Post offices rely on computers for everything ranging from banking to sending parcels but for one post office in Plymouth their postmasters found it "difficult to even sell a stamp" after a computer glitch brought their services to a standstill. Plymouth sub post-master said “"We couldn't get a connection so we couldn't use the computer at all. Each time I went to log in I was unable to do so” a source from Cascade had this to say “Computers are needed more so now than ever before, we use computers in our everyday life we rely on computers to do the most simplistic tasks” The glitch struck Plymouth branches at 11.30am and was not solved until 3.00pm, although very stressful for the employees it leaves the rest of us asking the questions such as “Should their be a back up service”
Plymouth post office was one of many affected by the glitch, Business at every single city branch was affected by a fault thought to have hit the Post Office's £1billion Horizon system yesterday. Staff at the post office in Torridge Way, Efford, said they had experienced exactly the same problem. An employee for the post office had this to say “it was the third time the billion-pound Horizon system had appeared to temporarily fail within a matter of months” The fault is thought to have been caused by the automation project built by fijitsu, the project was brought to all 18,000 branches across the UK, to help improve banking facilities, provide access to government information, bill payments, recharging smartcards and online verification. A source with Cascade has said that “Project Fijitsu was built to make life a little bit easier and help the running of the business to be smoother and faster” but yesterday city customers were left standing in queues and unable to send parcels, renew car tax or access other services.
This computer fault has shown the damage that can be done by failings in the system, which brings back the question “Should their be a back up system” In the days before computers were invented postmasters were required to do everything by hand, Would it be easier to do this? Our source from Cascade said this “Yes, I do agree their should be a back up system in place, but post masters doing it all by hand is not an option as there are just too many customers to cater to” Post Office spokeswoman Valerie Antoine said: "The Post Office apologises to its customers for the inconvenience caused by a computer problem. We are very sorry for any difficulties this has caused our customers."
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Newly formed in October 2011 to service a growing demand in the business development sector, Cascade offers a system of unique direct marketing solutions.