When announcing the entry into force of the Emergency Powers Act last week, the government published a list of the functions that are critical for maintaining Finland’s security of supply. Security of supply means that socially critical basic functions are secured in case of severe disruptions and emergencies.
One of the socially critical functions on the list was logistics. As the largest logistics and delivery company in Finland, Posti implements this task that is critical in order to maintain the security of supply.
What does this security of supply maintained by Posti mean in practice?
It means that Posti’s employees deliver goods, mail and parcels as well as transport meals and keep the wheels of production turning, with our personnel working at our corporate customers’ warehouses and stores as well as different industrial production chains.
Yesterday, a historic decision was made to open the security of supply warehouses of the National Emergency Supply Agency. Posti’s transport fleet is taking part in these security of supply deliveries that are critical in this situation. Thanks to the protective equipment stored in the security storages, health care professionals are able to work and the chances of their getting sick can be reduced.
Mail is delivered on approximately 5,000 routes
On weekdays, Posti’s employees deliver on average 7 million items a day on nearly 5,000 routes, including during the current state of emergency.
According to our estimate, Posti has more than 20,000 encounters each day in different parts of the country, at the doorsteps of companies, hospitals and homes. Because of the pandemic, the aim is to conduct these encounters without any physical contact.
In this time of pandemic, meal deliveries are more important than ever. Annually, Posti delivers approximately one million meals to its customers. The approximately 900 employees of Posti’s home services provide people with comfort and assistance in their daily lives at home.
40 Posti trucks delivering toilet paper
Finns went out in great numbers to buy and hoard toilet paper because of the coronavirus crisis. Posti played a central role in the delivery of toilet paper. On Monday last week, 40 Posti trucks were delivering nothing but toilet paper and soft tissue paper to stores. In addition to soft tissue paper, Posti is currently transporting a higher-than-normal amount of hand sanitizer and hospital supplies.
Posti’s trucks are delivering goods to Finns by completing roughly 800 so-called core shifts around Finland on a daily basis. The total distance of the daily runs corresponds to circling the globe five times.
For the security of supply and the functionality of the delivery chain, it is of the utmost importance that Finland has sufficient storage. Posti’s subsidiary Transval has as much as 350,000 square meters of storage space. Thanks to the sufficient storage capacity, companies’ products (food stuff, utility goods, the components used by companies, etc.) are already in Finland, which reduces the dependency on imports in exceptional circumstances.
When it comes to the logistics of daily consumer goods, Posti is a visible presence, for instance, because Transval’s employees stock the shelves at approximately 1,300 stores around Finland.
Priority on safety-related items
In addition, Posti has statutory obligations related to national exceptional circumstances. Pursuant to the Postal Act, Posti and many other Posti companies must be prepared for exceptional circumstances as well as disruptions in normal situations.
The obligation pursuant to the Postal Act means the delivery of mail must work even in the middle of a crisis. Letters must reach their intended recipients even in exceptional circumstances.
Of course, the coronavirus might also put Posti’s employees in quarantine. Then, the delivery of items related to general safety takes precedence: deliveries of blood, laboratory samples, official announcements and other services specified by government officials.
Posti has its own 24/7 exceptional circumstances working group
Thanks to its contingency plan, Posti is well-prepared for the exceptional circumstances. Posti’s multi-professional exceptional circumstances working group commenced its operations already two weeks ago. The group works on a 24/7 basis. The task of the exceptional circumstances working group is to maintain Posti’s operations and customer service as well as actively report on the situation.
The essential services for citizens are maintained by approximately 20,000 Posti employees. We also have many local partners. For example, our deliveries are subcontracted to more than 400 transport companies. In addition to this, Posti has more than 800 partner-maintained service points.
Despite Posti’s extensive resources, one company cannot ensure the security of supply for the whole country on its own. The whole country’s food supply and item transport require other operators outside Posti to keep their operations at the normal level.
At the moment, the domestic mail delivery and transport of goods as well as Posti’s other services are working nearly normally. The service points are open, with the exception of individual locations.
Despite border closures, goods are still moving into and out of Finland, but they are partly transported via exceptional routes and may subsequently be subject to delays. However, the transport connections to many countries are temporarily closed due to the coronavirus, especially outside of Europe.
The need for the home delivery of groceries has increased rapidly, with more and more Finns staying at home and avoiding trips to the stores. As part of the security of supply and our social responsibility, Posti is aiming to increase its home delivery services. For instance, in Järvenpää, Posti is delivering groceries from K-Citymarket to residents.
At Posti, we are doing our utmost to keep the goods and mail deliveries going as well as the wheels of the Finnish economy turning.