“One yuan per order, what service do you want?” a Tongda courier said to me. Double 11 in 2020 has been “opened”. The chopsticks are looking forward to express delivery at home, but they don’t know that Double 11 is a tangled rather than a carnival for couriers-“I will continue to deliver express. ?”
This year is the most intense year of price wars between express companies and the most tortured year for couriers. The recent “Express Strike” incident that rushed into the hot search on Weibo directly reflected this problem. The topic read over 13 million that day, and Baidu Tieba’s related posts exceeded 120,000.
Netizens discuss (screenshot on Weibo)
“Strike” for wages. After the couriers have worked for more than 300 hours for 30 days, the courier outlets are still not paying wages.
But the problem of asking for a salary is a “no problem” that happens every year. The courier company thinks that not paying wages is a matter of joining the outlets, and joining the outlets thinks that the headquarters is holding down the price too low, not only not making money, but also losing money, how do you want me to pay? Both sides kick the ball back and forth.
In mid-September, Huxi editor tried to go to the front line of express delivery, and experienced the work and life of couriers for a few days, to see what is less known behind the “courier monthly salary of 10,000 + salary” widely reported by the media Reality.
I chat with the couriers when they are not too busy
Not 996, but 697
Since unmanned vehicles and drones were promoted by some Internet companies to the logistics frontline and made some flashy PRs, many people think that express delivery is an industry that is gradually freeing hands by technology.
The so-called logistics technology can solve the first two of the three “basic links” of logistics “warehousing-transportation-distribution”, but whether you can see your express delivery as soon as possible still depends on the courier at the end network and site— -And this, to a large extent, is the “human flesh” efficiency.
The “697 curse” of “more than 10 hours, no Saturdays and Sundays” is the most real grassroots reality in the development of China’s express delivery industry. About 4 million couriers follow this work pattern.
I work at a franchisee branch of a courier company in the Tongda Department of Beijing H District. The first time I arrived at the warehouse, it was almost 8 o’clock in the morning. The conveyor belt for express delivery in the warehouse was humming and the couriers were on both sides of the conveyor belt. Busy to sort out the express delivery in his own area.
After a brief communication with the master Tao Jun, he said that the speed of express sorting was a bit slow this morning, and that the loading has already begun at this point. He is worried about the subsequent process, which will eventually lead to longer working hours.
To cope with a job type with a daily working hours of more than 10 hours and no rest days for one year except for annual leave, you need to have very good physical strength, strong stress resistance, and a good attitude like Tao Jun before you can hold it.
Take the express outlets in District H where I am as an example. They start to work at 5 am and 6 am every day to sort out the express delivery from all over the country from the Beijing Express General Operation Center. Generally speaking, after a series of tasks such as dispatching, they must leave work until 9 or 10 in the evening to 1-2 in the morning.
Such long working hours are not only due to the increasing volume of express orders. More importantly, the warehouses and sites at the end of the express industry rely almost entirely on manual operations-like the cool unmanned black technology displayed on the Internet, such as a group of robots and palletizers handling and sorting express delivery. This kind of high-configuration scenario will only appear in the large-scale storage and transfer center JD Asia One, and the intelligent sorting large warehouse of the express company.
In addition, their working environment is also very simple. In the terminal warehouses here, almost all express companies are open-air, covered with rain cloth as warehouse roof and iron sheet as wall.
On both sides of the courier truck is the working environment of the couriers, almost all of them are metal houses
Tao Jun told me that almost half of the express outlets in Beijing are open-air sorting. The outlet like I am in is considered to be medium, and the worse condition is sorting on the side of the road. In Beijing, warehouses within the Fifth Ring Road are not allowed. For fear of potential safety hazards, the weather in Beijing is relatively dry, mainly for fire prevention and electricity protection. “When it rains, put the express delivery under the conveyor belt and cover it with rain cloth.” Tao Jun said.
Before going to the end dispatch site, the conveyor belt or manual sorting in the warehouse is only the first step. The second step is to scan the code of the sorted express with a pistol in the warehouse, confirm the number of delivery, and check whether there are any mishandled express and empty parts (merchants brush single parts), and finally load the truck according to the size of the parts. The process is basically controlled within 2 hours. Every day, the thunder cannot move.
When they arrive at the delivery site, the courier will sort out these express items one by one according to size and type, and arrange them neatly. After sorting out, start to number the express items. After coding, you need to scan the code one by one with a pistol, and send a pickup text message or robot voice call to the recipient. The pickup code in the text message is determined according to the personal habits of the courier. You can enter Arabic numerals or enter the last four of your mobile phone number. Bit.
