A practical new service for customers has been launched at 65 post offices across Belgium.

From 2 October, and continuing throughout the whole month, citizens who are less digitally literate can visit their nearest post office to compare the prices of telecom providers – a bpost initiative in partnership with FPS Economy – and get help completing their administrative chores online. The project will then be evaluated to determine whether and how it will be continued.

Valuable digital assistance

The world is constantly changing. Especially in terms of digital technology, as tools become more and more powerful and services increasingly move online. This can be a source of frustration for lots of citizens who find it hard to navigate the digital world. Digital exclusion affects 46% of Belgians, according to the King Baudouin Foundation’s Digital Inclusion Barometer 2022. ​

The same goes for telecommunication subscription offers, which change regularly, as do the needs of customers. But few people compare the offers of different providers to find the cheapest deal. ​

With this in mind, a new pilot project for digital assistance and price comparison in 65 post offices has been launched across the country. It will then be evaluated to determine whether and how it will be continued.

bpost’s digital assistance service benefits citizens in many different ways. Digitally illiterate citizens can visit one of the 65 participating post offices across the country to get help in various domains:

Accessing a price comparison website to compare internet, TV and phone prices. Digital assistants will be available at post offices to help customers compare telecom operator prices. They will analyse their needs, their current subscription price and the offers on the market at meilleurtarif.be, the price comparison website developed by the BIPT (Belgian Institute for Postal Services and Telecommunications). ​

Personalised digital assistance: The digital assistants can also guide citizens through the process of accessing the online websites of public authorities, creating and setting up email addresses and identifying themselves online. ​

Jos Donvil, CEO bpost Belgium says: “Our engagement towards the population is unwavering, and we are always looking for ways to meet the needs of our customers. These high-quality digital assistance projects draw on a savvy combination of a highly accessible network and employees, the focus bpost has on serving citizens, and technology for all.”

Petra De Sutter, Minister of Public Enterprises, Telecommunications and Postal Services: “The world is going digital at lightning speed. We are therefore faced with a major social challenge: enabling everyone to get on board the digital train, leaving no one behind. In our country, many people find it difficult to use the Internet, while public authorities and businesses are increasingly offering their services online. This is why bpost, with all its accessible offices, can help to reduce this digital divide. Consumers were already able to compare energy prices, now we’re helping them to do the same for Internet, TV and telephone.”

Other ongoing pilot projects

This is not the only bpost assistance project. The inhabitants of Jurbise can visit their local post office for free help with their online administrative chores, particularly accessing the municipality of Jurbise’s online services.

bpost has also partnered with SPW Finances for the Digital Inclusion Plan. Free assistance is offered, by appointment, at 17 post offices in Wallonia through to the end of October, to citizens who wish to pay their regional tax in instalments or claim a reduction in their property tax.

In addition, bpost is a member of #DigitAll, a coalition of Belgian companies and institutions with the aim of promoting digital inclusion in Belgium.

Source: bpost