SingPost to reduce postmen's workload in move to improve service standards

SingPost to reduce postmen's workload in move to improve service standards

SingPost trucks
Delivery trucks parked at a loading bay of the Singapore Post (SingPost) e-commerce logistics centre on Dec 6, 2016. (Photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

SINGAPORE: Singapore Post (SingPost) announced new measures on Thursday (Feb 7) to improve its standards as part of a review into its postal operations in light of recent service failures.

The new measures were released after SingPost was fined S$100,000 by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) on Thursday for failing to deliver mail on time in 2017.

Among the new initiatives was reducing the workload of postmen. SingPost said in their statement workloads have been increasing significantly due to the rise of e-commerce and cheaper postage.

On average, each postman carried out 50 to 60 doorstep deliveries per day during the seasonal e-commerce surge over the last few months. SingPost said the number of package deliveries being made to doorsteps now exceeded that of delivering mail to letter boxes.

The company will be working with Government agencies and the Union of Telecoms Employees of Singapore (UTES) to upgrade the skills of its postal workers to ensure they will be equipped to handle the e-commerce boom, the statement said.

One hundred more postmen will be hired, while another 35 mail-drop drivers will be redeployed as full-time postmen, SingPost confirmed.

It will also increase the number of dedicated counters and staff at post offices for parcel collection.

Other measures include enhancing postmen’s remuneration with incentives for successfully delivering items to the doorstep, as well as improving mail delivery by reducing non-core mail businesses such as advertisement mail.

READ: Commentary: Are SingPost’s lapses indicative of a deeper malaise in the company?

SingPost CEO Paul Coutts said the new measures would provide “improvement in service quality over the next three to six months".

"These are the first steps currently taken to address our customers' immediate pain points and to rebuild the trust we have lost. Please bear with us as we look into longer-term measures that address other issues that customers have raised," he added.

SingPost has recently been accused of deteriorating service over the November to December period by its customers. It apologised earlier this year after complaints surfaced on social media about subpar service including undelivered letters and forged signatures for packages. 

A postman was arrested last month following reports of letters allegedly being discarded in a bin. Last year, a SingPost postman was fired after he threw away returned letters and direct mail to a condominium.

Source: CNA/ec(mi)

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