Deepak Chopra: Canada Post reinvented its role in the digital economy to help retailers succeed as Canadians reinvented the way they shop
Long before Canadians embraced online shopping, Canada Post was busy building the essential foundation necessary for Canadian retailers to reinvent their businesses and embrace a digital future. A journey that we began at the start of the decade ushered in a new era of convenience for Canadian shoppers.
By meeting the needs of some of the most innovative retailers on the planet, we have emerged as Canada’s No. 1 parcel company. This is a tribute to our employees, who are enabling the digital economy for retailers and shoppers alike.
There is a quiet revolution taking place at Canada Post. The daily ritual of our letter carriers walking a neighbourhood is now performed in a compact delivery truck. These trucks carry fewer letters, about 1.8 billion fewer than they did in 2006, but a lot more of your online purchases (clothes, shoes, Christmas gifts, back-to-school shopping, tools, gadgets and more) as well as seasonal catalogues and offers.
Transforming a company from a decades-old letter-centric business to a revolutionary customer-driven e-commerce powerhouse has been both challenging and rewarding. It is a remarkable tribute to our employees that they have carried out this revolution so seamlessly that Canadians (91 per cent) and businesses (83 per cent) are highly satisfied with Canada Post’s services.
Canada Post faced digital disruption by reinventing itself
In a world where you are either disrupting or being disrupted, there is no room to sit still. Few companies faced with digital disruption have reinvented themselves – but Canada Post has, in just a few years. We have grown annual Parcels revenue by over half a billion dollars since 2011. This success was neither certain nor easy. Every aspect of our business needed to be rewired: from operational processes to full integration of shipping rates and tracking data with customers’ check-out processes; from working with innovative start-ups to helping mega brands introduce online stores; from launching drive-thru parcel pickups to introducing flexible delivery solutions for Canadians who
are not home during the day to receive their packages.
At the heart of this transformation are our employees who not only embraced this change but also became passionate advocates of our new brand promise, Delivering the Online World™.
Committed to serving all Canadians and responding to our challenges
Despite constant pressure to find efficiencies in our operations due to the unrelenting decline in Lettermail volumes, we have stayed true to our mission of serving each and every Canadian. Residents of the far north and isolated rural areas remain as critical for us as any downtown Vancouver or Toronto address. We have re-emerged as the vital bridge between Canada’s remote, often cut-off communities and the rest of the world. They now have access to products from around the world, including dry groceries and medical supplies, which we proudly deliver to them coast to coast to coast.
We have worked hard to stick to our core competencies, avoiding the perils of diversifying into areas we know little about. It is this conviction about reinventing our role in the digital economy that has earned us success when few believed we could succeed.
Much work still lies ahead. Our challenges are serious but not insurmountable. We have developed new skills, new leadership talents, new energy and new ways to overcome adversity.
While much has changed over the past 150 years, the sight of a Canada Post letter carrier in uniform has been and still is a constant reminder to Canadians that we connect them with the world. As we celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, we walk into the future with a new sense of purpose, which is to continue to reinvent our business to serve the ever-changing needs of Canadians – one address at a time.
President and Chief Executive Officer