Past event

Optimise recruitment costs by assessing candidate's level of knowledge of English

Finding out just how good a candidate's language skills really are is a challenge for employers. On 20 May the BPCC's Human Resources policy group met to hear about a programme designed by the British Council, to give employers a standardised, objective tool with which they can measure how well candidates know English.

Małgorzata Kurpias and Katarzyna Kaczmarek-Gut from the British Council talked about the programme, called Aptis, which was created to speed up and lower costs of checking candidates' linguistic abilities.

Research by IPSOS, presented at the meeting suggests that:

  • 68% of job ads require knowledge of a second language
  • 75% of companies check the language skills of job applicants
  • 95% of companies carry out interviews with candidates in a foreign language
  • 44% of candidates are subjected to formal foreign language tests (usually prepared in-house)
  • 30% of employers are happy to accept recommendations from previous employers

Currently, many employers treat their prospective employees using a plethora of different language tests. The British Council decided to devise a standardised tool to meet the demands of employers, who need to be able to quickly and cheaply assess candidates' skills.

Aptis allows employers to test any number of people at the same time within the space of one hour . It is flexible and cost-effective. It gives employers the opportunity to save time and money, having four different modules, examining different skills, and an employer need only pay for those modules needed for the skills they need to check. One test allows employers to test all four. This is a computer-based test which can be carried out online or offline; in addition, an employer using Aptis has its own administrator and has 24/7 access to the system.

Aptis can be used as a stand-alone recruitment tool, or as a complement to those methods already in use within the company.

The programme was judged to be extremely useful by those responsible for HR departments.

A free demo version of Aptis is available here: