Hermes environment, social and governance (ESG) strategy

Parcel deliveries that don’t cost the earth

couriers next to globe
why esg matters

Why ESG matters 

As a responsible carrier we recognise our impact on the environment and believe in doing the right thing for our people. 

Now we’re pushing sustainability and ethics to the forefront of our operating model. We’ve recently appointed two key roles – a Chief Transformation Officer and a Head of ESG – to steer our ESG strategy as we move towards our net zero carbon emissions target, which we aim to hit by 2035.  

It’ll be a long journey but we’re firmly on the right road as we look to deliver a better future for the planet and people – our people, our customers and retail partners, and our wider communities.  

Our ESG targets and initiatives are set out over the following pages. 

why esg matters

Find out what were doing to reduce our impact on the planet

We’ve enhanced our alternative fuels fleet with CNG and electric-powered vehicles, and have built a number of eco features into our network of hubs and depots. We’re also helping customers and clients become more sustainable with our innovative products. 

why esg matters

Learn about how we plan to promote equality and fairness

We’ve enhanced our union-recognised SE+ contract for our growing team of couriers and have launched several employee wellbeing initiatives. We’ve also set up a diversity and inclusion network, and plan to significantly increase our charitable donations. 

why esg matters

Were being transparent about how we operate

As well as publishing an updated code of conduct for employees, suppliers and couriers, we’re making sure all policies – including gender pay gap reporting, tax and modern slavery – are clear and easily accessible.  

why esg matters

Who we are 

We’re the biggest dedicated parcel delivery company in the UK offering seven-day delivery solutions for anyone who wants to send a parcel. We work with over 80% of the UK’s biggest ecommerce and retail brands, including John Lewis, asos, Tesco and M&S. 

The Hermes journey began in 1974 as Grattan Mail Order in Bradford. We’ve grown over the years and rebranded as Hermes Parcelnet Ltd in 2008. We have an increasing number of hubs and depots across the country, an expanding estate of ParcelShops and Lockers, and a growing local courier network. In 2009 we launched our customer-to-customer service, offering a cheaper, faster and more convenient way to send parcels. 

Highlights in recent years include Print-in-store sending and returns; the launch of the SE+ courier model; the release of our award-winning app; the opening of a dedicated National Returns Centre; and the trialling of renewable energy fuelled vehicles across every stage of the parcel journey. 

Key Milestones in Hermes ESG history

Timeline Initiative
2017 Launch of first Hermes ParcelShops
2018 First 30 low carbon biomethane CNG trucks and 32 EV vehicles into London
2019 Launch of Self-Employed+ programme. Enabling any of our self-employed couriers to benefit from paid holidays and a guaranteed hourly rate

Biomethane CNG accounts of 30% of our fleet

Advent international invests in Hermes UK, launch of Transformation Programme and ESG Steering Committee


Increase in ParcelShops and Lockers to 10,000, CNG biomethane fleet to 40% of total and 30% EV vehicles to services ParcelShops

Launch of our new ESG strategy

why esg matters

Where we’re at 

As the pandemic changed the retail landscape dramatically and people turned to home delivery during lockdown, parcel volumes soared to unprecedented levels. In order to build the capacity and flexibility to handle this surge, we invested heavily in people, infrastructure and technology while implementing our five-year growth plan in just five months.  

The business is delivering more than 650 million parcels and has tripled in size over five years. As our business continues to grow we are working hard to support our retail clients and customers with sustainable delivery solutions as we strive to combat carbon emissions.