“Forward ever, backward never: onwards with Breaking Through”
No 07 -2020

Formulated by UNI Apro Post and Logistics Sector

In all offices, CCAs who have at least 30 months of relative standing on February 15th to be converted to career status. January 23, 2020.
Postal Services will continue the negotiations with personnel agreed on in 2019 to update delivery work. January 22, 2020.
Amazon’s electric fleet ambitions. January 22, 2020.
Volker Ratzmann will become Executive Vice President Corporate Public Policy & Regulation Management.
January 21, 2020.

Bpost teams up with Ria Money Transfer. January 20, 2020.

FedEx mounts big-money push to head off unionization by US workers. January 14, 2020.

In all offices, CCAs who have at least 30 months of relative standing on February 15th to be converted to career status

January 23, 2020
NALC and USPS have settled a national-level grievance regarding non-compliance with the contractual caps on the employment of City Carrier Assistants (CCAs). This settlement (M-01906) provides that all city carrier assistants in any size office with 30 months of relative standing on February 15, 2020, will be converted to career status within 60 days from the signing of the agreement on January 22, 2020. CCAs meeting this criteria in 200-workyear offices or larger will be converted to full-time regular, and CCAs meeting this criteria in all other offices will be converted to part-time flexible.

Select districts will make conversions to career status in addition to those described above.  The districts where these conversions will take place and the number of months of relative standing to be used are identified in the settlement.  The criteria for these additional conversions will otherwise be the same. All CCAs converted to career status in accordance with this settlement will be converted within their current installation.

NALC projects this settlement will result in almost 4,800 CCA conversions to career status, including approximately 3,000 conversions to part-time flexible in smaller offices.

Source: https://www.nalc.org/news/nalc-updates

Postal Services will continue the negotiations with personnel agreed on in 2019 to update delivery work

January 22, 2020
In 2019, changes were made to sorting and delivery work and operating models on the basis of what was agreed with Postal Services personnel. The aim of the changes is for Posti to be able to provide services that better meet customers’ needs. At the same time, it was agreed that the effect on personnel would be assessed later. Postal Services will continue the cooperation negotiations that began in basic delivery in 2019.
Together with personnel, Postal Services will also look for solutions for day-to-day work on the basis of the flexibility measures that were agreed on during the autumn 2019 collective agreement negotiations. Customers’ needs are changing faster than before, and we now need solutions related to working hours, work rhythm and commuting areas. Our aim is to make the necessary changes without any dismissals.

“We will do everything we can as well as use various methods to ensure that there will not be any dismissals. There may be changes to working hours and places of work. These negotiations will last for at least six weeks, and we will know the results only after the negotiations have been completed. Our aim is to find - together with our personnel - solutions that will help soften the effect of the changes and ensure that the work continues to feel meaningful,” says Sami Reponen, Posti’s Director of Postal Services Production.
The negotiations, which will continue on January 29, concern basic delivery in the capital region and South-West Finland. The negotiations do not concern early-morning delivery, i.e. newspaper delivery.

Increasing machine sorting reduces the amount of manual sorting

The amount of manual sorting done by Posti personnel is still falling sharply. Machine sorting speeds up the process and takes care of the more physically demanding work stages. If items are sorted using a sorting machine, the items will already be sorted to the level of mail recipient addresses when the deliverer receives them and will not require any further sorting.

“These changes will not be noticeable to recipients, but they will make a difference for our large sending customers. We will be able to provide services in a more agile and cost-effective way as well as offer digital additional services and real-time information. Our sending customers are largely already able to track the status of their batch in our process,” says Reponen.

The need for part-time employees is growing as demand varies greatly according to the days of the week and the seasons

Different numbers of employees and working hours are needed on different days of the week in order to provide services in the way customers require them. Seasons also have a strong effect on demand. As in other service industries, the need for part-time employees is growing significantly.

“We will support our employees and do everything we can to combine part-time duties into jobs that can provide full-time hours if the employee wants to work full-time. Our personnel also has access to the Uusi polku program, which supports transitioning to working for another employer by offering personal solutions,” says Reponen.

Source: https://www.posti.com/en/media/media-news/2020
Amazon’s electric fleet ambitions

January 22, 2020
Amazon India has announced its delivery fleet will include 10,000 electric vehicles (EVs) by 2025. These EVs are in addition to Amazon’s global commitment of 100,000 electric vehicles in its delivery fleet by 2030 announced last year.