Before sending the pickup message, the above series of tasks must be repeated twice a day (SF Express continuously delivers express parcels to outlets, about 5 times a day). The express delivery company site I am at is close to 650 parcels in the morning + afternoon, and the express parcels on promotional days such as Double 11 can exceed 1000. Before this, Tao Jun was responsible for this.
This is about 400 express items sorted out by Tao Jun and I in the morning. Tao Jun is responsible for sorting and coding the express.
When the picker comes to pick up the package, the courier has to pick up the courier, scan the courier, and confirm the courier one by one. This is just “spot delivery”, not “climbing the stairs to deliver from house to house”.
The following is the income issue. If it’s one yuan for a courier (the cost of delivery is different from the delivery of stairs, it is 1 yuan/piece, and it is 1.2 yuan/piece to climb to the old floors), no matter whether it is hard or not, more than 600 pieces will be delivered a day In this way, 10,000+ per month is not a problem, just like white-collar workers.
But is this really the case?
More work ≠ more
Tao Jun has been in the express delivery industry for nearly 11 years. He reflects that the delivery fee at the end of the express delivery industry is getting lower and lower. “Now all express companies are asking couriers to improve service quality while lowering prices.”
Tongda courier Hua Zijie also said that he has worked for many years, and now he has delivered more pieces than before, but he has delivered more pieces and his salary has not risen.
According to the industry growth rate, the express delivery industry has maintained a growth rate of more than 20% every year, but the couriers have not shared the dividends of the industry’s growth. The original delivery fee for a single end express ticket is between 1.3 yuan and 1.5 yuan, with a minimum of 1.2 yuan. But this year the price has been reduced to 1 yuan/piece.
Data source: State Post Bureau, Qianzhan Industry Research Institute
Generally speaking, the courier fee of the courier company includes four types of fees, namely, pickup fee, face-to-face fee, transit fee and delivery fee. For franchised express delivery companies, due to the nature of franchise systems, if the headquarters does not have unified regulations, they The settlement method of each link and each express outlet will also be different. At the end, the delivery fee is also determined by the franchisee of the outlet.
Earlier, “21st Century Business Review” reported that some media have dismantled the distribution of express delivery costs. Assuming that users pay 10 yuan for express delivery fees, 3 yuan of which goes to the outlets, 1.6 yuan for couriers, and distribution within the city The cost is 0.6 yuan, and the freight to the distribution center is 0.3 yuan. The headquarters receives a face-to-face fee of 1 yuan, a transfer fee of 2 yuan and a delivery fee of 1.5 yuan.
The current stock market in the express delivery industry is fiercely competitive. In order for express companies to seize market share and increase their own corporate revenue, scale effect is their best method. Therefore, express companies will fight price wars, resulting in lower and lower express delivery prices.
The result of the price war is that the unit price of the delivery source is reduced, and the income of the face-to-face, transit fee, and transportation costs are discarded, and the remaining delivery fee will be reduced accordingly. And the two parts of this reduction are the profit sources of the end franchise outlets and the courier, so the end single ticket of express delivery is getting lower and lower.
Not only that, nowadays, the express cabinet has also “divided away” the income of the courier, and the cost of an express delivery to the express cabinet is more than 0.55 yuan. In addition, communication fees and SMS fees must be added.
Let’s calculate an account. The end delivery fee for a piece of express is 1 yuan, and the express delivery cabinet fee is 0.55 yuan. The communication fee + SMS fee is calculated at an average of 0.2 yuan, 1-0.55-0.2=0.25, and finally to the courier Only 0.25 yuan/piece in hand.
And the final 0.25 yuan/piece has not yet been deducted from the various fines that the couriers hate the most, and sometimes the fines for a courier only cost thousands of yuan. This is also the reason why the liquidity of the entire industry remains high and recruitment is difficult.
In addition, few people know that many couriers have no basic salary.
The couriers do not agree with the notion of no-responsibility basic salary. They call it “guaranteed basic salary”, which is pure commission, more work is more, less work is less.
Gong Fuzhao, the founder of Double One Consulting, said, “The courier is not a model with a basic salary. It is calculated based on the amount of the package. It belongs to the commission model. You will receive as much as you send and receive at the end of the month.” .
