[AMA] I Work in Customer Operations for Australia Post

Hi guys,
I thought it might be worth posting an additional AMA from a different sector of Australia Post after I saw tsu-chan's AMA.

I deal with customer operations and have a lot of experiencing interacting with all parts of the company. Ask me absolutely anything and I'll do my best to explain or answer it.

Side note; if you think it's best I attempt to post replies to the other AMA, let me know.

EDIT: On that Monday to Friday grind, I'll answer everything tonight

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Comments

  • +8 votes

    Whats it like knowing your ex CEO took home $10.8m in 2017

    https://www.smh.com.au/business/ahmed-fahours-final-pay-day-...

    Whilst cutting 900 jobs?

    • +8 votes

      Emphasis on EX-CEO. You're right, it's shitty and disappointing and pretty much everyone in AP was pissed about this. Current CEO seems very focused on changing the current opinion of AP in the public, and winning back the workforce.

      • +5 votes

        and then, if im not mistaken, he done something doggy (but not illegal, probably a loop hole in the system).
        something like giving amazingly BIG "donation" to a an organisation managed/owned by his sister, i assumed so he can pay less tax.

      • +2 votes

        Is your new CEO, value for money or result of a gender pay gap?

        • +11 votes

          Look, I'd like to say neither. From my understanding the previous CEO was not very involved with people on the ground, whether they were employees or customers.
          Christina Holgate has put in place some changes that have drastically improved both our service levels and employees lives.

          She has pushed for initiatives to protect men in the workplace, has been on the ground working and volunteering side-by-side with employees. There's been action taken regarding mental health and extra policies to protect employees who are struggling.

          All in all, in my personal experience, it's been much better than what I've been told about the previous oneml.

          •  

            @PostieMalone: "She has pushed for initiatives to protect men in the workplace"

            what sort of initiatives are we talking about here?

            • +7 votes

              @MercSal: Initiatives might not have been the correct word, but she's been a big advocate of men in the workplace. In a society that is ever so slowly slipping towards hating a specific gender, she advises of the importance of caring about one another, and that a lot of physical work is done by men.

              • -6 votes

                @PostieMalone:

                In a society that is ever so slowly slipping towards hating a specific gender

                Please state your sources.

                • +7 votes

                  @Placebo: It's not trail mix, but you're more than welcome to pick at it. The UK has recently put forward a bill that would include men and the elderly into demographics affected by hate-crimes. This isn't even where I want this thread to go.

                  •  

                    @PostieMalone: By bill, do you mean the law review being undertaken?
                    Because that is considering whether goths should be a protected demographic, as well as considering both misogyny and misandry. Unless I missed a report and subsequent Bill in all the Brexit chaos, I think you might be cherry-picking concern there.

                    Not having a go, but if you think society "hates" men, but don't think society hates women, I reckon you might have your own axe to grind.

                    • +1 vote

                      @MercSal: Apologies if it sounded one sided. There's unequality on both ends and neither should be neglected. I think that's where it should stay. As mentioned above, this isn't where I want this thread to go. It's an AMA about the postal service. I'm not a PR rep and this is being done unofficially, on my own time. I'm not going to make my responses neutral to both standings of society so my stock doesn't drop.

                •  

                  @Placebo: It would be interesting to see the gender breakdown of all the negative votes you've received.

                  "In a society that is ever so slowly slipping towards hating a specific gender" If we really translate this with context then this goes more like "In a male centric society that is ever so slowly taking the the real power away from men to all".

                  How can one be so ignorant. Feminism/Gender equality is not equal to "hating a specific gender" but is more about emphasising the power imbalance of one specific gender, that is, men.

                  •  

                    @radicalhaqer:

                    "In a society that is ever so slowly slipping towards hating a specific gender" If we really translate this with context then this goes more like "In a male centric society that is ever so slowly taking the the real power away from men to all".

                    I mean, if you translate with a certain ideological bias maybe.

          • +4 votes

            @PostieMalone:

            has been on the ground working and volunteering side-by-side with employees.

            While this is obviously laudable and also has intangible benefits for staff morale, you really wonder at the efficiency of a very highly paid CEO using her time doing this (which a minimum wage worker could do) instead of the much harder job of running the company.

