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Tuesday, 8 November 1983
Page: 2446

Question No. 412

Mr Lloyd asked the Minister for Communications, upon notice, on 6 September 1983:

(1) Further to the answer to my Question No. 271 (Hansard, 23 August 1983, page 123) and the Australian Commission's testing of mail path performance (a) what refining of the testing system has been undertaken since 1977, (b) how often was performance testing done in (i) 1977-78 and (ii) 1982-83 and (c) by whom was the performance testing performed.

(2) Has the posting time, upon which the delivery percentage is based, been brought forward to an earlier hour since 1977 so that it is now easier to achieve a higher percentage of standard letter deliveries.

Mr Duffy —The answer to the honourable member's question, based on advice received from the Australian Postal Commission, is as follows:

(1) (a) More categories of mail are now checked regularly for service performance-namely, non-standard enveloped articles, surface paid parcels, Priority paid mail and overseas airmail leters.

Procedures for sampling and performance assessment have been simplified and streamlined.

(b) (i) and (ii) Each delivery day.

(c) Performance testing has several components. The random selection of mail for the daily test sample and the recording of data is performed by staff at selected mail delivery offices in line with prescribed procedures. Capital City delivery centres and the Launceston Post Office are invariably included in performance testing; other offices are selected on a rotational basis by Australia Post divisional office staff using national guidelines which ensure representation of the overall mail network. The evaluation of test results is performed by specialist staff at a central point in each State and at Australia Post headquarters.

(2) Adjustments to latest posting times to meet service standards are made from time to time in individual areas to accommodate changes in operational arrangements designed to improve service performance, or to meet changes in contracted transport schedules. Since 1977, earlier posting times have been introduced at some locations and later times at others.