This blog post was originally written by Onsi and uploaded to their blog on 17/07/2022.

‍Gophr is a same-day delivery platform with a difference. Actually, quite a few differences – one of the most notable being the fact that it puts its couriers at the heart of its business model (see CEO and Founder, Seb Robert, talk about his confidence in the fact that “happy couriers lead to happy customers” below)What also sets Gophr apart is the breadth of its operation. Through harnessing a potent combination of innovative technology and a deep understanding of the last-mile logistics landscape, the platform facilitates same-day deliveries across pretty much all industries and services, and via all vehicle types.

Gophr were also the first courier company to work with Onsi – they’ve been offering benefits to their workers since 2020! Here, we chat to Gophr’s CEO and Founder, Seb Robert, about the platform’s partnership with Onsi, and how it feeds into their future-focused vision of reshaping the delivery industry through helping couriers thrive.

Fixing a broken industry through listening to couriers, not just customers

Seb’s passion for putting couriers first is immediately apparent. It’s this that has always driven Gophr, he says. Because failing to think about what the courier’s experience is, has led to a broken industry – one where customers, couriers and businesses lose out.

“Before we set up Gophr I probably did about 18 months of research directly with couriers,” Seb tells us. “What we discovered was this overarching feeling of we’re self employed but we don’t necessarily get any of the benefits of self employment, and also this idea that the couriers were somehow incidental to the delivery process – which seems quite ridiculous when you think about it. So, the focus was entirely being placed on the customer and customer needs, without paying much attention to creating an environment for the couriers to be at their best.”

He goes on to talk about how their vision is very much about addressing this problem through helping couriers to build their own businesses. And through giving them the same access to benefits and security that employees in ‘traditional’ roles have.

“I think the perception around certain gig economy platforms is this idea […] that you’re sort of trying to load the dice in your favour. But we don’t necessarily see ourselves in that manner,” Seb explains.

“We’ve always been incredibly pro courier – thinking about what we can do to help couriers build their own businesses, and build their own customer relationships within our platform. […] I think what Onsi managed to pull together, which was super impressive, was this idea that actually we can give our couriers insurance coverage [and benefits] to the same level if not better than what most companies can provide. So that just felt like a no brainer, as they say.”

Seb truly believes that a cared for, thriving workforce is good for business. “Happy couriers lead to happy customers,” he sums up succinctly (and we couldn’t agree more). That’s why Gophr’s vision is so commendable – so essential, really, in a time where on-demand workers are making up more and more of our workforce. Why shouldn’t they get to enjoy viable, rewarding careers? Seb speaks about how this idea informs their business on every level:

“It’s really about asking: how do we make a really good courier great, and how do we make sure businesses get access to those great couriers, and how do the couriers get access to those great businesses?”

Seems pretty logical to us.

Implementing a tiered rewards programme for happier, more incentivised couriers

Seb tells us how Gophr is still very much at the start of its journey, despite being around for a while. And that the second half of this year is really when the company is going to be able to start delivering on its vision – with Onsi very much being a part of that. He describes the organic process of deciding to work with Onsi, and how that panned out practically speaking.

“We were effectively looking for what Onsi said they could deliver. The next question after that was – how can we tailor the Onsi solution around the disparate nature of our fleet? Because ultimately, self-employment is about flexibility for the courier, meaning that the courier should have the opportunity to go out and work with as many different platforms as they like.”

Gophr would need a tiered system that accounted for the fact that some of its couriers dipped in and out of using its platform, while others used it as a main source of income.

The result? Couriers – whether they are at Silver, Gold or Platinum tier – all have access to accident & injury pay, which allows them to take time off to rest and recover worry free, alongside the Onsi savings programme, which offers discounts on everyday items such as food and fuel. Moving up to Gold tier, couriers also get access to compassionate and family leave insurance, for times when they need to grieve a loved one or welcome a new child, along with wellbeing support such as access to a digital GP. The Platinum tier gives couriers access to all of the above alongside sick pay.

“We wanted to give access to everybody, and we also wanted to make it as fair as possible, so that couriers that are using us as their primary source of income are getting the maximum coverage they could possibly get. So that was a consideration from the beginning. Then after that it was really just about the speed of deployment and how many new features, services, discounts and additional coverage Onsi could provide. A big part of that was – how do we build Onsi into the courier user journey so that we can make them feel secure as they spend more and more time on our platform and drive more revenue for our platform?”

With all this in mind, Gophr successfully implemented a tiered Onsi programme through pulling their active courier data and looking at how much individuals use their platform. Now, they monitor this activity, with couriers being able to work their way up through coverage tiers the more they work for Gophr.

More recently, Gophr has reduced the eligibility criteria for the Silver Tier package, so that couriers only have to complete 30 jobs a month to qualify. Doing this has allowed them to double the number of couriers who can access the benefits, in comparison to last year.

“As couriers see their revenue go up, they can see the different levels of cover that they can unlock. Our job first and foremost is to help them grow the amount of revenue they are making on a daily, weekly, monthly basis, and I think just being able to add that piece of unlocking a new tier of coverage is really like a cherry on top,” Seb says.

Celebrating a successful uptake of benefits and coverage

Seb tells us that Gophr couriers are making full use of their new benefits. Interestingly, he says he’d expected them to mainly use the insurance coverage aspect of things. He’s since been pleasantly surprised to see them regularly using all of their day-to-day discounts. Especially for things like cheaper fuel, and deals for repairing and maintaining their vehicles.

“I was really delighted to see that,” he says. “And I’m glad to say we’ve got more active couriers now than ever.”

Seb summarises by talking about how Onsi helps fill the gap for hardworking couriers who deserve the same career rewards as those with permanent contracts:

“For many couriers, this is a career choice. A lot of them have talents – say, photography or art, or something else – they’re smart people – who like being on the road. So our job is to help make that work for them, and hopefully help them secure a long-term career if that’s what they want to do. And I think that’s where Onsi comes in.”

We love Gophr because their vision for the on-demand industry speaks directly to what needs to change, and their actions demonstrate how we can get there. Their entire business was built off an idea of putting couriers first and then letting everything else follow, which feels revelatory and also overdue. The best bit about all of this? With a 200% increase in couriers compared to last year, and the recent achievement of having more active couriers than ever, their vision is clearly paying off.


Interested to know more about how Onsi can help you achieve a happier, more more incentivised workforce through specialised on-demand insurance and rewards? Head here.