Smart Lockers: The Future of Student Parcel Delivery

As the number of students and parcels grows, so does the need to modernize student parcel delivery

Our digital lifestyle has reshaped campus life, and no one has felt it more than the campus mail centers. As the number of students and parcels grows, so does the need to modernize student parcel delivery.
For colleges and universities that means deploying smart parcel lockers across locations on campus to streamline parcel management and enhance student services.

Student Parcel Delivery Today

A generation ago, a student living on campus might receive a care package from home or a catalog mail order once or twice a semester.

What makes student parcel delivery so challenging today? Each year American students spend over $8.4 billion shopping online, while campus shipping volumes grow at 14.8 percent annually. And those small campus mail centers are overwhelmed by the surge. That flood of incoming parcels includes more than just student care packages and online orders; mail centers are also handling important documents for administration, research samples and artifacts for faculty, and supplies and equipment deliveries for facilities.

The Future of Student Parcel Delivery

The future of student services, including parcel delivery, is automation. Colleges and universities across the country are deploying smart locker solutions combined with automated tracking systems to deliver a modern, contactless student parcel delivery service.

Unlike traditional lockers, a smart locker substitutes manual door locks with door that automatically open with the swipe of the user’s smartphone that includes a unique PIN or barcode. Package delivery confirmation can be obtained through signature or photo.

Smart lockers also take automation to new heights by integrating third-part software, giving administrators the ability to remotely monitor packages whereabouts from arrival to delivery.

For students, this translates to convenience. They receive a digital notification that a package is waiting for them. They can pick it up at a locker without waiting in line at the student center to be helped.

Smart locker systems in the mail center provide:

  • Accurate status information from the time a parcel arrives on campus.
  • The ability to process inbound parcels quickly
  • Instant automated messages about pick-up and delivery
  • Knowledge of exactly where every parcel is until it’s delivered

The ability to have packages delivered to a smart parcel locker adds tremendous value, and not just for the mail center. Parcel locker locations across campus are being used to elevate services for faculty and students in the innovative ways they’ve come to expect.


Click here to see how Pitney Bowes ParcelPoint™ Smart Lockers can streamline package delivery on your campus. Learn more about E&I’s Pitney Bowes contract.