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  • FIRST POST
    • Former MSE Helen
    • By Former MSE Helen 24th Oct 11, 12:10 PM
    • 2,324Posts
    • 971Thanks
    Former MSE Helen
    0 WOW
    MSE News: Stamp prices could rise as Ofcom proposes Royal Mail shake-up
    • #1
    • 24th Oct 11, 12:10 PM
    0 WOW
    MSE News: Stamp prices could rise as Ofcom proposes Royal Mail shake-up 24th Oct 11 at 12:10 PM
    This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

    "Regulator Ofcom has announced plans which would enable Royal Mail to set its own prices for the majority of its products ..."

Page 1
    • WestonDave
    • By WestonDave 24th Oct 11, 12:28 PM
    • 5,038 Posts
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    WestonDave
    • #2
    • 24th Oct 11, 12:28 PM
    • #2
    • 24th Oct 11, 12:28 PM
    The elephant in the room is the Universal Service Obligation - most residential addresses would not suffer unduly if this was cut to every other day Monday to Saturday. What this would mean in practice is that people might have to wait one extra day for their post (albeit that anyone sending anything time critical could still pay for special delivery etc which could be done as a special round by van etc). However from the Royal Mail perspective it would eliminate a lot of pointless pavement pounding, and could effectively halve the delivery workforce. At present it tries to cover the daily round costs by offering massively subsidised junk mail rates - around 2p per item rather than 36p for second class addressed mail! - but if rounds were cut back to every other day this junk mail could be dropped leaving posties with room to carry two days mail on their round.

    The current stubborn strategy of insisting that we have to have deliveries every day, and trying to facilitate this by chasing falling volumes with prices rises simply can't work in the long run. Everytime they put the prices up to cover the costs of lower volumes, more people decide to switch to paperless billing, so volumes fall further, prices rise and the whole thing continues a downward spiral! For those people who rely on "snail mail" it would be more effective to reduce frequencies and lower prices.
    • ehlo
    • By ehlo 24th Oct 11, 12:57 PM
    • 389 Posts
    • 231 Thanks
    ehlo
    • #3
    • 24th Oct 11, 12:57 PM
    • #3
    • 24th Oct 11, 12:57 PM
    My house will frequently get no deliveries for a few days and then a whole load at once (postmark date clearly show these should have been delivered earlier)

    Perhaps Royal Mail should give me a discount
    • custardy
    • By custardy 24th Oct 11, 1:59 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
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    custardy
    • #4
    • 24th Oct 11, 1:59 PM
    • #4
    • 24th Oct 11, 1:59 PM
    My house will frequently get no deliveries for a few days and then a whole load at once (postmark date clearly show these should have been delivered earlier)

    Perhaps Royal Mail should give me a discount
    Originally posted by ehlo
    the postmark shows nothing of the sort
    staffing in mail centres have changed
    Sunday,Monday & Tuesday are light days for staffing
    hence a general flood of mail for the rest of the week
    • custardy
    • By custardy 24th Oct 11, 2:03 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
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    custardy
    • #5
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:03 PM
    • #5
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:03 PM
    The elephant in the room is the Universal Service Obligation - most residential addresses would not suffer unduly if this was cut to every other day Monday to Saturday. What this would mean in practice is that people might have to wait one extra day for their post (albeit that anyone sending anything time critical could still pay for special delivery etc which could be done as a special round by van etc). However from the Royal Mail perspective it would eliminate a lot of pointless pavement pounding, and could effectively halve the delivery workforce. At present it tries to cover the daily round costs by offering massively subsidised junk mail rates - around 2p per item rather than 36p for second class addressed mail! - but if rounds were cut back to every other day this junk mail could be dropped leaving posties with room to carry two days mail on their round.

    The current stubborn strategy of insisting that we have to have deliveries every day, and trying to facilitate this by chasing falling volumes with prices rises simply can't work in the long run. Everytime they put the prices up to cover the costs of lower volumes, more people decide to switch to paperless billing, so volumes fall further, prices rise and the whole thing continues a downward spiral! For those people who rely on "snail mail" it would be more effective to reduce frequencies and lower prices.
    Originally posted by WestonDave
    the EU demand a basic mail service with USO (IIRC)
    hence the 2nd class standard letter price being left alone

    its nice you see 10'000s of people losing their jobs as the solution
    don't buy into those falling mail volumes storys
    mail has changed for sure but posties are still taking out full bags
    of course its now more direct marketing mail and bumph.
    RM use set figures for measuring mail.
    eg 250 letters per machine prepped trays
    any office that has done a manual count has found this figure can be more like 350-400 a tray
    doesnt take a genius to see the effect that has on figures

    where did you get the 2p rate from?
  • Trader1889
    • #6
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:05 PM
    • #6
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:05 PM

