Safeguarding health whilst minimising postal disruption
From providing households with hand sanitiser to arranging free accommodation for Malaysian staff during lockdown, Post & Parcel spoke to a spokesperson from SingPost to learn more about the company’s short and long term strategies for dealing with the coronavirus crisis.
“ In addition to the global disruption to supply lines and operations experienced by postal and last-mile operators worldwide, the Covid-19 pandemic has directly impacted SingPost in two major areas:
“Firstly Malaysia’s nationwide Restriction of Movement order to stem the Covid-19 spread in their country has had an adverse impact on postal operations, as our Malaysian team mates constitute 20% of our postal service workers. Over 80% of them chose to stay in Singapore during the lockdown, and SingPost is providing them free accommodation in three hotels, as well as disbursing a one-off special allowance and a daily food allowance to help them tide over this difficult period. We are very grateful to our Malaysian team mates for choosing to continue working during these challenging times, and applaud their resilience and esprit de corps.
“Secondly some members of our mail processing team contracted Covid-19, and were immediately hospitalised for treatment. Contact-tracing, quarantine and disinfection measures were activated and SingPost worked closely with the government and relevant authorities to prevent further transmission of the coronavirus. The affected floor was immediately shut down for deep-cleaning, but the impact on operations was thankfully minimal as it was the weekend and the floor was not accessible to public. Normal operations resumed after a thorough disinfection of the premises lasting two days. We are providing full support to staff who are recovering from Covid-19 as well as those on quarantine, and have put in place strict business continuity plans to safeguard the health and well-being of everyone in SingPost.
Short and long term strategy
” Safeguarding the health and well-being of our staff and members of the public, as well as ensuring minimal disruption to mail deliveries remain our foremost priorities. In the short term, we have implemented strict business continuity plans entailing working from home, segregation of teams, temperature takings, donning of personal protection equipment such as masks and gloves, video/tele-conferencing instead of physical meetings etc. Frontliners have been advised to take the necessary precautions when undertaking their duties e.g. temperature-taking at least twice daily, frequent washing and sanitization of hands, wearing masks, ensuring a controlled number of customers within our post officers, ensuring social distancing, amongst others. Many of these practices will likely persist in some form even after the pandemic has run its course, as awareness about hygiene and health will likely be heightened in the years following the outbreak.
Reaching out to the local community
“As Singapore’s national postal operator, SingPost is doing our part to contribute to the national fight against Covid-19. A landmark programme we are participating in is #BYOBclean, an initiative spearheaded by Temasek Foundation, a philanthropic agency under state investment company Temasek Holdings. #BYOBclean is a national initiative which provides every household 500ml of hand sanitizer, and we distributed redemption pamphlets to the letterbox of every home in Singapore for free. Our shopping mall SingPost Centre is also a collection centre for members of the public to redeem their hand sanitisers. More information about #BYOBclean can be found here.”