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Wednesday July 6th, 2022

OREL IT: Empowering People to Transform Global Enterprises

Dr Upendra Pieris Chief Executive Officer OREL IT (Pvt) Ltd

OREL IT’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Upendra Pieris, discusses the company’s strategy for growth and empowering employees to the agents of change precipitated by the rapid upheavals in technological advances.

Can you take us through OREL IT’s journey and successes thus far?

Our sister company Orel Corporation, known for its brand Orange Electric, diversified into IT services 12 years ago with a startup operation run by just two people. The team expanded to 50 in the first two years before accelerating growth over the last eight years. Today, OREL IT comprises a strong team of 4,500+ tech wizards specializing in AI solutions that enable enterprises to automate processes, data services, engineering services and managed services to a global clientele.

OREL IT is an innovative tech company with a strong reputation for delivering transformative solutions here and overseas. We are one of the largest AI solutions providers in Sri Lanka and the largest IT services exporter in the country.

We have a vast portfolio of clients across Europe, and the US, including Israel, whereas we keep expanding into the Scandinavian region, Dubai and New Zealand. A third-generation family business, we are fulfilling a founding purpose to transform the IT landscape in a meaningful and impactful way with client-centric technology solutions for over 12 industry verticals ranging from healthcare to finance, agriculture, city planning, entertainment, sports and more.

We adopted a workplace university culture from day one, laying foundations for a strong culture of inclusion and innovation. We have an open-door working environment within the organization and provide equal opportunities for all our people to grow in their careers. We have a learning platform named Orel Academy with thousands of courses on various tech domains open to all employees, where students can track their progress, appraise their skills for further development and map their career growth trajectory. Because of our many initiatives to improve employee well-being and growth, we are a certified Great Place to Work in Sri Lanka.

How have your clients responded to unfolding challenges in Sri Lanka, and how is OREL IT addressing their concerns?

OREL IT has a presence in 16 countries. Our reputation for superior service quality and uninterrupted and timely delivery has secured the company a loyal clientele. They are impressed that we continue to support them as before and are committed to engaging with us. Their encouragement has given us the resolve to embark on an aggressive expansion drive globally. We are looking for new opportunities to grow the business and maintain our status as the top IT services exporter in Sri Lanka.

Just as the pandemic created new opportunities for the tech industry, I believe the current situation in Sri Lanka is an eye-opener for the industry to explore further out of the box to create new opportunities. OREL IT is perfectly positioned to take the lead in driving export revenue from tech-related services. Despite the uncertainties in the country, we are investing in our people and securing opportunities for them to grow. We are recruiting highly-skilled foreign tech professionals who can help OREL IT deepen its capacity and build tech solutions further up the value chain. OREL IT will commit resources to expand its global footprint.

How do you think companies like OREL IT can make a difference during this time of crisis in Sri Lanka?

Since 2018, OREL IT has held the mantle as the largest IT service exporter in the country. We continue to generate much-needed foreign exchange into the country and are keen to grow our contribution, a passion and purpose shared by every one of our employees. We are creating world-class opportunities for career growth, exposing our employees to developed markets and the latest technological upheavals transforming the world. Our people can continuously upskill themselves via the Orel Academy, becoming enablers of the transformations precipitated by rapid technological advancement and contributing to empowering enterprises and people worldwide.

OREL IT is a major employee of youth tech professionals in the country. We have three other branch locations apart from our head office in Colombo, in Kadawatha, Galle and Kurunegala. We initiated a programme to empower school kids earlier this year, providing 20 rural schools with fully-equipped computer labs as a community service to empower the next generation, making them tech-savvy as much as possible. We hope to extend this programme to many other rural schools. We are also contributing to growing the knowledge of the pool of technology professionals graduating from our universities. Now is the right time to have a clear mandate on aligning the education system with the needs of growth industries like the IT sector.