Consumers are making online purchases more than ever and Australia Post is transforming its service to meet this boom.
Australia Post managing director and CEO Ahmed Fahour said the company is responding to the internet shopping boom that includes new delivery options such as the ability for customers to collect parcels from an initial 100 extended hours locations and access to parcel lockers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
"These new measures are additions to existing parcel services and come in response to a 10.9 per cent increase in parcel volumes over the last financial year – a figure which can be directly linked to Australians taking up online shopping in record numbers," he said.
As part of the overhaul, customers will have the ability to have their parcels delivered to a location of their choice from an initial 100 parcel pick up locations across Australia which offer extended hours with many open weekends.
Also, 24-hour access electronic parcel lockers will be trialled in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane giving customers the option to collect their items when they want and will receive a SMS notification when their parcel is ready for collection. The parcel lockers will be in 24 locations nation-wide by the end of November.
Trial of new self-service machines for domestic parcels and Billpay are also beginning at five initial retail outlets, with more to be operating across the country by the end of the financial year.
"We're listening to our customers. Australians are receiving more parcels than ever and many of our customers are rarely at home during the day and find it increasingly hard to get to a post office," Fahour said.
"This is the biggest change Australia Post has ever made in our parcels business since it was set up many decades ago. It will allow us to introduce more services to complement those we continue to offer, such as home delivery and parcel collection at the post office."
Richard Umbers, executive general manager parcel services said that while home delivery is still the best option for some people, for others it is more convenient to collect a parcel from a location of their choice which is open for longer hours.
"This year we trialled extended hours and drive-through parcel collection in Sydney and 90 per cent of residents surveyed who took part in the trial told us they wanted the service to continue,” he said.
"With our extensive delivery network and the largest retail network in the country, Australia Post is the natural partner for eCommerce in Australia with millions of parcels delivered annually on behalf of online sellers both domestically and internationally.”