Technology is squeezing the post office so much that a familiar service has to disappear
Email, social media and video conferencing are prompting Canada Post to end door-to-door mail delivery service in urban areas.
Facing mounting deficits the federal Crown corporation announced plans Wednesday to overhaul its system which will include a shift from home to delivery to the use of community mail boxes, increase in postal rates effective March 31, 2014, let up to 8,000 jobs go unfilled when postal workers retire or leave and step up the use of technology to streamline processes.
A statement released by Canada Post cited rising cost and advances in digital communication as the main reasons for the changes.
“Canada Post has a mandate to fund its operations with revenues from the sale of its products and services, rather than become a burden to taxpayers,” a statement in the corporation’s Web site said. “With the increasing use of digital communications and the historic decline of lettermail volumes, Canada Post has begun to post significant losses.”
Left unchecked, the losses will soon jeopardize Canada Post’s position of financial self-sufficiency, it said.
The Conference Board of Canada projects that the Crown corporation stands to lose $1 billion by 2020 unless Canada Post makes fundamental changes to its business.
Canada Post has tried several things in the past to keep up with the times including boosting its Web services and delivery network with the use of an e-commerce platform
The five main initiatives outlined by Canada Post are:
Over the next five year, the one third of Canadian households will receive their mail at their door will be getting their mail from community mailboxes
Beginning March 31, 2014, a new tiered pricing structure for letter mail mailed within Canada will take effect. Customers that buy stamps by the booklet will pay $0.85 per stamp. The minority of customers that buy one stamp at a time will pay $1 per stamp
Canada Post will partner with local businesses to establish more franchise postal outlets
Implement technology such as faster computerize sorting systems, systems that will consolidate mail and parcels in a central location, mail and parcel tracking systems and more fuel-efficient vehicles.
Canada Post plans to bring its labour costs in line with competitors through attrition and collective bargaining. Nearly 15,000 of its workers are set to retire over the next five years. It will also cut some 6,000 to 8,000 jobs
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