96% of logistics and shipping firms do not use Eircode

A survey has found that 96% of logistics and shipping companies have not adapted their processes to use the €38m Eircode system, nearly a year since its introduction.

96% of logistics and shipping firms do not use Eircode

The CBRE Ireland Logistics & Supply Chain Confidence Index also found 83% of businesses ”are unlikely to enjoy a net gain from the introduction of Eircode”.

The head of the industry body representing freight businesses said the findings are a sign that Eircode is “going nowhere”.

The survey, carried out by CBRE Ireland and market research firm Analytiqa, was commissioned by KPMG and the Freight Transport Association of Ireland. Participants included Aer Lingus, Tesco, DHL, Topaz, Bord na Mona, and Bausch & Lomb.

Marie Hunt, head of research and executive director at CBRE Ireland said the findings were surprising, in that while the results suggest a very low uptake of the system, 64% of respondents still said they believe Eircode “has been a positive development for logistics and e-commerce in Ireland”.

“Perhaps there is a bedding-in period, and the use of Eircode is not being enforced so those using it are doing so by choice,” she said.

While the survey did not ask respondents why they have not adopted the use of Eircodes, Ms Hunt said the industry cost of accessing the Eircode database has been cited as one reason .

“Anecdotally we have heard that it is quite expensive. Users need subscriptions to access a lot of addresses and that is quite costly.

While the survey had only 50 respondents, they are 50 of the biggest businesses in the supply chain sector.

Neil McDonnell, general manager of the FTAI, said:

“The structure of Eircode as a random, database tool means that, despite the proliferation of systems and software in the market, even large operators and their customers have no use for it. “Its use is confined to government services and database users such as banks and insurance companies, which to be fair, can exploit its power as a database.”

Mr McDonnell added that recent moves by one of the Eircode consortium to offer a newly-labelled small area code system to operators was indicative of how the industry has responded.

“The rollout of small area codes by one of the Department of Communication’s largest contractors, Autoaddress, confirms Eircode’s failings as a postcode for business,” he said.

“It is doubly frustrating that this company was to the fore in rubbishing structured postcodes, yet is now asking for our help in marketing one to industry. It is an explicit admission of failure by one of the State’s principal contractors. [Communications Minister Denis] Naughten was sympathetic to our views on Eircode in opposition, it will be interesting to see his views as minister. Eircode is going nowhere,” Mr McDonnell said.

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