Bank of Ceylon clinched the silver award at the People Development Awards 2016/17 conducted by the Sri Lanka Institute of Training and Development (SLITAD). The award was in recognition of the bank’s continuous endeavour to train and develop its human resources to ensure an efficient banking service to the nation. SLITAD which was founded in 1998, believes in the value that learning, grooming, facilitating, developing and training adds towards building a progressive team. The need for individuals to evolve in core competencies as well as advantageous skills-set are more pronounced in today’s fast changing corporate landscape. Thus, the development of an organization’s Human Capital creates an advantage for organizations to build its competitiveness in the market. The Bank has a Training and Development Policy which identifies the development needs of each and every employee and provides training in the required areas for their development.

Bank’s training department identifies and conducts training and development programmes based on the business requirements. All these activities have been achieved through the bank’s annual training budget.

The bank has a code of conduct and a code of ethics that every employee is required to follow. The equal opportunity policy of the bank upholds the human rights of all employees and has taken all possible steps to ensure that employees are treated equally with appropriate dignity and respect and without discrimination. The Bank of Ceylon believes that a proper work-life balance will produce a contented workforce. The Bank has various clubs and societies that enables employees to engage in religious, cultural, and sports activities, which also helps maintain a work-life balance. Health and safety programmes are also conducted by guest lecturers, doctors and professionals in the field.

“Investment in training and development is done with the intention of enhancing and updating the job related knowledge of employees, thus helping them to provide a better service to customers and perform their duties more efficiently, while also developing their knowledge and fulfilling their career aspirations. The training and development programmes also help to motivate the employees of the bank and it also improves employee performance and efficiency, which in turn improves the bank’s key performance indicators” stated the General Manager/ CEO Mr. D. M Gunasekara.

The Bank maintains a performance appraisal procedure where employee targets and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are communicated in the beginning of each year and their performance is reviewed in the middle of the year, and also at the end of each year.

The Organisational hierarchy is structured based on the business and operational requirements of the Bank. The required capabilities, qualifications, experience and skills are identified based on the job role, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

“The Bank has a succession plan, where identified talented staff are groomed and encouraged through the talent management process to build their skills to take up the next level challenges. This ensures that the bank has a pool of talented people capable of taking up higher level challenges at all times. Training programmes and workshops are conducted for all levels of employees to highlight the importance of leadership skills. In addition, every employee is encouraged, trained and guided by their immediate supervisors to develop leadership skills. Supervisors are encouraged to train, coach and guide employees to make them ready to take up responsibilities in higher positions and diversified job roles” stated Mr. K.E.D. Sumanasiri, Deputy General Manager, Human Resources.

The bank’s reward and recognition policy sets out the process by which staff is rewarded for their commitment to supporting the bank’s objectives in their duties. The committee implements a policy to provide a coherent and practical approach to recognize the employee’s performances including teamwork beyond their assigned duties. The scheme is expected to encourage innovativeness and creativity in order to enhance the competencies of employees and improve efficiency to obtain a competitive advantage among other competitors.

The training department analyses the training needs of the various job areas in the bank and thereafter organizes training programmes in-house, locally and overseas. The Bank has an in-house training centre, (Central Training Institute), which is a fully equipped training centre with in-house trainers to facilitate the training process.  Employees are able to select the area of study that they would like to pursue and the bank reimburses the course fees of the relevant courses.

The Bank considers its team of employees as one of its greatest strengths. Every effort is made to ensure the well-being of staff. The attrition rate, which is below 1%, is one of the lowest in the industry, which speaks volumes of the bank’s HR management process. Right from the start of their career, all new recruits are provided with an induction training so that they can easily blend into the culture and work ethics of the Bank. All staff are provided with job-related training to ensure they have the requisite level of knowledge to perform their tasks. It also provides them the opportunity to build-up their knowledge and pursue their career aspirations.

The Bank has a mix of young staff and experienced employees which gives an ideal balance in terms of experience, maturity and dynamism. The Bank is committed to gender equality. The Management maintains a cordial rapport with all Trade Unions. Activities that promote staff engagement and a work life balance such as sports, health awareness programmes, and religious activities are conducted regularly. The health and well-being of the employees is also emphasized. An in-house doctor is available for the convenience of employees, in case of unanticipated illness at work. The Bank upholds human rights of all employees and all employees are treated equally with appropriate dignity and respect without discrimination. The Bank makes every effort to ensure employees maintain a healthy work-life balance.