Tony Edwards

Tony Edwards

Sales Lead
Sefas Innovation Ltd

Assessment of the Royal Mail Wholesale Consultation issued 8 Oct 2012

This article provides an insight into the key areas of this Royal Mail Wholesale (RMW) consultation and the impact it will have on iSORT™ installations in the UK.

National terms – combining SSC and Zonal fall-to-earth rules

The pre-2012 NGPP rules used mailing region / SSC to determine the fall-to-earth – for sample National postcode files run in 2007 we identified 68.55% non-compliance (85 of the 124 regions).

Access 70 currently only uses 85 selections so these would be used for the fall-to-earth rules.

For the same sample National postcode files run against the current 4 zonal NGPP compliance rules, three files were compliant, and one was not.

Zonal terms

RMW are proposing a change from 4 zones to perhaps 12 to better reflect their cost of delivery.

Impact to Access Customers

The iSORT™ platform has already been programmed for both the Mailsort Region/SSC and Zonal NGPP rules in their current form – the system will be re-configured to reflect the new proposed rules (subject to final details being confirmed by RMW).

Using the more comprehensive fall-to-earth being proposed, the likelihood is that a higher percentage of the mailing run postcodes will be non-compliant.

Single Agreement

RMW want to combine all agreements for a single entity under one single agreement.

Volume Commitment

We would strongly recommend a volume commitment that spans a single agreement, irrespective of the delivery being National and / or Zonal.

Impact to Access Customers

This will ensure that a single Agreement number can appear on mailing runs prepared for either National or Zonal thereby removing the need for two separate envelopes with two agreement numbers (as is the case at the moment).

Enterprise Intelligent Barcode (EIB)

EIB will provide an Access Customer tracking of the job level mailing run from dispatch to final mile delivery and in the future to the doorstep once postal staff have access to hand held scanning devices.  If an individual mail piece requires tracking, there will no doubt be a premium per mail piece.

Impact to Access Customers

Relying on RMW to report back fall to earth with EIB will not provide an Access Customer with the ability to react effectively to avoid surcharges and further potential discount reversion for failing to meet the proposed compliance commitments.


The iSORT™ platform once re-configured for the proposed rules will give an Access Customer real visibility of its actual fall-to-earth and iSORT™ will ensure compliance by re-sorting/splitting the mailing runs between National & Zonal.

There is a strong likelihood that iSORT™ will still deliver savings as well as compliance (based upon the previous results seen for the SSC and Zonal fall to earth rules) once those proposed rules are confirmed by RMW .

The added benefit of a single agreement number will remove the potential operational envelope issues attributed to two agreement numbers currently required for National and Zonal.

In summary, the following benefits will be achieved:

To prevent National fall-to-earth penalties – iSORT™ will deliver on-going compliance for both domestic and international postal agreements

To assist in building a business case – iSORT™ will always deliver the lowest cost per mailing run, creating opportunity for savings for both domestic and international distribution

To prevent discount reversions – iSORT™ will split bad address items out from a mailing run, available for both domestic and international addresses

To prevent discount reversions – iSORT™ will identify large number of address line mail items for potential exception handling

To enable job and piece level postal tracking – iSORT™ will be able to provide the EIB data for inclusion of EIB barcodes on mail piece documents / envelopes

To assist in tray weight management – iSORT™ will identify the tray weight boundaries at the mail item level

To remove maintenance overhead for distribution logic – iSORT™ enables Document Applications to be simplified by handling all the distribution decision logic

To enable secure and binding email delivery – iSORT™ will work with PostStream regify and Document Applications for effective electronic email distribution


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