How Smart Lockers Improve Package Delivery for Office Buildings


Logistics innovations

The internet influences everything from your kitchen appliances to the largest office building. As the number of packages delivered to office buildings increases, property managers are scrambling to find a solution to better manage the receipt, storage, and distribution of the millions of packages received every day.

Smart Lockers are becoming popular among students in residence halls, and residential buildings are seeing an uptick in adoption. On the other hand, multi-tenant office buildings have been slower to adopt Smart Locker technology. In addition, the investment is relatively minimal relative to their benefits. So why has there been such hesitation for large office complexes to take advantage of what Smart Lockers offers?

What is a Smart Locker?

The best place to start is always at the beginning. So what exactly is a Smart Locker? Smart Lockers are automated systems that let multiple parties securely deposit, store, and retrieve packages. The design of every Smart Locker functions a little differently depending on its exact model, but most use a similar process.

Your tenants would have their purchases shipped to the office building as they usually would. However, once the courier is onsite, instead of handing their package to a lobby attendant (if one is available) or leaving the package unattended, they quickly use the onboard touchscreen to open a locker slot to deposit the package. Once deposited, the software automatically sends a notification and a pickup code to the recipient. The pickup code is then scanned at the locker, and voila’, the slot automatically opens to retrieve the package.

Challenges at the Office

The first challenge is managing a building’s security. Studies estimate only 3% of businesses without dedicated onsite staff utilize an access control system to allow entrance into their building. As a result, couriers may only deliver when facilities are open or when a tenant is available to accept delivery. A significant number of deliveries are missed on the first try.

Even when couriers gain access to a building, property managers face another challenge. With more than 5 million packages delivered to U.S. offices every day, building constant courier traffic. For office complexes, especially in urban centers, the volumes can be significant as deliveries can either be personal or commercial shipments. This strains property managers and office concierge staff members tasked with receiving and holding packages until tenants, who were not present when the package arrived, can retrieve them.

Lastly, packages left at front desks or other locations onsite reduce overall tenant satisfaction. Most buildings become disorganized and cluttered around common areas as unclaimed packages pile up. Security and safety in the building increase, compounding an already difficult situation. Tenants miss more deliveries and spend more time trying to retrieve them. Managers waste time managing packages, and courier delivery costs increase while waiting or re-delivering packages.

The Smart Locker Solution

Commercial property owners and managers are turning to Smart Locker technology to improve on-site security, streamline tenant services, and focus on proactive management practices. Properly designed and installed Smart Lockers eliminate the continuous interruptions of deliveries in the middle of your staff’s workday. Instead, Smart Lockers make accepting deliveries efficient and straightforward for everyone involved, reducing labor costs.

Photo of a commercial ParcelPort smart lockerParcelPort Smart Locker in the lobby of a national bank building

When tenants are not available, couriers either must return and attempt to deliver again or leave packages unsecured in hallways or closets. With Smart Lockers, especially when located in areas accessible 24/7, the same courier will securely deposit packages quickly and efficiently. As a result, tenants receive their deliveries faster, courier traffic is reduced, and liability for lost or stolen parcels is transferred away from management.

Generating Revenue

Smart Lockers are able to generate another source of revenue for commercial office property owners. For example:

  • To facilitate the continuous availability of lockers slots, expiration fees can be charged for tenants who do not pick up their packages within a predetermined time.
  • Advertising space can be sold for display on above locker screens, as flash ads on the host monitor, or via SMS and text.
  • Couriers and major delivery services will pay commercial complexes who have Smart Lockers to reduce the amount of time required onsite location upwards of 75%.
  • Personal shipments could also be made to the Smart Lockers by employees for a small fee.
  • Nearby retailers can tap into your Smart Locker using a cost-per-use model to extend their physical footprint or to provide 24 hour service to their customers.

Lastly, with space at a premium, Smart Lockers also provide a secure and organized solution to the traditional package closet. Gone are the piles of cardboard boxes stacked in every nook and cranny of available floor space. Further, the organization of packages in Smart Lockers reduces potential trip and fall hazards for both staff and tenants.

Final Thoughts

Managing a large commercial property with multiple tenants is a complex undertaking. With the expected growth of online shopping and one-day delivery to reach 20% by 2025, one of the biggest challenges facing office properties will only get bigger. Fortunately, technology has made Smart Lockers the solution for property managers and owners seeking to not only reduce the burden of deliveries but as a way to add a valuable amenity to attract and retain tenants.

To learn more about how your organization can maximize smart lockers to reduce cost, increase revenue, and delight your customers, contact the ParcelPort team online by visiting, email at or calling 1-800-818-0870.