    The current stubborn strategy of insisting that we have to have deliveries every day, and trying to facilitate this by chasing falling volumes with prices rises simply can't work in the long run. Everytime they put the prices up to cover the costs of lower volumes, more people decide to switch to paperless billing, so volumes fall further, prices rise and the whole thing continues a downward spiral! For those people who rely on "snail mail" it would be more effective to reduce frequencies and lower prices.
    Originally posted by WestonDave
    I have to agree, with the above, alternate days would be adequate for most people. I've reduced my use of the postal service purely because of the price rises.
    • corbyboy
    • By corbyboy 24th Oct 11, 2:15 PM
    • 1,137 Posts
    • 1,378 Thanks
    corbyboy
    • #7
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:15 PM
    • #7
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:15 PM
    I have to agree, with the above, alternate days would be adequate for most people. I've reduced my use of the postal service purely because of the price rises.
    Originally posted by Trader1889
    On a similar note, do we need post delivered on Saturday and Monday? How much mail is sent and processed over the weekend?
    • KxMx
    • By KxMx 24th Oct 11, 2:26 PM
    • 7,744 Posts
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    KxMx
    • #8
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:26 PM
    • #8
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:26 PM
    I would not be happy to get a delivery every other day, no way. I wouldn't like to lose a Saturday delivery either but would be willing to if that protected the Monday to Friday service.

    I think you'll find businesses would have something to say about alternate day delivery/ tues-fri only (which has to be the stupidest thing I have ever heard)
    Just because some people don't send/receive much, doesn't mean that applies to everyone.

    Of course, letter volumes have fallen, but I rather think with the internet packets and parcels have rocketed!
    Last edited by KxMx; 24-10-2011 at 2:28 PM.
    • custardy
    • By custardy 24th Oct 11, 2:28 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
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    custardy
    • #9
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:28 PM
    • #9
    • 24th Oct 11, 2:28 PM
    I would not be happy to get a delivery every other day, no way. I wouldn't like to lose a Saturday delivery either but would be willing to if that protected the Monday to Friday service.

    Just because some people don't send/receive much, doesn't mean that applies to everyone.

    Of course, letter volumes have fallen, but I rather think with the internet packets and parcels have rocketed!
    Originally posted by KxMx
    packet traffic rises every year.
    this is the issue
    its easy to speak for yourself but this is an issue that concerns everyone in the UK
    • KxMx
    • By KxMx 24th Oct 11, 2:29 PM
    • 7,744 Posts
    • 11,452 Thanks
    KxMx
    packet traffic rises every year.
    this is the issue
    its easy to speak for yourself but this is an issue that concerns everyone in the UK
    Originally posted by custardy

    Oh I know, which is why I would be willing to see high price rises to keep the service regular.

    Just giving my view as several others have done on this thread.
    • WestonDave
    • By WestonDave 24th Oct 11, 3:50 PM
    • 5,038 Posts
    • 8,521 Thanks
    WestonDave
    The alternative to across the board price rises could be an enhanced service subscription (probably the norm for businesses).

    Apologies to custardy - old memory of sorting leaflets into bundles for door to door - current prices are around 5p per item unaddressed "junk" mail. I don't particularly relish shedding loads of jobs but sometimes life moves on - our railways for example no longer employ two people in the cab, one to drive and the other to shovel coal, because modern trains don't require that. In the same way with our communication networks, there is going to come a time when everyone effectively paying a tax just to keep posties in work shovelling junk mail through our doors will become unsustainable. Whether or not RM is fiddling the figures its presumably cast iron logic that if RM keep bumping up prices volumes will not rise! At some point this issue has to be addressed and we can't indefinitely keep kicking it down the road. Its also going to start coming to a point of conflict whereby councils who are facing increasing rubbish collection charges start getting antsy about RM adding to it!
    • custardy
    • By custardy 24th Oct 11, 4:39 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
    • 29,930 Thanks
    custardy
    The alternative to across the board price rises could be an enhanced service subscription (probably the norm for businesses).

    Apologies to custardy - old memory of sorting leaflets into bundles for door to door - current prices are around 5p per item unaddressed "junk" mail. I don't particularly relish shedding loads of jobs but sometimes life moves on - our railways for example no longer employ two people in the cab, one to drive and the other to shovel coal, because modern trains don't require that. In the same way with our communication networks, there is going to come a time when everyone effectively paying a tax just to keep posties in work shovelling junk mail through our doors will become unsustainable. Whether or not RM is fiddling the figures its presumably cast iron logic that if RM keep bumping up prices volumes will not rise! At some point this issue has to be addressed and we can't indefinitely keep kicking it down the road. Its also going to start coming to a point of conflict whereby councils who are facing increasing rubbish collection charges start getting antsy about RM adding to it!
    Originally posted by WestonDave
    well RM have increased their profits on D2D items
    staff now get a set payment of 20 odd a week.
    thats a cut for most on 3 items per week
    however the 3 items cap has been lifted
    so its more like 5/6 a week

    the end result at RM will be a casual workforce employed through the newly sset up RM employment agency.
    how we get their is up for debate


    many offices in RM are reaching the physical limit of hat a human can do every day.
    In my old office its a 'model office' with staff doing long duties,parts of other duties every day.
    staff who dare to do such things as take breaks,not work overtime can expect plenty of manager attention.