This follows the news that Amazon has ordered 40 StreetScooter WORK Box electric vans to be deployed at its distribution centre in Munich Daglfing. StreetScooter has also installed 60 charging stations at the Amazon site.
Indian-made EVs
The fleet of 10,000 EVs will include 3-wheeler and 4-wheeler vehicles – designed and manufactured in India. The vehicles will be deployed in over 20 cities across.

According to Amazon, significant progress in the Indian e-mobility industry in the last few years has led to advanced technology, and superior motor and battery components.

Government initiatives encouraging the adoption of electric vehicles and creating charging infrastructure helped Amazon accelerate its EV plans in India.

“Despite some doubts about the “eco-friendliness” of these vehicles using coal-generated electricity, this is a good move by the e-commerce behemoth. Experience from our clients and partners suggest that small electric tricycles can actually improve efficiency due to easy parking, entry/exit and driving.” - Marek Różycki, Managing Partner, Last Mile Experts
The energy question
India remains dependent on fossil fuels for generating electricity. The nation has significantly grown its green energy production - with some figures suggesting renewables (including hydroelectricity) make up over 25% of India’s grid capacity.

As the world’s third-largest consumer of electricity, India will need to continue to add more renewable energy sources to make EVs a truly green delivery option.
In 2019 Amazon revealed plans to buy 100,000 electric delivery vehicles, to be made by Detroit-based startup Rivian Automotive. These vans are scheduled to hit the streets next year. Amazon plans to have 10,000 of the new electric vehicles on the road as early as 2022, and all 100,000 by 2030.

Amazon led a US$700m financing round in the electric vehicle startup in 2019, and was part of a whopping $1.3bn funding round at the end of the year. Rivian has yet to sell a single vehicle.
Amazon’s evs in germany
So what about Amazon buying vehicles made by Deutsche Post DHL?

Amazon says it’s collaborating with a number of different partners developing new technologies. Already it has 10 Mercedes-Benz eVito vans working out of its Munich fulfilment centre. The eVito vehicles supplied to Amazon have a range of up to 184km.

Sourcing EVs from StreetScooter and Mercedes-Benz might be a quick way to get runs on the board – especially in a market that has a reputation for green solutions. (Remember DPDHDL has set ambitious emission targets, and Amazon will need to work hard to catch up.)

As an aside, Deutsche Post DHL (DPDHL) is reportedly set to sell its loss-making StreetScooter division. Would Amazon be interested in buying a share or acquiring the whole company? Or is the deal with Rivian enough for now?

Electric vehicles will be a key part of the Last Mile Innovation Workshop, which will take place at The Proto Invention Factory, Tallinn, Estonia from 15 – 16 June 2020. Come and see the latest innovations in electric vehicles.

Source : http://www.thepostalhub.com/blog

Volker Ratzmann will become Executive Vice President Corporate Public Policy & Regulation Management

January 21, 2020
Volker Ratzmann will take over the function of Executive Vice President Corporate Public Policy & Regulation Management as of May 1, 2020.  He will report to Frank Appel, Chief Executive Officer of Deutsche Post DHL Group.

Volker Ratzmann will join from the public sector. His last position was - since 2016 - as Secretary of the State Ministry and authorized representative for the State of Baden-Württemberg in Berlin. In this capacity, he successfully contributed to negotiations between the federal and state governments on various legislative projects and their implementation, including the "DigitalPakt Schule" initiative, which aims to equip schools in Germany with digital technology, as well as regulations regarding CO2 pricing.

Volker is a qualified lawyer and holds a degree in law from the Free University Berlin. He began his active political career in Berlin in 2001. There he held several positions in the Bündnis90/Die Grünen parliamentary group in the Berlin House of Representatives.

"With his broad experience in politics as well as his comprehensive expertise in the field of regulation management, he will be a great asset to our company," said Frank Appel, CEO of Deutsche Post DHL Group. "We are convinced that Volker Ratzmann is best qualified to represent the Group's interests in the national and international political arena."

Volker Ratzmann takes over from Rainer Wend, who has headed the function since 2009 and retired at the end of 2019.

