16 December 2019
UK Home Office signs a multi-year commercial agreement
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - PeopleCert, a global leader in the delivery of examination and accreditation services, in partnership with LanguageCert and Prometric®, has been awarded a multi-year agreement with UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), to deliver Home Office approved, Secure English Language Tests (SELT) in the UK and globally. LanguageCert, an Ofqual regulated awarding organisation is solely dedicated to the design and award of language qualifications, and is a 100% subsidiary of PeopleCert. Prometric is a leading provider of technology-enabled testing and assessment solutions. This dynamic trio of organisations, who together deliver 7.5 million secure tests each year in over 215 countries, combined their individual capabilities and strengths to form a consortium for the Home Office commercial agreement in the UK.
UKVI, part of the Home Office, runs the UK’s visa service, managing around 3 million applications a year from overseas nationals. To date, hundreds of thousands of SELTs have been taken each year by individuals seeking to apply for a visa to study, work, visit or join family in the UK, where evidence of English language ability at a specific level is required.
The commercial agreement was awarded by UKVI after a rigorous and competitive procurement process. Bidders were required to demonstrate expert capability in the fields of examination design, delivery and security, technical innovation and customer experience, all underpinned with a global examination delivery network.
Each of LanguageCert’s Home Office approved SELT exams has been independently assessed by the UK government’s designated authority, UK NARIC to ensure they accurately measure English language ability at the level required by UKVI. LanguageCert’s SELT exams are the ideal solution for individuals applying for a visa where valid proof of English language ability is required. The exams are designed to meet Home Office specifications and visa requirements, whilst maintaining a candidate-centric approach. The SELTs offered in all four skills - Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking, are also available across the two-skills of Speaking and Listening.
Each SELT exam will be delivered globally through the PeopleCert/Prometric test centre network combining user-friendly, state-of-the-art examination technology. Candidates will have access to frequent exam dates and exam results will be issued with speed and efficiency.
This customer-focused testing solution is scheduled for global rollout in April 2020. LanguageCert’s SELTs are a secure, reliable, trusted and attractive choice for all candidates applying for UK visas where English language ability must be demonstrated. Candidates can be assured their end-to-end UK visa exam experience will be reliable and seamless, combined with optimum levels of customer care.
“Being chosen as an Approved SELT Provider by UKVI further validates our ability and commitment to the provision of excellence. The agreement with UKVI spearheads a new era for secure, innovative and user-friendly English language exams for those seeking to live, study and work in the UK. We are delighted with the outcome and look forward to our global rollout in April 2020!” says Dr Mike Milanovic, Chairman of the LanguageCert Board of Directors.
Byron Nicolaides, CEO of PeopleCert, commented “We are pleased with the outcome of this procurement. Global mobility is critical in today’s world and SELTs play an integral role in maintaining the validity, security and integrity of English language testing. PeopleCert’s proprietary, technology-enabled testing solutions, coupled with our core values of Quality, Innovation, Passion and Integrity will underpin our firm commitment to offer an exceptional SELT customer experience.”
“Prometric is honored to partner with PeopleCert and LanguageCert to provide consistent, convenient, and reliable access to the SELT testing programme via Prometric’s network of secure testing locations” said Alex Paladino, Chief Revenue Officer at Prometric. “These organisations share our core corporate values of providing high-quality customer-focused services and technology-enabled solutions that support the needs of our clients, constituents, and ultimately the individuals we serve – in this case, those seeking authorisation to study and work in the UK.”