With over 280,000 living in the city, Irvine is home to a thriving community of businesses and consumers. More than 17,000 companies operate within its borders, giving Irvine an impressive job-to-population ratio of 94.8 percent.
Given how vital business is to Irvine’s impressive reputation, we at Irvine Weekly seek to highlight some of its best. This month we put the spotlight on Parcel Pending.
Parcel Pending provides our community with an innovative package management solution. Often seen in multifamily communities, retailers, corporate campuses, universities and more, their locker systems help to improve package-receiving efficiency.
As the popularity of online-shopping skyrockets, so does the need for better management of packages. From “porch pirates” to restrictive pick-up times, consumer frustration has led to the creation of a growing market of solution-based shipping and receiving services.
So what sets Parcel Pending apart from its peers? We had a conversation with Lori A. Torres, CEO and founder of Parcel Pending, to get the answers.
“What sets us apart is our best-in-class customer service,” shares Ms. Torres.
“Parcel Pending stands out amongst its competitors due to our unmatched 24/7 service teams that are dedicated to creating the best experience for all of our customers. Our specialized departments focus their time and efforts by going above and beyond, reaching out to their contacts and ensuring everything is running smoothly all day, every day. We pride ourselves on improving the security and accessibility of over 1.5 million packages monthly. We recognize the importance our lockers play at the communities we serve and that the packages people are excited to receive are our top priority and passion.”
As the ordering of goods becomes the norm, we are now seeing more environmentally temperamental goods — such as food, wine and medications — being delivered. However, with rising summer and fall temperatures, this creates a problem for consumers that are not able to immediately receive their orders. Parcel Pending has a solution to this problem.
“In addition to phenomenal customer service, we also are committed to offering the most technologically advanced electronic lockers. That’s why our product line has expanded from indoor lockers to outdoor and refrigerated — the first in the industry — lockers. We are always pushing the envelope when it comes to new features and strive to provide state-of-the-art lockers that suit the needs of our diverse audiences. For example, our new BOPIL™ solution is designed to help retailers drive in-store customer engagement, improve the customer experience and increase revenue opportunities with their BOPIS solution. We remove the chaos of package management by assuming all customer service responsibility for package delivery, notification and retrieval.”
Parcel Pending provides a service to both the retailer and the consumer, shaping their business model to best serve the Irvine community and beyond.
Ms. Torres knows the needs of our city well, having moved to Orange County from Long Beach in 2000 for a career advancement role at The Irvine Company, a real-estate investment company and master planner based in Newport Beach.
“I first developed the idea for Parcel Pending while working at The Irvine Company. During my 13-year tenure … I held various senior positions, including Senior Vice President of property operations. I was responsible for the operational oversight of the company’s multifamily portfolio, consisting of 1,200 property management associates operating over 44,000 apartment homes.”
It was during this time that Ms. Torres became aware of a developing resident need.
“While at The Irvine Company, I regularly walked through many of their multifamily communities. Initially, package delivery was not a major issue. It used to be that property managers only took a few minutes out of their day to manage a small amount of deliveries for residents. However, as time went on and online shopping became increasingly popular, I noticed that property managers were struggling to devote enough space, time and money to properly manage the influx of deliveries. At the same time, residents were becoming overwhelmingly frustrated with having to pick up their packages during office hours, disappearing packages, and tracking packages that never arrived. I knew there had to be a better way and set out to find a solution.”
That solution was Parcel Pending.
As founder, Ms. Torres has built the company from the ground up, from the formation of an initial idea to the management of the successful business it is today.
“My extensive real estate experience has allowed me to truly understand the diverse needs of property owners, property managers, couriers and residents. As a result, I have been able to conceptualize and develop completely customizable indoor, outdoor and refrigerated digital smart lockers that provide seamless package management solutions for residents, employees, retailers and shoppers nationwide.”
Headquartered in Irvine, it employs many of the city’s residents. What makes Parcel Pending a great place to work?
“As an innovative and customercentric company, we are invested in a culture of service and collaboration. Parcel Pending is powered by our people and our leadership team firmly believes that the key to our continued success is celebrating the achievements — both big and small — of our entire team. We not only recognize the contributions of each employee but also work hard to maintain an environment that gives our team members the opportunity to thrive through open communication practices and programs to help them achieve positive results. And above all, we are committed to having fun!”
They plan to continue to grow their job creation as the company encourages a positive work environment.
In addition to employing many of our neighbors, Ms. Torres and Parcel Pending are deeply involved within the community. The company supports many of the local nonprofits and organizations that fight homelessness.
Ms. Torres herself has served in various community roles over the years, including stints as the president of the South Coast Apartment Association, Orange County in 2009, as a board member of the California Apartment Association from 2010 to 2012 and as a board member of the CAA South Coast Apartment Association, Orange County from 2005 to 2011. She was also a board chair of Grandma’s House of Hope, a nonprofit dedicated to ending homelessness, poverty and hunger, from 2010-2014.
Currently, Ms. Torres sits on the board of Families Forward, an Irvine-based nonprofit that aims to provide affordable housing for homeless and at-risk families.
From her experience, it remains important to Parcel Pending’s founder that the company be committed to giving back to its home. As such, Parcel Pending has provided school supplies, scholarships, food and relief efforts to underprivileged children and families in Orange County.
So what does the future hold for this fast-growing company?
“The company will continue its expansion in retail, grocery, corporate campuses, commercial office buildings, multifamily apartments and universities. We anticipate innovative new products and will continue to be the first-to-market with these new ‘make life easier’ solutions. We have great things in store.”
Lastly, we must ask: Why choose Irvine as your headquarters?
“Irvine is a great place to run a business. The city offers a thriving, collaborative community with vibrate access to top talent. Everyone in Irvine is also very supportive of local businesses. There is a great deal of support for start-ups and entrepreneurs in Irvine. There is no better business community!”
Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting Irvine Weekly and our advertisers.