In brief

In brief

  • Mary Traversy, chief operating officer of Canada Post, shares her thoughts on the changing nature of the postal business.
  • From technology application to embedding a culture of innovation into the workplace, Mary discusses the future of the post and parcel industry.
  • This is part of a series of perspectives from industry leaders, addressing the most pressing challenges and exciting opportunities they see today.

Which new technologies excite you?

We’ve equipped our delivery people with technology and I think that will evolve into a smart phone with a lot of applications and so again, that real-time information about what is happening with packages being fed back to consumers. We’re experimenting with robotics and I think that’s going to change our industry as well, further use of robotics to help us process and perhaps deliver. I think autonomous vehicles are huge. We have a huge fleet, we do so much transportation, with so many trucks, thousands and thousands per day of trucks on the road, so if some of them could go autonomously that would also be a huge, huge change for us. I think ultimately there will be some deliveries by drone, hard to predict how many.

Why does technology matter?

Competitors and the start-ups have taught us a lot about digital, they’ve come in with some really great applications, and mobile applications and convenience for consumers. Mailers have choices now and they didn’t so much in the past, and ultimately the consumer is pulling and having demands and so we’ve seen that a lot from the competition, what they have been doing and we’ve been following behind to try and make sure that we stay up with them.

How do you foster innovation?

We have an innovation group in our engineering organization and what we do is we fund them and give them some people to look at these technologies. It's about having some resources and some money in place for folks to be able to look at things that maybe seem like far-fetched ideas, and wouldn’t really stand up to a business case, to sort of do a lot of work on them, but making sure you’re keeping on top of things.

Mary Traversy

Chief Operating Officer – Canada Post


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