Posti set to furlough 1,100 workers as freight business slumps during pandemic

The furloughs come as it is revealed that Posti's CEO runs a management consulting company with his wife that just received a €100,000 grant from the government.

File picture of Posti truck leaving Helsinki depot, 12th November 2019 / Credit: News Now Finland

The Finnish postal service Posti is starting talks to lay off 1,100 staff in its Freight services; Home Services and Transval business units due to a down-turn in business during the coronavirus pandemic.

Other parts of Posti’s business are seeing a lot of trade, with online sales increasing during the virus restrictions meaning people at home are turning to online shopping. Posti is handling a million parcels each week in its home delivery service, similar to the levels of trade seen during the Christmas season.

“The coronavirus pandemic is impacting everyone and society as a whole. Thousands of our employees have worked hard in their respective areas to ensure the delivery of our services and that we can help our customers in this exceptionally challenging situation” says Turkka Kuusisto, Posti’s CEO.

“While some of our business areas are very busy, some areas are seeing declining volumes as a result of declining customer needs. As the coronavirus crisis continues, it will inevitably impact also Posti. As a responsible employer, we must prepare for the business impacts of the situation and ensure the viability of our operations also after the crisis” he adds.

The lay-off talks could result in the freight staff being furloughed for 90 days in staggered shifts, throughout the rest of 2020.

Posti CEO’s business gets government subsidy

Meanwhile a consulting company called Idego run by Turkka Kuusisto and his wife has received €100,000 from the government.

The story was first reported in Iltalehti newspaper, and Kuusisto owns 55% of the business which specialises in management consulting.

Kuusisto, who was appointed to lead Posti in February this year, receives a monthly salary of €37,500.

Posti’s top management – including Kuusisto – have said they will forgo one month of their salaries during this year during the virus outbreak.