            But morale + being in touch with the work force + getting an understanding of the conditions on the ground can't really be quantified so arguably a good use of her time anyway.

            • +2 votes

              @HighAndDry:

              getting an understanding of the conditions on the ground

              This. I work in the telco field and typically when someone senior goes into the field, they got a gold plated and fully scripted experience which is completely unlike normal working conditions. It's frustrating that it happens this way because they don't see the actual problems, ultimately not being inspired by first hand experiences to resolve these kinds of issues.

              CEOs are important and have a lot of time consuming responsibilities, but they should be good enough at managing their time to be able to free up a few hours/day here and there to understand what their business actually is and what the experience on the ground is.

    • +4 votes

      It seems strange to me that the CEO of Australia post would be earning more than the CEO of Telstra and BHP. I wonder how the board of directors justified that? What made them think he was worth it?

      • +6 votes

        Mate, if I could tell you how they justified it, or made it worth it, I think I'd try and make that exact justification about my pay.

      • +2 votes

        Don't know enough about Auspost/Telstra/BHP financial performance to speak to the specifics, but this might be an example of the counter-intuitive case in which worse-performing companies pay their CEOs more than better performing ones, because remuneration is basically set in stone when someone is hired, and you need better pay to attract someone to run a badly performing company than to run a well-performing one.

        For example, take two identical companies except for the one difference that one company has year on year losses, and the other has year on year gangbuster profits. It would take a higher remuneration package to attract someone to come in to run the first one - because they risk having their name associated with a failing/failed company, than to attract someone to run the second (because in addition to pay, they also get to associate their name with a successful company).

        It's incredibly counter-intuitive though, which is why you have dozens of articles a year (if not a month) questioning why failing companies are paying CEOs so much, especially when, as a result of the companies failing, workers are getting sacked.

        • +1 vote

          Perhaps they have excluded the inclusion of stock in the CEOs earnings.

          AustPost is a gov corporation, and not listed so cannot issue shares, etc (obviously). SO they have to make base rate more attractive.

      • +1 vote

        That's because he was head hunted.

      • +4 votes

        He literally TRIPLED pre tax profits in only ONE year, that's absolutely amazing considering the market for postal services and the absolute RUT that AusPost was in prior to him coming in. The means in which he did may or not be justified but for all intents and purposes the board came out with a profit of about 70 Million on their investment.

  •  

    My second question, AusPost getting better than used to but struggling during the peak time (Xmas /11.11/ black friday sales), some of my items from Syd to Cbr took three weeks to arrived and long line up at collection centers. Any steps to overcome this in future?

    • +5 votes

      You're not wrong, we definitely did struggle during the peak period. We had an entirely new sorting machine installed that we hoped would mitigate delays. But unfortunately this year really smashed Australia Post in the sense that we had a lot of really bad weather, which both flooded our largest facilities and caused us to call "force majeure" multiple times and then had a pre-sales for Black Friday, Black Friday and then Cyber Monday. And to top it all off, it was Christmas.

      It's also a good point to note that a lot of vendors generate tracking numbers and labelling information with us, much before they ever hand the item to Australia Post. This is one of the biggest grievances with companies as although it helps us, it causes numerous complaints as the customer thinks we have been holding it for weeks, when we have only received electronic information

      •  

        It's also a good point to note that a lot of vendors generate tracking numbers and labelling information with us, much before they ever hand the item to Australia Post. This is one of the biggest grievances with companies as although it helps us, it causes numerous complaints as the customer thinks we have been holding it for weeks, when we have only received electronic information

        This… I absolutely hate it.. why oh why does a vendor have to do this to us, I regularly get the tracking code around 5pm onwards … We all know no one's picking it up until the next day.

        It just causes confusion sometimes.

        Oh cool my package got a tracking number at 4pm, must mean it'll get here soon, a week later. Oh it didn't get picked up till two days later.

      • -3 votes

        Black Friday and then Cyber Monday. And to top it all off, it was Christmas.

        Um, yes. Because really busy times are so… unpredictable.

        If only these really busy times occurred on a regular basis, at the same time every year.

