Last Mile Brief 10/01/2023: PostNL reaches agreement with unions

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Today's update covers a potential dispute-ending deal between Netherlands' national postal service and unions, consumer research on sustainability vs price, and state regulation coming to a new last mile delivery concept that's gaining traction in the US.

Last Mile Brief 10/01/2023: PostNL reaches agreement with unions
PostNL press materials

We begin with news from the Netherlands, where it appears agreement has been reached between 2 trade unions and PostNL, thus avoiding a Royal Mail-like dispute breaking out.

PostNL and trade unions BVPP and CNV have signed agreements in principle on a new collective labour agreement (CLA) for PostNL and one for Saturday deliverers.

PostNL says the agreements in principle envisage a structural wage rise totalling 9.5% over two years, with the lowest pay grades awarded relatively the highest increases.

PostNL paid the first part of the rise in December 2022. A 5% split in three steps will also accrue to all employees governed by these CLAs from 1 June 2023.

These three increments involve 2% in June and 2% in September 2023, plus 1% in January 2024. In addition, February 2023 will see an extra gross payment of 1.5% of annual salary.

Pension contributions paid by employees will nonetheless remain unchanged for the duration of this CLA and will not be raised.

PostNL adds that itself and the unions have reached agreement on a range of other issues, including commuting allowances, lower hours for older staff, and transition leave for employees changing genders.

Europe round up

Elsewhere in Europe, a new report from Capgemini has found that 56% of shoppers are choosing affordability over sustainability.

It also seems that those shoppers will remain in good number this year and beyond. Ex-Ocado finance director Vineta Bajaj, now CFO of pan-Europe online grocery firm Rohlik Group, argues that e-commerce sales will remain high in 2023 due to working-from-home becoming a prominent mainstay post-pandemic.

North America round up

Today’s North American news begins with the topic of AI and machine learning. Bart De Muynck, chief industry officer with supply chain visibility company project 44, believes the tech will prove very valuable with respect to managing inventory for last mile deliveries.

Meanwhile, in the State of New Jersey, food delivery businesses with mobile kitchens are set to be subject to regulation.

Why is strike action looming at UPS? In this long, comprehensive piece, the New Yorker looks at the history of unionisation at the US parcel delivery firm and predicts how things may play out in the future.

The Guardian also reports there has been outcry over an Amazon employee’s death on the floor of Colorado Springs warehouse.

Rounding things up, FedEx Freight has expanded its FedEx Freight Direct e-commerce solution for returns of big and bulky items from-or through-the-door of residences and businesses.

News from the rest of the world

Today’s rest of the world summary opens with news from Laos. DHL Express has expanded its presence in the country with a new service point in the Xaysettha district of Vientiane.

Finally, Maersk is to open a flagship logistics centre in China offering a wide range of integrated logistics services, including international export consolidation, regional and global order fulfillment and distribution, cross border e-commerce and other value-added logistics services.

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