What Is The Buplas Online Screen Test?

While the primary purpose of recruitment is to find the best people and reject those who don’t make the grade, the process also needs to be efficient – reducing time and costs of the recruitment process without impacting quality.

There are many efficiency tools out there in the market for language assessments, but the problem has always been ensuring that it is the right fit for the organization and that quality is not sacrificed along the way.

In this blog I will discuss one option, the BUPLAS Online Screen Test, which serves as an efficiency tool particularly for the BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA), but can also be used for other communication assessments an organization may have.  If you have not heard of it before, or have heard of it but would like to know more, read on for more information on what it is, what it does, to help you decide if it’s the right product for your team.

BUPLAS Recruitment Process.jpg

The BUPLAS Online Screen Test is a 40-item online assessment that predicts the likelihood of the applicant passing the BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA), therefore “screening” out those that are not likely to pass and making your recruitment process more efficient.   The test can be accessed on site or remotely, is composed of four sections, and can be completed in 20 minutes or less. As the test is conducted and scored online, it requires minimal to no supervision by your recruitment team. It is hosted on our online system, QUARTO, which is part of a BUPLAS Recruitment license.

 What does it measure?

The Screen Test measures four different areas of communicative competence:

  • Grammar
  • Vocabulary
  • Listening
  • Discourse and Interactive skills

There is some overlap between the BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA) and the Screen test domains, but the approach to  assessing these domains are different. The screen test assesses knowledge of grammar and vocabulary, as well as the awareness of the proper discourse and interactive skills.  But the BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA) looks at production of language as opposed to knowledge, and therefore needs a human assessor to reliably rate it. Pronunciation is not assessed in the Screen Test, and unlike the VA where listening skills are integral to completing the assessment, this is not so in the Screen Test this and therefore listening has to be assessed on its own.

It is important to note that the BUPLAS Online Screen Test is not meant to replace the BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA).  Yes, it scores the relevant areas and screens out those who will fail the Voice Assessment, but after the applicant reaches a baseline proficiency level, it is only the Voice Assessment that can check actual spoken performance and accurately determine the competency level of the applicant at recruitment, and eventually on-the-floor performance when in production.

 Why is it effective?

The BUPLAS Online Screen Test is effective because it follows assessment principles of validity, reliability, practicality, and fairness:

  • Valid. It assesses the actual skills needed to communicate effectively in the workplace – grammar, vocabulary, listening, discourse, and interactive skills – and provides a sound indication of Voice Assessment performance
  • Reliable.  The tests are automatically and consistently scored when the applicant selects the correct answers. Also,  the different test of sets follow the same specifications and have been tested for reliability.
  • Practical. Because it is system-administered, is easy to access from any location, and scores are automatically computed.
  • Fair.  It does not discriminate nor favor any test taker.

Using the Screen Test has helped clients cut average employee processing time by up to 30%, hence improving overall productivity (client data, Screen Test impact for 2016)

The Screen Test also adheres to strict standards in test design which helps its effectiveness. Here are a few characteristics:

  • It is context-based.   All the items in the BUPLAS Online Screen Test operate in a context that is understood by the test-taker – grammar questions are structured in sentences, vocabulary items are presented in a holistic cloze passage, listening skill questions pertain to a customer-service related conversation, and a call scenario sets the stage for answering the discourse and interactive skills questions.
  • Benchmarks can be customized. The Screen Test benchmark can be adjusted based on business needs.  If the business is ramping up and does not have a lot of applicants, benchmarks can be lowered to allow more applicants to be assessed.  If the business has lots of applicants and only need to fill a few positions, then benchmarks can be increased.
  • Correlation with BUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA). Lastly, internal tests conducted among BUPLAS users show that the BUPLAS Online Screen Test has a good positive correlation with theBUPLAS Voice Assessment (VA).
What do I get with the Screen Test?

When you purchase a BUPLAS Recruitment license, the BUPLAS Online Screen Test will come as part of the bundle. Upon request, Future Perfect can conduct an audit or evaluation t to help you determine the benchmark to use for the Screen Test.   Your recruitment team will also get a BUPLAS ecosystemoverview, an orientation on the BUPLAS Screen Test, sample user testing, and support from the technical team for any questions you may have.

The BUPLAS Screen Test is housed in the powerful QUARTO Online System [Quality Analysis of Recruitment, Training, and Operations] which also includes data tracking and analytics.  You will be able to view results of the Screen Test and generate reports to analyze trends to inform future decisions in recruitment and benchmarking.


I hope this blog has so far helped you understand the BUPLAS Screen Test – what it is, what it measures, how effective it is, and what you can get with it.  You may also schedule a free demo-walk through with Future Perfect by clicking on the button below.

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