Post & Go -Part 1 IBM and Fujitsu

FujitsuFollowing on from the “Weigh and Vend” experiment in 2004 at Alfreton, Luton and Broadgate, London EC2.  a further experiment – this time for a shorter duration of three months-was set up to assess the suitability of a simpler and less ambitious self-service facility- obviously with a view to finding a viable way of reducing demands on counter staff for simple transactions involving the mailing of inland letter items. Publicity on the spot emphasised the simplicity and speed of the operation.a further experiment – this time for a shorter duration of three months-was set up to assess the suitability of a simpler and less ambitious self-service facility- obviously with a view to finding a viable way of reducing demands on counter staff for simple transactions involving the mailing of inland letter items.

The initial trial involved three branches : trial was of the nature of a ‘proof of concept’- that customers would accept (and use) an automated self-service ‘Postal Kiosk’. The intention was that the machines from three different suppliers would be trialled- a pair of Pitney Bowes machines at Birmingham BO, two Fujitsu machines at Maidstone BO and a ‘double’ IBM machine at Belfast BO.The Birmingham trial was first to get underway on Monday 29th January; next was that at Maidstone in a newly-opened public office on 5th February and the last at Belfast on 5th February, where introduction, postponed until 12th February was further delayed by last minute problems until the next day, Tuesday 13th February.This was due to problems with the IBM machine which was initially substituted for a single Fujitsu machine, followed by another a few days later.The situation then became two Fujitsu machines each at Belfast and Maidstone and a pair of Pitney Bowes machines at Birmingham
The initial trial proved sucessful and at the end of October 2007 further “Post and Go” self service machines were installed in further selected Post Offices as follows:- Clapham Common (London SW4), The Galleries (Bristol), Gorton (Manchester), Doncaster, Sunderland and South Shields.
 The rules of requisition for Royal Mail group dicate that large tenders for the supply of equipment must go through the ‘OJEU’ process and following this process  the 700 replacement machines to be rolled out in 2008/9 will be supplied by Nixdorf and the existing machines withdrawn before the end of 2008.

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