This important document brings together the findings of the EC funded project “Postal Skills and Work Environment in the Digital Era”, implemented by the SDC working group “Training, Health & Safety” over the last two years.
The main purpose of the “Postal Skills and Work Environment in the Digital Era” project was to investigate the evolving relationships between digital transformation, new skills and work environments, to provide the a better understanding of how companies and employees can benefit from technology, understand the impact of digitalisation on training and retraining activities as well as to envision the potential impact the new technologies can have on work environment. The project utilised the innovative research tools through an external Ernst & Young (E&Y) consultancy, analysed the impact of digitisation on training in key professional areas such as back-office operations, delivery operations and post-offices networks. The research also analysed the impact of digitisation during the pandemic period. This in-depth analysis following a modified version of the Delphi methodology was based on data collection through desk research, questionnaires distributed to all social partners followed by a semi-structured interview. The analysis was then oriented to identify possible evolutions of the digitalisation impact on training and work environment in a time horizon of 5-7 years.
In the Joint Declaration, amongst the various points highlighted, of particular importance are those in which employers and unions recognise the increasingly central role of training and retraining in tackling the organisational and economic challenges affecting the sector, the growing importance of soft skills in providing the customer with new products and services as well as the need for training and retraining programs more tailored to the workers’ needs. Some of the project main outputs highlighted in the joint declaration are also that the evolution of jobs entails that employees will be put into more contact with customers and working more in collaboration with colleagues, requiring from them enhanced interrelation and managerial skills as well as greater autonomy. Given these evolutions, training, re-training and up-skilling must continue to be considered as a joint responsibility in a lifelong perspective for the sector’ employees to ensure digital transition, right intersection of skills and jobs and adequate levels of employability. As Barbaro Francesco Costa, Chair of the Training, Health & Safety Working Group, underlined “The joint declaration is an important document to formalize the common vision of the European social partners on the impact of digitalisation on training and the work environment in the postal sector. It highlights that the further development of employees’ soft skills will be essential. In that context, adequate training and re-training of employees will ensure the best connection between skilled employees’, companies’ and customers’ needs.”
The report also recognizes that the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated many of the digital transformations already seen in the postal sector being it in terms of products’ diversion but also of increased used of digital processes and devices such as contactless confirmation. In order to, support these transformations, the joint declaration also underlines the key role played by social dialogue to accompany the sector’s digitisation and diversification processes and the related changes in tasks, roles and competences.
The final conclusions of the “Postal Skills and Work Environment in the Digital Era” project are gathered in a booklet that will be distributed to the European Social Partners and key European stakeholders.
For more information and to obtain a copy of the project’s final report, please contact:
Chairwoman of the PostEurop CSR Activities Circle
T: +31 55 44 23 73
Cynthia Wee Neumann
T: +2 2 773 11 92
POSTEUROP is the association which represents European public postal operators. It is committed to supporting and developing a sustainable and competitive European postal communication market accessible to all customers and ensuring a modern and affordable universal service. Our Members represent 2 million employees across Europe and deliver to 800 million customers daily.
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