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How ‘on demand’ courier company Sherpa surged during the pandemic

Delivery and courier services continue to thrive in Australia as more consumers choose to engage in online shopping. A February 2019 study showed that 80.8% of Australians were shopping online, a number expected to reach 85.2% by 2021. The same study also suggested that one in every ten items are typically bought online, and this number is expected to grow, particularly given the rapid and forced adoption of online shopping during 2020. 

Sherpa, a last-mile courier business founded in 2014 is one of the fastest growing delivery companies in Australia supporting the increase in demand. Their mission is to change the way retailers execute their last-mile fulfilment, driven by industry-leading technology and a customer-centric approach. Sherpa achieve this through an intuitive booking platform, operations across 16 Australian cities, a commitment to 2 hour, 4 hour and same-day delivery, and drawing on the largest fleet of crowd-sourced drivers, with over 10,000 available drivers across Australia. 

Sherpa uses gig economy workers to support their business as it matches their need for flexibility based on supply and demand. Sherpa’s go-to-market strategy is collaboration with major transport companies as a faster and more cost-effective delivery option, coupled with establishing direct partnerships with some of Australia’s leading retailers. 

Sherpa’s on-line driver application and onboarding program is systematic, convenient and sensible in line with legislative guidelines, having built a bespoke onboarding program that suits their business requirements. All drivers are required to upload their driver’s licence and insurances, complete a citizenship check, and if the driver wishes to participate in certain contracts, hold a current Australian police check. 

WorkPro commenced a partnership with Sherpa several years ago, establishing an integration that seamlessly administers the licence and insurance compliance requirements, including auto-expiry alerts, management of an instant work rights check using WorkPro’s VEVO integration, and an Australian police check service accessing WorkPro’s Government integration with the national criminal database. 

When Sherpa’s customer demand surged during the pandemic, Sherpa needed to quickly increase and mobilise drivers to respond to more than 1,000 retailers’ needs, including BWS, Dan Murphy’s and Woolworths. In only a few short weeks, the demand resulted in a 150% increase for police checks, and a 200% increase in work rights checks. WorkPro was able to easily and instantly scale with no impact on quality, turnaround or customer service.  

Amanda Bardwell, WooliesX Managing Director stated the partnership with Sherpa was logical as they had access to a highly flexible and scalable workforce. “We’re seeing a big increase in demand for home delivery as more and more customers seek to limit their outings in the community. We’ve worked hard behind the scenes to find innovative ways to provide much-needed additional delivery capacity across Australia and Sherpa has helped us address this.” 

WorkPro’s founder, Tania Evans, echoed Ms Bardwell’s statement, highlighting how WorkPro was able to meet Sherpa’s increased background checks needs. “WorkPro’s integrations with Government department databases coupled with our intuitive online program meant that as Sherpa’s demand surged, the only thing we needed to scale was human resource for document verification. The platform itself was able to scale easily, and the increase in additional resources meant that drivers and Sherpa were able to get in contact with us quickly for one-on-one support.” 

Workforce compliance is critical to mitigate risk and meet certain legislative requirements. In sectors where there is a high turnover, or where the sector is heavily dependent on flexible workers, it is also important that any screening or onboarding implemented can be supported digitally, powered by specialists to help businesses make educated decisions.  

WorkPro can easily help get your workforce job-ready, while maintaining your compliance requirements. Our online platform gives you to access an extensive range of on demand background and probity checks, licence, ticket and document management, and a broad e-learning library of industry and job specific modules. To learn more about WorkPro and how it may be able to help your business grow, whilst maintaining a stringent level of compliance, visit us

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