Business

Australia Post seeks 600 casual employees to meet parcel demand as stuck-at-home shoppers get clicking

Australia Post seeks 600 casual employees to meet parcel demand as stuck-at-home shoppers get clicking

Australia Post is putting hundreds of posties in vans, hiring an extra 600 casuals and bringing 15 more processing facilities online to handle a near doubling of parcel traffic over the past month as virus-isolated consumers shop online.

It has also chartered an additional eight freighter flights a day to improve Express Post priority service deliveries across major capital cities in a move to soothe frustrations over delivery delays.

Acting chief operating officer Rod Barnes warned the service was still experiencing significant delays due to limited flights, hygiene and social distancing requirements to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

“The majority of parcels are still arriving on time, but we ask and thank our customers for their patience, as we work as hard as we can to get parcels to you as quickly as possible,” Mr Barnes said.

Australia Post said deliveries around the country have continued to average almost two million parcels a day since just before Easter as coronavirus social restrictions keep people away from the shops.

To handle the pandemic parcel surge Australia Post said it had already refocused 700 people — a mix of posties and drivers from its StarTrack business — to provide additional van deliveries across the country.

He said the re-purpose and opening of 15 new facilities around the country, and the employment of more than 600 casuals, would assist in the network being able to sustain the current demand.

At the same time, demand for other core products, including letters, have been volatile and many have halved.

Last week Australia Post announced it would be cutting metropolitan letter deliveries to every second day — a move it said would free up posties to be retrained and redeployed into delivery vans to help with parcels.

Mr Barnes said the retraining of 2000 posties is part of a broader Australia Post push to transform the business as traditional letter volumes dwindle.

AAP