Suranga Palliyaguruge brings in an interesting mix of talents into his new leadership role as Managing Director of Ambrum Solutions (Pvt) Ltd. As a former banker, he has had a remarkable career for over two decades serving in both local and international sectors of the industry. He is a Past President of the Rotary Club of Battaramulla and was also adjudged as the Most Effective Rotary president of the year 2015-2016 in Rotary district Sri Lanka-Maldives.
An old boy of S. Thomas’s College Mount Lavinia, Suranga is a multiple MBA holder including one from Preston University in the United States. He also holds a Diploma in Marketing from Wigan and Leigh College in the United Kingdom. On a lighter note, during off-work hours Suranga loves spending his time playing golf, snooker, and basketball. Additionally, he enjoys simple things like architecture, cooking, and gardening which he claims are also his hobbies.
Outside of his current role at Ambrum Solutions, he holds the position of Director Shareholder to both Ambrum Wealth Management (Pvt) Ltd and Ambrum Marketing Solutions (Pvt) Ltd and is also a Consultant at Melache (Pvt) Ltd.
Some of Suranga’s clients include the Royal Colombo Golf Club, the Glen Abbey Golf Club (Canada), Atlas Express (UK), Laurel, Verner’s Law firm, Lakwin Aviation, and many more. Ambrum Solutions has designed and developed unique and dynamic solutions in the areas of golf operations solutions, coaching solutions, banquets, and meeting room management solutions, food handling solutions, courier service solutions, mobile solutions, custom ERP solutions, and inflight solutions. According to Suranga, the organization will continue to explore ways to provide tailored solutions to individual consumer demands with continued outstanding after-sales support, solutions will consist of audit trails (as risk assessments are critical) and process re-engineered solutions.
When asked about his thoughts on Sri Lanka’s thriving digital businesses, Suranga says that whilst the growth potential is immense, the industry excellence could certainly be improved. The ambiguity of industry standards, unexplored talent pools, lack of direction into innovation are some of the key areas identified. Explaining these further, he says pricing inconsistencies are notable within the industry with some companies overcharging whilst some cut corners to underprice. A vast majority of students are not industry-ready and the unutilized talent pool is a weakness, as it limits the capacity to change the scope of the industry. Moreover, this could be addressed and resolved at the foundation level through better-implemented education strategies to guide students to thrive in this industry and making them industry-ready when passing out. Furthermore, the Government would need to accelerate the introduction and adoption of global technological advancements. This he identifies as one of the most critical factors needed to grow the economy because of its subsequent contribution to other factors such as attracting foreign investors and strengthening local organizations’ have a competitive edge.
When questioning the challenges faced by Ambrum Solutions and strategies they have applied to keep ahead of the curve, Suranga reflects on the journey starting with the idea at the inception and the many roadblocks he encountered along the way because he did not have a background in IT. His solution to this was not to ponder on the challenges but to look at the potential. Although it’s been a short period he has not been reluctant to take bold steps to restructure including the senior management team. Suranga has also utilized the company’s biggest strength which is the skilled and outstandingly talented workforce efficiently and effectively. He also went on to say that he has the best team he could hope for and has stood by him during the initial challenging times. The team and the company have come a long way since then and now are able and ready to be a team and a company to reckon with. The company has expanded its wings even overseas with a physical branch office in Canada.
“Honesty, truthfulness, and hard work done in a smart way will always pay good deviance,” he states.
When we asked how Ambrum Solutions aligned with operations during Covid-19, Suranga stated that the company was founded at the height of the virus outbreak. Taking this into account, he made certain that all their employees had access to suitable transportation and were advised on necessary safety precautions and guidelines. Life will not move back to what it used to be and the good part is this was the way of life from day one and it is not new hence are aware of how to handle operations in uncertain and volatile times.
Suranga reports that, in terms of his long-term aspirations for Ambrum Solutions towards information technology, he plans to produce custom smart solutions and intends on focusing on sports solutions golf in particular as he envisions instilling a global footprint. Finally, he encourages us to embrace change and look for opportunities within it, since if we do not, change will knock us down. He also encourages doing the right thing regardless of the outcome, as well as believing in oneself and taking the risk.