People’s Leasing & Finance PLC

Annual Report 2018/19

සිංහල  |  தமிழ்


Strengthening stakeholder relationships

Material matters

We conduct an annual materiality assessment to determine the content of our review, with due consideration given to significant economic, environmental and social impacts on our business and our stakeholders.

How material or important a topic is was assessed by its relevance to People’s Leasing or our stakeholder and its significance. How significant it is was determined by the probability of occurrence and the magnitude of its impact.


Our annual review covers most material aspects and their boundaries through a materiality matrix to reflect significant economic, environmental, and social impacts enabling our stakeholders to assess our sustainable performance.

We take into consideration the sustainability context, our Vision, Mission and Values, business model, feedback from stakeholder engagement, independent research, and market reviews to identify topics of significance.

GRI 102-46 GRI 102-47 GRI 103-1
GRI standard number Material topic Materiality to People’s Leasing Materiality to stakeholder
Internal External
Employee Customer Business partner Community Environment Investor
Material GRI Topic
201 Economic performance
202 Market presence
203 Indirect economic impact
204 Procurement practices
205 Anti-corruption
206 Anti-competitive behaviour
301 Materials
302 Energy
304 Biodiversity
305 Emissions
307 Environmental compliance
308 Supplier environmental assessment
401 Employment
402 Labour/management relations
403 Occupational health and safety
404 Training and education
405 Diversity and equal opportunity
406 Non-discrimination
408 Child labour
409 Forced/compulsory labour
410 Security practices
412 Human rights assessment
413 Local communities
414 Supplier social assessment
417 Marketing and labelling
418 Customer privacy
419 Socioeconomic compliance
Other material topics
Digital finance
ESG considerations

GRI 102-49

During the materiality review some topics were identified as not material to our operations and removed from the list when compared to 2017/18. Further, digital finance and ESG considerations were newly included in the list.

Our approach to create shared value

At People’s Leasing, we are focused on sustainable business, devoting our energies and resources to delivering value to stakeholders just as much as we derive value from them.

We formulate our strategies and strategic imperatives based on the outcomes of our materiality analysis. All material topics are managed in alignment with our strategic plan, with responsibilities assigned to the respective functional Heads. Resources are allocated based on a risk or opportunity’s degree of materiality. Measuring the performance of our employees and operations against a set of pre-defined Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) strengthens our commitment to living by our value proposition. It is a process of monitoring and review that brings our operations back on track as required, and helps us create value for our stakeholders while achieving our strategic objectives. The Sustainability Governance Steering Committee and the Board of Directors review the progress on a quarterly basis.

GRI 103-1 GRI 103-2 GRI 103-3


GRI Standard Reason/s for materiality Management approach
(commitment, goal/target, responsible, resources, grievance)
Evaluation systems and methods adopted by the Comapny Progress
(Pls. refer Annual Report 2018/19)

GRI 201 -Economic performance

As the flagship subsidiary of People’s Bank, one of the largest state banks in Sri Lanka, economic value generated and distributed has a large positive impact on the economy.

Further, being a financial services provider, People’s Leasing has a role to play in the Sri Lankan economy, enabling financial inclusion mainly for SMEs for their income generation purpose and creating awareness on financial literacy.

Unemployment remains a social issue in Sri Lanka and our contribution to improve local economy and quality of life of people by providing employment opportunities life long skill development island wide is significant.

In a context where global warming is occurring more rapidly and humanity having caused most of the last century’s warming by releasing heat-trapping greenhouse gases, Sri Lanka is vulnerable to environmental and economic shocks and has been experiencing extreme weather conditions including increased droughts and floods. Hence, PLC is in support of green finance and promotes responsible lending.

In the social sphere, unemployment, unequal access to basic services like health, and education, remain challenges. Hence, PLC invests in outreach CSR to address national priorities, bridge inequalities and fulfill the SDGs.

PLC offers responsible finance through a spectrum of customised products and services that transforms the lives of customers through economic empowerment, developed by the Central Marketing Unit based on customer feedback and market research overseen by DGM - Marketing.

Overseen by the unit head of mobile education, our dedicated mobile education team reaches out to people of the interiors of the country and educates them through structured mobile education campaigns.

Further, overseen by DGM – Marketing, strategic institutional partnerships identified by the Central Marketing Unit makes our product/service offers more attractive.

DGM – ICT ensures that that our operations are enhanced through state-of-the-art eco efficient technology and digitally empowered staff. Our products and services are made more accessible through innovation via multiple channels including the island-wide branch network and digital platforms.

Guided by our credit policy, our lending practices are subjected to risk management controls including the climate risk overseen by the DGM – Risk Mgt. & Control. We gradually increase financing for climate through measures like low carbon lending including green vehicles.

The internal audit controls are under the purview of DGM – Internal Audit.

Senior Manager – Compliance ensures that our business operations are in compliance with the relevant country laws and regulatory requirements.

