Royal Mail boss Simon Thompson was grilled by MPs yesterday, and asked if he thought he was worth his half a million salary plus £140k bonus.
The biggest takeaway from the session has to be that Simon Thompson came across as evasive and obstructive and didn’t show much remorse for the current situation where consumers and businesses have had to suffer nine months of disruption from strikes.
However, the real highlights of the session were a couple of CWU stooges in the back row briefly holding up a “Vote Yes” sign, and Simon Thompson being warned by the chair that it’s a serious offence to mislead Parliament and that his reluctance to be straight with MPs wasn’t well received.
There was little reference to the fact that the post is still providing a diabolical service and items aren’t being delivered on time, and that’s despite the last strike date having been the 24th of December last year. However Simon Thompson was presented with a poster from a delivery office which clearly stated that tracked parcels should be delivered first, followed by large parcels, then late parcels, and only if a postie gets some spare time half of the letters they are supposed to deliver that day… meaning 50% of letters really don’t matter.
Simon Thompson denied this was policy saying the poster was an isolated incident in one Deliver Office, but the truth is on strike days they publicly stated on Special Delivery and Tracked 24 items would be prioritised – lending some veracity to the poster’s claims.
Despite rejection from MPs, Simon Thompson still wants to reduce letter deliveries to 5 days a week but says customers want parcels delivered 7 days a week. That’s reasonable, but after his performance it’s hard to trust that everyone would get letters delivered Monday to Friday and his insistence that letters are just as important as parcels doesn’t really ring true.
You can watch the entire session for yourself on Parliament TV. Royal Mail were grilled from 09:53 but there was also an interesting session with Dave Ward and Andy Furey from the CWU just before Royal Mail took the stand.