Jump to content

spikey

"Despatch operation shutdown"?

Recommended Posts

Australia is a country of "she'll be right mate" attitude and yet due the failure of the populace to exercise due care in adhering to community distancing regulations in the last two days approximately one million workers lost their jobs.  Draconian measures have seen many businesses forced to shutdown indefinitely plus a ban on foreign travel (except in extenuating circumstances).  Given that everyone coming to Australia must self isolate for two weeks at their own expense in a hotel or private home plus international borders are closed throughout the world and our major airline is ceasing foreign operations in a couple of days.   I seriously doubt other airlines will be flying downunder.  Emirates has already grounded its fleet. Virgin Australia has grounded all international flights and severely restricted domestic flights leading today to 8000 employees being stood down.

 

I seem to be at odds with many here in that I agree with Hattons viewpoint as regards an industry wide shutdown on health precautions.  Businesses will suffer.  Tell the one million workers in Australia who were told the last two days to join the unemployment line,  businesses from hotels, restaurants, bars, electrical goods stores, beauticians, travel industry, hospitality outlets, cafes operating under very strict conditions,  that it is not their fault that they are out of work but like others they must pay the price to stem the spread of the virus.  My wife could lose her job in the next two weeks.  My daughter is working from home because her employer realised that community distancing regulations made work in his business untenable.  She is lucky in that she kept her job and many others in the office did not. 

 

I object to the cynical view that Hattons are crying poor because if they take a sensible decision to cease trading then others will profit from their caution.   I believe that the industry is no more important than any of all the other businesses or industries that by government decree have been forced to cease trading,  causing employees to suffer indefinitely.  Once again personal selfishness rears its ugly head.  These people do realise that there is a pandemic afoot and all must play their part and all must suffer some inconvenience.  Some people really need to get out and see that the world does not rotate about themselves and maybe not getting that new loco delivered in a day or two,  a loco that they really do not need,  is not as traumatic as someone forced into unemployment simply because they worked for a company that dealt with human beings,  like for instance Hattons. 

  • Agree 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Comparing Hattons with most other companies dealing with mail order for our hobby is rather like comparing apples with pears I  think.  According to their latest accounts Hattons employ 60 people and while they very obviously aren't all involved in mail order they clearly have a much bigger operation than most others in the trade.  That in itself might make it far more difficult to impose social distancing at work especially when you consider that many others have already said that they are operating with only one or two people on their premises at present in order to handle mail order business.  And of course in the case of some premises that is no doubt all they need as a single person can easily pick and pack items from a relatively concentrated stock which isn't in a warehouse but is more readily accessible.

 

The availability and movement of people is obviously another issue but if - as in one case I know of - it simply involves one or two people travelling to work in their own transport and their outgoing items are collected from site there is inevitably only a minimal need for social distancing.  We can - and some of us do - apply our own precautions to incoming mail notwithstanding (as I will be in a moment as the post has just arrived, in plastic envelopes, grrr) and ptrovided it is safelty handled at despatch there's no risk imposed at that end.

  • Like 1
  • Agree 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, GWR-fan said:

  Some people really need to get out and see that the world does not rotate about themselves and maybe not getting that new loco delivered in a day or two,  a loco that they really do not need,  is not as traumatic as someone forced into unemployment simply because they worked for a company that dealt with human beings,  like for instance Hattons. 

 

I'm not offering an opinion as to whether Hattons - and other companies - should shut down or not to on-line orders.

 

But I don't think it helps to suggest that it's all about people being able to get new rolling stock. I think most of us would be happy to wait for the next locomotive to roll up.

But for many of us this is a chance to get on with all sorts of modelling because we can't do much outside the house, and it is going to be a bit frustrating to be held up for lack of a bottle of glue or tin of paint.

  • Like 1
  • Agree 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Coryton said:

 

I'm not offering an opinion as to whether Hattons - and other companies - should shut down or not to on-line orders.

 

But I don't think it helps to suggest that it's all about people being able to get new rolling stock. I think most of us would be happy to wait for the next locomotive to roll up.

But for many of us this is a chance to get on with all sorts of modelling because we can't do much outside the house, and it is going to be a bit frustrating to be held up for lack of a bottle of glue or tin of paint.

