What do I need to know about USPS® Intelligent Mail Indicia (IMI) Compliance?
Businesses of all sizes have long relied on postage meters to assist in mailing their communications. Postage meters save money since the postage meter indicia (markings that carry the necessary postage information) costs less than a stamp, and time, as it eliminates trips to the post office.
The Information Based Indicia Program (IBIP) was the first digital postage management system designed to manage the mailing system, but as technology evolved, the design and function fall short of necessary benefits. To that, the USPS® introduced a new data based standard of indica, the Intelligent Mail Indicia (IMI).
The goal of the USPS is to replace all existing IBIP-based indicia with the up-to-date technology of IMI, as it provides more detailed transaction data, enables automation of costly back-office operations, and employs better security standards. The USPS now requires all new mailing systems meet the IMI standards as the mailing systems go to market.
Full compliance and additional benefits
The new IMI standard was designed to safeguard the USPS and everyone who uses a mailing system, from small businesses to large enterprises. Additional benefits of IMI include:
- Accurate postage
Even the most careful manual data entry may produce errors. With an IMI, the postage is automatically calculated after you input the required Service Class. Using IMI saves money and mail is not returned for lack of postage.
- Automatic updates
The USPS requires systems with IMI to connect to the manufacturer’s servers every 72 hours. With frequent use information, the USPS is better able to manage mail flow. Updates arrive to the meter in a timely fashion, including rate changes and other modifications, avoiding over or short payment.
- Stronger security
Federal Information Processing (FIP) is the organization that creates standards for data encryption. IMI adheres to their standards to ensure that information transmits securely, whether it is going to or from the postage meter.
- Greater connectivity
There is no need for a dedicated phone line. Instead, dedicated LAN connections are required to ensure a constant connection, which enables faster updates and postage refills.
To gain additional insight into IMI Compliance, download the complimentary Ebook: Quick Reference Guide: Everything you need to know about USPS® Intelligent Mail Indicia (IMI) Compliance and Infographic: What you need to know about the new USPS® Intelligent Mail Indicia (IMI) Standards
You do have a choice when it comes to which postage meter you purchase, but it must comply with USPS standards. The new IMI captures more data, provides the USPS with more real-time data, and ensures that you always use the correct amount of postage.
The iX-Series by Quadient meet the latest IMI and Dimensional Weighing (DIM) USPS requirements. Gain a complete suite of tools that offer a one-stop approach to processing, tracking, reporting and reconciling postage expenses for mail and parcels.
To learn more about Quadient’s IMI compliant iX-Series postage meters, visit quadient.com.