Talk Your Way into a Job; Use the Summer to Brush Up on Your Language Skills -- It Could Be a Promising Career Move, Writes Linda Whitney
Byline: Linda Whitney
LANGUAGE skills are critical in a global market place yet only one in 10 of the UK workforce speaks a foreign one.
With more than 300 languages spoken in London and 72 per cent of UK international trade with non-English speaking countries, it means that linguists are in great demand.
However, most employers are not looking for fluency, according to the Confederation of British Industry, which found that 74 per cent of employers were looking for conversational ability -- it helps to break the ice, cement relationships and bridge cultures.
"In an increasingly competitive job market, it is clear that foreign language proficiency adds significant value to a candidate's portfolio of skills and can give them a real competitive edge when applying for jobs," said the CBI's Education and Skills Survey 2009.
"There is an increase in demand for people with extra languages, especially combined with business skills," says Rocco Sec of London-based recruiter Languages Matter.
There is strong demand in business for German, the Scandinavian languages and Dutch, although French (required by 52 per cent of employers looking for language skills, according to the CBI), Russian (21 per cent) and Arabic are also sought after.
Most demand in the private sector is for European languages but public sector employers such as local authorities look for …
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Publication information: Article title: Talk Your Way into a Job; Use the Summer to Brush Up on Your Language Skills -- It Could Be a Promising Career Move, Writes Linda Whitney. Contributors: Not available. Newspaper title: The Evening Standard (London, England). Publication date: July 9, 2009. Page number: 50. © Not available. COPYRIGHT 2009 Gale Group.
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