Source : https://www.dpdhl.com/en/media-relations/press-releases/2020

Bpost teams up with Ria Money Transfer

January 20, 2020
Ria Money Transfer, a subsidiary of Euronet Worldwide Inc. and a cross-border money transfer specialist, has announced an agreement with bpost, to offer its money transfer services through bpost’s network of more than 600 post offices.

“bpost is always striving to offer its customers a world-class service and teaming up with Ria Money Transfer, a global remittance leader known for its efficiency and competitive prices worldwide, represents an opportunity to offer a streamlined, secure and transparent remittance service to customers nationwide,” says Jan Smets, Director Retail & Customer Care bpost.

International money transfers are an essential source of income for millions of people around the globe. Therefore, the UN established that the average cost of remittance services globally should be lowered to 3% by 2030, and Ria Money Transfer is leading the industry’s efforts towards reaching that global average costs and keeping it below that mark.

“We are thrilled to partner with bpost, a leading postal operator and a socially responsible business player,” shared Jose Cabral, Managing Director at Ria Europe. “Through our shared values of transparency and sustainability, we will bring better access to cost-effective and secure money transfers to customers across Belgium.”

Thanks to this agreement, customers will be able to send money from any bpost post office to any of Ria’s 389,000 locations where the money can be collected in cash or through direct bank deposits across 161 countries around the world.

Launch of the services is foreseen for the second half of February.

Source : https://postandparcel.info/118214/news/post

FedEx mounts big-money push to head off unionization by US workers

January 14, 2020
Teamsters bid to organize employees seeking better pay and benefits as company bombards them with anti-union messages.

FedEx workers hoping to unionize and get better pay and benefits have met with a well-financed barrage of opposition from the company, according to recordings obtained by the Guardian.

Workers who charge that their benefits are less than at rival UPS said the company has bombarded them with anti-union messages and forced them to attend anti-union meetings.

The Guardian obtained recordings of meetings that were mandatory and required workers to sign in, according to a FedEx employee, held at FedEx facilities in 2015 and 2016, where managers and union avoidance consultants lectured workers on unions as the Teamsters was attempting to organize FedEx drivers at several locations around the United States.

“It’s time to campaign. If you don’t want this third party coming in putting a wall between us, it’s time. Because when you campaign and tell them you don’t want them here, eventually it becomes loud and clear to them. You can do that,” said a FedEx human resources manager in a July 2016 captive audience meeting.

In the meetings, FedEx human resources managers often cited anecdotes to dismiss union organizing.

One, in the same July 2016 meeting, said: “Recently I had this question come up from an employee. Why is there a small group of employees at our company who seem to be very ungrateful at what the company has to offer them? Why do some employees give their allegiance to strangers and an organization like the Teamsters rather than this company that continues to provide for us, that has provided us with a long list of benefits and incredible pay, not to mention good equipment and facilities?

“I don’t have an answer, I don’t know. I feel your pain. I appreciate the company and what they offer. I have an attitude of gratitude.”

In another alleged anecdote, the same FedEx manager told workers a story about an unnamed 58-year-old employee for three years who supported unionizing because they wanted a better pension plan.

The manager told workers: “He’s getting closer to retirement. He tells the HR manager. The manager said: what have you done leading up in your career to prepare for retirement? You can’t hold FedEx Freight accountable for your own inability and failure to prepare for your retirement. He changed his whole attitude about it and started supporting the company because he took ownership of his own failure.”

In the meetings, FedEx managers and consultants claimed negotiations with labor unions are a gamble.

“It’s like going to Vegas and rolling the dice,” one said.

They also referred to union authorization cards as a “blank check”, and told workers “they need money, they’re running out of money. They want your money. They want our money.”

In a video used by FedEx to deter unionization, the Teamsters union was characterized as a plot to undermine FedEx by UPS, where about 250,000 employees are represented by the Teamsters.

“A package lost by FedEx equals a package gained by UPS,” said a narrator in the video.
FedEx, the second largest logistics company in the US, spent $837,000 between 2014 and 2018 on union avoidance consultants, according to a recent report published by the Economic Policy Institute. The report found by examining publicly available forms filed by consultants with the Department of Labor, US employers spend around $340m annually on union avoidance consultants, with FedEx as one of the top spenders.

