A century or so ago, mailrooms were flowing with letters and telegrams. In 2020, that traffic has been replaced by parcels and packages from employees shopping online and having their packages delivered to the workplace.
With global parcels shipped in 2020 expected to surpass 100 billion, businesses and building managers need to step up their mailroom game to handle this influx. Stacking parcels behind the front office desk will soon become unsustainable because:
Efficient package management is not just about convenience. It's about saving time, money, and maintaining a perfect reputation.
Today, we're seeing different forms of package tracking systems implemented in various places. Every single one has a cost attached to it that is borne by building managers and business owners. The question is, which one will work best for you?
The traditional method of handling mail and parcels is simple and straightforward. A worker receives a package, signs for it, and stores it somewhere safe. The recipient is tracked down and notified to pick it up, upon which they will sign for it. A record of this transaction may or may not be kept for accountability purposes.
For low-volume traffic, this method works great. There is a minimal cost of materials such as books and pens, and the employee handling them may already be doing other work at the front desk.
The problem comes when you have numerous packages coming in every day. That same worker suddenly has to spend hours daily receiving and delivering these packages, tracking lost items, notifying recipients, and so on. We estimate that such a scenario can cost you upwards of $30,000 a year in lost time, employee wages, and more.
This figure is not accidental. Every package takes up about six minutes of lost time between its reception, signing off, storage, and recipient tracking. You can expect about 20 packages a day, throughout the year. Do the math — our number is $33,408.
This method is also prone to human error. Packages can easily be lost or stolen in such an inefficient system, and you can be held liable or lose your reputation for it.
The package boom has inspired some novel solutions. The most comprehensive one is the on-premises service powered by hardware, software, and dedicated personnel handling throughout the day.
In this case, you will have equipment such as barcode scanners operated through software to track mail and packages in or out of the premises. This method requires a dedicated member of staff or a team of employees to maintain. It is the same method that companies with high traffic volume — such as Amazon — use.
The On-Premises method has certain advantages at first glance. The efficiency of package management is greatly increased and human error minimized. You can have automated software to notify the recipient of the progress and even collect e-signatures for the same. Plus, you can archive all the package traffic data for analysis in the future.
This system may work very well for large and profitable organizations. However, it is bulky and does not integrate easily with newer, more convenient technology such as mobile phones. The data stored in On-Premises systems also runs the risk of being lost because it is only stored in one physical location. Small businesses and individuals need to find a solution that is more agile, affordable, reliable, and suitable for their needs.
Package lockers are another elegant solution to the problem of increased packages. They vary in their implementation, but the basic model is where a set of lockers are installed in an easily accessible location. Delivery personnel will put the package inside a compartment and lock it electronically or with a key. You can then pick it up after a delivery notification.
Package locker providers such as Luxor One offer an even more exciting electronic experience for multi-family buildings where no human interaction is necessary. All you need to do is go pick up your package when you receive an automatic notification.
This solution is smart and sensible, but only within certain limits. The biggest disadvantage to the system is that it will cost thousands or tens of thousands of dollars to set up. Additionally, it takes up hundreds, if not thousands, of feet of real estate. This is inconvenient as it is space you may need for other amenities or units. This is especially difficult when you have a large building complex or expect a lot of packages to be delivered. Once a compartment is locked, only the recipient can unlock it.
Plus, what happens with large packages such as electronics and TVs? Not every provider caters to these kinds of packages. Lockers currently take parcels of up to 42cm x 35cm x 32cm in size and a maximum weight of 4.5kg. Package lockers are an elegant solution, but may not be the most practical one.
The next stage of package management is already here thanks to cloud-based management software. Such systems operate through an app that personnel can use to scan packages received within seconds and let the app do the rest. It records tracking information such as the parcel code and time received, alerts the recipient, and sends out delivery reminders.
Best of all, the software stores a digital trail of records for tracking and accountability purposes in the cloud forever. This system reduces package handling to a process of Receive>Scan>Store>Move on to other things.
Best of all, cloud-based app-based package management systems are very affordable seeing as there is no investment in hardware, real estate, or training.
Notifii is the new way to manage packages around your office or multi-family building. Using the latest OCR technology and powerful software, our package tracking software enables automatic notifications and reporting. Plus, its versatile build means you get real-time cross-device communication with secure data channels and storage.
Unlike On-Premises systems, you don't need to hire extra staff or buy any additional hardware unless necessary. It cuts the initial implementation cost to almost zero and allows you to get started with the solution almost immediately.
If you already have existing systems and are looking for a more cost-effective yet scalable system, look no further. With Notifii, integration or migration from existing systems is a breeze. Plus, our software experts will tailor the package to suit your exact needs at a minimal cost. Schedule a demo with Notifii today and see how technology can transform the way you handle packages today.