September 2023 - Secret Label is a bold chocolate monster, How to remove Signature Required

Date Posted:7 September 2023 

"Kindness is a language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see." - Mark Twain

September 2023

Spring is upon us and with Melbourne’s fickle weather patterns of freezing cold one day and beautifully warm the next, the only way to cope is by wearing many layers and either subtract or add depending upon how the weather plays out during the day.

We naturally think of coffee as a cold-weather beverage and yet after almost 2 decades of watching coffee sales throughout a calendar year, there is a clear and consistent trend placing Spring at the top of the seasons for coffee consumption.

That may have something to do with spring marking a time to get outdoors after winter’s long hibernation. With more people moving around to enjoy blossoming trees and flowers, spring encourages socialising with friends or family and most likely also involves sharing a few delicious brews.

For the coffee industry, we continue to see new season harvests arrive from origin and we are transitioning new lots into production duty regularly. There has been quite a substantial rate of change for our coffees over the last 6 weeks with all our blends also undergoing adjustments as part of the normal 3 monthly (quarterly) change cycle.

A few of the new standouts include – Both Colombia Excelso and Colombia Organic, Ethiopia Yirgacheffe, Kenya, Mountain Water Organic Decaf, Tanzania, Uganda – all excellent examples of classic cups from those origins.

Postie refusing to leave your parcel making you grumpy?.

Maybe there is a reason why AusPost delivery agents are not leaving your parcel as instructed.

Read our explanation of how to get the best delivery experience by setting the right preferences in the checkout - we see so many mistakes every day and hope the explanation can help you avoid a frustrating effort to collect parcels.

August Secret Label was a huge success with our customers. The fruit-driven sweetness made for a deliciously complex and rewarding cup. 

Fruit is never an easy element to make or sell in coffees, but that August Secret Label was indeed a genuine classic.

September is a dark, moody and seriously punchy number. There’s 2 different chocolates delicately playing sword fights – Swiss and Dark, and of course those subtle roasted hazelnuts, nougat, black currant and a really juicy acidity round out a tasty cup.

It’s a coffee that slices through milk or dairy alternatives with consummate ease.

The acidity is perhaps one of the most interesting aspects to this blend as it leans in towards malic, yet with a fine lingering sweetness.

And for the trivia buffs out there, September’s Secret Label uses an origin in the blend that has never, ever been used or sold by us in our long history of roasting coffee. A first time for everything.

Yep, it’s different to August and that folks is the essence of discovery with Secret Label.

Grab it here - September Secret Label

Removing "Signature Required"

Sounds so simple, but guess what - almost 50% of our customers are getting it wrong. Blimey !.

Customers call or send grumpy emails to us complaining about AusPost not leaving their parcel resulting in them having to go and collect it from the LPO.

We hear ya……happens to us as well when we order stuff and the roller door is closed with plenty of people inside able to accept a delivery.

So let’s try to help you understand how to improve the chance of a good delivery experience.

For those of you who have mastered the art of delivery preferences, no need to read on.

There is a recurring problem we see with shipping labels and it's the #1 issue causing our customers to get frustrated and angry when it comes to deliveries (besides other AusPost nuances).

Most of the time, it's preventable or avoidable.

Entering delivery instructions asking to leave a parcel without ticking the important “Signature not Required on delivery” box does not work how you think it should.

Maybe you didn’t notice the small tick box, or the app on a phone is hard to see clearly, but you would be surprised to learn it even happens to customers that have placed 50+ orders on our system.

Without removing or disabling the signature, parcels are not able to be left unattended and all your delivery instructions are ignored.

In the checkout, at the Shipping Method section, after choosing the service (Standard or Express), there is an important step to tick the box “Signature not required on delivery” (Authority to leave parcel if receiver not available).

If you Add Delivery Instructions by typing messages like “leave parcel in the shade”, or the system uses a previously stored Delivery instructions to pre-populate that field, without ticking the “Signature not required on delivery” box, delivery agents are not allowed to leave a parcel unattended without obtaining consent.

Customers (or in this context a parcel receiver) may not be aware that Delivery Instructions do not remove the need to sign for a parcel.

Only by checking the box “Signature not required on delivery” can you grant consent to leave a parcel.