Head of HR ensures that our staff is rewarded based on their performance and ensures year round investment in staff development and lifelong learning.

Head of CSR ensures that investment reaches the upliftment of intended beneficiaries with staff volunteerism.

Under the purview of the Board, CEO/GM, and the Corporate management review, the Company progresses towards achieving the set targets. Our Heads of branches ensure that their specific monthly targets are met. This drive is facilitated by the respective Heads of the Departments at the Head Office facilitating the Branches to achieve their set goals, offering support services and advisory as and when required.

Annual internal and external audits provide in-depth analysis on responsible business performance. Proposed audit rating will further ensure that the Company stands in accordance with the statutory and regulatory compliance requirements.

An exclusion list is the basis to screen the proposals to finance to drive low carbon lending.

Staff performance is measured through evaluation of achieved annual targets set based on the budgeted performance for the financial year and the set Key Performance Indicators.

Evaluating our performance - Economic value
added on pages 177-178

Financial reports - Independent auditor’s report on pages 217-219

Achieving execution excellence - Rewards and recognition on page 117

Embodying responsible stewardship – Investment in CSR by mode of implementation on page 136

GRI 202 –

Market presence

Being financial services provider, our staff is our most valued asset. We attract the best and retain them to keep our customers satisfied with superior service.

The practice of sourcing senior management and staff locally who know their business territory and customer profiles provide greater inputs to drive the strategic growth of the Company through increased revenues, reduced bad debts and structured recovery efforts. It also improves work-life balance for our staff.

Guided by our HR policy, we value diversity and ensure equal opportunity. Our employees are compensated based on their performance and subjected to minimum wage requirements. They are provided year-round training. Career progression is assured for outstanding staff. Further, their future economic wealth is secured through the Company’s contribution to EPF and ETF schemes. The aforementioned is overseen by the Head of HR. With an island-wide branch network, People’s Leasing’s local sourcing policy helps People’s Leasing to be effective in its mission on financial inclusivity through a well-trained and experienced team who knows their business territory.

Annual performance appraisals and system supported staff performance assessments enable us to reward and recognise the best performers. Annual statements of accounts released by the ETF Board is a proof of our commitment to statutory requirements.

Achieving execution excellence - Ratio of basic salary to gender on page 116


Achieving execution excellence - Maintaining an inclusive culture on page 112

GRI 203 – Indirect economic impact

Being a responsible corporate we create value for our stakeholders and being a pioneer in automobile leasing, we contribute towards improving the quality of private passenger transportation since 1996.

Being a financial services provider we take financial literacy to interiors of the country and mainly cater to the SME segment for livelihood generation and enhancement, we strengthen the national economy.

We create employment and thereby reduce unemployment.

To secure our social license to operate, we are mindful to minimise our negative impact on society and proactively invest in infrastructure and services to empower local communities across the island through education, skill development and infrastructure/services development.

Overseen by the two Senior DGMs, PLC provides inclusive and responsible credit for SMEs through multiple channels with our presence island-wide.

Our ethical business operations and investment in innovation improves access to financial solutions and help improve people’s lives even more.

Overseen by Chief Manager Finance, PLC contributes to government revenues through due settlement of tax payments.

PLC also provide periodic dividends to shareholders including the parent, People’s Bank - a state bank which has a 75% stake over the Company.

Overseen by DGM - Marketing, centralised CSR Department ensures that investment in infrastructure and services through outreach strategic CSR implemented by the island-wide branch network and Head Office empowers local communities.

Periodic stakeholder engagements

Strategic Plan

Periodic progress reviews

Credit risk reviews

Tax statements

Feedback g sheets, acknowledgement letters and impact assessments on CSR projects

Dividend statements

Evaluating our performance - Economic value added on pages 177-178

Embodying Sustainable Stewardship - Our strategy for outreach CSR on pages 135-139

GRI 204 – Procurement practices

Sourcing of products and services locally for our business from our country itself and from locations of our operations results in more flexibility, greater control over quality considerations, and reduced supply chain costs for People’s Leasing. It also retains foreign exchange within the country whilst promoting local entrepreneurship and more control over environmental considerations.

Further, PLC encourages its branch network to source from the locality as going local reduces costs and the urban-rural divide. Further it enables our branches to reach vulnerable groups including SMEs, minority groups, people with disabilities, etc. ensuring more inclusively and tackling poverty.

Guided by the procurement policy, the centralised Logistics Department headed by the Senior Manager – Administration registers suppliers annually after screening them to make sure that their sourcing meets the product/service standards set by the Company. Suppliers are educated on the Company’s values and the supplier code of conduct.

PLC promotes responsible procurement and economic inclusion at branch level too with emphasis on screening the source, production conditions, delivery condition etc.

PLC does not tolerate bribery and corruption, violation of human rights and damage to environment or society in sourcing.

E-rims system is the platform to order supplies centrally. In addition, the branch network is encouraged to use the system for their day-to-day office supplies.

