Corona, Background

Over 17 million: Swiss Post processed more parcels than ever in April 2020

Ines Schumacher

To understand the sheer amount of work involved, you have to break the figure down: over 24,000 parcels every hour, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, throughout the whole of April 2020. This was achieved by the PostLogistics team working across two shifts from Mondays to Saturdays. They were actively supported by employees in the letter centers and delivery staff, who also handled parcels.

This joint effort resulted in an all-time record for parcel processing. Over 17 million parcels. In a single month. “I am very proud and see this as confirmation that we are capable of extraordinary work,” says Head of PostLogistics Dieter Bambauer, paying tribute to his team’s work. “It’s just an outstanding achievement!”

PostLogistics has tackled record volumes in the past few years, especially in the run-up to Christmas. As a reference point: in December 2019, PostLogistics processed 15.7 million parcels, compared to just under 13.2 million during the same period in 2017. “But the sort of volumes we’re seeing now are larger than anything we have ever seen before,” explains Bambauer. In fact, the coronavirus crisis poses enormous challenges for everyone involved: a number of employees are absent from work, because they have to look after their children or belong to a high-risk group. What’s more, protective measures such as social distancing also have to be adhered to in the parcel centers and during delivery. This means that PostLogistics cannot simply increase staff numbers.

Despite this, everyone involved managed to overcome these unprecedented circumstances. Leading representatives from retail, logistics, social partners and Swiss Post met at a round-table discussion to develop joint solutions for the record volumes. This was at the beginning of April, and now, as Bambauer explains, “the decisions we made together back then are beginning to have an effect. This is especially true of the cross-unit cooperation.”

Specifically, this refers to employees from other units – above all PostMail staff – who have been lending PostLogistics a helping hand. As the letter centers and letter delivery regions are currently under less pressure, they have been able to provide capacity for parcel processing and delivery. In addition, volunteers from other units have devoted some of their working hours to handling and delivering parcels thanks to Swiss Post’s coronavirus jobs site.

written by

Ines Schumacher