 

So having some modelling to do while in quarantine or self isolation is important for the individual while literally millions are at this moment suddenly forced into unemployment not knowing whether they will have a roof over their head in a week or so or how they will cope supporting a family, not just for a day or two or maybe a week,  but indefinitely.  These days many employees are casual or low hour workers who have not had a payrise to keep up with inflation for years and so do not have the cash reserves to carry them through this period.  A study in America showed that a high percentage of the population could not scrape together $400.00 in cash if an emergency situation faced them.   Maybe those who voice their objection to Hattons attempt to minimise the effect of this crisis by an industry wide shutdown are retired or financially well off enough that not having modelling items delivered is paramount to their worries but for many simply having a roof over their heads and food to put in their families mouths seems more important.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, The Stationmaster said:

Comparing Hattons with most other companies dealing with mail order for our hobby is rather like comparing apples with pears I  think.  According to their latest accounts Hattons employ 60 people and while they very obviously aren't all involved in mail order they clearly have a much bigger operation than most others in the trade.  That in itself might make it far more difficult to impose social distancing at work especially when you consider that many others have already said that they are operating with only one or two people on their premises at present in order to handle mail order business.  And of course in the case of some premises that is no doubt all they need as a single person can easily pick and pack items from a relatively concentrated stock which isn't in a warehouse but is more readily accessible.

 

The availability and movement of people is obviously another issue but if - as in one case I know of - it simply involves one or two people travelling to work in their own transport and their outgoing items are collected from site there is inevitably only a minimal need for social distancing.  We can - and some of us do - apply our own precautions to incoming mail notwithstanding (as I will be in a moment as the post has just arrived, in plastic envelopes, grrr) and ptrovided it is safelty handled at despatch there's no risk imposed at that end.

 

That covers both ends, but not the risk to everyone involved in actually getting the mail from A to B. Maybe that can be sufficiently minimised.

 

I think some delivery drivers haven't quite got the message yet. I had one yesterday attempt to hand me a parcel. I would have preferred him to put it on the doorstep and retreat.

  • Friendly/supportive 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, GWR-fan said:

Maybe those who voice their objection to Hattons attempt to minimise the effect of this crisis by an industry wide shutdown are retired or financially well off enough that not having modelling items delivered is paramount to their worries but for many simply having a roof over their heads and food to put in their families mouths seems more important.

 

Stop the silly and provocative statements please.

  • Like 2
  • Agree 12
  • Funny 1
  • Friendly/supportive 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Captain Kernow said:

I agree. If the postal services and courier companies deem the risk too high for their employees, then they will be best placed to say this. They are professional organisations and will have their own medical and risk assessment experts.

 

If I was running a mail order company, it would be reasonable for me to check with my courier company on a regular basis that they are still happy to continue operating in that way, but I wouldn't presume to make any such judgement for them.

 

 


And it will also have fallen on Hattons to risk assess the number of drivers coming into them to deliver and collect, some of who may have done 50 or more deliveries to any random destination to empty the van before collections begin. 
 

ironically the only carrier I know that use dedicated collection vehicles full time for small parcels from such dedicated mail order houses is everyone’s favourite Hermes, as i doubt Hattons have dedicated artics parked outside, which you would if dispatching larger items. Most others use their delivery vehicles at least part of the time (I assume Royal Mail may have cages or yorkies in use for Hattons).

  • Agree 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, GWR-fan said:

 

So having some modelling to do while in quarantine or self isolation is important for the individual while literally millions are at this moment suddenly forced into unemployment not knowing whether they will have a roof over their head in a week or so or how they will cope supporting a family, not just for a day or two or maybe a week,  but indefinitely.  These days many employees are casual or low hour workers who have not had a payrise to keep up with inflation for years and so do not have the cash reserves to carry them through this period.  A study in America showed that a high percentage of the population could not scrape together $400.00 in cash if an emergency situation faced them.   Maybe those who voice their objection to Hattons attempt to minimise the effect of this crisis by an industry wide shutdown are retired or financially well off enough that not having modelling items delivered is paramount to their worries but for many simply having a roof over their heads and food to put in their families mouths seems more important.

 

Um. Did you actually read what I wrote?

 

I explicitly said I wasn't giving an opinion on whether deliveries should continue or not.

 

I was just pointing out that it was misleading to say that if deliveries did continue it would just be so people don't have to wait for new rolling stock.

 

  • Funny 1
  • Friendly/supportive 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, GWR-fan said:

 

So having some modelling to do while in quarantine or self isolation is important for the individual while literally millions are at this moment suddenly forced into unemployment not knowing whether they will have a roof over their head in a week or so or how they will cope supporting a family, not just for a day or two or maybe a week,  but indefinitely. 

 

But on the other hand, continuing to buy stuff by mail order is helping keep people in employment ! Maybe only a small number but it's something. If transporting non-essential items by post was a real risk, either to the efficiency of delivering medical or food supplies, or to the health of senders, logistics staff and recipients, I would expect Government to take action (and if they do I will have no problem complying).