In other words, for delivery staff, time is money; for delivery staff, order quantity is money. 10,000+ salary is too hard to have.
At the beginning of 2020, the “2019 National Express Practitioners Occupation Survey Report” released by China Post Express News revealed that 75.07% of the couriers had a monthly income of less than 5,000 yuan, and 0.73% had a monthly income of more than 10,000 yuan. my country’s express delivery employees work 8-10 hours/day accounting for 46.85%, working 10-12 hours/day accounting for 33.9%, and nearly 20% of employees work more than 12 hours.
In 2018, the salary of couriers was generally more than 6000 yuan. According to the “2018 Courier Group Insight Report”, the average salary of couriers was about 6,200 yuan. The salary structure is mainly composed of basic salary plus commission. 80% of couriers Work over 8 hours.
From these two reports, it can be seen that by 2019, the overall salary level of couriers has begun to decline significantly, and the working hours are increasing.
At this time, it was almost 8 o’clock in the evening, and the courier was sorting out the last wave of express parcels and sending a pickup text message to the recipient
Zhang Peng, a courier who has just resigned recently and has been working in JD Logistics for less than two months, said that the salary of doing express delivery is not as high as that of the outside world. At first, he is not familiar with the business. Generally, it is around 6000-7000 yuan. Low, “I left my job because of the small quantity and low salary.”
According to a report by Xinhua News Agency, Zhao Ping, vice president of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, said, “According to my estimation, when the price of a single express ticket has dropped by more than 20%, the salary of couriers will fall by 10%. the above.”
The job type most similar to the courier is the takeaway brother. Zhang Junkai said that he has a counterpart in Yunda who has worked in the courier industry for 7-8 years because of salary, and he switched to a takeaway this year. But Zhang Junkai feels that it is no longer possible to run takeaways now, and it is not profitable. If he could still make some money in the past few years. In the opinion of Tao Jun’s colleague Xiao Wang, the time of being a takeaway is too tight. For half an hour, it’s a heartbeat.
The couriers believe that if they want to make money, contracting is the best way, but not everyone has the conditions for contracting, and there is still potential in a certain part of the contract, because we need to talk about B-end customers, such as office buildings and commercial buildings. Wait.
Therefore, in order to increase income and get a salary of 10,000+ per month, couriers must bear the pressure of express delivery and service of hundreds or thousands of pieces per day, and also bear the lower and lower single ticket pressure of the express company. Income, increase income in units of single quantity, and run desperately. (It is not difficult to understand why many couriers will put the express directly into the express cabinet without the recipient’s permission or notification. Otherwise, they will not be able to complete the workload in a day.)
And behind running desperately to 10,000+, if you are not careful, you will fall into various pits.
“There is always a fine for you”
The crime and punishment in the eyes of the courier is the “one size fits all” of the courier company. This is the seemingly tangible but invisible shackles that the courier company puts on the courier-from the process of collecting the package to the delivery to the consumer The courier company imposes more than 100 deduction fines on the courier, and there is always one that suits you.
Chen Amo, a courier of Suning Logistics, told me that all express companies are the same, but it’s just a matter of fines.
But this kind of mechanized management mechanism will inevitably bring some “backlashes”: it will make the courier go to extremes, and make some illegal and disorderly things, such as in recent years: the courier insults the recipient, beats and retaliates. The recipient, the courier kneel down, or even enter the recipient’s home while delivering the express to do something illegal, etc.
In June 2018, Mr. Zhang from Shenyang sent a package to Fujian via Yunda Express. During the period, the whereabouts of the package was unknown. During the complaint process, various departments shirk each other. In a hurry, Mr. Zhang told the courier that he would complain to the postal department. Thinking that the courier started cursing and was unwilling to compensate, I complained to the courier company out of anger. Finally, the courier apologized and was fired.
On June 11, 2019, a female courier at a branch of Yuantong in Guangrao, Shandong encountered a malicious complaint and knelt down to ask for forgiveness. The police came forward to issue a certificate for her and received much attention. At that time, the incident remained high in the hot searches on Weibo, which triggered heated discussions among many Weibo netizens and all walks of life.
In 2019, a female courier at a branch of Yuantong, Guangrao, Shandong suffered a malicious complaint and knelt down to ask for forgiveness
There are many incidents like this. According to data from the State Post Bureau, in September this year alone, a total of 16,668 complaints were passed through the “12305” postal industry user complaint telephone and complaint websites, of which 15,609 complained about express service problems, accounting for 93.6% of the total complaints.