  • +4 votes

    I have complained a few times about parcels not being delivered whilst being at home and the "we missed you cards" arriving the next day. I'm even still waiting for a "we missed you card" from November! Every time I still get a generic response of "we will follow this up at the depot", yet nothing ever happens. What is your advice to solve this issue?

    •  

      Agree! With wine case deliveries I ALWAYS get a 'collect from PO' card, even though I stay home to receive delivery :( Obviously easier for the contractor but as I don't own a car, pretty inconvenient for me! Never a problem with other delivery services…

      • +12 votes

        Wine deliveries are generally carded due to OH&S. Delivery officers cannot carry more than 16kg, and unfortunately most wine deliveries fall between 16.5-20kg. This information is readily accessible on our website and advised to companies that send large articles.

        Good example of companies inconveniencing customers is furniture companies that send out five 22kg parcels. We cannot deliver that to the door, and they are aware of this.

        As mentioned before this may not be the case and it may be because people are cutting corners, but generally this is the reason.

        •  

          That’s interesting. Why would a wine merchant use Australia Post then? The other couriers deliver…

          •  

            @Sweet3st: My assumption would be cost. Generally we are still one of the most economical services for articles to be sent through. It can also be dependant on area, as some couriers do not service certain areas and may end up lodging the item with Australia Post to complete delivery or may charge a premium for delivery to areas.

    •  

      This one is a very good example of someone potentially not noticing something about your address. Is there a chance you live in more rural or potentially "out of the way" area?

      We can always follow it up, but if we missed something and the facility is doing the right thing, nothing would happen.

  • +1 vote

    Still waiting on my parcel from October 2018…
    Parcel was sent via FedEx from the US and delivered to AusPost for local delivery to me.
    Unfortunately it was never delivered, even worse that it was a Christmas present. Had really poor follow up from AusPost who kept advising that it wasn't their problem and I should follow up the sender.
    My issue was that the tracking placed the parcel at the Mt Wav Depot, and was not lost during transit.
    Does this happen a lot? How can something in the depot go missing, or should I assume someone saw the parcel and fancied what might have been inside?

    • +1 vote

      Apologies about the wait on this one. Unfortunately my phone had died on me twice while I was responding to this and I'm sorry to whoever missed out on their gift.

      We'll first address the tracking. Most of our tracking is point to point, and when you see something marked as "In Transit/Arrived at Facility - Mt Waverley", this means the container that your parcel SHOULD be in, has arrived at this facility. However, there are cases where you parcel didn't make it in that container, or that your parcel came in an earlier or later container. Some reasons a parcel may not make it there, is because it may be missorted, the addressing information may have been damaged, the contents may have become completely separated from it's packaging, the list unfortunately goes on.
      The short of it is that something, somewhere has gone wrong, we'll try our best to find it and get it to you, but nothing in life is a guarantee. Parcels don't go missing often, but they do go missing. Although there are people who do the wrong thing, I doubt that it was stolen. We aren't provided or ask for information on the contents, so it'd be a stab in the dark as to what it was and he could of walked away with some baby pacifiers or toilet paper.

      Onto what can feel like "passing the buck" to the Sender. We do this in the best interest of all parties. We were taught to explain it like this:

      You purchased some nikes from ASOS, you paid ASOS directly so you are now ASOS's customer. ASOS's obligation is to complete your order so they pay directly Australia Post to have the item posted. ASOS is now Australia Post's customer. If we mess up, our obligation is to ASOS as they have paid us directly. It then works in reverse for any compensation to be provided.
      A big reason we don't go to ASOS "hey we lost this, can you arrange a replacement", is because a lot of companies when have contracts where they forego any applicable compensation for a lost item. They may do this as the cost to insure each item to it's respective value may be worth more than losing an item or two. But this also means they may not want to discuss it with us as they may not get anything out of it, and are happy to deem it lost if we provide you with an email or a reference number.

  • +3 votes

    How can the following situation be resolved:
    - I live in a small village in Victoria
    - There are no parcel deliveries by Aust Post to my street address (there is a mail delivery), and no parcel locker service
    - All parcels are held at the LPO and a card is provided to my street address

    That is ok, I suppose, although as I don't work near home / LPO, I can only really collect parcels on Saturday mornings.

