IPC’s harmonised label to simplify parcel processing and tracking

IPC’s harmonised label to simplify parcel processing and tracking

International Post Corporation has announced that its new harmonised label, which rolled out on 15 September, will help to simplify the tracking and processing of parcels. In a statement issued today (22 October), IPC said: “The presence of multiple labels and barcodes on a parcel has long complicated and slowed down the handling and distribution process of international deliveries. Therefore IPC worked together with its member posts to develop and implement a harmonised labelling solution, ensuring uniformity based on the existing standard barcode, using a set of standardised address elements, icons and layouts.

“The new label will present significant improvements for e-retailers and consumers, by reducing overlabelling while also improving track and trace, quality and transit times, and facilitating delivery.”

Alan Barrie, Director, Operations & Technology with IPC, commented: “This is not just a technical initiative to align the essential data elements underpinning e-commerce fulfilment, it’s also a practical visual alignment to give thousands of postal workers clear instructions on how to deal with the rapidly growing e-commerce volumes.

“Customers are demanding the same experience cross-border that they enjoy in their home country and this is a great initiative by postal companies to improve the consistency of their service offer.”

The harmonised label contains the following elements:

  • a dedicated section to include the e-seller’s specific elements(e.g. barcode, instructions) for operational needs
  • standardised address data elements
  • a dedicated section to include relevant operational instructions, represented by standardised symbols
  • a standardised use of barcode and UPU S10 identifier.

Posts are expected to start using the harmonised label –  which is available as part of the INTERCONNECT initiative – by early 2016.


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