15. April 2020 | Press release

DPD Germany: Contact-free tips for parcel delivery personnel - innovative digital services prove their worth in the coronavirus crisis

  • During the coronavirus pandemic, parcel consignees can show their appreciation of the delivery driver with a contact-free tip via PayPal

  • Digital services like the DPD App are more important than ever for every parcel consignee

  • The digital deposit okay is booming

  • DPD's chatbot also provides digital support on questions relating to the coronavirus

Aschaffenburg, 15 April 2020 – The digitalisation of our working and living conditions has received a strong boost from the coronavirus and the associated social distancing. This also applies to parcel deliveries, which to many people are more important than ever in the current situation. Parcel shippers, consignees and delivery staff are benefiting enormously from digital innovations in parcel shipping. As a current example, German DPD consignees can give their delivery driver a contact-free tip via PayPal. This enables them to show their appreciation of the special service the delivery personnel are providing in today's exceptional circumstances, while at the same time maintaining the necessary distance.

It's precisely in such difficult times that we see how much the digitalisation of parcel deliveries is making people's lives easier."

Michael Knaupe, Chief Customer Experience & Communications Officer at DPD Germany

"It's precisely in such difficult times that we see how much the digitalisation of parcel deliveries is making people's lives easier", comments Michael Knaupe, Chief Customer Experience & Communications Officer at DPD Germany. "A digital, contact-free tip provides the delivery driver with respect and recognition in an appropriate way, especially in times of social distancing. We're delighted that the great commitment of our delivery personnel during the coronavirus pandemic is being appreciated even more than usual".

The contact-free tip is available in the German DPD App and on the company's mydpd.de online portal, and is linked to a simple online rating. After receiving a parcel the consignee is digitally requested to rate the shipping experience on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Every year more than a million users take advantage of this function. On average, consignees are currently giving a rating of around 4.5 out of 5 stars - a slightly better rating even than before the outbreak of the pandemic. This demonstrates that in spite of the coronavirus, DPD's parcel service is continuing to operate at a high quality level - and consignees appreciate this quality more than ever before. In the case of a particularly good rating (4 or 5 stars), the consignee can use PayPal to reward the service provided by the delivery driver directly, conveniently and without contact, with the tip going straight to the driver's PayPal account. A precondition is that the driver has registered for the tipping function with his or her own account. It is up to the individual drivers to decide whether or not they wish to take advantage of this option.

Number of digital deposit okays has more than doubled

The DPD App and the mydpd.de online portal enable consignees to choose between a number of flexible delivery options. For example, delivery on a different day or to a specific parcel shop can be selected. However, the deposit okay option is currently particularly popular. This enables the consignee to authorise the driver to simply leave the parcel in a safe place - for example in the garage, in the garden shed or even on the front porch. The safe-place option allows parcels to be received completely without contact, and is therefore ideal for meeting current social distancing requirements. At present more than twice as many deposit okays are being registered in the app and on myDPD than is usually the case - the increase is currently 130 percent in a month-on-month comparison, with a clear upward trend. In the month of March alone, the various redirection options were used 1.3 million times, with safe-place deliveries accounting for 80 percent of these. However, consignees don't need to worry about delivery to their front door either: for the time being, they no longer have to sign on the driver's handheld scanner when they receive their parcels. In addition, parcels are no longer transferred from hand to hand. The driver rings the consignee's doorbell as usual, but always keeps a distance of two metres from the consignee when the door is opened. The driver then simply places the parcel near the front door and confirms the delivery with his or her own signature.

Stay at home – at exactly the right time: parcel delivery forecast accurate to 30 minutes

Due to the restrictions imposed on public life and increased working from home, significantly more people are now located at home during the day than usual. But in spite of the regulations encouraging people not to go out, many consignees are still afraid of missing a parcel delivery - for example if they are out shopping or walking the dog. That's why it's especially helpful for them to know exactly when their parcel will be delivered. For every parcel DPD provides a delivery forecast which is accurate to 60 minutes. In the course of the delivery, the forecast time even runs down to an accuracy level of 30 minutes. In addition, before the actual delivery consignees can see in the Live-Tracking display on a detailed online map where their parcel is currently located. The Live-Tracking function also offers a health-promoting reminder of the coronavirus: the house icon, which marks the destination address on the map display, is prominently marked with the request to "Stay at home". Even in times which are free from the coronavirus DPD uses seasonal icons in the Live-Tracking display - for example at Easter and Christmas. A large number of positive social media comments show that with this gamification approach DPD is in tune with online shoppers.

DPD expands its chatbot service

As early as last autumn DPD integrated an additional service channel in order to enable customers to make contact with the digital innovation leader: an AI-controlled chatbot called "Red" provides reliable information on delivery times and parcel status. The chatbot is available on the DPD website and will also appear in the DPD App during the next few days. "Red" is learning new stuff all the time, and is gradually offering additional functionalities. For example, it is now possible to issue a deposit okay directly via the chatbot. It is also possible to specify a different delivery date directly in the chat. "Red" also helps when users want to select a favourite parcel shop for their delivery, while DPD's chatbot also provides useful answers to questions about parcel delivery during the coronavirus pandemic. It refers users in particular to the central landing page at dpd.de/coronavirus, where all the necessary information on parcel shipping and the coronavirus is concentrated.

All in all, DPD's digital functionalities and information services have seen a significant increase in the number of users since the outbreak of the pandemic in Germany: in March page impressions on DPD's websites rose by more than 30 per cent to 47 million. The DPD App and myDPD recorded 5.4 million active users in March, which is also almost 30 per cent more than in the previous month.

For its digital services such as the DPD App, its Predict delivery forecast and digital tipping programme DPD has received many awards – no fewer than 13 in the last four years alone. For example, DPD has been ranked among the winners of the Digital Leader Award, the German Design Award and Germany's Prize for Online Communication.

Press contact

Peter Rey

Manager Media & Digital Relations

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Image: Parcel delivery drivers are especially popular these days – which is also reflected in the contact-free tips provided via PayPal. And in its Live-Tracking service DPD is prominently promoting the call to "Stay at home".