FedEx’s anti-union campaign between 2014 to 2018 was largely a success. In April 2019, the only FedEx Freight workers unionized in the US voted against an effort to decertify the Teamsters union at a warehouse in Stockton, California, but prior decertification efforts were successful in 2017 in Pennsylvania and North Carolina. The only other unionized FedEx employees are their pilots, who voted to form a union in 1993.

A FedEx location in New Jersey voted to unionize in 2014, only to voluntarily cede representation in 2017 after FedEx fought in court with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for years over which workers should be included in the bargaining unit.

Several FedEx warehouses around the US voted against unionizing between 2014 and 2018, while other locations didn’t get that far in the union organizing process due to company pushback.
“They told me, ‘either you’re a team player, or you’re a problem and we will do everything to eliminate problems,’” said Greg Barfuss, a FedEx driver for seven years who was laid off in December 2015 after openly supporting unionization of his Gardena, California, based FedEx warehouse. “They first tried to intimidate me. When that didn’t work they fired me, and that scared other drivers from trying any more.”

He filed unfair labor practice charges with the NLRB, and a settlement was reached with FedEx in May 2016 for one of the charges.

FedEx rejected Barfuss’s claim that he was fired for union organizing and noted the NLRB did not rule in favor of Barfuss on the charge of being fired in retaliation for union activity. “To avoid the time and expense of litigation, FedEx Freight chose to resolve one of the claims and did so without payment of money or admission of liability,” a spokesperson for FedEx told the Guardian in an email.

As FedEx heavily opposed unionization efforts among its employees, the company aggressively lobbied in favor of the 2017 Trump tax cut bill, which decreased FedEx’s taxes from over $1.5bn in 2017 to zero in 2018. Despite the significant tax savings, the New York Times reported in November 2019 that FedEx did not fulfill promises of using the tax windfall to reinvest in equipment and other assets, while spending about $3.6bn on stock buybacks in 2018 and 2019. FedEx’s CEO, Fred Smith, claimed the story was “distorted”, without citing specific examples, and challenged the New York Times publisher to a debate in response.

Workers at FedEx experienced cuts to bonuses in 2019 and a FedEx driver in Texas, who requested to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation, said this year workers essentially received a pay cut due to increases in healthcare costs.

“They decided for 2020 that if your spouse can get insurance at their employer and you keep them with Fedex’s insurer, they’re going to charge you $150 a month to keep your spouse on it. The pay raise amounted to $30 a week because we received $0.75 an hour raise so it doesn’t cover the spousal surcharge,” they said.

FedEx is also changing its pension plan in 2020, eliminating it for new hires who will be offered a 401k plan instead, while giving current employees the choice to keep their current plans or opt in to the 401k.

The FedEx driver explained the pension plan was one of the driving forces for union organizing at FedEx.

He said: “Our retirement is bad when you compare it to UPS. A UPS worker gets $100 a month for every year of service, somewhere around there. So 20 years in you’ll get a $2,000-per-month pension. I have 20 years here. If you project my pension, in another 10 years my projected income will be $300 a month with almost 30 years in. What am I going to do with $300 a month?”

A FedEx spokesperson said the company was changing retirement benefits program to ensure the benefits “remain competitive”.

The spokesperson added in an email to the Guardian: “While FedEx Freight respects the right of our team members to decide for themselves if they want to be part of a union, the law does not require us to remain neutral and protects our right to provide facts and opinions about unions so that our employees may make a fully informed decision.”

Source : https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jan/14


January 20, 2020
Omniva’s parcel volumes are growing at a rate of 20% per year – but despite this impressive growth the Estonian delivery company coped well with 2019’s peak season, stating that all parcels were delivered before Christmas.
So what’s the “secret sauce”?

Investment and innovation in the last mile

Estonians have embraced out of home delivery. Omniva has been expanding its parcel locker network in Estonia - and across the Baltics, too. In Estonia alone, Omniva now operates 255 parcel lockers. It has a further 500 lockers in Lithuania and Latvia.

All of Omniva’s lockers are accessible 24 hours a day and they are supported by a network of 330 access points (including post offices).

From August 2019, Omniva started refilling its most popular parcel lockers up to three times per day. Omniva estimated that it would be able to deliver 20% more parcels via lockers by increasing the service frequency. In this way, many lockers are now able to operate at over “100% efficiency”.

