Delivery Appointments

Discussion in 'FedEx Discussions' started by Ricochet1a, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    Spoke with a source in Memphis, delivery appointments are being rolled out Monday (ads go on air Monday, service starts Tuesday).

    From everything I was told, the whole program is going to be a flustercluck.

    It only applies to residential deliveries

    Appointments will have a two hour window

    The AM Gatekeeper will have to relabel all packages that have delivery appointments indicated and get them back to the Courier (supposedly no delay in leave bldg times...)

    There will be an option for 5-8PM deliveries (nearly spilled my coffee all over myself when I heard that).

    Memphis has pulled some revenue projection out of their butt - but they have NO IDEA how the program will be received by the public.

    The cost will be either $5 or $10 surcharge (paid by the customer RECEIVING the package). Details are sketchy as to whether the customer must use an Express account number of their own, of if a credit card will be accepted.

    There will be the option to reroute packages to different delivery locations.

    Stations will be told (are in the process) of making sure to get staffing to get the goals of this program met. So if AM-ers have to be called in after clocking out - so be it. If additional evening routes have to be added for the 5-8 PM delivery options - so be it. If PM pickup routes have to be loaded with delivery appointments - SO BE IT.

    Memphis has completely thrown the Courier under the bus with this - you as a Courier (especially full-time) will be essentially on call. If you go to clock out and there are a stack of delivery appointment packages to be taken out - you go back on road. No split shift, no nothing.

    I was also told that Express will soon admit to its employees that package volumes are going down PERMANENTLY. Part of this is Amazon redoing their distribution network to better use ground line haul to get their shipments out (using both their own system and better utilizing UPS and FedEx).

    The process of transforming Express into a 'boutique' shipper is well under way with this move. There is more in the future - but no firm dates as of yet.

    You all had better get cracking - Rome is still burning...
  2. bbsam

    bbsam Moderator Staff Member

  3. TUT

    TUT Well-Known Member

    1. This is more of a response to My UPS, they have the same thing, already have it. Express is behind. Blame them, not Memphis. That said, could be looked at as emerging service demands by eCommerce. But mostly UPS, just keepin up, like always. From my understanding these aren't wildly popular services, more yawn.

    2. Your CEO has already said publicly (to investors) Express business isn't coming back. It's out there, that should be no surprise and they don't have to admit it again. That is also why there is a restructre going on within Fedex now.
  4. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    Express realized that they were beginning to lose some residential volume due to direct signature packages being attempted when no one was home - then having CSAs spend time trying to contact the customer to pick up the package - then shipping the package back to the shipper when the customer didn't show up to sign for the package before the cutoff. This program is primarily aimed at packages that require signatures (when no one is home). My source had the 'feeling' that resi DSRs will be gradually converted into appointment only deliveries - with most of them going to evening routes (5-8 PM delivery).

    Freddie has NEVER openly admitted to the wage employees of Express that Express is shrinking. To the contrary, they have always put out the BS that Express is just in a rough spot and volumes will come back. This flies in the face of the company replacing W700s with Sprinters (the Couriers seem to be oblivious). The transformation of Express is well underway - it is just being played very coy by executive management. They don't want the Couriers to start getting all nervous and doing the unthinkable (signing those union cards).

    About the only way this will work (if the public really accepts it), is for Express to increase the number of part-time Couriers and start making more and more full time Couriers take extended breaks (get stuff out in the early AM - then wait to get out late PM delivery appointments). The twist to all of this is that the PUBLIC will be the major determiner if whether the Couriers will be transformed into Fred's oncall force - or whether the program will crash and burn.
  5. SmithBarney

    SmithBarney Well-Known Member

    If I come back to the building and there is a stack, I'll surely go right out, and sit ON THE CLOCK until each "appointment"

    Most the appointments will probably be loaded into the system before the sort so if you scan it
    the PPAD will probably prompt you during VANning to print a label, just like it does for a redirect, or HAL (unless we are the only place that has this)