    staff levels drop every year
    The RM machine is geared for privitisation
    most of the talk of stamp prices (remember all of this is speculation from a change in regulation)will be moot as i expect the whole network to be split in the near future
    I have no idea how that will affect the end user
    • neil9313
    • By neil9313 25th Oct 11, 7:32 PM
    • 687 Posts
    • 206 Thanks
    neil9313
    All spot from Custard,

    from another ex postie................thank god.
    • k66yla
    • By k66yla 25th Oct 11, 7:44 PM
    • 346 Posts
    • 491 Thanks
    k66yla
    RM would'nt be in this position if Europe had'nt insisted that the market be opened up to leeches TNT, UKMail, CitiPost etc. The tax payer has been subsidising these firms as RM HAVE to deliver the 'competitions' items at a loss. Now we appear to be delivering their packets/parcels so I wonder how much subsidy the tax payer is shelling out this time.

    For all those that say privatise RM, you'll miss it when its gone.
    • custardy
    • By custardy 25th Oct 11, 8:16 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
    • 29,930 Thanks
    custardy
    seemingly at todays Work Time Learning (AKA lying ) session
    RM management are keen for their staff to provide feedback

    https://stakeholders.ofcom.org.uk/consultations/securing-the-postal-service/howtorespond/form

    along with a farcical session on preparing for winter without fitting winter tyres to the vans,plans on dealing with the weather etc
  • Garudi
    Sorry guys, but junk mail will never be dropped. The problem is it just makes too much money.

    If Royal Mail didn't deliver it, you get specialist companies hiring people whose sole job would be to chuck junk leaflets through your letterbox.
  • jojob63
    Start thinking outside the box and get competitive.
    First of all, with the Government in trouble managing its programme on several fronts, I cannot see massive increases for quite some time. It will be moderated.
    Not all have nor indeed want electronic information systems and prefer the power available to the written word.
    Short term the Post Office should remove their petty rules by disposing of the counter envelope guides.It deters and also hinders and lengthens queues. (Christmas is coming~!)
    For an experimental period, restore Sunday collections through use of regional sorting offices. Falling volumes seen at weekends simply because nothing is collected and moved on until monday. Urgent mail does get delivered on Sats but no chance of an urgent response. Planes fly around the world on Sundays so let them carry mail!
    the EU demand a basic mail service with USO (IIRC)
    hence the 2nd class standard letter price being left alone

    its nice you see 10'000s of people losing their jobs as the solution
    don't buy into those falling mail volumes storys
    mail has changed for sure but posties are still taking out full bags
    of course its now more direct marketing mail and bumph.
    RM use set figures for measuring mail.
    eg 250 letters per machine prepped trays
    any office that has done a manual count has found this figure can be more like 350-400 a tray
    doesnt take a genius to see the effect that has on figures

    where did you get the 2p rate from?
    Originally posted by custardy
    • custardy
    • By custardy 26th Oct 11, 4:46 PM
    • 35,244 Posts
    • 29,930 Thanks
    custardy
    First of all, with the Government in trouble managing its programme on several fronts, I cannot see massive increases for quite some time. It will be moderated.
    Not all have nor indeed want electronic information systems and prefer the power available to the written word.
    Short term the Post Office should remove their petty rules by disposing of the counter envelope guides.It deters and also hinders and lengthens queues. (Christmas is coming~!)
    For an experimental period, restore Sunday collections through use of regional sorting offices. Falling volumes seen at weekends simply because nothing is collected and moved on until monday. Urgent mail does get delivered on Sats but no chance of an urgent response. Planes fly around the world on Sundays so let them carry mail!
    Originally posted by jojob63

    Sunday collections wont return
    its a whole system aimed to cutting staff levels in MC's/collections

    no point telling RM christmas is coming. they block it out until a flashback to the previous year around December 4th

    price and proportion maybe unpopular and zonal pricing will be even more so
    however you cannot get away from the fact that size affects handling costs.
  • Magic Mel
    "Falling volumes seen at weekends simply because nothing is collected and moved on until monday."

    Ha Ha...!!!

    As a Long Distance Logistics Driver whose duty content is now Tues to Sat, and it is very very clear, the number of these duties is increasing to cover Saturday working each time there is a re-sign this statement is erroneous. You might not be moving it.. but we are!!

    Mail volumes (letters per york may be diminishing) but parcels are increasing, and you get less per york, so therefore using more cube requires more Artics!
    Magic Mel
    Because I magically disappear when it's time to decorate !!
    • wileycat
    • By wileycat 30th Oct 11, 4:07 PM
    • 2,157 Posts
    • 870 Thanks
    wileycat
    Not sure what benefit bringing back sunday collections would do tbh? Surely its just extra expense wasted?

    Volumes are falling yes, but the space taken up by volumes is static or rising by the numbers of parcels being posted. Just imagine what would happen to RM if people still shopped in shops in the high street!
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