Royal Mail Group plc is wholly owned by the Government and it is responsible for universal mail collection and delivery in the UK. The company collects, processes, and delivers around 84 million items to 27 million addresses a day and it serves nearly 28 million customers a week through its network of over 14,000 Post Offices. It has 193,000 employees.
They operate in three areas:
- Royal Mail - delivering letters
- Parcelforce - delivering parcels
- Post Office Limited - managing the nationwide network of post office branches as retail outlets
Data reporting was improved in order to capture more comprehensive data of equality and diversity issues. In addition, Royal Mail now asks for equality and diversity issues in its internal Have Your Say survey.
The Group’s recruitment processes were reviewed aiming to remove barriers to working for the company, such as the ones affecting women and ethnic minorities.
Partnering with Direct Enquiries, Royal Mail monitored the accessibility of all its branches and produced a film to spread best practice on how to identify and meet the needs of its customers with disabilities.
Employees were rewarded by Royal Mail Pension Plan and Royal Mail Senior Executive Pension Plan and flexible working hours to carers and parents were extended. Moreover, the company worked with CWU on developing local flexibility plans and implementing new working practices and equipment to modernise the business and improve efficiency.
In 2008 Royal Mail advertised 21 new part-time roles internally and externally; 53% of whom were offered to women, supporting the Quality Part-Time Work (QPTW) initiative. Since 2007, this initiative encourages women at organisations that could offer them quality part-time roles with hours that enabled genuine work/life balance.
Due its support of the Business Action on Homeless Scheme, 75 previously homeless people completed a two week work placement at Royal Mail with 47 of them progressing into employment with either Royal Mail or other organisations.
In partnership with Remploy, 109 disabled people were placed across letters - business and provided with support to integrate them back into the workplace. 65 of the people placed progressed into permanent employment with Royal Mail and 37 remained on temporary Remploy contracts. In addition, Remploy provided 117 temporary staff to cover the Christmas period.
11 Springboard Development programmes for non-management female employees were completed. These programmes enabled 172 women to take more control over their own lives by identifying clear, practical and realistic steps that they want to take.
Royal Mail carried out MARY (Management and Assessment of Risk in Yards) in more than 1,830 sites across the UK. MARY calculates the hazards in yards and identifies the necessary measures to reduce them. In addition, aiming to drive consistency and best practice, the company created a Group Safety Standard on CDM (Construction Design and Management Regulations) into its operations. Aligned with this, employees were provided with training in the following areas: Person in Control; PIC Essentials; Fire Safety Management; and Safe Place to Work.
In 2008 the company invested roughly £550,000 in health screening services. It improved the sickness and rehabilitation support to employees.
£2.2 million a year have been invested in HELP confidential helpline via website. The service is available 24/7 and has supported over 15,000 people in 2008/2009. Aligned with this, the company also piloted a stress programme at its London site.
Royal Mail contributes actively to the success of communities across the UK. Working in partnership with organisations that make a real difference and a positive impact at local level, the company is involved in a wide range volunteering activities which develop opportunities for its employees to engage with local issues. Fundraising within Royal Mail Group has been increased by providing structures and mechanisms to help its employees raise money for good causes.
Furthermore, Royal Mail Group saw a 69% increase in volunteering projects and a 122% increase volunteers taking part in projects. Some of those projects were:
- Get Involved! campaign to volunteer in small local projects and nationally organised events
- £600,000 fundraising for Children in Need
- Join In! Programme to look at ways the company can use its branch network to engage customers with good causes. For instance, its partnership with Barnardo’s supports youth programmes and examines how the company can help free children from poverty, abuse and discrimination
- Partnership with Business in the Community (BITC) to run a programme in four regions, aimed to offer schools the benefit of extra resource, while giving its employees the chance to volunteer and develop their skills
In addition, Royal Mail aims to place CSR at the heart of its commercial offering and of its commercial relationships. In concordance with its management of the environmental impact of products and services, the company has developed a range of initiatives such as:
- Working with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the Direct Marketing Association (DMA) to achieve a 55% recycling rate for direct mail door drop material by 2009, rising to 70% by 2013
- Developing and launching PAS 2020, a new environmental standard for direct marketing, in association with DMA, ISBA and Acxiom
- Improving Parcelforce Worldwide’s carbon neutral parcel service in line with government guidance and developments in carbon offsetting best practice
- Continuing the Carbon Neutral Door to Door service to help businesses reduce the environmental impact of their unaddressed mailings
- Introducing the Recycle Now logo on all type of mail (via stamp cancellation marks), to both encourage recycling and raise awareness
- Launching its Ethical Standards Statements and Associated Code of conduct for suppliers and partners
- Royal Mail is also committed to help deliver a low carbon economy. Therefore, the company has joined the 10:10 campaign which aims to reduce national carbon emissions by 10% during 2010
- 71% reduction in employee sickness absence
- 76% success rate in returning previously sick employees to full duties
- 73% satisfaction rate from the London stress programme
- In 2008/2009, the company reduced total CO2 emissions by 189,577.3 tonnes; energy consumption by 72.2GWh; water usage by 484.273m3 and solid waste dispatched to landfill by 11.223 tonnes
- Royal Mail gained the Quality in Print Media Environmental Award from Quality in Print Awards
- Corporate Social Responsibility Award for Carbon Management Programme from the World Mail Awards in 2008
- 47 previously homeless people now have employment with either Royal Mail or other organisations
- Royal Mail is now the number one provider of jobs for disabled people through Remploy
- Of 109 disabled people placed on work placements with Royal Mail. 65 of the people placed progressed into permanent employment with Royal Mail and 37 remained on temporary Remploy contracts
- HELP confidential helpline via website has supported over 15,000 people in 2008/2009