Suppliers are screened at the annual supplier registration, as to their suitability not only in terms of their capacity to supply goods, but also in respect of their ethical business practices.

Regular dialog and desk reviews of their performance and regular site visits are part of the process employed to make sure suppliers continue to comply with our requirements including lead time.

Achieving execution excellence - Procuring responsibly and sustainably on pages 107-109

GRI 205 – Anti-corruption

Being a finance company with island-wide presence, spectrum of products and services, multiple platforms for servicing, interaction with a range of stakeholders including customers and suppliers’ staff being one of the key points of contact, could lead to corruption-related activities.

Hence, PLC has zero tolerance for corruption in accordance with laws and regulations.

Guided by policy on anti-corruption and Code of Conduct, our Standards are developed to reflect relevant laws and regulations.

PLC educates our stakeholders including our employees, customers, and suppliers on the policies, standards, and procedures to be followed when conducting business.

PLC being a practitioner of ethical business, co-operates with the requirements of the highly regulated finance industry. Compliance requirements are overseen by the Senior Manager – Compliance.

The Head of HR ensures that our staff is aware of the Code of Conduct.

Overseen by the DGM – Internal Audit PLC ensures that internal controls are in place to eliminate anti-corruption.

Incidents on anti-corruption are also monitored by the Risk Mgt. Department overseen by the DGM – Risk Mgt. Control.

Code on Corporate Governance Report

Auditors Review

Post Training Evaluation

Need assessments, impact assessment for requests for donations and outreach CSR and staff engagement in project monitoring and evaluations

Augmenting customer experience - Anti-corruption on page 103

GRI 206 – Anti-competitive behaviour

People’s Leasing operates in a very competitive market environment with a large number of competitor originations and therefore anti-competition is material to us as it can affect our customer choice and pricing. Further, we understand that healthy competition promotes economic efficiency and sustainable growth of industry.

Guided by national and international laws on anti-competitive behaviour, anti-trust and monopoly and being an ethical corporate, People’s Leasing conducts year-round staff education, followed by assessment to identify risks of anticompetitive behaviour. Periodic compliance audits identify unethical business practices that hamper fair competition, through on-line and branch audits at our service points. Above are overseen by Senior Manager – Compliance and DGM – Internal Audit.

Code on Corporate Governance Report

System controls

Awareness of all levels of staff on business ethics followed by training evaluations and monitoring by the Heads of Branches and relevant Departments

Lobbying for anti-competitive behaviour at industry related fora

Augmenting customer experience - Our offering on page 97

GRI 301 - Materials

The financial services sector is not material intensive, but it pays close attention to the global impact of climate change. To adapt to and mediate the effects of climate change, effective and efficient use of material and minimisation of waste remain material for us.

PLC envisions a paperless office and invests in green ICT to minimise paper use. System improvements, slip-less transactions through internet and mobile platforms ‘PLC Online’ and ‘Intap.’–promote slip less transactions and other innovations are led by our ICT Team under the purview of DGM – ICT. In parallel, continuous staff awareness and education take place and signage are displayed for all levels of staff including the Heads of Departments and the Branch Managers on optimised resource use.

Guided by our environmental policy and being a carbon conscious corporate the CSR Department calculates the Company carbon footprint annually. Environmental strategy promotes staff awareness, lean office, low carbon and responsible lending and promotes environmental conservation among stakeholders we engage with including through the branch outreach CSR programmes.

Senior Manager – Administration ensures that system-based inventory controls are in place and Senior Manager – Premises ensures that BMS-based controls are in place in Head Office premises management.

Overseen by the DGM – Marketing our marketing team ensures that innovative digital marketing strategies in marketing products and corporate brand are in place including increased use of social media.

Carbon footprint calculation

E-rims system for procurement

Building Management System (BMS)

Annual asset requirement

Material usage data

Endorsements from outsourced certified waste management solution providers

Officers who track the material consumption at branch and department level

Embodying responsible stewardship - paperless financing and Group-wide carbon footprint - on pages 143-144

Achieving Executional Excellence - Selecting suppliers
on pages 107-108

GRI 302 – Energy

PLC is dependent on energy to run its fully automated system. It is an essential requirement to ensure that our systems operate uninterrupted, and our business offices are comfortable enough for our customers to do their daily transactions. Hence, the materiality is high as the absence of energy would disrupt our operations while limiting us from servicing our customers to their satisfaction.

Guided by our environmental policy, we understand the business case for energy efficiency as it results improved operational efficiency, cost savings, increased stakeholder satisfaction and environmental returns. We strive to be energy-efficient in terms of green ICT, green premises mgt., greener business-related travel (through route planning, green vehicle fleet, proper vehicle maintenance), digital finance and digital marketing. Further, as a responsible financier, PLC lends for green vehicles and to ‘green’ the businesses of SMEs.

