Monitoring the Royal Mail

When I retired I looked for some interesting part time work I could do from home. I thought a job would help me fill my time and finance my hobbies.  I found rather to my surprise several companies were happy to employ the more mature candidates.  Here is one of the ways I earn a few treats.

I have been part of the Royal Mail monitoring panel for almost two years. This is operated by Kantar TNS Research International and has been running for twenty-five years.  In exchange for posting and receiving letters and parcels I receive postage stamps and love to shop vouchers. I also get some packaging material which can be recycled. Other treats include  a diary for Christmas and a packet of chocolate  eggs for Easter. I have been lucky enough to win a £10.00  love to shop voucher in the daily draw twice.  Kantar also hide a golden smart in a parcel each month which is worth £100.00 but I have never been lucky enough to find it.

What do I have to do?

A collection of stamps showing Hermione, Harry and Ron with the Ford Anglia and the Night bus.
I received a set of Harry Potter stamps when I went live in January

All over Britain participants   send each other letters and packages.  Each one contains an electronic chip called a smart which records the progress of the item through the Royal Mail postal system.  When I am live I receive a package each week with my posting instructions. This includes various sizes of envelopes and a schedule of when to prepare and  where to send the letters. Details of letters sent and received have to be entered every day on a fairly user friendly website. About once a week I also have to go to the local post office to post a parcel.

Although it can have its downside generally I find it good to have an incentive to go for a walk or visit the local shopping centre.  Normally I spend about six months live and am then rested for six months.  During this time I can participate in other postal surveys. I did feel a bit guilty when our postman struggled through the snow with a couple of letters that I knew only contained a piece of paper and a smart recently.

If you are in the U.K. and live near a post box and can get to a post office and would like to join click here to find out more 

Kantar provide full training and I had a few weeks sending pieces of cardboard to and from their office while I  showed I was happy with what I had to do.

Have you found any unusual part time jobs? Please share in the comments below.