Are you bilingual or multilingual? If so, you have a valuable asset that can set you apart from other job candidates. However, it's important to showcase your language skills in the best way possible on your CV/resume. We'll outline the benefits of showing your language capabilities, give you tips on how to list your languages, as well as examples of how to describe your language skills in a CV/Resume or covering letter. Let's get started!
So, why should I list my languages? For starters, it will show employers that you have a valuable asset that can set you apart from other job candidates. In other words, it helps you get that job you're looking for. In today's increasingly globalized and interconnected world, employers are looking for job candidates who have the ability to communicate with people from all over the world.
To highlight, a customer service agent who can speak two or more languages is more valuable to an employer than one that is monolingual. This is because they can provide customer service in multiple languages to many more customer, which of course is a valuable asset for companies that provide customer service internationally.
Another benefit of listing your language skills on your CV or resume is that it can help you to advance your current career. If you're looking for a promotion or a new role, then being able to show that you have the required language skills can be a big help. Its essential for the same reason mentioned above. Employers need employees who can communicate efficiently and effectively with their target markets.
So what's the best way of showing my language skills? Well, you can do this in a number of ways, but the most common method is to list them under a "Skills" or "Language" section. For example:
- Language: English (native), Spanish (fluent)
Another option is to list your languages skills according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (also known as CEFR).
CEFR is a standard that helps people compare different languages to each other. It tells you the level of difficulty from A1 (beginner) to C2 (expert). It is always a nice touch to reference something official.
However, don't include in your resume language skills that aren't at least to B2 (upper intermediate) level. This is because employers won't get any value from you being able to say "Hello" or order your favorite drink (and nothing else) in a different language and thus doesn't belong in your otherwise stellar CV. Remember that your employer will need your skills in a professional setting.
Now as for where on your CV you should add your language skills, then this might differ depending on what kind of job you are applying for.
If you are looking to get a job as a German speaking customer service agent, then it would make sense to list your language skills at the top, or early in your CV. In contrast, if you are applying for a role where a certain language is viewed as a merit, then placing the skill at the end or in a designated skills section would be a smart move.
Remember, If you're applying for a job that doesn't require language skills, you should still list your languages on your CV as it will help strengthen your overall profile. Its really never a negative to highlight your talent for communicating.
Once you've decided where to place your language skills on your CV or resume, it's time to start thinking about how to otherwise showcase them in the best way possible. There are a few things you can do to make sure that your language skills stand out.
First, tell your potential employer about when you have used your language skills most recently. This can include when you lived abroad for 3 months or your holiday job when you interacted with tourists who spoke in a foreign language.
Second, highlight objective verification of your skills. There are a few ways to validate your language skills, such as language certificates or diplomas. If you have a certificate or diploma in a foreign language, be sure to list it. This is an easy way to show that you have the required language skills for the job you are looking to get.
Third, consider applying for the job in the language that is required. This is perhaps the clearest way for a recruiter or hiring manager to see how good you really are. The only reason not to do this is if the employer explicitly states that they only want to receive applications in a certain language, for example, English.
Including your language skills on your CV or resume can be a great way to stand out from the competition and show that you have the required skills for the job. There are a number of ways to showcase your language skills, such as telling employers when you've last used them, listing certificates or diplomas, or applying for the job in the required language. Whatever route you decide to take, be sure to highlight your skills in a way that will catch the attention of potential employers.
By following these tips, you're sure to create a CV or resume that includes your language skills in the best way possible!