Beyond footprint calculation, the process owners at Head Office and Branch Managers are encouraged to track and monitor their energy consumption as an ongoing practice and initiate continuous dialogue on reducing energy consumption with related signage in place.

The process is monitored by the DGM – Marketing, DGM – ICT, Senior Manager – Premises, Senior Manager – Administration, Head of CSR, and the respective Heads of Departments and Heads of Branches.

Carbon footprint calculation

Electricity bills that reflect usage of electricity and trend analysis that show usage patterns across the year

Vehicle running charts that reflect fuel usage

BMS records

Post training evaluation sheets

Operational guidelines

Embodying responsible stewardship - Environmental strategy - Managing energy and Group-wide carbon footprint assesment on pages 142-144

GRI 304 –Biodiversity

Being a finance company our direct negative impact to biodiversity is minimal.

However, a major portion of our disbursements is for motor vehicles which emit emissions, and considering that some of our leased vehicles could be used in unethical practices, often by third parties which may damage environment/bio diversity, we are committed to conserve environment and bio diversity.

Guided by our environment policy, pledge on resource efficiency and our third strategy of promoting responsible credit, our staff at all levels are educated on the importance of bio diversity and how irresponsible lending could lead to the destruction of bio diversity. This education is imparted to the new recruits at the orientation programme and our branch managers and marketing staff during credit and legal related trainings by DGM – Risk Mgt. & Control and Chief Manager – Legal.

Further, we promote financing for proposals to upgrade facilities to minimise negative impact on environment.

Guided by our procurement policy the Senior Manager – Administration ensures that suppliers are educated on the Company’s expectation minimal negative impact on environment.

People’s Leasing is a patron member of the Biodiversity Sri Lanka, a national platform established to promote strong engagement of the corporate sector in biodiversity and environmental conservation since 2013 and receives year round networking/learning opportunities on how to integrate biodiversity conservation in the corporate strategy.

Centrally monitored by the CSR Department, our investment in the environment includes long-term reforestation/planting initiatives, education of stakeholders on environment conservation and thereby contributing toward preventing the extinction of species.

Prevention of damage to environment through credit risk controls including the exclusion list in screening

Environmental impact assessments for sites prior to lending to manage negative impacts to biodiversity

Vigilance by Heads of branches to ensure that our operations do not affect protected areas of high biodiversity value

Supplier assessment on environment related criteria

Post training evaluation sheets

Impact of outreach CSR projects on environment

Remediation of damage to environment by long term reforestation/planting monitored by staff from nearest branch through site visits and progress reports by custodians of the sites.

Published information on sensitivity of habitats

National conservation lists

Embodying Sustainable Stewardship - Biodiversity on pages 144-145

GRI 305 - Emissions

Climate-related impacts are already occurring and will intensify. Hence, a low carbon, resource efficient growth is vital to sustain the world and avoid large scale economic disruption.

By virtue of the key business portfolio of PLC relating to leasing of motor vehicles, the Company considers the negative impact on emissions and invests in greenhouse gas reductions and low carbon lending.

Guided by our 4-pillared journey towards carbon neutrality, we strive to support the low carbon economy and we promote emission certificate as a prerequisite for customers who lease vehicles with us.

Overseen by DGM – Marketing, green products that minimise negative impact on environment are introduced to the market.

CSR Department does the calculation of carbon footprint and awareness programmes organised in parallel on GHG reduction to motivate all staff including branch staff to save energy, save water, pool travel, plan their routes, and opt for green modes of transportation to reduce GHG emissions and our investment in the environment includes long-term reforestation/ planting initiatives.

Senior Manager – Administration and mobile education unit ensure that route planning is practices in day to day business travel and mobile education campaigns to ensure optimum use of vehicles.

Senior Manager – Premises ensures that minimal emissions generated with the state-of-the-art BMS to manage premises.

Carbon footprint calculation

Electricity bills that reflect usage of electricity and trend analysis that show usage patterns across the year

Vehicle running charts that reflect fuel usage

BMS records

Post training evaluation sheets

Operational guidelines

Impact assessments of CSR projects that promote emission reductions

Feedback sheets from training/awareness programmes

Global Warming Potential (GWP) Ratios

Air conditioner service records

Usage data of fire extinguishers

Responsible management of food waste through identified service provider to minimise generation of GHGs.

Embodying responsible stewardship - Managing fuel and emissions on pages 143-144

GRI 307 –Environmental compliance

Our consideration of environmental responsibility is voluntary and exceeds compliance requirements as an environment conscious corporate.

Guided by our environment policy and pledge on resource efficiency, we ensure that we do not violate compliance on environmental related laws/regulations and continue to voluntarily exceed such compliance.

Voluntary environmental agreements with regulatory authorities are in place for responsible waste management. And long term reforestation/planting work.

The ongoing voluntary implementation of an Environmental Management System across our business units spearheaded by respective process owners are heads of branches is expected to further impact positively on environment backed by staff awareness, reporting, and verification.

