Royal Mail prepares for holiday season

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Royal Mail has launched its annual recruitment campaign for temporary workers to support the post’s 123,000 permanent staff over the Christmas period.

Approximately 19,000 seasonal roles will be made available throughout the UK, comprising 14,000 in England, 1,340 in Scotland, 560 in Wales and 550 in Northern Ireland. Royal Mail Group’s express parcels business, Parcelforce Worldwide, is also recruiting around 2,600 extra drivers and sorting staff throughout the UK.

The recruits will work in mail, distribution and data centers, helping to sort Christmas cards and parcels before they go to around 1,400 delivery offices for postmen and women to take out on their rounds.

Sue Whalley, chief operations officer, Royal Mail, said, “Christmas is our busiest time of year. We plan all year round to help ensure we deliver the best possible service for consumers and businesses in the UK. Every Christmas, we make a substantial commitment in additional resources to handle the festive mailbag, including the recruitment of thousands of temporary workers.”

Ahead of the holidays, Royal Mail has also changed the tariffs for mail or parcels where insufficient postage or no stamps have been attached.

Under the previous structure, the surcharge was a £1 (US$1.50) handling fee, plus the remaining postage due for the particular item posted. On October 5, 2015, Royal Mail introduced a flat fee only of £1.50 (US$2.30) for a letter or large letter where insufficient postage has been paid. Where no postage has been paid, the fee will be £2 (US$3). A flat fee of £3 (US$4.60) will apply to a small parcel where insufficient or no postage has been paid. It is the first time that the surcharge handling fees have changed for ten years.

Stephen Agar, managing director of consumer and network access at Royal Mail, said, “Surcharging customers is the last thing Royal Mail wants to do. We make it as easy as possible for senders to attach the appropriate postage to their letters. The vast majority of consumers get it right most of the time. On the occasions where they don’t, the surcharge helps to cover the extra cost of handling items that have been underpaid or have no postage attached.”

October 7, 2015

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Helen has worked for UKi Media & Events for nearly a decade. She joined the company as assistant editor on Passenger Terminal World and since progressed to become editor of five publications, covering everything from aviation, logistics and e-commerce to meteorology. She has a love for travel and property and has redeveloped three houses in three years. When she’s not editing magazines, she’s running around after her two boys and their partner in crime, Pete the pug.

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