Amazon makes its disruptive parcels delivery pitch in Australia

By: Rob McKay


Online retail behemoth says Amazon Flex is supplementary to existing carriers

Amazon makes its disruptive parcels delivery pitch in Australia
Craig Fuller

 

Amazon Australia has launched its gig-economy delivery service, Amazon Flex (AF), in Sydney and Melbourne, with delivery stations in Moorebank and Dandenong respectively.

AF’s advent, along with the expected appearance of Uber Freight, is viewed with deep concern in industry, union and certain political circles.

Amazon spruiks the initiative as an innovative delivery service that offers individuals the opportunity to be their own boss and earn extra money in their free time delivering Amazon packages to customers.

"Amazon Flex will also enable Amazon to expand its delivery network, ramp up at peak times and ultimately speed up deliveries for customers, while providing a unique opportunity for individuals to further their earning potential whilst fitting in with their lifestyle," the company says.

Using the AF app, which contains a background check component and a parcel scanning function, interested "delivery partners" in Sydney and Melbourne with their own vehicle can sign-up, choose delivery blocks that fit their schedule, and deliver packages.

The Australian Amazon Flex website makes few promises on reimbursement other than that toll claims are able to be submitted through the app, the block offer is the minimum that will be paid and that overall pay rates include an amount for any mileage payments required by law.

"Amazon Flex sends payments every Wednesday through a direct deposit to the bank account you provided during sign-up. In most cases, funds will appear in your bank account by Friday.

"If you are eligible for toll reimbursement your payment will be disbursed as described above after you provide the required information within 72 hours of completing your block.

"However, it may take up to five business days for payments to process depending on your bank."

Holidays may mean an extra day before payments arrive.


Read about concerns around the gig economy in freight transport, here


"Amazon Flex puts delivery partners in the driver’s seat, enabling them to earn extra money with the flexibility to choose their own schedule," Amazon Australia director of operations Craig Fuller says. 

"With visibility of how much they will be paid for a block before they accept it, delivery partners ensure their time on the road is well spent.

"We are always looking at new ways to deliver convenience to customers.

"As customer demand and delivery needs continue to grow in Australia, Amazon Flex gives us the agility to supplement the work we do with our existing carrier partners so we can speed up delivery times and respond to peaks in demand.

"At Amazon, we work backwards from the customer and, with our team of innovators, Amazon Flex give us the flexibility over time to unlock customer delivery benefits we haven’t even thought of yet."

Originally from Melbourne, Fuller came to Amazon Australia following a career encompassing marketing, sales, operations and general management both in Australia, Switzerland and Japan, with a particular focus on foods.

His former employers include Nestlé’, where he was responsible for the global dairy segment, and Australian health and organic foods firm Kadac.

Fuller joined Amazon in Japan in 2015 to establish Amazo's global speciality fulfilment operations in Japan. Over three years, he introduced to the Japanese new concepts such as Amazon Pantry, Prime Now and Amazon Fresh.

"This required launching 8 fulfilment centres, recruiting leadership teams, and exceeding customer expectations with quality, price, selection and convenience," Amazon says.

Fuller returned to Melbourne in March 2018, to lead Amazon Australia’s expansion, build the supply chain and the transportation network,

Last April, he was promoted to director of operations and leads the fulfilment centre network in Australia in addition to his supply chain and transportation responsibilities.

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