Sri Lanka Telecom (SLT), the national ICT solutions provider proved to be one of the strongest business entities when it was awarded the prestigious ‘Taiki Akimoto 5S Awards including; the Merit Award for the Service Sector-Large, Merit Award for the “Best Efforts in Public/Private Partnership”-CSR Awards 2014 categories and three Certificates of Compliance awarded to SLT Regional Offices Chilaw, Kotte & Kurunegala for the Service Sector-Small category at the recently conducted annual Taiki Akimoto Awards ceremony by the Japan Sri Lanka Technical and Cultural Association (JASTECA) Awards ceremony. The Taiki Akimoto 5S competition is an annual competition organized by the Japan Sri Lanka Cultural Association (JASTECA) to recognize and reward the overall performance excellence of organizations and strictly evaluates applicants upon a broad range of criteria as per 5S standards. “This competition made a remarkable change in the appearance, productivity and attitudes of the staff at SLT which was clearly visible to the entire organization. With the implementation of 5S we have seen a significant improvement in staff morale and confidence building towards achieving the corporate goals,” commented Mr. Lalith De Silva, the Group CEO of SLT. “The entire organization – staff and management alike - were taken over by extensive efforts, to convert our workplace into an even more efficient entity, relentlessly focusing on adding value to the activities we perform each day. The sheer dedication and keenness shown by our team members was very encouraging as it has allowed us to enhance the quality of our services”. The SLT Group has successfully transformed the internal processes and practices that will bring in efficiencies and increased productivity throughout the entire gamut of Group’s activities. The company has focused on the four pronged goals of Services, Operations, Network and a Synergetic approach as key strategies that ensure that the Group maintains the competitive edge. “As I believe, promoting best practices across the value chain through high-end enterprise, SME to domestic services together with attractive product enhancements will make our valuable customers happier than ever,” continued Mr. De Silva. With the commitment of top management, SLT has formed company-wide cross-functional teams on ‘productivity improvement’ bringing about a ‘paradigm shift’ within SLT.” “I’m thankful to the entire SLT team for realizing the timely “need for change” and “leading the change” to improve the efficiency of SLT’s provisioning and delivery of services, positively impacting productivity and enhancing the bottom line of the SLT Group. Also I'm thankful to my team because I could manage to uncover hidden talents of employees and obtain productive ideas from them and implement these ideas that have greatly helped to improve processes in our journey. I encourage my team to continue in this same spirit during the coming years also and work hard towards the goal of becoming a high performing organization.” Meanwhile, the ensuing business synergies that arise from this collaborative effort widely complement the customer focus on each company within the SLT Group while also rewarding increased productivity within the Group. Employee engagement has become a top business priority today for any organization. In the growing economy, business leaders expect to have a high-performing workforce essentially for growth and survival. SLT has recognized early that a highly engaged workforce can increase innovation, productivity, and bottom-line performance while reducing costs related to hiring and retention in highly competitive markets. Further, the company has also aligned their strategy in line with the national goal of regional expansion and digital inclusion for all Sri Lankans. “Over one hundred and fifty years spent in connecting people from one end of the island to the other has given Sri Lanka Telecom a deep understanding of Sri Lankan lives - Sri Lankan ambitions - Sri Lankan dreams. This is why we have placed such great emphasis on being a company that stays relevant to the people we serve, one that keeps ahead of its own industry standards and uses the best global practices as its benchmark. A company, in short is willing and able to intelligently evolve,” added Mr. De Silva.