Many citizens continue to turn to the Federal Network Agency to vent their anger at late or missing letters and packages. In November, around 7,000 postal complaints were received, the Bonn authority said when asked by the dpa. That was less than in October, when around 9,400 complaints landed at the Federal Network Agency, but more than in September (5,000) and in July and August (6,500 combined).
The letters are mainly about deficiencies in the letter delivery of the market leader Deutsche Post. Other letter or parcel companies are also meant, but only to a small extent. According to the information, 91 percent of the critical descriptions contained in the letters refer to the Post, 9 percent to the competitors.
The post justified the "local problems" in the past few months with a high level of sick leave and the difficult situation on the labor market, where too few skilled workers can be found.
37,000 complaints since the beginning of the year
A month ago, the management had spoken of an improvement in the situation - the number of complaints may have fallen because of said improvement. A company spokeswoman said: "Our measures, that we have hired around 6,000 new employees in delivery alone since October and made around 10,000 permanent contracts since July, are now showing the hoped-for positive effect."
However, the number of complaints remains at a high level. For comparison: In the first eleven months of this year, the complaints have already totaled around 37,000, compared to only 15,000 in the whole of the previous year.
Against the background of the high number of complaints, Federal Network Agency President Klaus Müller has called for legally anchored sanctions in order to be able to increase the pressure on Swiss Post. Federal politicians from various parties signaled approval. This could be regulated in the forthcoming reform of the postal law.
The Post considers such a state pressure tool to be of little help, after all the company would not get any additional workers through such a change in the law. So far, the regulatory authority can do little to counteract the problem: so-called occasional reviews are ultimately just written warnings.
Percentage relatively negligible
Some complaints also contain several reasons for complaint - for example, when a citizen complains in the same letter about a letter dropped at the neighbor's and about a wrongly placed package. In the year to date, 58 percent of the reasons for complaints related to letters and 24 percent to parcels. Other critical comments relate, for example, to branch opening times.
In relation to the billions of letters and parcels, the proportion of complaints is negligible. However, the number of unreported cases of citizens who are also waiting in vain for a program that is important to them, but who do not contact the network agency, is likely to be high.