Royal Mail is to deploy fully-automated parcel sorting machines from BÖWE SYSTEC in its Tyneside, Medway, Nottingham and Southampton mail centres.
With operational roll-out projected to begin next year, the automated sorters – which are capable of processing some 180,000 parcels per day and up to 10,000 parcels per hour – will join the 20 fully-automated parcel sorting machines which are already operational in 16 mail centres.
Royal Mail said that investment in parcel sortation technology formed a key part of its transformation strategy to become a parcels-led business and it intended to continue with the installation of automated parcel sorting systems in its operation over the next three years.
Simon Barker, National Network and Integration Director at Royal Mail, said: “With the growth in online shopping, customers are showing an even greater appetite for parcels. This year alone has seen parcel volumes rise by 34% in the first five months of the year. Automating parcel sortation will enable us to meet this growing demand and transform our company into a parcels led delivery company that also delivers letters.
“We have already made significant strides towards this goal, having invested in the design and installation of 20 parcel sorting machines in 16 sites across the country. This automation technology is already fully operational and has increased the number of parcels sorted automatically on our network by a third. Our plan is to build on this and continue to increase the number of parcels automatically sorted in our network as parcel volumes continue to rise.”