Omniva: What to keep in mind with parcel operations before the holidays?

According to Omniva, the beginning of December has brought parcel volumes that easily break all previous records.

Although the company is handling these record volumes, we nevertheless ask people to consider the possibility that some parcels may reach the recipient up to three days after sending. 

The head of Omniva Estonia parcel business is certain that parcel volumes will continue to grow until Christmas. "The usual pre-Christmas parcel frenzy combined with the increase in e-commerce due to the corona pandemic has made this year's holidays especially rich in parcels," Unt explained. "We are thoroughly prepared for Christmas and will deliver all parcels shipped on time before Christmas, but it is wise to consider a slightly extended delivery time when ordering and sending parcels at the moment. If you want to receive the parcel by Christmas then definitely do not leave your e-shopping for the holiday week."

Since major parcel volumes are currently flowing to the most popular parcel machines, according to Unt, some parcels might reach their recipients within 3 days. If any parcel machine has an extra long queue, some of the parcels destined there are rerouted to another parcel machine nearby. "We only do this if it allows for faster delivery and if the client is okay with it," Unt confirmed.

If the client's parcel is sent to a post office due to overloaded parcel machines, the client will receive the respective SMS a day before the parcel arrives at the post office and may contact customer service to have the parcel sent back to the parcel machine for free. “Here, the client must decide whether they agree to a longer waiting time in the parcel machine or receive the parcel faster from the post office," Unt explained.

Post office queue number on smartphone

Although the lines are long at major post offices due to people keeping the required distance, queue and waiting time statistics show that, in larger post offices, 70% of clients are served in less than 10 minutes. Longer waiting times usually occur in the afternoons and evenings of business days. We ask people to prepare
for longer waiting times during these hours.

In several post offices, the company has adopted a smart solution that allows you to get the line number on your smartphone using a QR code. While peak hours at post offices may have longer waiting times than usual, with the new solution, the client can use their time more effectively and run other errands in the shopping centre or nearby facilities while waiting. On their phone, the client can see real-time information on the queue and when their turn is coming up.

The QR code based queue solution is used in the Finest, Arsenal, Järve, Mustika, Kristiine, Lasnamäe Centrum and Pallasti post offices in Tallinn and at the Majaka parcel point as well as in the Ringtee, Eeden, Kvartal and Lõunakeskus post offices in Tartu. In addition to the machine, the QR code can be scanned from the signboard next to the machine and at the post office entrance.

Also, during the Christmas month, all clients standing in line will be served. That includes when the normal closing time has passed.

What can we do together to make parcels move faster between parcel machines?

Since new parcels are now moving between machines several times a day, it is now more important than ever that everyone picks up their parcels as quickly as possible. For every day a parcel waits in the parcel machine, we could deliver two additional parcels to clients.

To better manage client expectations and so that the client considers the overloaded parcel machines, Omniva has added markers next to parcel machines with longer waiting periods on the website map application and in the delivery options list of e-stores with automatic data exchange. Sharing data in real time with clients helps distribute major parcel volumes. Parcel machine network capacity information is updated every business day.

The company also implemented mobile parcel points this year, i.e. parcel buses that issue parcels to clients at popular locations and regions. Past years have shown that regardless of constant expansions and busy service, some parcel machines will nevertheless be too small before the Christmas season. For these situations, we use parcel buses, where the client can obtain their parcel as conveniently, quickly and safely as from a parcel machine. Such fast and flexible solutions help deliver up to 1500 additional parcels a day.

Since the pre-Christmas parcel season also means a greater strain on Omniva customer service, the company requests that clients not contact customer service in the event of 1-2-day delays. Contact customer service only if the parcel has not been issued within three days.

The faster you pick up your parcel, the faster the next parcel will be delivered to the next person.

Source: Omniva

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