 

  • Agree 13

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
56 minutes ago, caradoc said:

 

But on the other hand, continuing to buy stuff by mail order is helping keep people in employment ! Maybe only a small number but it's something. If transporting non-essential items by post was a real risk, either to the efficiency of delivering medical or food supplies, or to the health of senders, logistics staff and recipients, I would expect Government to take action (and if they do I will have no problem complying).

 

 

Keeping mail order going in general (not just for model railways) will actually keep quite a large number of people in employment, I would have thought.

  • Like 1
  • Agree 6

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Coryton said:

 

Keeping mail order going in general (not just for model railways) will actually keep quite a large number of people in employment, I would have thought.

might also kill a large number as well

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, twiggy1969 said:

might also kill a large number as well

 

I don't disagree.

 

4 hours ago, GWR-fan said:

I seem to be at odds with many here in that I agree with Hattons viewpoint as regards an industry wide shutdown on health precautions.  Businesses will suffer.  Tell the one million workers in Australia who were told the last two days to join the unemployment line,  businesses from hotels, restaurants, bars, electrical goods stores, beauticians, travel industry, hospitality outlets, cafes operating under very strict conditions,  that it is not their fault that they are out of work but like others they must pay the price to stem the spread of the virus.  My wife could lose her job in the next two weeks.  My daughter is working from home because her employer realised that community distancing regulations made work in his business untenable.  She is lucky in that she kept her job and many others in the office did not. 

 

I object to the cynical view that Hattons are crying poor because if they take a sensible decision to cease trading then others will profit from their caution.   I believe that the industry is no more important than any of all the other businesses or industries that by government decree have been forced to cease trading,  causing employees to suffer indefinitely. 

 

As I keep saying, I'm not saying that Hattons and the like should continue to trade. But you seem to be almost arguing that as lots of people have lots their jobs because their businesses have had to shut down, it's only fair if more businesses also shut and put people out of a job. I'm not sure that helps. I would have thought that the more of the economy that can continue safely, the better all round.

 

It's not a question of mail-order businesses being more important than physical shops, it's about the risk of contagion being much greater in a shop.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, caradoc said:

 

But on the other hand, continuing to buy stuff by mail order is helping keep people in employment ! Maybe only a small number but it's something. If transporting non-essential items by post was a real risk, either to the efficiency of delivering medical or food supplies, or to the health of senders, logistics staff and recipients, I would expect Government to take action (and if they do I will have no problem complying).

 

 

It seems the Post Office is happy to continue to carry non-essential items.

 

Their staff, perhaps less so: https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/mar/25/uk-postal-workers-plea-for-limit-to-non-essential-deliveries-royal-mail-coronavirus

  • Like 1
  • Informative/Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, twiggy1969 said:

might also kill a large number as well

 

Please don't post sensationalist statements you cannot substantiate.

  • Agree 10

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hattons clearly has to make its own decision based on its operation. I've just placed an order from them as my other go-to retailers have sold out, so we'll see. I've paid for DHL express too so i hope it is shipped in the day or so.

 

Bearing in mind Hattons is a multi-million paid operation, they may be able to sustain a period of closure, but as others have said smaller retailers probably won't have that choice as they will need continued income to pay their staff and bills. Hornby, Bachmann and other manufacturers have said they are continuing to receive shipments from China so they will need to pay the Chinese to receive those goods once processed by customs. If all retailers shut up shop, they won't have any income to pay for stock, so won't get more deliveries, so the manufacturers in turn don't receive income to pay the Chinese. 

 

Here in Portugal we have a State of Emergency but even so businesses can continue to provide a mail order service if they want to, you can still call a plumber or other "key" workers, restaurants can't open but they can offer take away/home delivery, supermarkets are open but also offer home delivery, and if you can't work from home and need to work, you are allowed to do so. Postal services/deliveries are continuing because that's the only way some people, e.g. those self-isolating, can't receive goods. However, all this takes place within the context of social distancing, so parcels are left outside and the person open the door to collect once the deliverer has stepped away.

Much of that seems to be still to come in the UK.

 

 

  • Like 2
  • Agree 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I stand by my original 'reaction' to their declaration and proposal.

 

VERY CORRECT IN CURRENT CIRCUMSTANCES.

 

WELL DONE HATTONS.

 

Al.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, atom3624 said:

VERY CORRECT IN CURRENT CIRCUMSTANCES.

 

WELL DONE HATTONS.

 

Caps lock text is shouting; please don't.

 

One cannot be 'very correct' anyway, only correct or incorrect. 

