We are all aware of our responsibility in these difficult times and we will continue to invest in technology to improve customer experience – Karla Codrea, CEO at DPD Romania.
COVID-19 reminded us of some important things. First of all, a serious business with a solid foundation manages to get through difficult times. To this must be added the need to adapt to the specific conditions of a difficult period. These conditions can mean both limitations and opportunities, both of which are equally significant. As far as we are concerned, we had two main objectives from the beginning: the people safety (employees and customers) and the smooth running of the business. With a series of measures, we tried to counteract the further spread of the coronavirus and protect our people and the customers.
We have complied exactly with all the security measures announced by the authorities. All our workforce, and in particular our couriers, are aware of the need for hygiene measures. We provide all our depots workers and couriers with disinfectants, disposable gloves and masks. In addition, all DPD Romania couriers are equipped with MPOS terminals, so that the payment can be made contactless, both by card and by phone. We have implemented the new processes for contactless parcel delivery, where possible, and at the same time ensuring that parcel shipping throughout Romania is safe and secure. The company’s network of parcel shops was temporarily unavailable, but now we are gradually opening them again for business.
Another important lesson is the need for transparent communication both within the company and with the general public – customers or potential customers. As far as employees are concerned, this contributes, both in normal times and especially in COVID-19 times, to increasing the cohesion of the team, the pride of working within the company – this is an aspect we especially care about. As for customers and the general public, with all the inherent risks, we believe that it is important for them to see us as we are: normal people, concerned with doing our job well.
What is the status of your current project(s) and investments planned for 2020-2021?
The COVID-19 crisis forced us, of course, to make several re-evaluations of the initial business plans. For example, we had to make certain investments that we did not plan for this year: we have increased the number of couriers and we’ve invested in new equipment (like scanners, printers, MPOS devices). Also, the safety measures came with unpredicted costs. We have increased the number of persons working in the depots with more than 10% and we are still hiring. Looking to the future, we will continue the policy of investing in infrastructure development.
Which are the advantages of your business and products, going forward? What are your expectations from the public sector, state projects to support future business?
We remain consistent with the principle that as long as we conduct our business on a solid basis and respect the principle of fairness and quality, things will go well. This is our main advantage: we have healthy principles, we like what we do and we are constantly improving the quality of our services.
The fact that we are part of the DPD Group, the most important road network for deliveries in Europe, also gives us another major advantage. It is about the strength of a large and strong European family. From here comes another advantage, which differentiates us from our local competitors: we deliver parcels internationally. Normally, the courier market will continue to grow.
The COVID-19 crisis has brought this habit of online commerce to many. Also, e-commerce concentration will accelerate further as large e-tailers become even stronger. If last year, Romanian e-shoppers made an average of 35 online purchases, this year we expect the number to increase.
Regarding the expectations from the authorities, in a normal crisis the government secures the liquidity of the economy, supports the companies until people start consuming and working again. But this will be more challenging because this time the priority is first to fight against the pandemic. Mainly we hope that the authorities will ensure a competitive business environment, with fair rules, applied equally to all market players and predictability.
What transformations you expect in your sector?
During this period, consumers are learning to spend differently and may become more selective in the products they buy even after the end of the coronavirus crisis. Potential change in buying habits will further impact our industries in new, unexpected ways. Some outcomes of this crisis are already becoming obvious, like the increase of the e-commerce which will accelerate the demand for B2C deliveries to home and out of home. Digitalization will accelerate while work from home will become a new norm. We have to be ready to accompany these changes.
What is your message to clients and partners?
Even in these challenging times we aim two important objectives: to be a reliable shipping partner for our customers and to take care of the safety and wellbeing of our people. We are all aware of our responsibility in these difficult times and we will continue to invest in technology to improve customer experience. Our team is working with all its energy to deliver every parcel reliably. The health of our employees, shipping customers and consignees is our top priority.
In the meantime, it is our role and responsibility to offer our continued support and cooperation to hospitals and to those affected by this crisis. Reducing risks and vulnerabilities will ensure we make it through this crisis together, stronger and ready to face future challenges. Because #WeAreInThisTogether
An article published in the exclusive supplement – “Market pulse report, Romania – The new normal” – June 2020
A property market tour, including major cities, with projects status and updated opportunities at the end of the lockdown in Romania – June 2020. | Essential news with the current status of further investments, clients and partners relations, new priorities for the post crisis cycle. | B2B communication report – to help you mark your statements during the changes period.
Publisher of – “Romania’s Real Estate Yearbook 2021”
An essential, integrated, printed, safe, market guide, mirroring the pulse of the market, at the official turn of the decade, post crisis, for 2021 | 8th edition, exclusive | Romania’s most comprehensive investment guide – unique concept | office & innovation parks | logistic & industrial parks | investment opportunities | international trends guide| leading business contacts | opportunities for 2021: residential, retail, HoReCa | tailored distribution – the most diverse business areas | print & online editions, November 2021, premium, English, country support in international future events or meetings.