for
9. In the residential unit with a population from 500 to 1 000 inhabitants is the letter box if
the other nearest letter box is in other residential unit distant more than 5 000 m (distance of centres). 4)
10. In the residential unit with a population from 1 001 to 3 000 inhabitants is at least one
11. In the residential unit with a population from 3 001 to 30 000 inhabitants there is for each
3 000 inhabitants at least one letter box.
12. In the residential unit with a population over 30 000 inhabitants there is at least 10 letter
boxes and for each 5 000 inhabitants over 30 000 inhabitants there is at least one letter box.
13. The letter boxes are primarily placed on the places of the natural concentration of
inhabitants. Time accessibility of the letter boxes may be limited by operating modes of equipment in which are letter boxes placed in (commercial centres, hospitals, etc.).
14. The letter boxes must be placed to be well visible. The colour tint of letter boxes of
universal services provider is unified and different from the other provider.
________________________________________________ 4) Centre of the village – the figure obtained from publicly available Web applications intended for the measurement of the distance along the available roads.
Time accessibility of the universal service
At the post office in the residential unit / village, which has:
a) less than 3 000 inhabitants or in the sub-region area, which has less than 5 000
inhabitants, are the hours for the public in working days, in the morning and/or afternoon and not less than 3 hours every working day, so that at least 1 times a week were the hours for the public in the afternoon, or at least one day a week normally until 17:00 o´clock; the requirement can be fulfilled by using a divided working time
b) 3 001 to 5 000 inhabitants, are the open hours for the public during the
working day at least from 8:30 to 15:00 o’clock, including technological and operational brakes or lunch breaks and at least one day a week up to 17:00 o’clock,
c) 5 001 to 10 000 inhabitants, are the open hours for the public during the
working day from 8:30 a.m. to 16:00 o’clock, including technological and operational brakes or lunch breaks and at least one day a week up to 17: 00 o’clock,
d) 10 001 to 50 000 inhabitants, are the open hours for the public during the
working day from 8:00 a.m. to 17:00 o’clock,
e) over 50 000 inhabitants, are the open hours for the public in general, the
working day from 8:00 to 18:00 o´clock, at assigned post office from 7:00 o´clock.
The provider of universal service is obliged to provide at each post office the organisational measures to minimize the waiting time for the provision of universal service, so that the average waiting time at the counter at the peak time operation 5) must not be more than 12 minutes.
The letter boxes are cleared at least once every working day. The last clearance of the letter boxes is made in the shortest possible time before the time of expedition of the postal items for postal transport.
The postal items dedicated for take away from post office boxes shall be prepared before the opening of the post office. If it is not possible from the operating reasons it shall be done at the earliest possible time.
The length of stay on stand of motorized postman during of which he receives the postal items from senders is determined by public requirements for the provision of postal services and is not shorter than 20 minutes.
In the case of unforeseen restrictions of postal services provision of technical or operational reasons the post office is obliged to inform the public about the expected time restrictions and by bulletin board notify which nearest post office is available to the public.
5) Peak operation is operation during two consecutive hours with the biggest intensity of provided service
The universal service provider is obliged to notify the reasoned temporary closure of the post office in a reasonable time, in a bulletin board, where he indicate the anticipated period during which will be the post office closed and notified which nearest post office will be available to the public (e.g. closure of post office for operational reasons). Temporary closure of the access point in duration over 30 days is the provider of the universal service obliged to notify the Postal Regulatory Office in advance.
Conditions of delivery and exceptions to the universal service
The postal items shall be delivered every working day, at least once a day up to 16.00 o’clock.
Recorded items of universal service and remitted amounts shall be delivered to the place indicated at the address. This obligation is not valid if: a) amount or weight is higher than the limit determined in the postal conditions, b) entitled addressee or authorised recipient was not reached at the delivery, c) the addressee of the postal items has the address on the 5th floor or higher and it is
d) place of delivery is not accessible, e) the access is not possible not even after ring the bell indicated by the name of the
f) on the request of the addressee another way of delivery is agreed.
In the cases under par. 2a) to e) the postman shall insert the advice of arrival the item to the available letter box of addressee with mark of non-delivery reason or provide notification to the other forms referred to in postal conditions.
Exemptions from the obligation to provide one delivery every working day (exceptions to the universal service) apply to: a) places where security and health of employees of universal service provider is
b) places with difficult access, c) reclusive (separated) settled place with less than 25 inhabitants, d) reclusive (separated) settled place located more than 1 km from the border of
e) places where there are one or more organizations that receives less than 35 postal
items a week and are more than 400 m from the built-up border of the village with delivery service,
f) places where there are one or more organizations that receives less than 75 postal
items a week and are more than 1 000 m from the built-up border of the village with delivery service, 6)
6) It means, that regularly delivery is insured :
up to 400 m from the border of the village in each case, because if the settled place has less than 25 inhabitants this is not a reclusive settled place, but it is a part of the village,
from 400 to 1 000 m from the border of the reclusive settled place with more than 25 inhabitants or business receives at least 35 postal items a week,
over 1 000 m from the border of the village to the reclusive settled place with more than 50 inhabitants or to the businesses that receive more than 75 postal items a week.
g) places which does not significantly differ in a geographically from the places
For addressees who live in places according to the par. 4 a) to g) of this article, or persons who permanently stay in place with place with orientation number or registered number according to the par. 4 a) to g) of this article the delivery is insured by: a) delivery at least twice a week in the nonsequential days (only par. 4 c) to f) of this
b) delivery at least three times a week (only par. 4 g) of this article), c) delivery to the delivery boxes (according to the par. 7) of this article), d) taking items away from the post office, e) other way what customer agreed with universal service provider in accordance to
Places with ensured delivery in accordance to points a) to c) are places with restricted
delivery and places with ensured delivery in accordance to points d) to e) are places without delivery services.
