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The Grading Process Broken Down
The receiving step is one of the most crucial steps in the PSA process. This is where all packages are logged in and separated based on their service level. Once the packages have been separated, each package is opened in priority of service and the cards are counted. After verifying the service level and payment, one of the most important steps in the grading process occurs.The submissions are now assigned a generic order number, removing the identifying information from the order – thus removing the potential for bias. Finally, all of the pertinent data is entered from the PSA submission form, an e-mail confirmation is sent to you and your cards are off to the next stage.
The next step in the PSA process is also called the Sticker Stage. At this stage, the cards are counted again and labels are placed on the outside of each card saver. The label or sticker assigned to each card contains information including the order number and individual certification number – that is the same certification number that will appear on the PSA label once the card is graded.Once this occurs, the history of that card will be stored in our database as it travels through the process and is eventually assigned a grade. Finally, the information on the stickers is matched against the information on the card itself.
Once the information has been verified during the Sticker Stage, the order is then off to our Spec department. This is where our research team resides. Once again, the cards are counted, the sticker information is verified and the cards that need additional research, whether there was no information provided or if it is a rare issue, are examined before all of the data is entered into the database.
GRADING & LABELLING
The cards are now ready for grading. Each order is distributed to graders based on their particular skill and expertise. For example, a 1956 Topps Mickey Mantle would not be distributed to one of our modern card specialists. While the graders are generally trained to handle cards from virtually all eras, they are assigned cards based on their strengths.In addition, the sheer number of graders assigned to each card can vary depending on the type of card submitted. In all cases, at minimum, two graders are assigned to every card.
Once the grades have been assigned in the database, the PSA labels are now generated and printed. By entering the order number into the system, our team can now print all of the crucial information for the PSA label including the card number, player and/or subject, manufacturer, grade and the unique certification number mentioned earlier in our video. Each and every collectible certified by PSA receives this unique number which is stored in our database along with that collectible's history.
Now that the PSA labels have been printed, our sealing department is given the task of selecting the appropriate custom holders for each card and then carefully placing the card and PSA label within the holder. Once the contents have been assembled by hand, each card is taken to the boom room where cards are sonically sealed in our tamper-evident holders. This sonic weld is strong and helps ensure security of the PSA holder.
QA STAGE 1
After the cards have been sealed in the PSA holders, they are then sent to the Grading Verification stage. As mentioned earlier, this is where another grader will check the orders for accuracy and consistency in relation to PSA standards. If the cards appear to meet PSA's guidelines, the order is then sent on to the next step in the process. If any of the cards do not appear to meet the standards, the card is then removed from the holder and re-evaluated by our staff.
QA STAGE 2
Once our grading staff has finalized the grades through the verification process, the orders are then sent to the final verification stage. This stage is PSA's final quality control checkpoint. Here, the order is then reunited with the original submission form and each card is matched against the paperwork.
The cards and holders are examined for defects that may have been overlooked in prior stages such as scratched cases or improper information on the PSA label. Once this is checked and verified, a PSA packing slip is printed so our shipping department is aware of the method of delivery you have selected. Upon completion, the grades are posted and an e-mail confirmation is sent to the customer with the grading results.
We are now at the final stage in the PSA process – the shipping department. Now PSA's staff will count the cards within the order once again to ensure that the card count and submission form matches the information in our system.Once this is completed, the staff members enter the shipping instructions into the computer, package the order and ship it back to the customer – who is eagerly awaiting their cards. Once the order is shipped from our facility, an e-mail is generated automatically to alert the customer that the order is on the way back to Game Addict Australia.
Once it arrives back with Game Addict, a team member will be in touch to arrange your next delivery.