AUSTRALIA Post chief executive Christine Holgate has confirmed painful mail delivery delays in central Victoria and other regional areas are on her short-term radar to fix.
She confirmed a review of “network operations” was starting soon and flagged key delivery centres could be re-established where most needed.
Ms Holgate said she was told first-hand about the issue on a recent visit to North Queensland.
“I am on the case,” she said.
“We’ve got two big customer challenges, where is my parcel and when will it get here?
“If you look at our complaints they are the two big things.
“It only happens in certain areas. It happens in Charters Towers and where you are.
“I’m not denying it happens and express post needs to be sped up.”
Ms Holgate said a consolidation of delivery centres about five years ago had been exposed with the massive growth in eCommerce of which Australia Post is a major player.
A report released this week from Deloitte Access Economics found.Australia Post facilitated 82 per cent of the nation’s $14 billion eCommerce market and 80 per cent of Australians saw no convenient alternative for receiving parcels other than through the post office.
Ms Holgate said Australia Post would be spending $300 million in building “capability and capacity” to make parcel tracking fully automated.
Talks with Qantas were also planned as part of finding a solution to the issue.
Unlike banks, Australia Post will consider shutting post offices only in exceptional circumstances.
“There will of course be an occasion when that could happen.
“I want to open more post offices.
“When you understand the passion and the importance a community puts on the post office why would we be closing them?”
Ms Holgate said there were 1500 communities in regional Australia where Australia Post was filling the void of no bank or government agency and providing those services in addition to mail.
“We are deeply committed,” she said.
“We do many other things.
“We play such a big and important role in these communities.”
The Deloitte report also found for every $1 that Australia Post contributed to national GDP last year, another 86 cents in economic activity was generated in other industries and a direct economic contribution of $3.2 billion, meant Australia Post created a further $2.8 billion through flow-on economic activity.
Also Australia Post's total economic contribution was more than other significant industries, such as broadcasting and electricity generation, which contributed $5.8 billion and $5.1 billion respectively.