    But, the bigger problem is at the LPO. They are obviously very inefficient and unorganised, as there are regular occurrences (for me and for others) where the owners / staff cannot locate parcels that cards have been issued for. They regularly just 'give up' and say they will have to look for it later. In my case, that means at least another week waiting for my parcel.

    •  

      The best solution is for the federal government to pass a bill that removes the CSO.

    • +1 vote

      They regularly just 'give up' and say they will have to look for it later.

      That's crazy! You probably have better things to do with your time but I just plain wouldn't leave without my parcel.

    • +6 votes

      It's definitely a tad painful not receiving parcel deliveries to your address, and unfortunately it always falls back on the absolutely silly "obligation" and law to work in a commercially sound manner.

      The LPO situation is concerning too. I'd encourage you to make a complaint through our call centres, as an LPO is a Licensed outlet and it is expected to provide the same level of service as our corporate stores. I'd be mad pissed if I had wait a week because they're disorganised.
      When these complaints are put through, they are sent to an area manager to have addressed and resolved.

      It's estimated something around 80% of people with problems don't contact the relevant bodies, and that very much applies here. We love to hear stuff like this, not only because it's ridiculous that they do that, but also because we can make sure it's not going to be a problem any longer.

  • -1 vote

    Do you feel embarrassed about the ad with the local postie returning a kids monkey doll when most posties lie about people not being home and false filling out cards. Personal service by posties went out the window when contractors were brought in. I witnessed it. I had one instance when the postie handed me a not home card direct to my hands one metre away.

    • +4 votes

      No embarrassment at all, because it's true to our values. In fact, we have an entire team dedicated to getting lost items, back to the Sender or recipient. There's also numerous things that occur that cause these cards to be left.

      Your local postie, on those absolutely sick postie bikes that everyone has seen photos of doing skids, he deals with your letters and parcels that can fit in your mailbox. Unfortunately, because they carry passports and other high value items sent through letter services, they have to put their bike security and mail security first.

      It's their obligation to securely deliver to the best of their ability, and unfortunately this can occasionally make something we think is simple, a big burden. We have roughly 3 or 4 reported incidents of armed theft from posties and drivers (also referred to as contractors) a week.
      This does not include occassions were theft is attempted but they fail.

      Our biggest problem with the cards that are left are generally the drivers. Most of them do bloody good work, but unfortunately there's always ones that ruin it for the rest. It's their obligation to attend the door, and attempt delivery, however some cut corners. They work out which addresses people generally aren't home at, they memorise which unit complexes rarely get responses on intercoms and finally don't see the inconvenience caused to customers.

      In all most all cases, your postie is not responsible for the cards that are left. So be nice to him, because he's working in the heat and rain and last thing he wants to deal with is someone blaming him for a problem caused by someone else.

      • +1 vote

        Nah, the item in question was an A4 land title that the postie never attempted delivery on and admitted filling in the card in the morning and never putting the item in his basket. He claimed he didn't know I'd be home….despite the fact that I am always home if expecting a delivery. Always, for the 5+ years prior, so they have no idea whatsoever about householders having monkey toys and attention to detail like that. I saw the transition to disinterested contractors and they invariably blame their workload for taking shortcuts and lying.

        It's kinda funny having a postie defend his lie by saying he didn't know I'd be home when you know I have always been home awaiting delivery. The truth is I am more flexible than most so the dishonest tricks they use are more obvious.

        • +5 votes

          That what happens when big business pay their workers below minimum wage.

          • +1 vote

            @whooah1979: If you're not willing to do the job, don't take the job. I'm not buying this justification for basically fraud - "oh yeah, I said I'd do XYZ for $N but it's actually too low so I'm not gonna do it."

            Imagine a shop does this: Sells you a product full well knowing the product and the price, and then turning around and saying: well no, you should be paying me a fair price for this, I'm not selling it. You'd report them to the ACCC for misleading and deceptive. I don't see why it's any different when an individual does it with their labour.

            • +4 votes

              @HighAndDry:

              If you're not willing to do the job, don't take the job.

              It's not that easy once the contractors gets the job. The PCBU doesn't disclose the working conditions to the contractors before they accepts the job. The contractors are required to invest in a new/newish vehicle that may cost them $40k. They're locked in to the job once they've signed the finance contract.

