Concerns are being expressed about delays in Courier Post deliveries and one company is putting in extra efforts to ease the effects of that on business.
A staffer at a nationwide private hospital company anonymously told NZME he was concerned delays at Courier Post, which is a NZ Post brand, were preventing staff at his company from working at home because key equipment wasn't being delivered.
The man said he was told medical and pharmaceutical deliveries were being prioritised. But he said that did not include technology necessary to keep behind-the-scenes staff working at home and only frontline staff in hospitals.
"I've had to wait up to a week for stuff that would usually take overnight."
Auckland coffee company Kōkako sent an email to customers on Tuesday addressing Courier Post delays.
It said that "after some investigation" Courier Post told the company May 4 was a "record day" with close to double the amount of parcels being handled than at its Christmas peak.
Kōkako was told freight delays "are now five days for North Island and eight-to-10 days for South Island".
"Once a parcel leaves our roastery, there is unfortunately nothing we can do to chase up individual orders," Kōkako said.
Speaking to NZME, Kōkako managing director Mike Murphy said the postal delays started when the country moved to alert level 3. "That's when a lot of other online retailers started sending out products."
To remedy some of the delays, the coffee company started doing its own deliveries in Auckland and to parts of Waikato. "That's just a short-term solution to make sure that if you're trading as a cafe you can still sell coffee," Murphy said.
He said the company had been "proactive" with communication to individual and business customers on social media, email, and by phone, to ensure customers were aware of delays.
"I think that because there's so many people ordering stuff online, people are generally aware of the situation."
Murphy said it was a "bigger problem than just Kōkako's problem".
"I think people who have ordered online just probably need to be patient and if they can't wait for the product … they need to see if there's another way they can get it."
A recent statement to NZME said NZ Post was "proud to deliver parcels on time 97 per cent of the time" - but questions about the current delivery rate were not explicitly answered. That statement was in response to questions on how NZ Post was preparing for level 3 and if it would hire extra staff.
In response to questions on Tuesday, NZ Post chief marketing officer Bryan Dobson said its staff were working to get parcels out as soon they could - but people need to expect deliveries to take "a little longer" than usual.
He said the majority of parcels are expected to be delivered in two days, but items like food and medical supplies were prioritised.
Dobson said NZ Post has "geared up with round-the-clock extra shifts" - but noted that current restrictions mean extra safety measures and limitations.