Atlas Axillia Shines at National Quality Awards
Atlas Axillia has won the coveted “National Quality Award 2018” for large scale manufacturing, which is the highest Quality Award in Sri Lanka and is awarded by the Sri Lanka Standards Institute (SLSI). The award was received on behalf of Atlas Axillia by Asitha Samaraweera, Managing Director and Viraj Jayasooriya, Director – Operations at the prestigious National Quality Awards ceremony which was held at the Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapaksa Theatre recently. The award was presented by His Excellency President Maithripala Sirisena and State Minister of International Trade Sujeewa Serasinghe was also present at the glamorous event. Atlas Axillia also received a National Quality Merit Award for 2017 for manufacturing, which too was presented at the awards ceremony.
Organized and administrated by SLSI, the Sri Lanka National Quality Awards seeks to recognize organizations that have implemented successful Quality Management Systems, thus achieving best-in-class quality & performance excellence.
Each organization considered for the award is subject to a rigorous five-step evaluation process by an independent panel of judges and includes highly critical onsite reviews by SLSI against stringent rules and criteria. Candidates are evaluated based on the 7 elements laid out by the internationally acclaimed Malcolm Baldrige criteria; Leadership, Strategy, Customer focus, Measurement, Analysis and Knowledge Management, Workforce Focus, Operations Focus and Results. As a winner of Sri Lanka’s highest Presidential Award, atlas will now be eligible to apply for the “Global Performance Excellence Awards” organized by Asia Pacific Quality Organization.
Asitha Samaraweera, Managing Director of Atlas Axillia added, ‘On behalf of Atlas Axillia, I take this opportunity to point out that we have been recognized by the Sri Lanka Standards Institute, one of Sri Lanka’s most esteemed and impartial bodies, as the national leader in quality manufacturing. This decision has been reached after unparalleled scrutiny of every step of our manufacturing process from material sourcing, to material quality testing to production, storage and distribution. Atlas Axillia having been selected as the winner of the National Quality Award 2018 by SLSI, a highly independent entity and certifier of quality in Sri Lanka, should make it clear to our customers and the public that our products are always of the highest quality and the result of a best-in-class Quality Management System. For 60 years and counting we have been, and will continue to be, a 100% Sri Lankan establishment based on Sri Lankan values, committed to transforming the journey of education for children in Sri Lanka, and shaping the future leaders of our country.’
Speaking about the award, Viraj Jayasooriya, Director Operations at Atlas Axillia said, ‘We are incredibly proud and honoured to have been recognized with this prestigious award. At Atlas Axillia we are driven by the ethos of providing best-in-class stationary and back to school products at the most affordable price. We have consistently achieved this by ensuring that we have the right processes in place and we’re constantly looking for ways to improve. This is a collective effort by all members of our organization from the ground up. It is through our collective strengths and our focus on process and efficiency that we have been able to achieve the results that we have. For example, for over two decades now, the price of our Atlas Chooty pens have remained constant at Rs.10, but the quality of our product and our volumes have demonstrated consistent growth. Such a feat is only possible through a devotion to process engineering and management. Consistent pricing without constant price increases is a huge benefit to consumers. The pen is a core tool in learning & work and we are proud to be able to provide the best quality instrument at the most affordable price to our consumers.’
Atlas Axillia has built its quality management systems around ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OSHAS 18001 platforms, which have been the building blocks of the company’s manufacturing success story. Atlas Axillia has combined best process and quality management practices with stringent product standards and a high receptivity to customer feedback to ensure that the company’s products are always best-in-class yet the most affordable. Through this model, consumers benefit hugely because we are making world class products in Sri Lanka that are accessible to all Sri Lankans.
The company has also adopted Lean and 5S Kaizen principles for continuous process optimization and is one of the few companies in Sri Lanka to have wholeheartedly embraced these ideas and to have intrinsically embedded it into their culture at every level. The Kaizen culture of everyday innovations by every single employee along with lean management techniques have provided an efficient operating platform that has resulted in an effective and agile manufacturing organism.
Atlas Axillia Co. (Pvt) Ltd, formerly known as Ceylon Pencil Company (Pvt) Ltd. was founded in 1959. Fuelled by a passion for providing school-children with the essential tools for success, “Atlas” has created a strong connection with Sri Lankan consumers, being voted Sri Lanka’s most loved brand in 2017 (No.1). The Company is the market leader in school stationeries with products retailed in over 70,000 outlets across Sri Lanka. Atlas Axillia employs 1,200 people and operates two production facilities in Peliyagoda and Kerawalapitiya.