Royal Mail miss 1st Class quarterly target (But on track for the year)

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Royal Mail missed it’s target for 1st Class post and Special Delivery in the last quarter (by 1.1% and 0.8% respectively). However Royal Mail exceeded the standard for 2nd Class postage (by 0.2%). The results were published in the latest Royal Mail Quality of Service report.

Annual Targets

Even with the miss in the last quarter, Royal Mail is on target to meet the regulatory First Class mail target for the 2016-17 year which is to deliver 93.0% the next working day. They are currently exceeding the Second Class mail target of 98.5% having delivered 98.9% within three working days.

“Royal Mail continues to provide a high Quality of Service to our customers. Our postmen and women work extremely hard day-in, day-out to deliver to some of the most demanding Quality of Service standards in Europe.”
– Sue Whalley, Royal Mail Chief Operations Officer

Whenever we publish Royal Mail Quality of Service results we tend to get a few comments along the lines of “How can I meet eBay targets if Royal Mail only deliver 93% of mail on time?”. The answer is that these numbers only relate to Royal Mail products covered under the Universal Service Obligation which doesn’t cover many parcels and packets. Unless you’re using 1st or 2nd class postage these result probably don’t apply to the items you pop in the mail bag.

6 Responses

  1. We just do not see this 93% rate reflected in our business and never have done.

    I’ve said it before, but there’s a simple test. Send 10 letters back to yourself and see the results. I’ll eat my hat if more than six or seven out of ten come next day.

    Royal Mail does not also do enough about items “lost” (a lovely euphemism) in the post, either.

    I would love to know how they actually calculate this delivery figure. Since the items are not tracked, they must rely on surveys.

    Presumably they just stop asking people whose mail is not delivered to the required standard.

    The Guardian did a test with 500 letters a few years ago. About 70% got there next day, which I think is a more realistic figure.

  2. Posted 10 self-addressed 1st class letters in our nearest box today.

    Will see how many come back through my door in the morning.

    Should be all ten, or at the very least nine, if these Royal Mail “figures” are to be believed.

  3. Any figures RMG produce like this are to be taken with a very large pinch of salt. They are not anywhere in the 90%. Same with lost mail they make it so difficult to claim, criminal how we have been treated in last 2 years, a lot of the issues fall of the radar. As long as the boffins can make their spreadsheets look pretty however.

  4. 10 items sent yesterday 1st class back to our address against Royal Mail’s 93% supposed next day delivery %.

    We actually have had six back today, which is about the same as we find whenever we do it.

    Hardly definitive, I know, but probably in line with the rate most stamp mail is delivered at.

    According to Royal Mail CS, who I asked to comment about the 6 out of 10 delivery rate, they said it was a target, that was being met over millions of items each day.

    And I’m going to be getting a book of stamps as a goodwill gesture.

  5. And only 1 more today, so six delivered next day, one more after 2 days, with three still to come.

    That’s seven out of ten only after 2 days.

    Again, hardly definitive, but somewhere there must be a lot of 100% next deliveries to get to this 93%

    Our mail now goes to a big sorting machine in Chester. Years ago, local items were pulled out, so they would all have been delivered the following morning.


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