As some of you know, I work as a postman for Royal Mail. Recently I have had to field a few questions on twitter about Royal Mail, and so I thought I’d use this blog to dispel a few myths and maybe solve some of your problems. I can’t help with specific problems such as “where’s my letter?”, but I may be able to help with general questions. And any comments I make are purely my own views, I may work for Royal Mail, but I don’t represent them here. My comments have not been endorsed by them. And in case you’re concerned, I won’t say anything here that I wouldn’t say to my manager or any one else connected with the company, including the chairman.
And so to the first question…
Why did my postman leave a docket? Why didn’t he leave the [insert item] with a neighbour/under the flower pot/in the shed or sign for it himself?
Now this is a question we regularly get asked. Trust me, we don’t take stuff back to the Delivery Office for fun or just to annoy you (honest!). It means we have to carrying it longer, and believe me, we want to get rid of as much stuff from our bags as quickly as we can.
So why do we do it? Because we have to.
We regularly have to sign a piece of paper entitled “Safeguarding the Mail” to say we acknowledge the fact that we are responsible for all mail that we take out on delivery until it has been delivered through the letter box or into your grubby little hand, or returned to the Delivery Office. If we leave an item with a neighbour or in the shed, and it goes missing, we are responsible for it.
Likewise, if we were to either sign for a item or get a neighbour to sign for it, you could easily say it was never delivered. And because the signature wouldn’t be yours, we wouldn’t have any proof that it was delivered.
So by not doing these things, the postman is actually covering his own back in case something goes wrong. Conversely, if he did it, and got found out, his job would be at risk. And yes, postmen and women have lost their jobs for this.
We know it’s not always convenient for you to travel to the Delivery Office to collect an item, but remember, we don’t do it because we want to annoy you. We do it because we have to.
And if by some chance you have a postman who is prepared to risk his job by helping you out in this way, thank him. And definitely don’t tell his boss!