The rise in digital communications has dramatically changed the postal needs of Canadians. Canada Post recognizes that this shift requires fundamental changes to the way it serves customers. However, the postal network remains an essential enabler of remote trade and commerce. Its long-term viability is crucial for the small businesses and rural and northern communities that still rely on mail, and for an increasing number of retailers across Canada who require an affordable delivery network for them to participate in the fast-growing digital economy.
Canada Post is launching a Five-point Action Plan to better serve all its customers. It reflects what the company heard from Canadians during a recent cross-country discussion with residential and business customers. These discussions confirmed many of the new patterns the company has seen unfolding at its post offices, in its processing plants and in the makeup of the mail.
The postal service of the future will reflect and serve Canadians’ new postal needs. As more people began to communicate and manage their household bills online, Lettermail™ volumes declined sharply. Yet as more people shopped online, parcel volumes shot up. This dramatic shift is creating a pressing need to manage a greater number of parcels and less mail with more valuable items. (These items include credit and loyalty cards and government-issued cards and licences.) This transition also provides clear direction to Canada Post and to the many businesses looking to redefine customer experience in an increasingly digital world.
The initiatives Canada Post is launching form an integrated approach to support the shift. Internal operational changes to how parcels are processed and delivered will support and enable related changes in how the customer is served – changes that will emphasize convenience and secure delivery. Together, the five initiatives not only form the basis of a sustainable business model, but also help build the foundation of a new postal system.
The new system will allow Canada Post to compete in the fast-paced and technology-driven global parcel market. More importantly, it will sharpen the company’s focus on the customer, providing a level of service that will have benefits far beyond Canada Post. It will level the playing field for small businesses and other emerging industries looking to embrace e-commerce and to grow. People living in underserviced rural and northern communities will have significantly wider access to, and the ability to return, products from Canada and around the world.
While the volume of traditional Lettermail items, such as bills, statements and letters, is rapidly decreasing, ordering items that can now be securely bought or requested online but that cannot be sent online is gaining popularity. Examples include driver’s licences, vehicle licence plate stickers, health cards and other forms of identification mail. These kinds of transactions between large institutions and Canadians facilitate Canada’s digital economy. By providing secure delivery options, Canada Post can help support that economy’s growth.