              •  

                @whooah1979: Do more research. The information is certainly out there if anyone cares to look, and I'm sure contractors are looking before spending tens of thousands on a vehicle.

                And if they don't, they're not the first business to fail due to lack of preparation or market research or other issues.

                Edit: I might be being too harsh, but they're adults, I expect them to act and make decisions like adults.

                •  

                  @HighAndDry:

                  Do more research.

                  They don't. Most of them don't have no clue when they signing up to work as a parcel delivery sub-contractor for Auspost.

                  •  

                    @whooah1979: Then imo that's on them. None of these contractors are kids, they should be expected to know to do the barest of due diligence.

                    • +1 vote

                      @HighAndDry: They don't know because the PCBU withhold information during the recruitment process.

                      The seasoned sub-contractors knows, but keep it to themselves in fear of losing their jobs.

                      •  

                        @whooah1979: I don't know. I still don't buy it. Some contractors are obviously able to provide good service and apparently make enough money to get by. So it's definitely possible. And so why can't all the other contractors?

                        If it's factors like underlying ability, acumen, efficiency, hell maybe even intelligence to develop processes to get the same amount of work done faster… well that's how business works. Not every business is successful. Some are, some… aren't.

                        Again, I feel like I'm coming across too harsh but I don't see a way around it. No one who wants to be a contractor -which is basically a small business, is guaranteed success or a livelihood.

        •  

          If that's the case, that's definitely not right, but a good example of people cutting corners for "convenience" because "Yea, that guy will not be here because he never is" which is a bad attitude to have as people wait at home for things that are important.

          Stuff like that so what we want to hear about through our call centres as they have the power to contact the right people and make sure it's on record and addressed.

  • +2 votes

    do you like chicken nuggets?

  • +1 vote

    Why don't my missed packages go to the nearest post office?

    I have one post office 2km away in a convenient location with plenty of free parking, and another one 3km away which is harder to get to and metered parking. It is being taken to the one furthest away.

    In the past, at a different address (same city) the package would be taken to 1 of 3 different post offices, seemingly at random.

    Surely there should be some rule that it is taken to the post office nearest to the customer. What is going on?

    •  

      The carded article should be transferred to the lpo with the same postcode.

      •  

        Not entirely correct. It's a nice basis of information though.

      •  

        Fair enough, it just sucks to be me that it happens to be further away.

        It doesn't explain the other issue, where all 3 places were in the same postcode, just chosen at random. I guess it doesn't matter anymore

        Thanks :)

        •  

          Some postcodes may have more than one suburb. If that was the case then it should be transferred to the suburb lpo.

    • +1 vote

      There's numerous reasons your parcels may not go to the closest post office, and unfortunately we don't have an obligation for it to. The most common reason is we generally try to have parcels taken to the post office that is most central to route the individual driver completes. This ensures it is most convenient for the entire serviced area and also ensures we only make one drop-off point, to ensure everything is handed off same day. Unfortunately it's a big unmanageable for us to pass off specific parcels to specific post offices closest to each address as when they're all in a big van, you can't have them segregated easily.

      Other reasons may be capacity of the post office may be less than projected amount of articles for that. As although they really might be able to take more than 100, they can't do that consistent because people don't pick up the same day.

      General rule of thumb is that it'll go to one of the 3 closest post offices but this isn't a guaranteed number and may go elsewhere if large.

      •  

        I appreciate you taking the time to answer.

        What it amounts to is that they take it to whatever random post office best suits the driver at the time, and there is stuff all you can do about it; this is basically what I suspected was going on. Typical of AusPost's approach to customer 'service'.

        •  

          random post office best suits the driver at the time

          The contractors that do this isn't following correct delivery procedures.

          •  

            @whooah1979: No, that's apparently the procedure according to OP:

            we generally try to have parcels taken to the post office that is most central to route the individual driver completes

            aka: whichever is most convenient to the driver.

            •  

              @HighAndDry:

              No, that's apparently the procedure according to OP:

              Yes, according to OP that works in customer operations. Things work or used to work differently at the PDC.

            •  

              @HighAndDry: Drivers have preset routes that change from day to day based on their parcels on-board.

