More Royal Mail strikes to come

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The postal workers’ union will announce more strikes after failing to come to an agreement with Royal Mail. The union said that while progress has been made in some areas, including an improved pay offer of 6.7% over two years “with additional lump sums”, it was not enough to avert industrial action. The union executive will meet on Monday to finalise their decision.

Royal Mail have said they are “disappointed that … the Communication Workers Union continues to ignore the stark challenges facing the company and refuses to agree a way forward for the business”. With the Christmas spendy season just around the corner, the most important time of the year is approaching for many businesses: if we cannot rely on Royal Mail to make our deliveries in a timely manner, more of us than ever will be looking to Royal Mail’s competitors for business.

I’ve said it before, but I’ll keep saying it until Dave Ward and his colleagues face up to the realities of postal services in the twenty-first century, the CWU are about to strike their members out of their jobs.

16 Responses

  1. I shudder to think what effect these strikes will have on my business in the run up to the Christmas period. I have no choice but to stick with Royal Mail as the items I send are (mostly) large letter category, for which there is currently no alternative. I will adapt and hopefully survive, however I don’t hold the same hope for Royal Mail.
    With the current attitude shown to it’s customers, more and more users will seek alternatives, or make changes that cut out Royal Mail altogether. With no mail to deliver, what’s the point of having postal workers?

  2. I’ll say this for my customers: they were *great* during the last lot of strikes. But if they get less patient towards Xmas, I really won’t be surprised, nor would I blame them.

  3. I hate to say this but more and more sellers will migrate to courier services in preference to post. So will off line businesses. RM will end up as a junk mail delivery service if they don’t wise up pretty soon.

    All it takes is for one courier company to establish drop off shops for Christmas present deliveries to wipe a fortune off RM profits this year (in fact I’m surprised none of them have to date).

  4. Tricky at present Mountie, as most companies I have found offering a viable service suitable for small packets and parcels use RM for the “last mile”, so they will be just as affected.

    For business to business and large items, there are other options, but not for small breakables requiring insurance.

  5. Hi Brian
    It’s all down to weight and the quantity that you ship. Couriers services are available for around a tenner (check out PayPal shipping with ParcelForce) which is slightly higher than Special Delivery up to 2kg but a hell of a lot cheaper than over 2kg. If you send enough and get a courier contract you can get the price down below the £7.75 for up to 2kg, but if your items are very light then it’s hard to beat

  6. I think that if you’re selling expensive but light things, it might be easier to find alternatives. £10 to courier a £500 engagement ring doesn’t look so bad: you just need to check the courier’s insurance deal with jewellery. It’s the small cheap items where it’s particularly difficult to find a replacement service – though I have heard that several companies are looking at providing small packet services now, which really would knock RM out the water.

  7. It’s also worth noting ParcelForce compensation is limited to £150, but you can buy additional cover. Other couriers cover varies and most won’t cover glass.

    It’s seriously worth checking them out though and seeing what type of deal you can get and making sure you get the insurance you need.

  8. No, as far as I have found so far, they are none of them good for ceramics and glass, which Royal Mail standard, recorded and special delivery as well as International airmail services will all insure (contrary to popular opinion…). Parcelforce and Std. Parcels are not insurable, nor are any of the courier companies.

  9. Sue, check those small packet services – all I have looked at have used RM for the last mile – the actual delivery from the sorting office to the customer. If the strikes escalate that is not going to be much help.

  10. Lynne, that’s what I mean – not that any of them are now, but I have heard some rumours that a couple of RM’s main competitors would be looking at services that *don’t* rely on RM for the final mile.

  11. That would be very interesting indeed if and when it comes about. I hope they will insure breakables as well… we’ll have to wait and see (and hope they read on here! )

  12. The day it happens I’ll be trying them out, I’m seriously fed up with Royal Mail messing about year after year. It’s a fantastic world leader being beaten into the ground by strikes. It’s sad really but I don’t like my income being affected because some union guy or other can’t get his head around the modern world 🙁

  13. Its the Insurance that is the problem, or was last time I checked anyway. For some reason delivery peeps seem a bit wary of £1500.00 plus rings 😀 and less than10 items month doesn’t seem than attractive to them either.

  14. Sorry Brian, just checked ParcelForce T’s and C’s
    Articles made largely or wholly of gold, silver or other precious metals and Diamonds and other precious stones are both excluded from compensation 🙁
    I’m guessing other couriers are the pretty much the same which doesn’t help you at all


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