British Council and TeamLease partner to drive employability for one lakh Indians with English certificates

British Council and TeamLease Group today announce a new partnership to offer a free mobile English test and certificate to 1,00,000 aspiring Indians by the end of 2019. 

The partnership includes an investment of ₹7 Crore to subsidise the cost of EnglishScore certificates for 1,00,000 people, helping them to prove their English level to employers

The partnership aims to create opportunities for young Indians to find better jobs by awarding internationally recognised EnglishScore certificates. India adds 12 million people to its workforce every year and there are 711 million people currently within the working age group of 18 to 59 years old.  One of a number of upcoming initiatives between the two parties, this free English test and certificate will help people to understand their English level and offer proof to their employers.

Ashok Reddy, Co-founder & Managing Director, TeamLease Services Limited, commented “We are delighted to be working with British Council to offer EnglishScore to the next generation of aspiring Indians. At TeamLease, our focus is on 3 key pillars, employment, employability and ease of doing business, and offering this recognised English test to new and existing TeamLease members aligns perfectly with our mission to develop job ready skills for our youth and our vision of Putting India to Work.”

On the back of the 2017 acquisition of job site FreshersWorld, TeamLease continues to prioritise developing the skills of India’s young workforce. With over 300,000 new jobseekers registering with various TeamLease group companies every month, an EnglishScore certificate will help people stand out in a competitive job market. 

Companies offering some of the best paid jobs now require their employees to communicate effectively in English, and fluency can increase wages by up to 40% and 55% for young men and women respectively. According to the India Skills Report 2019, employers place English language in the top 3 skills to look out for, whilst large multi-nationals such as Samsung, SAP, Renault and Microsoft have all adopted English as their global corporate language. 

Further to this employer demand, the National Education Policy 2019 also references the need to teach English to the next generation, “in addition to teaching languages native to India, English must also be available and taught in a high quality manner at all government and non-government schools”.

Barbara Wickham OBE, Country Director, British Council India, said, “Improving employability through English is a core part of the British Council’s purpose in India. We understand the need for a diverse and global workforce and this only happens through the accessibility of education across the country. We recognise the great work TeamLease are doing in employability and we are delighted to partner to increase the reach of our new free English test to India’s ambitious workforce.”

EnglishScore is British Council's latest innovation, set to transform English language assessment on a global scale. It is a 40-minute test that anyone can take for free on their smartphone using the device’s camera to prevent against cheating. After the test, the user instantly receives a score graded against an international standard, alongwith a breakdown of their results, and recommendations on how to improve their score, with the option to purchase a British Council certificate. Under this initiative, this certificate will now be available free of cost to one lakh users.

Michael Curry, CEO, EnglishScore, said, “Effective communication in English is such an important attribute now when employers are looking at hiring and developing their workforces. We want EnglishScore to become part of the fabric of connecting talented candidates with the best jobs they can get. We have found a like-minded partner in TeamLease, and we can’t wait to start helping their customers.”

British Council is rolling out EnglishScore around the world, investing to make it a global standard for workplace English. India has been chosen as the first launch market, due to its demographic dividend, committed workforce and growing demand for English in the workplace.

Charlie Bragg