The exceptions from universal service according to the par. 5 and 6 are approved by the Postal Regulatory Office.
On the request of the addressee the delivery post box can be established. The addressee may establish the letter box on his own account in the place, which does not belong among the exceptions of the universal service, in agreement with the provider of the universal service. The universal service provider shall inform the addressee of the time of the delivery to the delivery box.
Conditions of delivery of the postal items are comprehensively specified in the Postal terms and conditions of the universal service provider including cases when the obstacles occur.
On-time performance of transport of the items
The time period that expires from the posting to the delivery during providing the universal service may not be baselessly prolonged.
The postal items within the universal service are delivered in the time limit for on-time performance.
Limit for on-time performance is not valid for the postal items if the obligation according to paragraph 2 of this article was not fulfilled from the reason occurred on the side of the addressee or in consequence of the fact, that the sender did not keep the postal conditions.
Transport time is the number of days from the filing of the items in its delivery and it is expressed by the formula D + n, where D represents the date of filing and “n” is the number of working days after the date of filing. For items posted at the post office after expiration of the latest posting time or inserted to the letter box after the latest clearance the posting day is considered to be the next working day. For items posted in a non-working day is considered to be the next working day.
Quality standards for all categories of items from the scope of the universal service are 93% of items delivered within transport time and 99% of the items delivered in time, which is twice the period of the transport.
Standard of quality as determined in section 5 of this article is considered to be fulfilled if the required result in a percentage performance was reached when the number of the applicable control items was at least:
6 000 letter items of the fastest categories,
6 000 letter items of the standard category,
The universal service provider shall ensure in each calendar year the measurement of transport time of letters of the fastest category and at least two other kind of items (letter b) to f)) to the extent referred to in point 6 of this article, while each type of items shall be measured at least once every three years.
The measurement methodology is in harmony with STN EN 7) and is approved by the Postal Regulatory Office.
The universal service provider shall submit the provisional results of the measurement for the first half year to 30. September of the calendar year in which the measurement is made, and the overall results of the measurements referred to in paragraph 6 of this article, to 28. February of the following calendar year, to the Postal Regulatory Office. The results are approved by the Postal Regulatory Office.
The universal service provider realises the measures to ensure the security of the postal items; that is assurance against:
a) damage of the wrapping, b) damage, shortage or loss of the content, c) loss of the postal item
7 ) Art. 16 Directive 97/67/EC as amended.
and the universal service provider systematically monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of the measures. He has to inform the Postal Regulatory Office about implemented measures and results of the monitoring two times a year.
The universal service provider marks each letter box: a)
This obligation does not apply to letter boxes located in the interiors of the post offices.
Information about the hours for the public, during which the post office provides the universal service, shall be indicated at the entrance to the post office or at another appropriate place so as to be permanently accessible even in the time of the conclusion of the post office to the public.
The universal service provider shall ensure that at each post office it would be possible to dip into:
requirements for the quality of the universal service,
list of post codes used in the Slovak Republic.
At each post office there shall be published the warning on the possibility to dip into the documents according to this paragraph.
The universal service provider shall ensure on his web site disclosure of: a)
requirements for the quality of the universal service,
list of post codes used in the Slovak Republic.
The universal service provider shall ensure that at each post office premises shall be published: a)
an overview of the postal services belonging to the universal service,
specimens of the correct writing of the address,
information about the crucial time for the collection of postal items at post offices, where the departure of the determining postal rate is before the completion of the public hours.
The universal service provider shall keep all information referred to in this article in actual status.
A claim is a complaint adjoining the quality or correctness of performed postal service.
A complaint is an expression of the discontent of the organization concerning the perceived defects of its products, services or policies, or the complaints handling process itself, while explicitly or implicitly expected to answer or solution (STN EN 14012).
The procedure of the handling of complaints shall be published in the Regulations on complaints. The regulation must be simple and understandable for customer and shall not compel him to expend unfounded effort.
Complaints are handled objectively on the professional level and as quickly as possible, with the requisite level.
If the right of the sender or of the addressee to compensate damage, to repay the lump sum, to repay the paid charge or its part arise from the handling of the complaint, this right shall be satisfy the most quickly possible way, no later than the time limit determined in the Regulations on complaints.
The universal service provider shall deliver to the Postal Regulatory Office annually the report on the results of complaints investigation within 10 working days from the date of its publication, which includes an overview of the number of complaints and claims relating to compliance with the obligations under the law on postal services and these requirements, which were lodged during the previous calendar year with the provider of the universal service, including the way of handling (justified or unjustified complaints, quantification and an overview of the reasons complaints).
The universal service provider respects STN EN 14012 7) standard at creation of the measurement system of customer satisfaction.
The universal service provider shall submit to the Postal Regulatory Office the methodology of measurement on customer satisfaction with the provision of the universal service and shall ensure the measurement of customers satisfaction with the universal service quality on a representative sample of min. 1 000 customers at least once a year; reasons for dissatisfaction shall analyse and adopt the measures to eliminate the causes of discontent. The universal service provider shall inform the Postal Regulatory Office about the measurement results and done measures. Žilina, 27-th March 2012
Chairman of the Postal Regulatory Office
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