By Emmanuel Elebeke
Since the advent of the dot-com era in 1990’s, business managers have not only been compelled to change their business policies but align the approach in tandem with the requirements of the time. With the gradual unfolding of technological innovations in this digital era, and multiple competing options in communication and social interaction space, many have doubted the chances of the Post finding a space to ply its trade of processing traditional mails side by side with the emerging digital media.
Several organizations have since been tilting their mode of operation to suit, Information Technology, IT, thereby making service/product delivery more robust and efficient for customer satisfaction. The assumption is that a lot of new technologies would replace physical mail business.
The Postal Administrations, including the Nigerian Postal Service, NIPOST, rather than wait and be consumed by this expectation, seem to have leveraged the evolving electronic communications system to improve the management and operations of their traditional services and to develop new frontiers for more productive service delivery.
Although NIPOST is going through trying times, the management has maintained a positive posture that a silver lining still lays ahead of the once bubbling organization. Immediate past Post-Master General, of the agency, Mr Mori Baba, in his valedictory speech, said that Information and Communication Technology (ICT) was never a threat to the operations of NIPOST but NIPOST is rather using ICT as a tool to further improve on the efficiency of its service delivery.
It was in demonstration of this courage that the Acting Post Master General of NIPOST, Mr. Enoch Ade Ogun, last week at the occasion to mark the 2015 World Post Day, in Abuja, unveiled the NIPOST’s three strategic road maps aimed at building a transformed NIPOST. They include: improvement of quality of service; digitization of postal services and financial inclusion plan.
Enoch said, the world over, the Post office has changed from a place of posting letters to a communications centre, where various services are provided. His words: “Even in this era of new information and communication technologies, the importance of Postal services in socio-economic development cannot be over emphasized.
Improvement of Quality of service
The Acting PMG said improvement of quality of service will be a top priority of the present NIPOST management with the realization that for them to remain in the market and earn the thrust of the customers, they must satisfy customers’ need and even exceed their expectations. “It is now a priority for us to meet the target that we set for ourselves of 24 hours delivery. To this effect, all Area Postal Managers have been directed to ensure strict adherence to target as failure by anyone will not be condoned.”
Digitization of NIPOST
As part of its ongoing restructuring plan, the NIPOST boss disclosed that the agency had embarked on not just computerization of POSTAL operations, the project had provided the POST with a highly technological basic infrastructure that is a vital tool for increasing productivity and the quality of service provided.
In collaboration with Galaxy Backbone, he said VSAT were deployed to 320 POST offices with internet connections, which led to replacement of the SVAT facilities with fibre link in major offices to enhance the speed of data-transfer for provision of services. In line with Universal Postal Union, UPU directives, he also informed that the organization had awarded a contract to upgrade all ICT backbone infrastructure at the International Mail Processing Centre, Lagos.
To demonstrate commitment for financial inclusion, Enoch said the POST through federal government had earlier in the year signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a Bangladesh based company, the Infrastructure Investment Facilitation Company (IIFC) for the provision of adversary services. He said services would be rolled out at the conclusion of this process.