              •  

                @PostieMalone:

                Drivers have preset routes that change from day to day based on their parcels on-board.

                No. Contractors are given vacant beat from the PCBU when they first start. They may have received some training, but most of the time they've to work it out for themselves.

  •  

    Can you describe to us the parameters under which your franchisees operate? Specifically, what the are minimum standards of service that they are required to provide to their allocated area?

    I have watched the operating hours of my local franchises progressively shrink over recent years to a level that is frankly disgraceful. I subscribe to every available mail delivery option (parcel locker, PO Box, etc) and we am still occasionally forced to take time off work because an item - for one reason or another - needs to be collected in person at has opening hours limited to weekdays only. No morning collections, no evening collections, no weekend opening, no red door PO Boxes, nada.

    How are franchises permitted to over such inadequate service? What exactly are their contractual obligations? IMO… either they should either open Saturdays at a minimum, or provide an alternative collection service at every location.

    • +1 vote

      There is no easy parameters for me to advise. Local franchises do have freedom to an extent, to when they can be open, but still have minimum requirements set by Australia Post. However, there are circumstances where our only option, may be that LPO. If there is no suitable candidates or applications to become a franchise, we will generally do what we can to accommodate both the community and franchisee. From time to time, franchisees may not be able to continue with standard operation hours due to other commitments/health problems/retirement, but as an aid to the community they may try their best to accomodate.

      In some areas it comes down to us having no post office in that town, or having a post office that has really confined M-F 9-5 hours.

      Saturdays and alternate collections hours is something the AP brand has been working on over the recent years, because you're 100% right, the majority of the working population cannot collect during business hours, because we work them.

      • +1 vote

        you're 100% right, the majority of the working population cannot collect during business hours, because we work them.

        This exemplifies so much of the frustration the public has with AP. We have been working extended hours, weekends, etc for decades. But AP still cannot open its doors until 7:00 pm or all day Saturday for most people.

        It's like it is stuck in some kind of 1880's Dickensian time warp, where the impression given is that they are doing us a favour, rather than providing a legislated service.

      •  

        Thanks for taking the time to reply to this and everyone's questions @postiemalone.

        If there is no suitable candidates or applications to become a franchise, we will generally do what we can to accommodate both the community and franchisee. From time to time, franchisees may not be able to continue with standard operation hours due to other commitments/health problems/retirement, but as an aid to the community they may try their best to accomodate.

        While I do understand that in some regional locations, the provision of some service should be regarded better than no service all, I'm referring to inner suburban Sydney here.

        After moving my PO box to an adjacent suburb, just to have that location cease opening Saturdays, I used to AP website to determine that my nearest franchises with weekend trading (each over twenty minutes drive away) don't offer PO Boxes due to being in large shopping complexes.

        My local franchises do considerable business on weekdays, which in my mind equates to having enough revenue to hire weekend staff. Surely there's a reality check metric applied by AP. Being the incumbent monopoly on normal mail delivery, if the franchisee wants the revenue and resultant profit of the weekday trading, then they should be expected to adhere to some minimum service level.

        • +1 vote

          Preaching to the chior mate, it's an absolute pain in the ass. As I mentioned, I'm affected by M-F 9-5 hours too.

          I'm just unsure as to how to address the rest of this, our corporate outlets do not have an expectation to be open past standard trading hours, but some accommodate this (and I'm sure it's probably with it, money-wise). It would be unfair to put in place an expectation for a franchise to work outside of standard business hours. It then also comes down to work-life commitments for employees and franchisees too.

          Most franchisees work in their own store. Should they have to work 6 days a week? Should we impose a Tuesday-Saturday trading hours? What about the people who only have time on Monday?

          All in all as I mentioned, it's a hard question to answer, with a harder answer to give.

          •  

            @PostieMalone:

            I'm just unsure as to how to address the rest of this, our corporate outlets do not have an expectation to be open past standard trading hours, but some accommodate this (and I'm sure it's probably with it, money-wise). It would be unfair to put in place an expectation for a franchise to work outside of standard business hours. It then also comes down to work-life commitments for employees and franchisees too.

            My local postie comes around at 8PM to deliver parcels.
            I'm not kidding, and I highly appreciate he does this, it's more convenient.

