Strategic foundation

We have identified three strategic pillars that form the foundation for realising our strategic objectives.

Manage Parcels for sustainable growth

With a state-of-the-art network that offers customers high-quality service across the Benelux, we are ideally positioned to capture further e-commerce growth. To safeguard profitable growth we actively steer on balancing volumes and value. Our focus is on further enhancing customer interaction and delivering smart logistic solutions, continuing to work towards our sustainability goals, while managing our network capacity and utilisation of infrastructure. Together, these enable us to enhance customer value while continuing to make efficiency improvements and increase capacity.

Manage Mail in the Netherlands for value

In the Netherlands, we offer senders and receivers a range of postal services. We focus on strengthening the value of mail and enhancing the customer experience. And as the designated provider of the universal service obligation (USO) in the Netherlands we work to provide accessible, reliable and affordable postal services. We are managing the ongoing volume decline and inflation by making our network more flexible and reducing costs in the organisation by optimising and digitalising our processes. We are also implementing price adjustments. Together, these actions enable us to deliver stable and predictable normalised EBIT and cash flow.

Accelerate digitalisation

Digital transformation continues to accelerate across our sector, and this is increasing customer expectations. For PostNL, it creates a range of opportunities to optimise our operations and re-invent our business model. We want to become the most innovative and efficient e-commerce logistics and postal platform in our markets, by being a data-driven company and offering seamless integration to customers, consumers and operators. To offer our customers and consumers distinctive digital experiences, we continuously improve customer journeys to offer solutions that fit their needs.

We will achieve this through our Digital Next programme, enabling us to deliver distinctive customer experiences and helping us realise our ambition to be the favourite deliverer for customers, consumers and across society. At the same time, the transformation will generate financial benefits, for example through commercial effectiveness and cost efficiencies. Our ambitious plan to accelerate digitalisation consists of six building blocks, and our vision for these is outlined in the Digital Vision case study later in this chapter.

Our business keeps pace with a changing market, which is why we are further developing our capability to realise certain e-commerce-related services as an integrator. Going forward, this will involve giving the shipping platforms in our portfolio, such as MyParcel, Shops United and CheapCargo, the space and freedom to take advantage of the ongoing market developments, while continuing to provide (large) e-commerce companies across the Benelux with our growing array of end-to-end logistic services. More on our integrator model can be found in our 'Customer Valuedownload' chapter.

Digital Vision: Transforming the way we do business

The market in which we operate is transforming rapidly, driven by fast-changing consumer and customer needs, rapid technological developments and new business models. To achieve our strategy of being the leading e-commerce logistics and postal service provider in, to and from the Benelux, we are accelerating our transformation towards being a customer focused, agile and digital organisation. We have developed a Digital Vision to help realise this towards 2025, composed of six key domains that are outlined below.

Core commercial engine

We aim to offer our customers simple and smart (digital) solutions and services, which are intuitive and easy to use. For example, with the help of our Customer Journey Factory we are working towards the drafting and signing of contracts going fully digital. At the same time, data and analytics allow us to address each customer or consumer at a personal level to continuously improve our service levels.

Core logistics & operations

By introducing the latest data-driven digital technologies and methods in our operations we can serve customers and consumers quickly, flexibly and efficiently. One example is our fully-automated parcel lockers, from where consumers can pick up or send parcels. Going forward, we will create a flexible, fast supply chain by continuing to digitalise, hyper automate and hyper robotise. This could include using computer vision in combination with our robots (or robotic arms) to standardise increasingly complex processes, such as the robotic handling of heavy, fragile and irregular parcels.

Innovative business models

We are frontrunners within the world of e-commerce, combining a digital front-end with a physical last mile. Our innovative business models with distinctive experiences reinforce each other like a flywheel. For example, we provide corporate customers and partners with an easy-to-use platform, enabling them to interact easily with consumers and generate more data, insights and analytics, which we can use to develop new solutions and services to help our customers grow.

Data foundation

Our data foundation ensures that the data we use is accessible and clear, providing us with vital insights in areas such as customer satisfaction, individual effectiveness and our processes. Retail location data, for example, allows us to determine whether consumers can re-route their parcels to a retail location, or whether certain locations have already reached their capacity. Going forward, artificial intelligence and machine learning will increasingly give us insights into potential process improvements and cost savings.

Technical foundation

The technology we use is modular, flexible and open, which enables us to modernise and innovate rapidly. We work according to a protocol, which clearly sets out how to do business with PostNL digitally and how customers can build their own products on top of our digital services. It is simple, intuitive, secure, compliant with legislation and has a fast ‘plug ‘n play’ setup. This makes doing business with us digitally incredibly easy.

Digital DNA

We are a digital, customer-centric and responsive organisation that learns, experiments and innovates rapidly, which helps us make a difference to our customers and consumers. We learn and adapt quickly, take calculated risks, learn from our mistakes, and see change as the only constant.