“Our cooperation with Haltian has borne fruit. We now have a fully functioning, automated parcel lockers concept that can be expanded to the Baltics, as well”, says Jari Paasikivi, who works in the development of Posti’s parcel services and e-commerce business strategy.
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The Smartpost lockers, designed for picking up and sending parcels, were launched by Posti in 2017. The data transmission software used for the automated parcel lockers concept needed upgrading. Haltian participated in the upgrade through a research project. With the help of Haltian, the upgraded Smartpost 1.5 software was created.
“Posti’s previous parcel lockers used one-way IoT data transmission, which prevented remote updates to the locks. Software updates would have basically meant changing the locks, making the solution too expensive”, says Paasikivi.
Haltian has helped to create Posti’s latest automated parcel locker concept. The technology solution focuses on IoT data transmission between the electronic lock and the cloud, in which the lock communicates with Posti’s back-end system via the cloud.
“Haltian has helped us especially with the IoT data transmission solution. Compared to our previous Smartpost 1 solution, the new one uses a two-way Wirepas Mesh system, which enables us to provide real-time data transmission and to make software updates to the locks, as needed.
In the previous solution, the one-way data transmission posed challenges. If a customer had problems with any of the parcel lockers, there was limited customer service support available.
“Our customer service couldn’t help in real time, other than advising the customer to retype the PIN. We often had to ask the customer to come back to the locker the next day, when our customer service representative could be on site to help. Now we can even open the electronic lock remotely in real time”, says Paasikivi.
Consumers increasingly consider parcel lockers to be the preferred delivery method for parcels. Posti has responded to the needs of consumers by increasing the number of parcel points and by developing the electronic lock software together with Haltian. Currently, Haltian’s IoT solution is being used at 500 Posti parcel points, with almost 40,000 lockers with electronic locks.
“As consumers’ e-commerce purchases increase, Posti’s strategy is to significantly expand the network of parcel points in Finland. There are currently 1,700 parcel points around Finland, and the number is to increase to 4,000 in a couple of years. Posti also operates in the Baltic countries, where the first parcel lockers have been deployed. The aim is to introduce several hundred parcel points in the Baltics.
The system created by Haltian speeds up the work of couriers, because all lockers can be opened at once, instead of one by one. Information security has also improved with the new system.
“We are pleased with Haltian’s ability to come up with innovative solutions. ICT projects always involve changes during commissioning. There were a few twists and turns on the way, but Haltian delivered the solutions!”, says Posti’s Jari Paasikivi.