The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) officially announced at the National Postal Forum in Orlando, Fla., the pilot program of its gopost parcel delivery and drop-off lockers, which the USPS began implementing in Northern Virginia late last year, said Susan McGowan, senior manager of public relations at the USPS.
The current pilot phase has seven existing lockers throughout Northern Virginia with plans to expand throughout the Washington, D.C., area, McGowan added.
While customers typically have packages delivered either to their homes or their work addresses, gopost, situated in areas with heavy foot traffic, provides a third option. Customers sign up for the service online, decide which gopost location they want to pick up their package, and are given a keycard and PIN to open the locker when the package is delivered. Customers are notified of the package’s delivery through text or email.
McGowan added that eBay, the recipient of the USPS’ Partnership for Progress award, was particularly excited about the gopost program.
Though an analogous solution exists in Europe, American consumers behave differently, said Paul Vogel, president and CMO at the USPS. The current pilot program, Vogel added, is designed to test American behaviors and measure foot traffic and rotational time to determine the success of the gopost lockers. The USPS is also working on ensuring customers do not simply use the lockers as a storage area.
The technology used by gopost to communicate with customers about the status of their packages is more robust than its European analog, Vogel said, alluding to the recent updates of the USPS site. “It took three years to update and link all of our different services together,” he said.