“Lockers have become an integral part of the last mile in the Baltics. We were early adopters at Omniva and are now reaping the rewards with more choice and a better customer experience for our consignees.” - Ansi Arumel, Omniva CEO

A brand new logistics centre

In November 2019, Omniva started operations at its new logistics centre. The new centre is designed to cope with the growing parcel volumes – having three times the capacity of Omniva’s previous sorting centre, with significantly reduced requirement for manual sorting. The sorting centre processes parcels for the whole country and allows for nationwide next-day delivery.

As an aside – the new centre is covered in solar panels, and provides up to half of the logistics centre’s electricity needs. This, together with the increased effectiveness of out of home delivery means that Omniva is playing its part in controlling its carbon footprint smaller.

Peak 2019

his investment in capacity and in last mile technology meant that Omniva was well-prepared for the 2019 peak. The most popular day for receiving parcels was 18 December, when nearly 90,000 Estonians received a shipment.

In total, Omniva delivered more than 1.5 million parcels in December. The majority of shipments went to larger cities, but a significant portion of parcels was also shipped to rural areas.

“Christmas is a time when customers can either be severely disappointed or positively surprised by their last mile operator. At Omniva we have done all that is possible to keep our delivery promises this Christmas.” - Andre Veskimeister, responsible for the Baltic Parcel Business

In a move to improve customer experience further, parcels were also delivered the weekend before Christmas. Omniva still anticipates the above average volumes to continue in January, thanks to late deliveries from third countries as well as returns and re-gifting.

Omniva will host the Last Mile Innovation Workshop, which will take place at The Proto Invention Factory, Tallinn, Estonia from 15 – 16 June 2020.

Source : http://www.thepostalhub.com/blog

Chinese government to ban the postal service from using plastic packaging

January 20, 2020
The Chinese government has announced a new plan to crack down on plastic pollution across the country by 2025.

In a statement by the China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) on 16 January, the organisation said: “By the end of 2022, postal delivery outlets in Beijing,

Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Fujian, Guangdong and other provinces will ban the use of non-degradable plastic packaging bags and disposable plastic woven bags to reduce the use of non-degradable plastic tapes. By the end of 2025, non-degradable plastic packaging bags, plastic tapes, and disposable plastic woven bags are prohibited in postal express outlets nationwide.”

The new policy included a detailed timeline outlining which plastics will be banned by a certain time in areas across the country. Major cities can expect to see changes sooner, while smaller towns or rural areas will be given more time to adjust.

For example, according to the document, the catering industry will be banned from using single-use plastic cutlery in major cities by the end of 2020, while non-degradable plastic straws will be unavailable nationwide.

Source : https://postandparcel.info/118204/news/post 

Liverpool mail strike called off after company concedes deal

January 17, 2020
Industrial action that had been due to start on Merseyside tomorrow morning has been halted, after Royal Mail bosses today withdrew a disciplinary case against a CWU rep.

Ray Ellis, CWU assistant secretary, explained that the last-ditch deal had been reached after lengthy discussions with the company’s Director of IR, HR and Policy Helen Diksa.

While the case against Chris Stott, the CWU unit rep, has been dropped, there are still several outstanding disciplinary actions pending against other members of staff. It has been agreed that, if any of these cases reach the level of potential dismissal or suspended dismissal, a fully independent – i.e. non-Royal Mail – manager will be brought in to hear the appeal.

Going forward, and because workplace relations have been so bad at Bootle, it has been agreed to hold a Review and Improvement Plan process, to be overseen from the union side by a PEC nominee and a senior national manager from the company. An external mediator will be appointed to make sure that its recommendations are implemented on a timely basis.

“On that basis, the action that had been scheduled for this weekend has now been withdrawn,” explained Ray, “and we sincerely hope that this will be the start of a new and much more positive era for Bootle Delivery Office.”

The dispute at Bootle was originally sparked when a member accused a manager of discriminatory comments based on his Muslim faith. A spontaneous walkout by the workforce in support of their colleague led to 7 days of unofficial action. This was followed by an industrial action ballot in December in response to disciplinary action against the Union rep which returned an overwhelming majority for a strike – which had been due to start tomorrow.

Source : https://www.cwu.org/news