Yodel responds to C4 documentary

Dick Stead, Yodel’s Executive Chairman has responded to the allegations made in the Channel 4 Dispatches documentary last night (1 February).

He made his response on the company’s website today (2 Feb): “The allegations brought to our attention by Dispatches indicated some unacceptable practices. There were some specific and isolated incidents that were brought to light that we are investigating and are taking appropriate action on. We are very sorry for the occasions when we let customers down.

“During the busy Christmas period, over 3000 self-employed couriers worked for us helping to deliver the high seasonal volume of parcels. For the vast majority, the flexible nature of the work suits their lifestyle. An independent survey carried out in the last six months showed that 84% of self-employed colleagues enjoy their job and 85% are committed to the success of Yodel.

“We handle over 155 million parcels every year and the vast majority of these are delivered successfully thanks to our committed and valued people. Clearly there are still improvements to be made and we will accelerate activities which have already seen our customer satisfaction score increase from a disappointing 35% two years ago to over 80% today which is among the best in the industry.”

The film showed employees at a sorting hub throwing parcels long distances and mistreating them in such a way that damage was very likely. The documentary also suggested that the extremely low margins the company was running on – getting as little as 65p per delivery – contributed to the poor atmosphere among the staff and this is linked to the fun they were having. Competition is fierce in the industry and as often happens, just because one company is shown for doing it, doesn’t mean that their rivals aren’t doing the same. It may be worth managements’ time watching out for their staff as they may be the next in the media spotlight.