Royal Mail says it expects to report a “material loss” this yr regardless of seeing parcel deliveries leap by greater than a 3rd throughout lockdown.
The surge in parcel submit meant revenues over the 5 months to the tip of August have been stronger than anticipated.
But letter deliveries have continued to fall and the enterprise has confronted additional prices to deal with coronavirus.
Royal Mail mentioned it was speaking to unions about value cuts, together with changing “outdated working practices”.
In July, the corporate mentioned it might minimize 2,000 administration jobs – a fifth of such roles – which might save £130m.
But it has seen rises in prices elsewhere, together with £85m from dealing with extra parcels and fewer letters in addition to £75m associated to the coronavirus measures, corresponding to protecting employees absence, social distancing and additional protecting gear.
The firm’s different latest challenges have included former boss Rico Back making a shock exit from the enterprise in May.
Royal Mail is presently working with an interim chairman and chief govt.
‘Failing to adapt’
In its newest buying and selling replace, Royal Mail mentioned: “We are failing to adapt our business to fundamentally lower letter volumes and are holding on to outdated working practices and a delivery structure that no longer meets customer needs.”
The variety of letters it delivered over the five-month interval fell by 28%, persevering with the development seen in recent times.
Royal Mail specified numerous practices it wished to scale back or eliminate, together with sorting parcels by hand and employees signing in by hand.
It additionally mentioned it had but to take away previous letter-sorting machines, “unneeded when letter volumes have halved since 2004”.
In June, the corporate outlined two “scenarios” as to the affect of Covid-19 on its enterprise, one in all which it has up to date to point out income progress of as much as £150m, as a substitute of revenues falling by £250m.
However, it warned: “There are still significant ongoing challenges including the impact of the recession, changes to international postal rates and the potential frictional impact on cross border trade from Brexit.”
But buyers acquired the assertion positively, sending the shares up 9% on Tuesday morning.
John Moore, from stockbrokers Brewin Dolphin, mentioned the corporate had a juggling act forward of it.
“Royal Mail will have to move quickly to adapt and undertake some major changes, creating a more flexible business and more efficiently dealing with its legacy operations, while keeping its staff on board during this period of transition,” he mentioned.