AUSTRALIA Post jobs in Orange are set to remain safe, with job losses to be concentrated at its headquarters and administration.
The Australia Post Group confirmed 900 managerial, administrative and support roles would go during the next 12 months, mostly from Melbourne’s head office.
Employees working in Australia Post’s customer-facing roles, including posties and retail stores, will not be affected.
The job losses coincide with a priority system for letter delivery - a cheaper ‘regular’ letters service will be delivered on a slower timetable, while ‘priority’ letters will be delivered five days a week.
Australia Post managing director and CEO Ahmed Fahour said letter volumes had declined by about 30 per cent during the past five years and the decline was expected to accelerate to 8-12 per cent per annum in future.
“Losses in letters are now, for the first time, overwhelming the profits we make in parcels,” he said. “Furthermore, without postal services reform, the losses in our letters business will reach a billion dollars per annum within a few years.”
Mr Fahour said the job losses were regrettable, but changes would allow Australia Post to become more sustainable and focus more on the competitive parcels market.
“Today, our posties are able to deliver 25 per cent of their rounds with parcels compared to virtually zero only a few years ago,” he said.
However, Central West Community Union Alliance spokesman Bernard Fitzsimon questioned whether the changes were in preparation for privatisation.
“Things can change overnight and once you put it up for privatisation, you unlock the gate,” he said.
Mr Fitzsimon said fewer administration staff would place the burden on employees further down the chain, potentially affecting deliveries.
“Instead of one full-time equivalent job, people will be doing three full-time equivalent jobs,” he said.