    We have several route where I'd love to see how this is going to work. 6-8pm delivery 1hr from the STA with a 7:10CTV pull. LOL (keep in mind the 25pups and few DEL left between 6-8... HEHE.)
  6. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    The vast majority of couriers don't have a clue what's coming. What's given for public consumption i.e. Wall Street, might be followed by a small percentage who read the Wall Street Journal but most couriers I've known over the years, and I have worked in more stations than most, look incredulous when you try to tell them anything. I repeated a number of things read here at last station, started getting people coming to me to ask what I've heard lately after what I told them came true. Most couriers don't know about Brown Cafe or know anyone who reads it. And most get their company news from their mgr. Until he tells them, they don't know.
  7. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    Bet they won't offer it in P.M. areas or if they do they'll have courier who starts later meet up to hand off outbound then stay out to cover several areas as needed.
  8. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    It won't work like that. You'll have a 2 hour 'window' to deliver the package. You CANNOT make an attempt before the window opens (counts as a failure). You will be expected...

    AM Delivery routes - fit in the delivery appointment within your pattern. You will be given a prompt by your PPAD that you have a piece that you VAN and has an appointment. You MUST get that package delivered in that window. There are options for stations that are DRA enables and non-DRA enabled to work this. This is ALL supposed to work under DRA.

    PM pickup routes - fit the appointment within your pattern without having any late pickups. Expect start times to be moved up if the program catches on, and expect to see shippers have their pickup times manipulated to make later afternoon delivery appointments possible. PMers are basically going to do oncall and reg pickups, then get delivery appointments in, then any drop boxes and large volume late afternoon shippers before they clear.

    Customers will have until midnight before the package is due for delivery to request an appointment or reroute. They will have to log into the FedEx web page and pull up the tracking number and make their request and pay for it. The appointment will indeed be loaded into the system before the AM sort starts. The PPAD will prompt the Courier that they are scanning a package with a del appointment on it. The package is supposed to go to the gatekeeper FIRST, then the route delivering it will get it. So the AM Gatekeepers will have the potential of being completely swamped with relabels, if there are too many del appoints coming through.

    This is where evening del routes may be added if the program really takes off. At this point, Memphis doesn't have a clue how the program will be received. They THINK they will get $150 million a year in revenue off of this program (I shudder to think what the cost of running this program will be in terms of extra labor expense and fuel for trucks - the Sprinters get better milage though...). And there are those who think that Memphis hasn't been planning this shift to a boutique delivery service all along. They are going to be in for a rude awakening.
  9. Mr. 7

    Mr. 7 The monkey on the left.

    We watched a video describing this new service. The music playing during the video was ridiculous.
    Just work as directed.
  10. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    It will not be offered in PM areas. I didn't get an exact breakdown, but was told that areas served by 'extended routes' will NOT have the option for delivery appointments. This whole program is customized for suburban areas surrounding major metro areas. There will even be special ROADS yellow tags for these packages, even indicating if the reroute (if that option is selected) takes them to the service area of ANOTHER STATION (the package will have to be shuttled to the ramp, them gotten out to the new station) So late AM shuttles to and back from ramps will become the norm with this program.
  11. El Morado Diablo

    El Morado Diablo Active Member

    In our location (out West) we were told we will have to find a way to make it work. I think they plan on hiring as many PT's as they need to do the 5-8pm deliveries after the reload. Shouldn't be a problem if PM areas are excluded or demand is light. The feeling we have is that it will be the shippers pushing the appointment option rather than customers hearing about it and requesting on their own.
  12. zapmail

    zapmail New Member

    Bingo on that horrendous music Mr 7!
  13. zapmail

    zapmail New Member

    In addition I predict all this scared chatter is a non issue as this is all but destined to sputter and fail without a quiet whimper.
  14. STFXG

    STFXG Well-Known Member

    Express driver in my extended area said he was getting the scheduled deliveries... Also said nearly all express amazon volume is shifting to ground starting Monday.
  15. TUT

    TUT Well-Known Member

    From my understanding here he doesn't talk to the drivers, so you get the news anywhere you can, it's been out there.
  16. Route 66

    Route 66 Flacid Member

    He used to....once upon a time. But that was a different company and a long time ago.

    MAKAVELI Well-Known Member

    We were told the opposite. It Will be offered everywhere , no exceptions.
  18. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    Nope... Can't be pulled off in the extended service areas. They'd have Couriers spending 1-2 hours just getting off a single package. Express would lose so much cash if they tried this that they'd be swimming in red. The stations that have these service areas also don't have the staffing to even think about doing this.