This is complemented by responsible low carbon lending to ensure that our customers take on financial solutions in an environmentally responsible manner.

Compliance Reviews

Desk reviews of their performance and site visits are part of the process employed to verify that suppliers continue to comply with our requirements.

Embodying Sustainable Stewardship - Environmental compliance on pages 143

GRI 308 – Supplier environmental assessment

Environmental impacts are associated with the sourcing, production, storage and delivery of goods and services. Hence, it is essential that we work together with suppliers to work towards more sustainable and resilient supply chains.

Overseen by Senior Manager – Administration we ensure that through dialogue and agreements with suppliers the negative impact if any is prevented, concessionary loans are offered to improve supplier operations and mitigate negative impact if any.

New suppliers are registered upon screening them for their significant actual and potential environmental impact.

Registered suppliers are educated on performance expectations related to environment and their capacity is built prior to their annual assessments to evaluate the environment friendliness of their business practices.

Desk reviews of supplier environmental performance and site visits are part of the process employed to screen and verify that suppliers continue to comply with our requirements.

Performance expectation list related to environment remain the basis for the due diligence process for environment impacts to identify actual/potential negative environmental impact from suppliers and prioritise suppliers for assessment of environmental impact.

With contractual reviews and system controls in place we delist and terminate suppliers who do not meet our performance expectations as a remediation measure.

Achieving execution excellence - Procuring responsibly and sustainably on page 107

GRI 401 - Employment

The Company values its employees as great employees create great workplace and positive energy within workplace.

As a service organisation, people are the most valuable asset in leaning our business processes with increased productivity, delighting our customers through exceptional service with their experience and skills and creating a long-lasting positive perception and loyalty towards the Company in the minds of stakeholders.

Further, high staff turnover results cost implications including cost for recruitment and training of new staff.

Guided by HR policy our HR department is responsible for Human resource management related functions.

In a performance-based culture, our employees are compensated for their contribution for company performance irrespective of ethnicity, gender or age.

The Company has tested processes to ensure that employees are rewarded and compensated in par with industry standards and our compensation meets legal and industrial minimal standards.

Majority of staff is locally sourced with required knowledge and skills either internally or externally. The Company follows a stringent inclusive recruitment process irrespective of age or gender whilst ensuring that it provides career development opportunities to staff through transfers and promotions.

Staff is provided with a safe and decent work place with work life balance and offered benefits include a host of medical benefits.

PLC promotes safe and decent employment across the supplier chain also being considerate of the working conditions of workers of our suppliers.

Legal and industrial minimal standards

Annual head count planning

Locally identified staff are centrally interviewed, recruited, and trained.

Staff is compensated and promoted based on performance appraisals.

Process is periodically reviewed by the audit and compliance Departments and recommendations are provided to address gaps, if any.

Periodic employee satisfaction surveys are conducted

Periodically reviewed benefit plan

Achieving Executional Excellence

Rewards and recognition and Employee Recruitement and Retention on pages 117-121


GRI 402 – Labour management relations

Being in the financial industry and operating in a highly competitive market, our business operations are highly subjected to notices and regulations released by regulators and related institutions. Time taken to communicate a notice of an operational change to our staff depends on urgency, type and source of notice, market dynamics, and economic volatilities.

Our team culture, open door policy, and close superior–subordinate relations are the effective communication channels between the Head Office and the branch network that enable a well-connected workplace enabling People’s Leasing to effectively communicate notices regarding operational changes despite geographic location.

People’s Leasing Sports and Welfare Society also provides an ideal platform for the staff to develop and showcase their talents round the year while providing opportunity for healthy interactions with members of the People’s Leasing family and their loved ones.

Effective communication channels via telephone, mobile and opinion surveys between the Head Office and the branch network enable a well-connected workplace with each other enabling PLC to effectively communicate notices regarding operational changes despite geographic location.

Achieving Executional Excellence - Maintaining an inclusive culture on pages 112 and 115

GRI 403 – Occupational health and safety

Providing a safe and healthy environment for employees to work is of utmost importance to the Company. As low injury and absenteeism rates link to positive trends in employee morale and productivity. Therefore, we have established systems and processes across all locations to ensure employees are confident of the security provided, so that they are able to perform at their best at work.

Guided by the relevant national laws, People’s Leasing adheres to all relevant labour laws and regulations and health and safety policy.

We have established security personnel and security devices such as CCTV surveillance and access controls across all locations, including the entire branch network.

We conduct periodic fire drills and identified employees are trained as fire wardens and trained on basic first aid skills periodically. Personal protective equipment given to relevant staff.

All staff trained on health and wellbeing related topics periodically. State of the art gymnasium at Head Office with trained coach and reimbursement of gym memberships encourage our staff to be fit and healthy. Welfare and Sports Society encourage staff to participate in various sports activities and competitions to develop their sporting talents and balance work-life.

