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  Our Employees

Employees are the nerve centre of the Company. It is they who translate the vision into reality and convert the business plan into profitability. It is they who take the intangible and make it tangible. They are the public face of the Company. We recognise that our greatest resource continues to be our employees. We are committed to provide a friendly working environment to encourage their personal involvement and development.

SLT is committed to providing a work life that is rewarding and satisfying, not just in the short term but in the medium and long term too. We realise that employee motivation is the key to corporate success and the key to motivation is employee satisfaction at the workplace.

Learning: A Part of Our Corporate Lifestyle
A job in the Company should not be a mere source employment, but a career and part of a lifestyle. Providing opportunities for employees to develop their skills, further their career aspirations, enhance their knowledge and develop their minds is a major aspect of a company’s responsibilities to its employees. Over the past few years our human resource training policy focused on customer orientation; team building; interpersonal cooperation; workplace cooperation; IT skills; communication skills; productivity improvement and attitude development.

Our training schemes have been broadened to include all levels of level management and technical staff. Where our in-house training capacities are insufficient, we use external consultants. The major focus of these initiatives exercise will be to trigger initiative and to reward dynamism and creativity.

A number of other measures have been implemented to ensure that SLT’s work culture is more performance and profit driven. Apart from new training programmes, annual performance appraisals and Japanese productivity improvement measures such as ‘Kaizen’ and ‘5S’ have also been integrated.

Promotions are now based on competitive examinations, which have created a culture of learning in the organisation. Another strategic concern at SLT is with regard to our recruitment procedures. In the future the recruitment of personnel will be strictly a ‘needs based’ exercise. We have also focused on re-training employees to meet new tasks and to fit new job profiles. To us as at SLT learning is a continuous process and this is another value we are trying ingrain.

Developing a ‘Win-Win’ Work Ethic
Several employee involvement programmes have been initiated. This included a collaborative management programme sponsored by the International Labour Organisation. As a result local and regional discussion groups between management and the staff have been set up to encourage participatory management and to resolve conflicts through dialogue and negotiation. This has created an entirely new work ethic in the organisation based on mutual understanding and cooperation and has created win-win situations for both management and employees.


A Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) Telecommunications Business Solutions (TBS) workshop was held in October supported by SLT. Representatives from ten countries in the Asia Pacific region attended the workshop. TBS was designed as a training and learning experience for managers in the telecommunications business. The focus of the programme was to educate telecom managers on how to respond to market liberalisation and to explore different models of organisational restructuring. Relationship building between regulators and operators through scenario building exercises also figured in the programme.

Responding to Human Resource Conflict in the Field
In 2003 SLT launched its Human Resource Mobile Service. This service was launched to better understand human resource related problems at the Company’s regional locations. A particular focus was on issues pertaining to Management, Development and Welfare. These mobile ‘clinics’ enabled the human resource staff to engage with other staff on a variety of issues and offered an efficient problem solving forum for those employees in the field. The first ‘clinic’ was held at the Kurunegala Regional Office and others have been conducted at regional centres around the country during the course of the year.

Bidding Farewell
In 2003 SLT implemented a comprehensive Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS). Awareness programmes were held throughout the country to educate the employees prior to implementing the scheme. 1,116 employees, took advantage of this voluntary scheme. Outgoing employees obtained a package of between Rs. 150, 000/- and Rs. 1, 100,000/- under this scheme. It was oversubscribed.

SLT organised a series of valedictory functions to bid farewell and hand over terminal benefits and service certificates. Several programmes were arranged in various provinces to enable employees in the regions to attend these functions. The cheques of the VRS package as well as the cheques relating to EPF and gratuity were presented at these functions attended by immediate family members of the retirees. The Company will bear the cost of tax on the VRS package, if any. In addition, a rental free residential phone will be made available till the age of 55.

Counselling and other investment support was provided to those who took advantage of the VRS. Several seminars were held for the retirees to enlighten them on their future career prospects. As a further incentive SLT opened a counseling desk called the ‘VRS Watch’ that will function for three years and monitor the projects undertaken by retirees.

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