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2016-09-23

parcel centre

Parcel prices set to increase again, drawing public anger and criticism

Australia Post is preparing to further increase the cost of parcels at a time when they’re openly attacking the pay and conditions of the workers processing those parcels.

National Secretary Greg Rayner said the public have just about had it with the chaos caused by management’s failures to address simple issues associated with one of the biggest automation investments they’ve ever made in the Parcels business.

He said he sympathised with the public’s outrage.

“It’s just a tough pill to swallow.

“With one hand, they’re slapping the public across their left cheek in dishing out a lousy service due to the mess management have created with their automation obsessions.

“With the other hand, they’re coming back for another one right across the other cheek by slugging them with a price increase.

“Then, to top it all off, they’re coming at our members with a kick directly in the mouth, attacking their take-home pay and fifth week leave entitlements.

“The thought process is absolutely dumbfounding.”

Mr Rayner explained that it is becoming increasingly difficult for the Union to support a business model that continues to damage the Corporation’s credibility with the public.

“A sustainable Australia Post means sustainable jobs for our members, so of course we’re supportive of the Corporation’s journey back to profitability.

“And our members, led by their Union, have been incredibly accommodating with some pretty out-there ideas along the way — all in the interest of achieving sustainability.

“But the journey so far is leaving head-on collisions all along that road — filled with journalists looking for blood and leading angry customers to competing service providers.

“You can’t achieve sustainability by slugging the loyal customers, who continue to stand by Post, with additional costs to off-set the customers leaving in droves looking for a better deal.

“It’s just doesn’t work that way,” Mr Rayner said.

Angus Kidman, Editor-in-Chief at finder.com.au — an online consumer advocacy service, put it simply, and actually quite respectfully in his most recent column.

His attempt at correlating a link in the price rise to increasing the cost of consumers’ Christmas shopping by opening his column with the words Australia Post’s delivery sucks in its first sentence.

He concluded his thoughts with this:

A 25-cent price rise isn't going to cause anyone too much stress, but when it's applied to a product that so many of us already don't find reliable, it's not a good look. And while I appreciate that the shrinking amount of money Australia Post makes from letters makes it harder to deliver a reliable service, as a consumer I'd just like my stuff to show up when it's supposed to.”

If only Angus knew that the lousy service he and his colleagues have experienced were not due to the “shrinking amount of money Australia Post makes from letters”, but rather; management’s arrogance, short-sightedness and absolute obsession with reducing labour costs through automation and the use of underpaid delivery contractors.

Here’s one of the more civil of many recent posts by customers on Australia Post’s Facebook page in reaction to the price hike: 

“Dear Aus Post,

I understand you need to increase the cost of your satchels and all again with the cost of inflation, but if you could review your service possibly?

Last year parcels were "slow" taking 2-3 weeks from west to east and bias (sic) versa in red bags and 2-4 days in yellow (out of express zones)... We're not even in the silly season yet and it's taking 3-4 weeks for red bags I'm having to pay extra to upgrade to express just to assure they arrive on time and even then it's still taking up to a week! Just some feedback as I know I'm not alone in feeling a little disheartened.

I'm finding it shocking when my supplies from overseas in the US are passing through customs and arriving a week earlier then a parcel sent from NSW 😱

Regards a customer who spends lots of money on postage both sending and receiving and doesn't want to have to look for other postage options to assure her customers get their items on time!”

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