In addition, all employees on the permanent cadre are covered by a personal accident, critical illness, and life cover along with surgical and hospitalisation insurance as well as quarterly medical allowance. Annual check-ups for staff is a benefit offered to employees and their loved ones to diagnose their illnesses well in advance and do the required treatments.

The HR department stands responsible to ensure the full implementation of employee well-being by aligning the grievance mechanism and the HR policy are in line with the industry best practices.

The effectiveness of fire drills is periodically assessed to ensure the Company’s readiness to safeguard employees during an emergency situation. All security equipment is checked and maintained. In addition, periodic reviews of the health benefits are conducted to ensure that the best facilities are extended to employees.

Achieving execution excellence - Health and safety on page 117

GRI 404 – Training and education

To strengthen human capital and compete in a rapidly changing business environment, employee training and development is an important factor as it helps to keep employee satisfied and Company set strategic targets fulfilled. Year-round employee training to upgrade knowledge ensures that our employees acquire skills, remain fit for their jobs, always in compliance, even as the regulations change, and effectively service our customers including majority of SMEs in the highly competitive finance industry.

Guided by our HR policy, under the purview of Head of – HR annual training budget and training needs including new products and services, system developments, new procedures, and regulatory compliance for individuals are identified by HR Department. Trainings are conducted throughout the year by both external/internal resource persons or as e-learning modules or as overseas exposures.

Further paid education leave, reimbursement of education related expenses and paid external training, encourage staff to engage in lifelong learning.

Trainings are conducted as clusters of branches, as specialised training for selected groups, or as individual training to improve their efficiency and performance providing opportunities for them to reach their full potential.

The scope for training and development are reviewed annually through performance appraisals and aligned to the Company strategy as well as regulatory requirements.

Effectiveness of training is measured through feedback questionnaires, pre and post-tests, face-to-face interviews, and behavioural surveys.

The effectiveness of internal training interventions is assessed by obtaining spot feedback from employees subsequent to each training programme.

The annual employee performance and career development appraisals also allows the employee and supervisor to highlight any particular training requirements needed during the year. This information is considered at the time of deciding on nominating employees for programs or when designing learning interventions.

All employee updates with respect to operations are released by respective SDGMs or DGMs.

Achieving Executional Excellence - Training hours and investment on page 122

GRI 405 – Diversity and equal opportunity

We view diversity and equal opportunity as a business imperative in today’s global market. Diversity has enabled PLC to create a healthy work environment where diverse individuals bring in different skill sets and experiences to service our diversified range of products across Sri Lanka.

Equal opportunity at People’s Leasing harness a richer variety of experiences, perspectives, and abilities that make our business stronger with retained qualified staff.

Guided by our HR policy, we recruit, reward, develop, and provide career progression to our staff, irrespective of their gender, age, or ethnicity to effectively connect with our customers. All employment decisions are based on the ability of the individual to do their job with no regard to personal characteristics that are unrelated to the inherent requirements of the work.

We also ensured that appropriate policies and processes are in place to provide employees with an environment where they are comfortable.

Whistle-Blowing platform

disciplinary and grievances handling procedure

Equal remuneration based on annual performance appraisals

Periodic audits

Internal investigations on reported incidents

Zero tolerance towards any form of discrimination and appropriate action is taken with due diligence

Achieving Executional Excellence - Maintaining an inclusive culture on pages 112-113 and Ratio of basic salary to gender on page 116

GRI 406 – Non discrimination

Being a Company that fosters diversity and equality, we do not tolerate discrimination of any form.

In today’s emerging markets, to build a productive and diverse workforce, elimination of discriminatory practices in the workplace is important as it enables penetration of new markets, improves employee morale, and provides a wider pool of talent for recruitment.

Being a service-oriented company, it is of importance that employees themselves foster an environment of non-discrimination as it has a direct bearing on how we treat our customers.

Guided by our HR policy, Under the purview of the Head of HR, People’s Leasing fosters a diverse workforce at all levels, be it in terms of race, ethnicity, nationality, gender. Our employees are treated fairly during access to employment and once they are employed. We eliminate discriminatory practices and we encourage employees to accept and value each other’s differences.

We are strictly against child labour, forced labour, and compulsory labour and as mentioned in the previous section, the Bank has policies and processes to handle grievances and disciplinary issues.

Annual performance appraisals and performance-based rewards contribute towards non-discrimination at workplace.

All issues reported are investigated by the audit teams and policies are reviewed periodically to ensure they are current and are supportive of the approach to prevent any form of discrimination.

Grievance handling mechanism Management system audits

Achieving Executional Excellence - Providing equal opportunity and safeguarding human rights on page 115

GRI 408 – Child labour

People’s Leasing is against the use of child labour as it is a serious violation of human rights that prejudices the health/development and school attendance of children and advocates the abolition of it across value chain to promote economic and future human capital development of our nation.