            It's actually a higher hit rate for him to deliver parcels to my location as we have finished work.
            It's as if he has his own list of people he know is usually away from their house during normal business hours.. because people work.

            Perhaps data from Auspost can be collated as - how many times a house has been carded due to non-attendance during normal working hours, and an alternate solution (such as night time deliveries) could be offered.

  • +2 votes

    Why did Australia post recently change their "Fixed Price" Satchel offering to small and medium based business via "My Post Business" to a variable satchel price which is determined by the post code in which your business is registered and the post code to which you are sending.

    Despite being on the highest discount tier for My Post Business (15%) it is now CHEAPER for me to buy a retail red satchel at a post office to post to a postal code "deemed" rural by Australia Post than it is to use my own business account to send the same item in a self labelled 500g satchel via mypost business which provides 15% discount.

    I find it absurd that a business with a volume based commitment discount now pays MORE than a walk in 1 off retail customer for some postage services under the new "improved" service offering - I have not been able to get a straight answer from anyone at Australia Post including my Rep / live chat / complaint to supervisor / asking random workers at the post office etc.

    On another note I am in metro Adelaide and Mt Barker SA (say 25km away) is now dearer under this "variable" model for me to post a 500g satchel via my account than it is to post the same item to say Twin Waters QLD 2,000km away using my account due to certain postal codes being deemed rural. Again no one at Australia Post has been able to explain this to me other than it is the new improved system.

    • +1 vote

      I'm aware of the this restructure to the costs, but I haven't looked too specifically into this. You're 100% right on it being unusual, and I call reading that this was meant to make postage more affordable and encourage more postage due to lower rates. Give me some time to look into this and I'll see if I can source a different response or gain some clarification if this is going to be addresed.

  • +2 votes

    I always have trouble finding a phone number on the web page for customer service, i reckon they do not want to be contacted by phone…

    What is a reliable number i can use?

    tnx

    •  

      Our website is overhauled frequently, and occasionally the number goes from being big and bold to small and grey. We 100% love to be contacted by the phone, it means we can have a yarn but also help out to the best ability.

      Best way you can contact us is on 13 13 18.

  •  

    I have some old 500g prepaid satchels and when I brought one to the PO recently they said it was fake, advising me AuPost was 'cracking down' on fakes. It isn't fake, it's from 2012 - 2016 stock, bought from an AuPost reseller and AuPost still use them as illustration on the website.

    I pointed this out to the employee but they insisted on comparing it to the new (more expensive) satchel which I had to point out repeatedly wasn't a valid comparison. Eventually they relented and said they would accept them from me but was told they would flag it as 'suspicious' anyway, which I regard as hostile behaviour. The PO up the road doesn't behave this way, so I go there now for all my PO stuff.

    Tell me, is AuPost trying to discourage people from using old (prepaid) stock to sell more new (more expensive) stock? Or was this an example of local initiative?

    •  

      There's a lot of counterfeit satchels in circulation, and although they are not noticeable to the eye, when our sorting facilities scan these they can tell they're fake/fraudulent. What in turn happens is that these parcels get either taken out of circulation and returned with cost to be collected, or are held for investigation into the Sender.

      Most PO's are hesitant to deal with satchels purchased third party as generally if something goes wrong, they get the blame. I would encourage not buying 3rd party otherwise you might end up short one day.

      •  

        So clearly AuPost is trying to discourage people from using old (prepaid) stock, that has been paid for. I've never had one confirmed fake, just this one time claimed to be without proper care and attention to detail. They always scan fine, and are always delivered.

        I can't see a problem with 3rd party satchels as long as they are not fake. Old stock (cheaper) is fine by me. And I don't see that a PO has any choice but to handle old satchels, wherever they are sourced, as long as they are genuine.

        I don't see what a PO could be blamed for if 'something goes wrong', can you clarify?

        •  

          It's not that we're discouraging it, hell I'd promote it. If you can get cheaper postage go for it. We're more concerned about the inherent risks. They might scan okay at the PO but it may be our main sorting facilities that may flag it for counterfeit. We should never deny posting something if it seems authentic, but we just have to be vigilant and pass on the information.