  • Agree 11
  • Funny 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
32 minutes ago, brushman47544 said:

Here in Portugal we have a State of Emergency but even so businesses can continue to provide a mail order service if they want to, you can still call a plumber or other "key" workers, restaurants can't open but they can offer take away/home delivery, supermarkets are open but also offer home delivery, and if you can't work from home and need to work, you are allowed to do so. Postal services/deliveries are continuing because that's the only way some people, e.g. those self-isolating, can't receive goods. However, all this takes place within the context of social distancing, so parcels are left outside and the person open the door to collect once the deliverer has stepped away.

Much of that seems to be still to come in the UK.

 

 

 

That sounds like a pretty exact description of the current situation in the UK actually.

  • Agree 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, brushman47544 said:

Hattons clearly has to make its own decision based on its operation. I've just placed an order from them as my other go-to retailers have sold out, so we'll see. I've paid for DHL express too so i hope it is shipped in the day or so.

 

Bearing in mind Hattons is a multi-million paid operation, they may be able to sustain a period of closure, but as others have said smaller retailers probably won't have that choice as they will need continued income to pay their staff and bills. Hornby, Bachmann and other manufacturers have said they are continuing to receive shipments from China so they will need to pay the Chinese to receive those goods once processed by customs. If all retailers shut up shop, they won't have any income to pay for stock, so won't get more deliveries, so the manufacturers in turn don't receive income to pay the Chinese. 

 

Good point - a quick look at Hattons most recent accounts indicates that financially - albeit a while back - there was plenty of money in the business with over £800,000 being paid to Directors in the 2018 trading year end accounts (information in the public arena at Companies House, anyone who wishes to can look at the information).  While that might not reflect in their more recent trading and cash situation we are talking about a substantial business which makes a larger profit than Hornby (not difficult or course:rolleyes:) and whose turnover in 2018 trading year end  (latest available) was more than double that of Peco's with a even larger margin of difference on profit after tax.

 

While no business can stand losses on sales or reduced cash flow over a particular period there would seem to be a situation in which Hattons might have enough background financial strength to weather a cessation in trading where other model railway retail businesses might not be in such a fortunate position and will either have to keep going for as long as they can with mail order or could vanish forever.

  • Agree 4
  • Informative/Useful 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Given that it is well after 10 and I have received ‘deal of the day’ e-mails from other suppliers is it safe to say that they won’t be adopting the one closed, all closed position?

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, twiggy1969 said:

friends are no good to you once you 6 foot under

lets remember this virus dosnt travel on its own we spread it with the movement of ppl and goods 

 

Primarily people. There are ways to safely handle goods, as pointed out earlier.

 

And the Society for the Protection of Apostrophes and Full Stops would appreciate your post.

  • Like 3
  • Agree 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, BoD said:

Given that it is well after 10 and I have received ‘deal of the day’ e-mails from other suppliers is it safe to say that they won’t be adopting the one closed, all closed position?

 

new statement 

 

https://www.hattons.co.uk/newsdetail.aspx?id=758

 

cheers,

 

Keith

 

  • Thanks 1
  • Informative/Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, twiggy1969 said:

friends are no good to you once you 6 foot under

lets remember this virus dosnt travel on its own we spread it with the movement of ppl and goods 

 

 

I'm not disputing the seriousness of the situation or arguing for or against any particular course of action, I just wondered about the need for the words that I highlighted in bold.

  • Friendly/supportive 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really interesting to see the different views on here

 

The proposal for a unilateral approach was Inspired by the new way that traditional rival supermarkets are operating in the UK i.e. sharing resources, making joint decisions and ensuring they can function in a way that best protects their teams and customers needs.

 

I believed there was an opportunity for our industry to do likewise. I knew there would be three types of response from our competitors to my proposal - Yes, No & "This is a good idea, but..." so I am not surprised at the wide range of responses on here and I welcome them all, because this is a huge learning period for retail as a whole

 

I felt it was better to do something, rather than sit and wait, and the calls I've instigated with others from the industry have been groundbreaking and actually quite enjoyable. I'm glad I tried,

 

We suggested suspending shipping because:

  1. Government is covering the vast majority of wage & self-employed costs
  2. It keeps our teams safer
  3. We felt customers would understand our motivations were honest
  4. Stopping using couriers reduces the possibility of them transmitting the virus
  5. I wanted us to be an example to other industries - doing what we can for the situation 

 

This is a testing time for all of us

 

Best wishes

 

Richard

Managing Director, Hatton's

  • Like 7
  • Informative/Useful 1
  • Friendly/supportive 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.