Guided by our HR policy, we do not recruit staff who are below 18 years of age. Under the purview of the Head of HR, our interview process screen ensures that the candidates are above 18 years of age.

Further we ensure that no child labour is exploited in our value chain through supplier screening.

Supplier screening

Achieving Executional Excellence - Providing equal opportunity and safeguarding human rightson page 115

GRI 409 – Forced & compulsory labour

We are against forced and compulsory labour, as it is a serious violation of human rights. Further it tends to breed negative energy, poor work-life balance, and low levels of service and employee dissatisfaction.

Guided by our HR policy, and under the purview of the Head of HR, People’s Leasing eliminates forced and compulsory labour.

Under the purview of SDGMs, DGM – ICT and DGM – Marketing, we constantly develop our systems that promote employee productivity, minimised human intervention and therefore need for overtime work.

Grievance handling mechanism

System advancements

Achieving Executional Excellence - Providing equal opportunity and safeguarding human rights on page 115

GRI 410 - Security practices

Being a financial institution, high levels of security is vital to restrict unauthorised parties and protect business by deterring robbery, and protect life of employees, customers, and other stakeholders ensuring human rights of people are valued and respected.

Hired security personnel as a first line of defence are engaged at our business points. This function is overseen by the Senior Manager – Administration and Heads of Branch Managers.

To maintain a work environment in which the values of the Company will foster the respect for Human Rights, treatment with fairness and dignity of all people, we ensure that security personnel are trained on the policies relating to the protection of human rights.

Identified human right performance criteria are applied in supplier selection.

Code of conduct for security service providers

Grievances handling mechanism related to abuse of human rights

Achieving Executional Excellence - Providing equal opportunity and safeguarding human rights on page 115

GRI 412 – Human rights assessment

Human rights are basic rights for individuals. They form the foundations for freedom, justice, and peace. They apply equally and universally in all countries, irrespective of the legal framework. At People’s Leasing we believe that we have a clear responsibility to support Government and civil society groups in respecting and upholding human rights across our value chain.

We operate in accordance with the legislation on Human Rights. Our HR Department orients our new staff on aspects of human rights that are relevant to our operations.

Our credit policy and procurement policy provide internal guidance on how to integrate human rights issues into assessment of financial transactions and in procurement.

Overseen by Senior Manager –Administration our procurement operation is subject to human rights reviews.

Overseen by DGM – Risk and Control and monitored by Heads of branches our Credit Operations are subject to human rights reviews.

Achieving Executional Excellence - Providing equal opportunity and safeguarding human rights on page 115

Achieving execution excellence - Monitoring procurement on page 108

GRI 413 – Local communities

As our business grows and we operate on a larger scale, we understand the growing importance of corporate social responsibility towards local communities and are committed to CSR and charitable causes.

As a country, unemployment, lack of investment in early childhood development/ education, unmet infrastructure/service remain key challenges. Private sector investment in public services and utilities empowers local communities. Healthy relationships with local communities enable us to understand the needs of our potential customers, perceive their close ties with the local communities, and lend to creditworthy customers in the regions. In return, such lending helps the local economies to become to improve their quality of life.

Overseen by DGM – Marketing, the Head of CSR ensures that the company implements board approved outreach CSR Plan in coordination with the Heads of Branch network island-wide through active staff volunteerism ensuring active engagement with respective individuals/ groups of local communities, conduct of need assessments to understand their vulnerabilities, plan development programmes being sensitive to their ethnic background, gender, age, socio economic status, literacy levels, disabilities, income levels , health related vulnerabilities etc. , making information available in their preferred language, following our prioritised five focused areas to empower local communities, assess the impact of such implemented programmes achieving social, economic, and environmental gains for both People’s Leasing and communities we work with whilst ensuring that negative impacts on vulnerable/disadvantaged groups are minimised.

Dialogue with local communities

Need assessments to identify vulnerabilities

Impact assessments

Incidents reported on violation of society related rules/regulations

Credit risk assessments

Grievance handling related to concerns of local communities

Embodying Sustainable Stewardship - Our strategy for outreach CSR on pages 135-139

GRI 414 - Supplier social assessment

As a responsible buyer, ensuring that the business practices of our suppliers are community-friendly and making sure that their sourcing meets compliance with the requirements of procurement policy are important to us as a responsible corporate.

Overseen by the Senior Manager –Administration, the centralised Procurement Department registers suppliers annually after screening according to pre-set criteria.

Suppliers are incentivised, rewarded for the prevention of significant actual and potential negative social impacts.

Registered suppliers are educated on performance expectations related to environment and their capacity is built prior to their annual assessments to evaluate the society friendliness of their business practices.

List of social criteria to screen new suppliers and due diligence

Contractual reviews

Two way dialogue

Complaint handling mechanism

Audit reviews

Desk reviews of their performance and site visits are part of the process employed to verify that suppliers continue to comply with our requirements, prioritise suppliers for assessment of significant social impacts and terminate those who do not comply with our performance expectations.