          I didn't quite explain myself clearly regarding PO's being blamed. I mean in the sense that they are the point of lodgement, and generally if something has gone wrong, a large majority of customers visit point of lodgement (the PO), when they are incapable of taking action or doing anything. Especially in the case of an item being sent with counterfeit services. Some customers also believe we should post it at no cost even if it's been proven to be counterfeit because they paid for from a third party.

      •  

        Most PO's are hesitant to deal with satchels purchased third party

        What do you mean "hesitant"? That shouldn't be an option - a prepaid satchel is private property bought and paid for. Imagine shops started being "hesitant to deal with" gift cards bought from third parties, it'd be ridiculous.

        • +2 votes

          That shouldn't be an option - a prepaid satchel is private property bought and paid for.

          Auspost have the right to refuse service under section 5 of their T&C.
          https://auspost.com.au/content/dam/auspost_corp/media/docume...

          5 Right of refusal
          5.1
          To the extent permitted by the Act, Australia Post is not a common carrier and reserves the right to refuse to provide postal and related services to any customer or to accept articles of any particular class, character or nature whatsoever at its sole discretion.

          • +1 vote

            @whooah1979:

            articles of any particular class, character or nature

            That's referring to the customer or what's being posted, now how it's posted. For example if you're posting a phone, and the PO sees it's bulging and thinks the battery might explode, etc.

            While it does say "at its sole discretion", these are almost never 100% enforceable because it'd lead to ridiculous abuses. In fact, they're almost never actually legally effective, and are more included to try and prevent complaints or claims by consumers in the first place.

            •  

              @HighAndDry:

              While it does say "at its sole discretion", these are almost never 100% enforceable because it'd lead to ridiculous abuses. In fact, they're almost never actually legally effective, and are more included to try and prevent complaints or claims by consumers in the first place.

              "Australia Post reserves the right to refuse to provide services to any person, company or corporation or to accept goods of any particular class, character or nature whatsoever at its sole discretion."

              They are enforceable and are legally effective. Note they are not a common carrier. Your claim would need you to show the Act or the court case that proves they aren't effective?

              If AustPost refuses you could demand a refund off the seller as goods are not fit for purpose, which seems to be the proper remedy in this case.

        •  

          It's the equivalent to a shop knowing they just had a mass theft of thousands of prepaid visa's in an area and unfortunately they're indistinguishable until the money is pulled back out of the shop's account when the payment is processed.

          I also need to state again in this thread that is done unofficially, on my own time, so don't take each word as gospel, "hesitant" may not be the right word.

          •  

            @PostieMalone: No I understand there might be practical difficulties, but you plain can't arbitrarily deny someone the use of something they've bought and paid for. You're entitled to protect your profits, but not at the expense of innocent consumers.

    •  

      which I regard as hostile behaviour.

      lol.

      The faster the meteor comes down on us, the better….

  • +1 vote

    How did my parcel shipped from 3 suburbs away in inner-melbourne, END UP IN PERTH???? And then back to Melbourne before being delivered 3 weeks late.

    •  

      This is a case where our sorting facility has mis-read or missorted your parcel to potentially a similarly named suburb/postcode in WA. When this arrived in WA, the facility re-read the address and it was forwarded back to the east coast.

      From the East coast to the West, by a standard service, is estimated at 5-6 business days. This also applies on the way back, and potentially some further time for it to be sorted your local facility.

      •  

        From the East coast to the West, by a standard service, is estimated at 5-6 business days.

        Wow, that camel train is really speeding up nowadays.

      •  

        From the East coast to the West, by a standard service, is estimated at 5-6 business days.

        But seriously…. this has always confused me.

        Surely the most time-consuming, longest delay part of delivery is the initial pickup, then the sorting, then the dispatching to containers/whatever for road/plane delivery, etc.

        That 'lead time' would be exactly the same for a letter from Melbourne City to Dandenong, as from Melbourne City to Perth City.

        Now even, even if, there was only one air flight daily from Melbourne to Perth, that flight takes, what? five hours? How is that so different to two hours to Brisbane, or one hour to Sydney?

        But the total letter delivery time takes many days more?

        I joked about camel train delivery, but what exactly takes so many extra days? Er, given that letters don't actually go via a camel train.

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