Canada Post: Delivering The Internet, Sort Of


canadapost

Dear Canada Post and Pharmaprix,

Let me begin by pointing out that I am a strong proponent of Canada Post. When all about are calling to dismantle the service I steadfastly disagree. However.

The missed delivery card clearly indicated that my package would be available for pick up the next day after 1:00 pm. But I knew from experience that sometimes you can actually get the item late on the day the delivery was attempted …

Recently I ordered some items to be delivered by Canada Post to my apartment. I was able to track the package very well and was pleased with the promptness of the delivery. Unfortunately I was not at home to receive the package, but as I expected there was a card telling me when and where to go to pick up my item. Very nicely done indeed.

I checked and double checked the pickup location as I live equidistant from two such outlets and have in the past made the mistake of going to the wrong one. Having ensured that I was headed in the right direction off I went. The missed delivery card clearly indicated that my package would be available for pick up the next day after 1:00 pm. But I knew from experience that sometimes you can actually get the item late on the day the delivery was attempted, so as I was going to be close to the postal outlet anyway I thought I would take a chance.

The post office where I was instructed to get my package is located in a Pharmaprix store, a national retail chain called Shoppers Drug Mart in the rest of Canada, in a local shopping mall. I made my way to the back where Canada Post is located and I waited in line. After ten minutes or so it was my turn and I went up to the lady, presented her with my missed delivery card, explained that I knew I was early but just took a chance. She pointed to a pile of packages strewn on the floor and told me it was in there but had not yet been processed. No problem, I went home, I was early anyway.

My package had still not been processed, and was somewhere on the floor.

The next day I returned at approximately 2:45 pm and stood in line again. After several customers I took my place at the counter with my missed delivery card and ID in hand only to be shown yet again the pile on the floor and be told once more that the package had yet to be processed. Good-natured and patient fellow that I am I said I would come back later. They assured me it had not vanished and even gave me a telephone number to call to see if the package was available.

Around 5:00 pm I did in fact return and once more stood in line and repeated the process. This time it was … well… the very same response. My package had still not been processed, and was somewhere on the floor. I pointed out that it was now my third attempt to pick up my package and was told to bear in mind that it is Christmas. I informed the clerk that it was in fact December 1st and that things would only be getting busier as the month wore on.

On Saturday, three days after the delivery attempt, I returned to the Canada Post outlet in Pharmaprix with my missed delivery card. There were about a dozen people waiting in line and one person working. That one person was frantically sifting through the large pile of packages on the floor looking for a customer’s item.

The counter was understaffed on all my visits, causing a line to form unnecessarily. If the postal service really wants to  ‘deliver the Internet’, they need to have a long talk with Pharmaprix.

When I finally got to the counter and presented my card yet again the employee confirmed that it had been processed. Hallelujah! She went into the back and returned empty handed, unable to locate my item. I gave her an idea of size and shape and, with the postal gods looking down on us she was able to find and give me my package. I mentioned to her that she was very patient and that her colleagues had not bothered to look through the infamous pile, opting instead to tell people to come back later.

I don’t know who is responsible for these outlets in stores; whether the workers are Canada Post employees or Pharmaprix, but there needs to be some serious attention paid if the promised service is to be delivered.  The counter was understaffed on all my visits, causing a line to form unnecessarily. If the postal service really wants to  ‘deliver the Internet’, they need to have a long talk with Pharmaprix.

DCMontreal – Deegan Charles Stubbs – is a Montreal writer born and raised who likes to establish balance and juxtapositions; a bit of this and a bit of that, a dash of Yin and a soupçon of Yang, some Peaks and an occasional Frean and maybe a bit of a sting in the tail! Please follow DCMontreal on Twitter and on Facebook, and add him on Google+
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