Achieving execution excellence - Procuring responsibly and sustainably on page 107

GRI 417 Marketing and labelling

In informed decision-making related to a financial solution, clear communication on the terms and conditions is a must for potential customers.

Majority of our customers being SMEs, a responsible corporate does not take advantage of their lack of knowledge or choices. Further, they prefer simple information in their preferred language.

Further they expect an advisory role from our branch staff to customise a financial solution that suits their income capacity and other financial obligations.

Communicating the exact nature of the service to the customer is vital for us to maintain the transparency and strengthen our customer relationships and win their loyalty.

We offer responsible financial solutions that enrich the lives of our customers. Our communication and promotional materials are responsibly designed under the purview of DGM - Marketing by the Centralised Marketing Unit.

Senior Manager – Compliance ensures that material complies with our regulatory obligations and internal policies.

Branch Managers ensure that our product and service-related information is readily available at customer service points in most preferred language/s.

Further, under the purview of Head of HR, our employees are periodically trained to assist customers to access and understand information, explain, welcome customer questions, and propose customised solutions, and empower them to make informed decisions.

Compliance requirements of regulations, laws and codes

Customer satisfaction surveys

Feedback generated through the mobile education campaigns

Management system controls

Augmenting customer experience - Communicating within a regulated environment on page 102

GRI 418 – Customer privacy

For financial institutions that rely extensively on technology, the consequences of a breach in data security and privacy are significant. In this digital era, security and privacy threats continue to escalate.

A finance company requests and maintains sensitive customer information. Therefore, it is extremely important to maintain confidentiality in all matters including sensitive customer information. Customers would be adversely affected in the event their information gets exposed to an unauthorised party, leading to a breach of trust and confidence among customers, which would have a negative impact on our corporate image. We secure such information and earn the trust of our customers.

Guided by ICT policy, we ensure that customer rights and personal information are safeguarded with utmost caution to increase customer satisfaction.

We protect our customers’ privacy through awareness among employees to help them understand their vital role in protecting information, and controlling access to data.

Our Heads of Departments and Branch Managers ensure employees take precaution by keeping physical information safe and secure.

Under the purview of DGM – ICT we have robust threat and vulnerability assessments and incident tracking against breaches of customer privacy and losses of customer data.

DGM – ICT periodically evaluates the processes in place to ensure that security and responsible physical and digital storage of sensitive data, and recommend system modifications, enhancements to mitigate technology and information-security risks, applying industry best practices

Our Information Security Management System is ISO: 27,001 certified which gives our customers confidence in the quality of our operating systems.

Senior Manager – Compliance ensures that our operations are in compliance with regulations. Further, firm action against customer privacy breach attempts enables customers to increase their trust towards the Company.

Reviews by Internal Audit

Compliance Reviews

ISO 27000: 2013 audits

Augmenting customer experience - Improving customer relationships and satisfaction levels on page 101

GRI 419 – Socioeconomic compliance

As a responsible corporate citizen, we are committed to comply with relevant laws and regulations in the social and economic areas.

Senior Manager – Compliance ensures that the Company complies with relevant laws and regulations in the social and economic areas.

Compliance Reviews

Desk reviews of their performance and site visits are part of the process employed to verify that suppliers continue to comply with our requirements.

Embodying responsible stewardship - Integrating sustainability across stakeholder groups on page 132

Digital finance

Digital financial solutions have a significant potential to provide a range of affordable, convenient and secure financial solutions to SMEs in emerging economies. People could increasingly gain access to financial services through digital channels. Yet there remains a long way to go in digital finance.

Under the purview of DGM – ICT and DGM – Marketing, PLC develops and promotes internet based finance, mobile finance and point-of-sale devices to offer financial services at greater convenience, scale whilst lowering our costs with increased use of social media under the purview of Manager – Digital Marketing.

Post training evaluations on training related to digital finance

‘PLC Online’ app controls

Mobile app. based controls

Social media controls

Material matters – Completeness on page 71

ESG considerations

Climate and social issues increasingly affect people from all over the world and Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) considerations have become a business imperative. Investors, regulator, Colombo Stock Exchange have increased their focus on ESG criteria, indicates that the ESG considerations are emerging for the finance sector to apply.

Our credit policy provides internal guidance on how to integrate ESG considerations into assessment of financial transactions and overseen by the DGM – Risk Management the company gradually strengthens its risk management procedures with due consideration on ESG. Senior Manager compliance ensures that periodic ESG reporting is reported to the regulator and the annual integrated reporting is a communication to our stakeholders on how the integrated thinking including ESG performance applied companywide.

Credit reviews

Compliance reviews

Audit reviews

Achieving execution excellence - Procuring responsibly and sustainably on page 107

Annual report of the Board of Directors on the affairs of the Company - ESG reporting on page 58

Embodying responsible stewardship on page 145

Material matters – Completeness on page 71