The BIKAIN Certificate of Basque Language Quality is official, public and free of charge and is awarded by the Basque Government; it certifies the presence, use and management of Basque in a company or in an institution.
So it is a certificate that can be obtained following an assessment which establishes in what language the items included in the EME (Standard Framework of Reference) are and how they are managed.
According to the Bikain system, it is possible to score a maximum of 1,000 points, in other words 100% compliance. So three levels of recognition or certificates, each with its own colour, have been established:
• Basic level or black Bikain: a minimum of 200 points
• Intermediate level or silver Bikain: a minimum of 400 points
• High level or gold Bikain: a minimum of 700 points
The assessment process is similar to the method routinely used to assess the level of development of company management, but it is more streamlined: basically, an external assessment group will evaluate the company and will identify the strong points and the aspects that need to be improved. To do this, it will study the information provided in advance and will visit the company. It is an assessment, not an audit.
The external assessment service can be requested by public and private institutions, business units and the centres of work of large institutions as long as their activity takes place mainly in the Basque Autonomous Community (region).
With a view to 2017, the BIKAIN model (EME) is being reviewed. Since it is now 8 years since BIKAIN was set up, we believe the moment has now come to review, streamline and update the model; we have set about this while ensuring that the system remains effective so that it can be deployed across more organisations. In this respect, one of the aims of the Sub-Ministry for Language Planning is to align BIKAIN, in the short/medium term, with the strategic aims set in many other areas; for example, with the plan of use of the public administrations. This is designed to set up the plans of use in line with the BIKAIN model and to unify the structure itself; the BIKAIN assessment, aside from obtaining the certificate, will also be used to gather the data pertaining to the intermediate and final assessments that are conducted in the plans of use.