When I talked about this with Tao Jun, Zhang Junkai and other couriers, they thought that the personal accident of the courier would be anxious due to some customers or recipients, and the emotional backlog would suddenly break out at a certain node. Like the Yuantong courier’s kneeling incident, Zhang Junkai believes that this complaint is definitely not as simple as a 300 yuan fine, at least at the level of 12,305. If a courier is complained to the State Post Bureau, the provincial company will impose severe penalties, ranging from 1,500 yuan to The maximum penalty can be as high as RMB 5,000.
In 2017, a courier was beaten 5 minutes late and caused incontinence
In 2019, a Tongda courier Xiao Zhang received a repair part sent to Shenzhen due to his carelessness, but was deducted by the Guangdong courier company in the middle. The other party said that there was a Class 1 contraband in the package, which was a 24v battery. Xiao Zhang immediately received a 20,000 yuan fine. Xiao Zhang said that he was willing to accept the penalty, but the fine of 20,000 yuan was indeed too high, and he couldn’t afford it. If he had to pay the 20,000 yuan, he would have to work hard for half a year without eating or drinking.
What impressed Tao Jun most was that he was fined about 1,000 yuan. He said that it was because of the damage to two express delivery, one was a mop and the other was a pair of boots, and the boots lost 750 yuan. Tao Jun said that these couriers were not inherently damaged by themselves, “but the key is that I delivered them.”
“Damage to the courier has nothing to do with the courier, but is related to the company, because the courier is not involved in the delivery link before the package. The courier is only responsible for the end delivery, and the intermediate transportation link has nothing to do with the courier.” A Tongda Department The courier Li Abing said, but in the end, no matter what, complaints would be made to the courier. As soon as they complain, they call the headquarters directly, and no one listens to your explanation.
The courier brother burst into tears because he was framed (screenshot on Weibo)
Tao Jun’s experience is not an isolated case. Another courier said that he would lose money when he lost a piece. Whether it was stolen or sent by mistake, he lost a total of more than 400 yuan. The recipient said that he bought cosmetics, and Taobao orders also Don’t show me, “No way, if you don’t pay, they just send it to the post office, who cares about you, to put it bluntly, shut the door of the express delivery car, if something goes wrong, it’s all your own, and you will be detained several hundred a month.”
Chen Jiahao, a courier who has resigned from Yunda, said that the courier company had a “smile plan” before, saying that it was to improve service indicators, but in the eyes of the couriers, this smile plan is equivalent to a “smile complaint”: “Because of this plan. The company has set a rule to’threat’ you. If you fail to meet this plan, customers will complain to you, and the direct penalty is a fine.”
When the Smile Plan was first implemented, as long as the customer dialed the phone, the courier would not have any opportunity to appeal and directly issue a fine for the work order. What is the reason for the courier to ask? There is no reason.
Sometimes false receipts will result in double penalties. The headquarters penalty is the most basic penalty. The penalty is 100 yuan, and the site also fines you 100 yuan. There are also many types of fines, such as direct arbitration and settlement of claims and signing rate fines, which are included in more than 100 fines.
If you encounter a malicious complaint, the first direct work order is 500 yuan, and there is no opportunity to appeal. If you complain again, it will be directly upgraded to 12305, which will start with a fine of 1,500 and 2,000 yuan.
Chen Jiahao said that there are a lot of logistics in the country every day, and there are always loopholes. For example, some criminals or unscrupulous merchants send empty orders or empty parcels. When this reaches the end courier, it will be directly punished in the end. The courier company does not authenticate with the courier , All the reasons are the reasons of the courier.
There are also problems caused by changes in industry practices. In the past, the express delivery bills were double and triple sheets. Tao Jun didn’t understand why the express delivery now cancels the double and triple sheets. This cost-saving method has brought more trouble to the couriers. Second, the triplet means that the courier can tear off a single copy as a stub, which is now gone. “I think the most important thing is to keep the receipt signed by the customer. The receipt signed by the customer is with me.”
In the early express delivery order, this picture is a bit vague, but it can be seen that it is two consecutive orders (the picture comes from the Internet)
“In the early days, the express delivery was signed and received in person, and there were stubs.” Zhang Junkai said, now that the express company handles complaints, it is the headquarters that issues complaints to you, where the address is, who is the recipient, and whether the express has received it. Please show the “signature receipt”.