    With the anticipated revenue number put out by Express ($150 million), I calculated that they are HOPING for about 200 delivery appointments per day for each of the large metro mega-stations, and about half that number for the smaller, non-feeder stations (I'm having to assume all feeder stations are in PM service areas and will be excluded from this insane program). This works out to an average of 3-4 delivery appointments per route, per day (with variation depending on the coverage of resi areas by routes). Some routes that are practically exclusive to resi areas could see (if my numbers are right - based on Express' desired scope of the program), upwards to 7 delivery appointments per day.

    Now throw in DRA and have the Courier get reminders each time a delivery appointment window is open (the PPAD will prompt the Courier), and things will be an absolute mess. As another poster stated, this is more in REFLEX to what UPS is already doing, rather than a carefully thought out plan on the part of Express. This is what leads me to believe (and the individual I spoke with), that Express will merely add additional routes to handle delivery appointment packages and try to get as many onto delivery routes as practical without destroying productivity on those routes. If you have delivery routes breaking pattern every hour to get off a delivery appointment, they'll add at least 30 minutes to their on road time with no real additional productivity to show for it. The additional revenue for those appointments will in no way make up for the loss of time the Courier experiences (additional on-road time), or the potential to burn SO commit times if those are mixed in with other P2 stops. From what I picked up from the conversation and what I have been able to infer what will happen when this is put into action, it will be an absolute disaster in the making. Express will either need to up the charge for the service (should demand for the service materialize), and bite the proverbial bullet and add more routes to handle just this volume - or terminate the program entirely.

    Yes, the dreaded DEX 8 will be reduced, but so what. Having a Courier spend 15-20 minutes breaking pattern to get off a single resi delivery, as opposed to making 2 reattempts that only take maybe 5 minutes each is insane. One part of this program that DOES make sense is that ISRs will have the ability for the recipient to 'electronically sign' for the package, thereby enabling the Courier to drop and run instead of trying to indirect or making another attempt the next day. This part of the program makes sense. However, this option (from what I understand), still requires the Courier to make the delivery within a window of time (not 100% sure on this).

    The only potential goal of this program is to get off those DSRs which never have the resi present during regular delivery times (primarily SO). PO that goes to a resi more often than not has the recipient waiting for the piece (PO already has a de facto window in place for most stations, 8:30 to 10:30 AM). This means what this will do is shift SO to the evening option (5 PM to 8 PM). All service levels are available to use with this 'service', but I think that SO will be the primary 'focus' of this program -getting appointments set up for when the typical resi is home from work and can take their package in person. This is why I see the need for Express to add additional routes and just hold those items that have appointments after 3PM for a "PM delivery route". But this brings up a whole new problem - where in the hell are stations going to get the additional vehicles to run these routes? Most stations are already beyond capacity for vehicle parking. Are they going to lease a bunch of pickups and let new hire Couriers take off and get the deliveries completed? In theory, if DRA is enabled and functioning, DRA should be able to plot out a delivery pattern so that any idiot can get off the volume.

    The whole 'thing' about this, is that Express is going to be requiring more flexibility out of its Couriers, WITHOUT increasing their rate of pay one bit. Yes, you may get some additional hours - so what. If you are expected to pull all of this off and be flexible to your employer, you SHOULD be compensated more in return for your increased effort and capability to 'deliver service'. Don't hold your breath for a pay increase...

    What is more than apparent now with this program, is that Express is pushing the demand for flexibility out of its Couriers more and more (remember me writing about split shifts and recalls?). This is all leading up to the slow elimination of the full time Courier. XS is gradually disappearing (with DRA, customers will pull most of it on their own). Shippers are redesigning their networks to enable use of non air methods of getting their volume delivered within the time frames they want (while using OTR line haul). With more and more volume being pulled off of the traditional delivery route, the hours of the AM delivery route will decline to the point where part-timers can run them. Now do those 15,000 Sprinters make sense?

