Tony Edwards

Tony Edwards

Sales Lead
Sefas Innovation Ltd

Impact of recent Royal Mail Wholesale Access changes

Throughout my engagements with large mailers and service providers this year, I am getting a sense that the risk of surcharge for Royal Mail Wholesale Access clients will begin to have a serious impact going forward into 2014.

The shift in postal regulatory controls covering the Universal Service, the recent first step of privatising the Royal Mail Group, along with the bold intentions of TNT Post to compete for end to end services (currently West London and Manchester postcodes), are key reasons for this likely surcharge impact for 2014.

If a large mailer elects to use both DSA services and alternative end-to-end services, then there is a significant risk that the National Access fall-to-earth Postal Profile rules, for either Zonal Postal Profile or SSC Benchmark & Urban Density Profile, will not be met.  Essentially, as key postcodes are removed from the DSA Service used in a mailing run, for the alternative end-to-end service, then the postcodes left for the DSA service mailing run will most likely not meet the fall-to-earth postal profiles mentioned above.

Additionally, as the reach of the alternative end-to-end service extends to a much greater number of UK postcodes, this risk of not meeting the National Access fall-to-earth Postal Profile rules increases exponentially.

So how can large mailers, DSA postal providers or large service providers protect themselves from this surcharge risk? 

For transaction documents, such as Bank statements, Energy bills, and Credit Card bills, this is difficult to achieve when the postcodes being used for alternative end-to-end services and the fall-to-earth postal profile rules are constantly changing.  The difficulty is in being able to ensure that these changes are managed without impact to the very tight production time windows and the cost of change to maintain all the various types of transaction document types mentioned above.

The iSORT™ software platform, created by 21 Grams AB in Sweden and sold by PostStream Ltd in the UK, manages the difficulties of tight production windows and cost of change with ease.  The iSORT™ software platform is able to process a very large mailing run, and:

  1. Identify the alternative end-to-end service postcodes and create a separate mailing run component
  2. For the remaining run, calculate if the postcodes now meet the National DSA fall-to-earth rules, and if not adjust and separate the remaining mailing run into a compliant National mailing run component and a Zonal mailing run component
  3. All this without impacting those tight production time windows found in transaction document production

The iSORT™ software platform simply replaces the existing Mail Sortation step being used by large mailers or service providers in their mail creation process, with all the added benefit of  protecting the mailer from unnecessary surcharges, that will be unbudgeted and difficult to quantify given the constant rate of change.

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