Postwatch seeks comments on new Royal Mail targets

LONDON - Postwatch is seeking opinions on what Royal Mail's performance targets should be from April 2006 and, to kick off the three-month consultation period, it has published a document setting out its views to encourage public comment and to stimulate debate.

The consumer watchdog for postal services believes meeting Royal Mail's current 16 current licence targets -- including that at least 93% of 1st class letters should arrive next day -- should be the priority, but looking ahead the watchdog says customer service levels should be more clearly defined.

Postwatch proposes that additional targets should be added to Royal Mail's licence including:

  • The redirection service;

  • The time by which mail should be delivered (noon or within 1 hour of the locally set time);

  • Collections (not earlier than the time shown and tabs to show when the last collection has happened);

  • Daily Deliveries: (99.9% of walks to be completed every day);

  • Loss: (no more than 1 in 5,000 items to be lost within Royal Mail);

  • Damage: (no more than 1 in 10,000 items to be damaged within Royal Mail);

  • Post Office queues: (95% of customers should queue for no more than five minutes).

    Postwatch chief executive Gregor McGregor said that until there is true competition in postal services, customers must rely on an effective regulatory regime to protect their interests.

    "In our consultation document we set out what we believe acceptable service levels should be. We look forward to receiving a wide range of views," McGregor said.

    The consultation document can be viewed and downloaded here.

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