Fifty percent of US offices plan to reopen between August and October, according to a study published in USA Today. While remote working will continue for some employees, habits and behaviors adopted during the pandemic will change for those heading back to the office. For example, although online shopping looks set to retain its popularity - 47 percent of consumers shop online more often today than before the pandemic finds Pitney Bowes BOXpoll™ - employees are considering: where can my package be delivered safely if I’m no longer at home to receive it?
Parcel security is a concern for many consumers. Forty three percent of US consumers say they’ve had an ecommerce delivery stolen from their doorstep in 2020. Lawmakers are cracking down on this offense, and in some states, theft from doorsteps has been classified as a felony. On July 1, a new law in Georgia took effect which defines porch piracy as ‘removing three or more pieces of mail from the porch, steps or immediate vicinity of any dwelling of three or more different mailboxes or address’, and makes the crime punishable with up to five years in prison. In California, senator Brian Jones’ bill is going through the state legislature to allow judges to impose up to a year in jail.
62 percent of urban dwellers are nervous about parcel theft
We questioned 2,200 adults to discover their concerns and preferences around parcel delivery, and found that fifty three percent frequently get nervous that their packages will be stolen, rising to 61 percent for millennials and 62 percent of urban residents.
Our study found that two in three respondents wanted a more secure way for their packages to be delivered, rising to 72 percent for millennials and 73 percent for urban dwellers. Thirty six percent prefer to order items online and collect them in store because they feel it’s more secure, increasing to 53 percent of millennials. We found that not only were consumers worried about parcel security, they value the privacy of their packages too. One in two don’t like others to see the packages they order.
Businesses are reimagining the workplace
As offices reopen, many businesses are taking the opportunity to reconsider and reimagine the employee experience. The workplace left behind in early 2020 will need adjustments to allow for new safety protocols and preferences - a preference for contactless processes, for example. Businesses will also need to allow adjustments for employees transitioning back to the office. For many employees, ordering deliveries online and being at home to receive them is an everyday practice they have become used to. Our research found that some workers would prefer to receive their packages at their workplace instead of at home. Millennials in particular expressed this, with one in three stating this as a preference.
To support this, we’re seeing organizations invest in smart lockers, providing contactless, secure, convenient package pick up and document exchange for employees. These robust, touch-free lockers are integrated with intelligent software. Users receive real-time alerts and notifications about their parcel and its location via their mobile device. Scanning a barcode on a screen within the bank of lockers allows them to retrieve their package at a time that’s convenient. Importantly, the entire retrieval process is contactless, reducing the risk of virus transmission and helping employees feel safe. At a time when many people are still cautious about reintegrating to the workplace and beyond, businesses investing in technology that helps employees feel reassured, safe and supported in the office sends a strong message: “We value your safety above everything else.”
To find out how smart lockers can improve your employee experience, help maintain safety protocols and automate manual processes, please do connect with me.