Coronavirus: fewer customers in the branches

Around 20% to 30% fewer customers are visiting Swiss Post branches due to the coronavirus outbreak. As a result, opening times are, in some cases, being restricted. What is Swiss Post doing to protect customers and employees? And how are mail carriers dealing with the current situation?

Sandra Gonseth

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Franziska Rechsteiner, Branch Manager in Zollikofen.

Franziska Rechsteiner, Branch Manager in Zollikofen, canton Berne

“The whole situation is unprecedented and very challenging for us. As Branch Manager, I am under great pressure to reassure my team and to protect us all from the virus. The atmosphere in our branch is much more serious. Not everyone has understood yet just how grave the situation is. I hope we can all adopt a more cheerful approach again soon.”

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The PostalNetwork employees are currently doing an incredible job in maintaining operations and thus the universal service. This can only be achieved because Swiss Post is protecting its employees on the front line and because they are adhering strictly to the necessary hygiene and protective measures.

Customer visits have increasingly declined. Around 20% to 30% fewer customers are currently visiting the branches. As a result, opening times are, in some cases, being restricted.

Flexibility is required

Above all, branches with partners located in homes for the elderly were closed at an early stage as a preventative measure to minimize the risk of infection. Other partner companies had to close because they are not part of universal service. This often means the postal part is also closed temporarily.

At the branches which are open, we are ensuring that the required distance of two metres is also maintained at the counter. This involves stepping forward and backwards – a kind of yo-yo situation – which means it is taking longer to serve customers. The coronavirus crisis is also having an impact on the Contact Center, which is receiving a very high number of calls.

Protecting customers and employees

  • Installation of plexiglass screens in all branches with open counters
  • Floor markings to comply with distancing rules
  • Ticketing systems are being replaced with a single queue in many places
  • Activation of Maestro and V-PAY cards on payment terminals to reduce cash payments

written by

Sandra Gonseth