In the case of a futile delivery attempt (agent tries to deliver a parcel but nobody in attendance, or unable gain access), the parcel will not be left unattended as the Signature forms part of an essential “security” for delivery.

There are a few ways a parcel can be left at the premises unattended (referred to as Safe Drop), but only 1 way guarantees Authority To Leave (tick the box in the checkout).

All options are presented below.

  1. Tick the box “Signature not required on delivery” in checkout (it's by far the most reliable and easiest way), or
  2. A receiver can attempt to modify their consignment during transit using AusPost’s myPOST app (note, we as the sender are not able to modify your parcel once it has shipped), this option is not always reliable or works and depends upon where your parcel is in the journey, or
  3. AusPost may request a Safe Drop when notifying the receiver that their parcel is on board for delivery. A receiver may grant permission for a Safe Drop. This communication is directly between AusPost and the receiver – we do not see these messages.

Option 1. is our recommended method to ensure parcels will be left unattended in most circumstances. It's also the most reliable method.

Roughly 65% of our parcels utilize either Delivery Instructions or Signature Not Required, yet around 50% of those parcels with delivery preferences end up with the wrong settings due to a customer not removing the Signature, e.g. customer has typed “leave parcel” but not checked the box “Signature not required”.

Shipping labels with comments like “please leave on the porch” yet also having “Signature Required” will unfortunately not be left on the porch as the delivery agent must comply with the Signature Required status. 

If there is nobody home, or the agent is unable to gain access a parcel is returned to the LPO for collection by the receiver.

We are unable to “intercept” or modify customer preferences for deliveries set in the checkout. Everything that is captured in the checkout for a customer order is securely automated for upload into a logistics system. 

It's simply not possibly for us stop that flow to manually check names, addresses, delivery instructions or the Signature Required status.

Our policy prevents us from changing customer data without first seeking permission from the customer. However, where a customer has contacted us separately and we have had the opportunity to respond by confirming their parcel has not yet shipped, we certainly will do our best to make the appropriate changes that suit our customer’s preference.

In other words, if you think it's not right, get in touch and most of the time we can fix it for you. The only exceptions are when it has been picked, packed and loaded into collection vehicles. Like everything, time is of the essence.

Why are Signatures Required ?

All parcels have “Signature Required” set as default.

This is not designed to annoy customers or make it difficult or frustrating.

Nope, the Signature is there for both us and you - purely about security.

Removing Signature Required opens risks associated with parcels going missing when premises are unattended and it also let's AusPost off the hook when something goes wrong.

We offer customers the choice to remove “Signature Required” in the checkout.

Done all the right things and they still won’t leave the @#$%^& parcel !

The final point to note here is definition of “Safe Drop”.

Delivery agents are trained in assessing the risk of parcels being stolen when left at premises unattended.

In particular, if a location where the parcel is requested to be left can be seen from the property boundary, the delivery agent is within their rights to deem that location not Safe. Hopefully, the delivery agent will use their initiative to obscure the vision of a waiting parcel from the street by hiding it behind or under another object.

When Safe Drop first became a formalized selectable service option within AusPost, delivery agents were being super-careful by placing parcels in receiver’s bins, under the house, in a carport, etc. These days, if it does not look safe, it won’t be left.

The other point to note - properties with gates and fences or difficult access, agents may consider the risk of pets getting out the gate or being attacked by a dog, hence parcels may not be delivered to your door and will be directed to the LPO for collection.

These are but a few instances where access difficulties may prevent a normal delivery for a parcel. Businesses with locked doors or unattended reception areas, multi-tenanted buildings with special access or residential properties with physical barriers such as fences and gates.

The final points to keep in mind - delivery agents are not required to make phone calls to gain access and we ask our customer to please be aware that access difficulties generally result in a redirection to the LPO for collection.

Leaving a card to notify a receiver that a futile delivery attempt occurred is no longer a feature of AusPost’s service – physical cards have been retired (or are in the process of being retired right now). 

All notifications are electronic, e.g. SMS and/or emails. Please also check tracking links that are issued to the email address used to place or pay for your order.

Hopefully this can help customers enjoy a hassle free delivery experience.