Around 200 parcels. That’s the number of deliveries that inundated London student accommodation Liberty Plaza on a daily basis. Reception staff spent all day getting everything to the right recipients and students often had to queue up for a long time to pick up their packages. Concerned by the strain that parcel deliveries were having on her front of house team, Ashleigh Fawcett, General Manager at Liberty Living spoke to Bringme. Now, half a year later, the number of daily deliveries hasn’t decreased and we went to talk to Ashleigh to see if the box is living up to expectations.
Liberty Living is an old hand at student accommodation. ‘In the whole of Great Britain, we have over 23,000 beds in 19 UK cities,’ says Ashleigh. That makes Liberty Living one of the largest student accommodation providers in the country. ‘617 students live at Liberty Plaza.’ And they’re pretty well catered for; the modern facilities include a gym, recording rooms and a dance studio, nice places to work together, and good Wi-Fi, even in the laundry room. ‘Students’ expectations are quite high,’ Ashleigh explains. ‘They’re used to everything going without a hitch, just like with Mum and Dad. So we make sure they’re comfortable here. For example, we organize events to help the students get to know each other, as well as other initiatives such as yoga classes & free fruit Fridays to encourage a healthy lifestyle.’ To hear Ashleigh tell it, living at Liberty Plaza is a great experience.
It’s no surprise that students order plenty of things online, but the sheer numbers stumped even Ashleigh. ‘We began monitoring how many parcels arrived every day. That number turned out to be huge. Everything was stacked up at reception and our reception staff lost a lot of time. Refusing to take parcel deliveries was never an option – it’s a service that our students value and to some degree, expect.’ Students do order a lot of things online, and at Liberty Plaza, there are also loads of international students. Of course, it’s very convenient for them, too, to have all sorts of things delivered, such as things from home that they miss and are hard to come by here, or packages from family and friends. ‘The Bringme Box makes receiving parcels much more efficient and our people at reception notice that too. It took a bit of getting used to, but now everyone’s relieved the box is there.’
And for the students? Almost all of them belong to Generation Y, so for them it’s a no-brainer that everything goes through the app. ‘Yes, our students are completely up to date with the tech. For them, a real-time push notification on delivery is the most normal thing in the world. Often they’re at the box only a few minutes after they get the message.’ But it’s not just Generation Y who are enthusiastic. ‘When future students drop in with their parents for a tour, the Bringme Box always draws their attention. Parents are always pleasantly surprised at the box’s possibilities and they think it’s quite convenient that they can easily send parcels to their children.’