Knowledge of foreign languages opens doors to work in many fields and increases international connections and communication opportunities. Combining language skills with specialist knowledge gives young people a competitive edge in today's business environment. We invited our colleagues Natali Dimitrova and Andreya Pirkov - recruitment consultants specializing in the outsourcing sector - to talk about the role that foreign languages play in the career start and development of young people.
Is a high level of foreign language sufficient to start a first job?
Natali: Employers are now increasingly requiring candidates to have one or more foreign language skills, especially in the outsourcing (BPO) and information technology (IT) sectors. This is linked to the globalization of the market and the increasing need to communicate and interact with international partners and customers. Employers value candidates' ability to connect with different cultures and deal with situations of linguistic diversity.
Andreya: That's why we see that foreign language skills could open the door for a young person to their first job. Typically this is seen in so-called call centers. But the success of that first job depends on a number of skills (communication and technical) that talent should also bring with them, as well as purposefully develop at each stage of their career path. And higher level realization is now also directly linked to the acquisition and development of specialist industry knowledge.
What are the languages most frequently sought by employers in the last 6 months?
Andreya: The specific languages employers seek vary depending on the sector and regional needs. In the last 6 months, several languages stand out as being of particular interest to companies. English is consistently in demand and the most widely spoken language for business communications globally.
Natali: Besides English, Spanish, French, and especially German are also highly sought after by employers.
What skills do young talents need to develop to ensure success and competitiveness in their first job?
Natali: Speaking an additional language or two is not always enough for young talent to secure their place in their dream company. They can significantly increase their chances of success and competitiveness by developing various soft skills and competencies such as:
Andreya: Last but not least, it is important to develop personal skills such as time management, adaptability, flexibility, and resilience to change. Today's job market is dynamic and constantly changing, so it is important that future experts are ready to adapt and develop themselves as individuals.
In conclusion, a high level of foreign language skills is a great advantage when starting your first job. In order to consolidate and maintain their advantage in the job market, young talents need to develop communication, analytical, leadership, and personal skills to ensure success from the start of their career.