Discover more about the topics and technologies to be discussed at this year's conference, via a series of exclusive interviews with a selection of our expert speakers
Julia Pavlenko, director of the international operations department for SC Ukrposhta (Ukraine Post) will lead a panel discussion and talk about micro e-export recharging big state posts – Ukrposhta’s success story.
Describe your presentation.
In my presentation I will talk about the E-Export Program and why the World Post & Parcel Awards international jury decided to recognize Ukrposhta’s project as one of the best in 2019. I will also look at how digital tools have sped up post office processes and encouraged more customers to switch to self-service; how innovations have enabled higher average purchase size and doubled the volumes in three years; and how e-export initiatives can re-energize post office staff at big companies.
What is the E-Export Program?
In the import-dominant environment, with all logistics players fighting for volumes, Ukrposhta put its support on growing and promoting local exporters, especially those in the handmade merchandise segment. Ukrposhta set up a dedicated Export promotion unit that implemented a number of solutions to support local exporters.
The first solution was an off-line and online educational platform, E-Export School, which has benefited more than 5,000 aspiring micro-entrepreneurs and handmade merchandise producers from across Ukraine. E-Export School held dedicated activities aimed at re-employing people displaced by war as handmade goods producers and online merchants.
The second solution was major export product improvement, which included online services for exporters, a consolidated and expedited claims review, a loyalty program to support entry into new markets, and partnership with Etsy.com – the largest platform for handmade craft producers in the world.
The third solution was a reward system for Ukrposhta’s own front-line employees, who attract new exporters, train them and help them grow.
With Ukraine’s currency hugely depreciated, Ukrposhta’s initiative gave access for struggling local producers to global trade and allowed them to make a living. The program also prevented Ukrposhta’s own bankruptcy via about UAH500m (€16m) in additional revenue from exports. Inspired by the program’s success, KazPost of Kazakhstan invited Ukrposhta’s team to roll out a similar initiative in their market as well.
How have digital tools sped up the post office processes?
Ukrposhta introduced such digital tools as API integration, chat bots, a mobile app and personal online accounts on Ukrposhta’s website to allow its customers to fill in customs declarations at home before going to the post office. This has reduced the time our customers spend at a post office to post an item (from 10 to 3.5 minutes to post a parcel; from 8.5 to 3 minutes to post a small packet). Before Ukrposhta launched the E-Export Program, compensations were only paid in cash at a post office; now 85% of compensations are transferred to customers’ personal bank accounts. This also helped to reduce the waiting time at post offices.
Ukrposhta’s digital tools are a universal solution that make Ukrposhta’s service attractive to customers of any size (from individual senders to marketplaces); of any organizational form (from legal entities to private entrepreneurs); of any location (delivery from any part of Ukraine, including small villages); and of any budget (even customers sending several orders each month can enjoy the favorable conditions of the system).
The table below is a good illustration of the benefits for all kinds of customers:
What innovations have led to higher purchase size and doubled volumes?
Ukrposhta has developed an improved tariff policy and introduced a loyalty program with personal offers and discounts from 3-20%. There are also special discounts for customers (up to 60%) due to bilateral agreements with eight countries. The loyalty program covers the whole country, including the smallest exporters. Despite the severe competition in the market, Ukrposhta has managed to maintain its customers.
Ukrposhta is also working on generating new customers, in particular with the help of the free educational platform E-Export School. More than 20,000 people have attended off-line events and more than 10,000 have watched video recordings of the workshops on YouTube.
How can e-export plans energize staff?
Ukrposhta has introduced an individual and a collective bonus system, where a post office employee receives a fixed incentive for each accepted packet, and the whole staff of the post office receives a bonus depending on the post office’s monthly turnover. Ukrposhta also regularly uses non-financial incentives like competitions to recognize leading regions, post offices and postal employees in different categories.