Postal Strike information

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Industrial action: an update from Royal Mail
October 2nd update

The Communications Workers Union (CWU) has announced further strike action. Two 48-hour strikes are planned. The first will begin at lunchtime on Thursday 4th October and ends at lunchtime on Saturday 6th October. The second will begin in the early hours of Monday 8th October, ending in the early hours of Wednesday 10th October.

This will be followed by an unspecified programme of weekly strikes, starting week commencing October 15th, until the resolution of the dispute.

During the strikes, Royal Mail’s priorities will be:

* Keep mail flowing, by keeping as many sorting machines and vehicles as possible operating, and processing as much mail as possible through our system
* Protect vulnerable members of society, who depend on Post Office payments of pensions and social security
* Manage the needs of our large customers with bulk mailings – helping them post around disruption as best they can
* Ensure that all customers can continue to post mail through the Post Office network
* Prioritise Special Delivery services, although all guarantees will be suspended

What does it mean for our customers?

This action will severely limit our ability to provide any services for the coming period. Customers should expect severe disruption to all postal services during the strikes and for a significant period afterwards.

* Special Delivery will continue to be a priority throughout the period of disruption. We have well developed contingency plans, and will do all we can to deliver Special Delivery items on the due day. However, money-back guarantees will be suspended for items posted on 4th October onwards and will be reinstated as soon as we are sure we can fulfill the service promise
* Door to Door - We will not be able to maintain a Door to Door service. Royal Mail is therefore applying Force Majeure for all Door to Door contracts scheduled for delivery during the weeks commencing October 8th, October 15th and October 22nd 2007. Please see the section below for more details
* Redirection, Keepsafe and Diversion - Our advertised standard for setting up these services is likely to be affected by the industrial action, and so our customers should expect delays
* Redelivery will be suspended during the initial industrial action and will be reinstated as soon as we are sure we can fulfill the service promise. Customers collecting items should be aware that enquiry office opening times may vary from normal, and some may be closed on strike days
* Access mail - We will not give access mail special priority during strikes and period of recovery. We will deal with mail in the order we receive it, regardless of whether it has come directly from our customers, or from a supplier of Downstream Access

How can large Business Customers work with us to reduce the disruption to their mail?

Think of our network as a sequence of linked operations, starting with your mail arriving in the Mail Centre.

* Please bring your mailings forward as far as possible. This will allow us to process your mail quickly and put it onto our vehicles ready for distribution
* We will deal with mail in the order we receive it, regardless of whether it has come via Royal Mail, directly from our customers, or from one of our competitors
* The earlier it comes into our system the less severe the delay is likely to be
* Do not post on strike days
* Do not delay postings until after strike days, as it is likely to take some time to clear the backlog of mail
* Please provide us with as accurate and as early forecasts as possible
* Tell your account manager or Customer Operations Manager (COM) as much as possible about your mailing plans. This will help us to plan our resources.
* If you need to post on a strike day, you can take your mail directly to your local Mail Centre
* We regret that Royal Mail will not be able to collect mail during the strike period
* Our customer service helpline – 08457 950 950 will operate, but will be very busy, so please be patient
* Our website, www.royalmail.com, will contain the latest update on affected areas, so please log on to help you plan your mailings

How can Small Business customers and Consumers work with us to reduce the disruption to their mail?

* Bring your mailing forward to avoid the strike days – we will process mail in the order it arrives, so the sooner we receive it, the less severe the delay is likely to be.
* Do not delay postings until after strike days, as it is likely to take some time to clear the backlog of mail.
* Our customer service helpline – 08457 740 740 will operate, but will be very busy, so please be patient.

Message for Door to Door customers

* We regret that this industrial action will have a significant impact on Royal Mail’s Door to Door service during this period and for sometime afterwards whilst our operation concentrates fully on service recovery
* As a result of this disruption we will apply Force Majeure for contracts scheduled for delivery during weeks commencing 8th October, 15th October and 22nd October as we are not able to provide our normal delivery service
* We understand that customers may wish to make alternative arrangements during this period
* Any customers with a Door to Door booking for delivery on weeks commencing 8th October, 15th October and 22nd October who wish to cancel it can do so without incurring any cancellation charges
* Please contact our Sales & Customer Service Centre on 08457 950 950 (selecting the Door to Door option) for further information

Customers who receive benefit cheques from the DWP?

The DWP are planning to courier Jobcentre Plus, The Pension Service, Disability and Carers Service, Child Support Agency and Child Benefit customers’ cheques to the Post Office nearest to the usual delivery address, for collection on the usual delivery day.

We will update this webpage with the latest information as and when it becomes available and you can also sign up to receive email updates.
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