Postworks scales up for fivefold Covid growth

Hybrid mail specialist Postworks has successfully moved to a larger production facility during lockdown, as it ramps up capacity to support a fivefold increase in demand due to businesses and organisations switching to homeworking.

Booker: Our team has gone the extra yard
Booker: Our team has gone the extra yard

“Perhaps growth during this crisis can be seen as bittersweet, but it's reassuring to us that we are supporting thousands of organisations during such turbulent times,” said CEO James Booker.

“It isn’t really feasible for employees working from home to take the franking machine and printer from the office during the lockdown. Our team has gone the extra yard at helping small businesses, the NHS, and even whole councils switch over to online franking.”

He cited one council that was onboarded in just 24 hours at the start of the lockdown.

The Northampton-based business supported last month’s £120,000 site move by doubling its production capacity with the installation of two new 100ppm Xerox 3100s, which joined existing toner engines from Xerox and Ricoh and Neopost inserting lines. This year it is predicting growth of 300%.

“With an increase of people working from home, organisations across the country are looking for a solution to continue sending post, particularly SMEs who have limited options when it comes to outsourcing,” said the company’s spokesperson.

“For many of them, they would have previously hand-stuffed envelopes and used a franking machine or stamps. Early indicators tell us that that while switching [to hybrid mail] was a quick decision, they know using Postworks saves them time and money and will be continuing with us even after social distancing measures have lifted.”

The business’s clients include GP surgeries, accountants, law firms, councils, colleges and a wide range of SMEs.

The spokesperson said it had been “business as usual” during the lockdown, largely because it was “built on the foundation of remote working from a business continuity perspective. Every piece of software chosen, every supplier evaluated, all with the consideration of working remotely.”

In fact, all staff that could work from home started working from home a week before the lockdown, the spokesperson added.

Postworks describes itself as an online franking company that provides SMEs with a software-based alternative to franked business post. The 20-staff operation uses proprietary software that enables users to 'drag and drop' files for electronic sorting, printing and folding at its production centre. The pre-sorted mail is then delivered by Royal Mail.

Services range from single item business correspondence to fast-turnaround, six-figure volume direct marketing print and mail campaigns.

Founded in 2016 by James Booker and commercial director Marvee-Lisa Booker and initially funded by personal loans, the business began trading in 2017.

Last year it secured private equity investment from Foresight’s new equity fund for the Midlands Engine Investment Fund, with former Office2Office CEO Simon Moate ​appointed chairman around the same time.

According to the spokesperson, the couple’s inspiration for launching the business came from their time working at a company where only the CEO could use the company's front entrance, while staff had to enter and exit the building via a fire exit.

“That, coupled with seeing a poor hybrid mail operation, they felt they could build a company that put its people and customer experience first by creating a lean and efficient operation, super friendly software and following the servant leadership model.”


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