How queuing up for Royal Mail services made me launch a company


David Grimes - managing director, My Parcel DeliveryThe latest Royal Mail price rise today - 31 March 2014 - reminds me exactly why I launched a company to provide small business and consumers with access to cheaper parcel delivery and a better service.Back when I was running my first business after university - a promotional merchandise venture - it was totally reliant on sending parcels to customers. As I discovered, that was easier said than done.As a small, start-up operation we didn't have the necessary volume of parcels to get an account with a courier company. This meant daily trips to the Post Office to send our parcels via Royal Mail. Anyone using the Post Office will probably relate to its many frustrations: either a long commute to the Post Office if you're in a rural area or finding a place to park nearby if you're in a town or city centre. And then, there's the queuing - seemingly endless queuing.I've got nothing against the many other poor souls queuing in the Post Office for their pension, driving licences and countless other transactions. But, for a business, time spent queuing is money down the drain. And that could mean up to an hour away from the business every day, just to send a parcel.The national strike action of late 2009 was the final nail in the coffin for my dealings with Royal Mail. We couldn't send anything to anybody, which crippled the business. But, it was also the genesis of the idea for an online company that would allow individual, small businesses unable to get a courier company account to get access through the joint buying power of many businesses needing parcel collection and delivery. And so, My Parcel Delivery was born the following year.Now, not only can consumers and businesses access the services of the best courier companies at very affordable prices, they can enjoy the best parcel tracking and guaranteed delivery services available, which makes the whole parcel sending process far less stressful. Oh and, by the way, there's no queuing involved - I wouldn't have it any other way!With the latest increase in prices as of today, this will have a significant effect on any businesses using Royal Mail services. And for those companies sending multiple parcels on a daily basis, the extra costs could be considerable. On average, businesses using Royal Mail will be paying 50% more on parcel delivery charges than they need to; at worst, they will be paying almost 70% more than necessary.But with Royal Mail being such a dominant player in the market, it's not unusual for businesses to believe it's the only option. The good news is this: there are viable alternatives to Royal Mail that are both cheaper and better in terms of the services available; My Parcel Delivery is proud to be one of those alternatives.

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