BULATS is an internationally recognised assessment of workplace language skills. The test hasn’t been widely used by New Zealand businesses but we can see it working really well for organisations hiring employees from overseas or multi-nationals who want a quick, reliable language assessment for employees in the process of relocation.
The list of businesses who use the test as part of their training and staff development programme certainly backs this up – Microsoft, GlaxoSmithKline, Hyundai, Banco Do Brasil, Volvo Penta, Unilever, Volkswagen Bank, Philips, Ericsson, Citibank, HSBC to name a few. It’s focused on business and workplace English so is going to be more relevant as an assessment than tests such as IELTS or TOEFL.
It has a genuine focus on language skills and businesses can choose which of the components they want employees assessed in. It’s competitively priced compared to IELTS or TOEFL.
The test is created and administered through Cambridge ESOL and their network of agents.
There are the following components:
- Listening, Reading & Language Knowledge
It’s available in two forms:
… and usefully can be sat by employees in short chunks of time – maybe 20 or 30 minutes at a time.
Clearly for those working purely in the New Zealand context and looking for a diagnostic test more focused on Literacy and Numeracy, then the TEC Assessment Tool LNAT is still going to be the one to use but BULATS is certainly a ready made option for those businesses with more ‘global’ needs.