    I see this as just another crank of the knob to the burner under the 'frog in the kettle'. All of you are just going to continue to 'work as directed', until you realize that Fred is running your life without compensating you anywhere near what you're worth. I'm still left wondering when in the hell will the Couriers finally give up acting like those cats running off in different directions, and realize that if they intend on staying in Express, they will not only need to organize at their station, BUT establish a NETWORK among each other, AND get out and make contacts with other Couriers in adjoining stations and grow the network until at least 400 stations have an organizer in them. This means that there will need to be a CENTRALIZED hub of information exchange, station organizers will need to be willing to take direction from the hub and play the role of semi-professional organizers and grow the network and bring in additional stations within the network. Each of you going off in your own direction is absolutely USELESS - since it is obvious that only a fraction of stations out there have someone that reads this forum currently. If there were 400 regular posters to this forum who were current Express Couriers - all in separate stations - then yes, you could all just 'go for broke' and have a decent chance of getting enough cards in.

    I'll continue in another post, this one is getting large, even for me...
  19. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    However... that isn't the case. From what I can casually observe, there maybe 50 different stations that have posters to this forum. NO WHERE near enough to even hope to get a drive off the ground without growing the number of stations that have organizers in them. I hate to take this tone, but it is either time for you all to either accept what is REALLY needed to get an organizing drive off the ground WITHOUT assistance from an established union, or give up the amateur hour stuff and merely 'work as directed' for Fred until you can't bear to go to work another day. It is as simple as that.

    There was a half-hearted push to find another union out there to 'lead the charge'. One poster did contact the IAM and stated they were interested, but nothing came up after that. No other serious attempts (at least detailed here or communicated off list) have come up. This is another issue you (as a community) are going to have to face. Are you going to split your efforts among different unions (dooming you to failure), or are you going to come to a collective consensus and pick one (if it isn't going to be the IBT) and RUN WITH IT. It has been almost a month since the discussion about getting an alternative to the IBT came up, other than that one individual posting that he made an initial contact, NOTHING has come up. A month has been wasted from what I can see.

    Personally, I don't care which union you as a community choose to attempt to represent you, but make a choice and get on with it. If it turns out to be the International Brotherhood of Grape Pickers, GO WITH IT, but make a choice you can all live with. You need to stop this constant dithering about what union you want to affiliate with, pick one, then get to work - if that is REALLY what you want.

    Mr. FedEx has all the organizing 'tricks' that are needed to get a grassroots movement up and running. He's your leader (yes, you are going to have to accept LEADERSHIP, you CANNOT take on a multi-billion corporation without leadership, simple as that). In an ideal world, you'd have an established union providing that leadership, enabling you to sit back and just get cards in. This isn't an ideal world however, that doesn't change the fact that you need to have leadership AND you are going to need to personally accept direction from that leadership to accomplish YOUR goal.

    I've already communicated everything I know to him regarding what is needed to make any grassroots movement possible. IF, IF there is a serious attempt to establish network, I've already made it known to Mr. FedEx that I will help with the establishment of the non-public communications between the station organizers (there are ways to keep correspondence non-public yet accessible to a group of people).

    You as a station organizer, would have to commit to not only getting cards out in your station, BUT you'd also have to spend YOUR TIME getting out to other stations, talking to like minded Couriers there, bringing up the topic of them working as an organizer in their station, vetting them to the 'network', and giving reports as to how many cards you have distributed as well as responses by station management. You are going to have to take some level of 'risk' - no other way around it. If you use your head, you'll be able to avoid direct retaliation from station management (tips were discussed over a month ago).

    If you are unwilling to do this, then you'd be better off just admitting that the task of organizing is beyond you and forget about even discussing it.

    To put it frankly, it is either time to crap or get off the pot. The odds are HEAVILY against you, you all know this. That is why you either need to commit NOW, or forget about it. Spending another 12-18 months dithering like the past 3 years won't get you anywhere - except more frustrated with your employer with compensation that has completely stagnated along with work requirements that keep on getting more and more insane.

    You've been left for dead by the unions out there, it is up to you to prove otherwise.
  20. bbsam

    bbsam Moderator Staff Member

    MFE-- This is it. Time to lead. Are you up to the challenge? Personally, I think you are but only if you are willing to lead even when it seems nobody is following and there are real careers on the line. As R1a said, the odds are heavily stacked against you. This is how legends are formed. Spartacus. Achilles. David. Churchill. MFE? Why not?