In fact, this kind of management with fines and escrow has a high level of appeal in the industry, but the fundamental situation has not changed.
Part-time courier Mao Zijun said: “A few days ago, I went to a branch in Zhongtong, Xizhimen, and all the couriers went on strike and resigned overnight.”
Mao Zijun found that all the express companies are short of people. “It’s only a few months before they have started to sell out. The current express companies, their delivery fees, including various fine systems, make it increasingly difficult to recruit couriers. “.
Come and go
Tao Jun recalled that he came to Beijing from his hometown in Baoding, Hebei before graduating from high school in 2008. This year, he was very impressed. Beijing is hosting the Olympic Games.
He said that it was fun to come to Beijing at that time. In 2008, there were very strict supervision and patrols in the capital. If you go out at night, you must bring your temporary residence permit and ID card. If you did not bring your ID card, you were checked out. , Will be sent home.
The memory of Beijing is not particularly cold. People are sitting in Tiananmen Square. Many people on both sides of the square have national flag stickers on their faces. By 8 pm, the square starts to display fireworks. People in the square lie down and sit. Jun looked at this scene and saw the sky full of fireworks. He felt that his whole life was fulfilled.
Tao Jun is 31 years old this year. In this year, he is about to usher in the first golden moment of his life. He revealed that he will go to get the certificate in a few days.
In fact, similar to Tao Jun, there are thousands of couriers from all over the country. In the past, in the period of four links and one connection, people used to call the franchise courier industry the Tonglu Gang, and the early couriers were mainly from Tonglu, Zhejiang.
Now, the group of couriers mostly come from Hebei, Anhui, Shandong, Shanxi, Henan and other places. They are mainly male and male young adults. They usually leave the village to work in the city when they are in high school or secondary school, and some are elementary schools. ,Secondary school. North, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen are their main direction.
In terms of age, they are mainly men born in the 80s and 90s who are 21-40 years old. Now, post-90s are becoming the main force of couriers, and some people born in Z-era 00s have been or are joining the army under the influence of parents.
The post-00 courier Zhang Shuaishuai comes from a rural village in Xinzhou, Shanxi. He is 18 years old according to his age. He has been a courier for almost 4 years. His family is a contractor and is currently in a courier outlet in Tongda Department.
When the delivery site was about to get off work in the evening, I chatted with the couriers, and the one behind it was Zhang Shuaishuai.
He said that he came out before finishing the middle school when he was 14 years old. When he was 15 years old, he followed his parents to Beijing and worked as a daily courier. At that time, he didn’t know what he wanted to do.
The group of couriers is becoming larger and larger. On the one hand, thanks to the development of e-commerce, the demand of the express industry provides a large number of employment opportunities for rural laborers who work in cities; on the other hand, more and more rural young people are compared with their parents. , I am more yearning for urban life. Due to the limitation of cultural level, the low threshold of express delivery, considerable income, and relative freedom have prompted them to choose this job, which they think is much better than entering the factory.
Some young adults in rural areas do not have any extra money to make a living at home due to factors such as rural agricultural mechanized production, seasonal crops, land contracting, and family reasons. In order to earn more income, they will also choose to enter the city. Some young and middle-aged people with a cultural background will enter the express delivery or takeaway industry, while those with a weak cultural background will choose construction sites or others. Another part was introduced by acquaintances.
In addition, some takeaways who are pursuing safety and relatively stable income are also coming to the courier army, and some ordinary workers, drivers, and freelance workers have switched to becoming couriers.
In 2019, the total amount of express delivery business nationwide was 63.52 billion pieces, the total business income was 749.78 billion yuan, and the number of employees exceeded 4 million. As of September 10 this year, the national express delivery business volume has exceeded 50 billion pieces, and the State Post Bureau predicts that the national express delivery volume will exceed 75 billion pieces this year.
This means that the demand for couriers in the express industry will be greater and more prominent.
On July 21, 2020, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security announced the second quarter of 2020 among the 100 shortage occupations in the country for job hunting, the courier recruitment ranked second.
With the accumulation of income and the improvement of living standards, leaving the express industry to start a business and start a small business on your own is the choice and destination of many couriers.
During the conversation with the couriers, Zhang Shuaishuai was talking and playing the song “To Huanghuai” on his mobile phone, “When I was 19, I came to Huanghuai to be here with you. When I met, I paid for my 4 years…”, he said, going to school used to be sleeping and fighting, but now he regrets not going to school.
(The names of couriers in the text are all aliases)