The Evolution of Post in the Digital Age

13 January 2016

With the advent of more advanced and accessible modes of communication, Posts must transform themselves to remain relevant. While it is essential for Posts to meet consumers’ current needs, it is even more important to get ahead of consumers’ evolving needs.


The Changing Postal Landscape

The rise of digital communication has radically changed the postal landscape. Consumers are shifting away from traditional mail and moving towards digital alternatives such as e-mail, instant and mobile messaging. Not only has technological innovation given private and commercial players room to play, it has piled on immense pressure on Posts to remain competitive and relevant.

The postal landscape shift is the reflection of a more significant change – consumer behavior. Today’s consumers are not only demanding a service, but for it to be efficient, reliable, secure and convenient. In this digital age, we firmly believe that Posts must evolve their business and operation models, as well as mindset, to adapt to this ever- changing landscape.


The Vanishing Core of the Postal Sector

In 2014, mail volume dropped by 78.5 billion pieces, or 21 per cent, over the course of seven years[1], resulting in falling traditional mail-related revenue. The growing popularity of digital one-on-one correspondence, rise of paperless billing systems and online banking are contributors to the waning traditional letter communication business.

The decreasing demand for the postal sector’s core services puts the industry in a precarious position. Posts need to revolutionize their core services and introduce progressive, sustainable change within the organization, to better meet the demands of consumers and remain relevant.

Technology is ultimately the biggest game-changer – not only did it bring about decline in the traditional mail business, it is also pivotal in the evolution of the postal sector with the birth of eCommerce.

It is clear that fewer people are sending and receiving letters; they have instead taken to sending and receiving more packages. The main reason for this is the rise of eCommerce. Recent reports have traced an uptick in parcel delivery – a 5.6 per cent growth in parcel volume, leading to 11.2 per cent parcel revenue growth.[2]

Global consumers are expected to spend USD $1.672 trillion online by the end of 2015[3], with global eCommerce revenue expected to reach a staggering USD $2.4 trillion by the end of 2018[4]. With eCommerce flourishing across the world, the postal sector rebounds with a unique position to leverage – its strengths as a logistics service provider.


A Future in eCommerce Logistics

The number of retailers, merchants, and brands onboard the eCommerce revolution bandwagon is exploding. Although the U.S. and Europe are currently the major players in the eCommerce market, Asia Pacific is the region to watch as it is leading year-on- year growth with a staggering 35.2 per cent[5], its share of the global eCommerce sales projected to grow from 28 per cent in 2013 to 37 per cent in 2018[6].

In fact, the rapid growth in Asia Pacific has surpassed the U.S and Europe in terms of eCommerce turnover, pulling a projected USD $875 billion in online sales by the end of 2015[7]. With the projection of an 80 million growth in Asia Pacific online shoppers over the course of the same year, these numbers will continue to grow. What is so striking is – a significant number of these shoppers will be hailing from rural areas, and making purchases via mobile devices.

With the advancement of technology and evolving consumer lifestyles, SingPost is focusing on digitalization and consumers, placing them at the heart of our transformation. We created localized delivery solutions such as POPStations, mobile app services to meet consumer demands and warehouse solutions for customers to spur change within the industry. SingPost is transforming and getting ready for the consumers of the future.


SOURCE

[1] - https://newsroom.accenture.com/news/mail-no-longer-largest-revenue-source-for-postal-agencies-accenture-study-finds.htm
[2] - https://www.ipc.be/~/media/documents/public/markets/mi%20products/ipc_gpir2014_key_findings.pdf
[3] - https://www.internetretailer.com/2015/07/29/global-e-commerce-set-grow-25-2015
[4] - http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Worldwide-Ecommerce-Sales-Increase-Nearly-20-2014/1011039
[5] - https://www.internetretailer.com/2015/07/29/global-e-commerce-set-grow-25-2015
[6] - http://www.euractiv.com/sections/innovation-enterprise/asia-pacific-outstrips-europe-worlds-largest-e-commerce-market-302859
[7] - https://www.internetretailer.com/2015/07/29/global-e-commerce-set-grow-25-2015

Dr. Sascha Hower, SingPost
Group COO | CEO Quantium Solutions
Dr. Hower oversees the Group’s Operations and is responsible for strengthening critical processes and implementing innovative elements of SingPost's accelerated transformation. In addition to his responsibility for Operations across the SingPost Group, Sascha leads the Singapore Parcel division and oversees key customer-facing channels. As CEO Quantium Solutions Sascha leads the Group’s regional arm specializing in eCommerce Logistics and operating in 12 countries in Asia Pacific.