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When do you put languages on your CV?

 Language Learning Forum : Languages & Work Post Reply
86 messages over 11 pages: << Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ... 8 ... 10 11 Next >>
bela_lugosi
Hexaglot
Senior Member
Finland
Joined 4686 days ago

272 posts - 376 votes 
Speaks: English, Finnish*, Italian, Spanish, German, Swedish
Studies: Russian, Estonian, Sámi, Latin

 
 Message 57 of 86
03 December 2012 at 1:31am | IP Logged 
The problem with most online job application forms is that there is only a limited number of languages listed and sometimes there is not even the empty box where you can write the names of any other weird languages that the employer doesn't think any applicant would be able to speak. Typically there are only four options available. Of course, my experience is limited to only Finland and Italy, but I guess this is a European standard practice. I think it is stupid because if you speak more than four languages fluently, it is definitely an asset in most jobs. So my question is: do most employers think knowing languages is not that important?
1 person has voted this message useful



Serpent
Octoglot
Senior Member
Russian Federation
serpent-849.livejour
Joined 4829 days ago

9753 posts - 15776 votes 
4 sounds
Speaks: Russian*, English, FinnishC1, Latin, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
Studies: Danish, Romanian, Polish, Belarusian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Slovenian, Catalan, Czech, Galician, Dutch, Swedish

 
 Message 58 of 86
03 December 2012 at 6:23am | IP Logged 
They can't imagine why someone speaking 5+ languages would need to look for a job :D
LOL, one of the forms I filled in allowed you to list only TWO languages XD I picked Finnish and Portuguese...
1 person has voted this message useful



cathrynm
Senior Member
United States
junglevision.co
Joined 4357 days ago

910 posts - 1232 votes 
Speaks: English*
Studies: Japanese, Finnish

 
 Message 59 of 86
04 December 2012 at 5:57am | IP Logged 
I put together a resume lately. I just say I have an 'interest' in Japanese Language, like it's a hobby -- which are commonly put in resumes here in the USA. I don't think it really matters much to anyone, but you never know.
1 person has voted this message useful



Sumthae
Diglot
Newbie
Poland
studyinglanguages.wo
Joined 2573 days ago

6 posts - 8 votes
Speaks: Polish*, English
Studies: Indonesian

 
 Message 60 of 86
09 January 2013 at 3:03pm | IP Logged 
Well, putting languages only from which I have certificates is anti-productive. First,
not everywhere you can take the certificate exam (like TOPIK) or the language just have
no certificate exam.

Since my major interest lies in Asia, I'm gonna put info on all my Asian languages.
Only-Asian languages I know are Japanese, Korean, Indonesian (studying now) - tho the
level may vary. But, at times even my basic Korean was needed. Sometimes I'm omitting
Korean, as the level of it is not satisfactory, and usually Russian, which requires a
major review (unless I'm listing it as basic).

I don't see a reason to NOT put the basic knowledge of languages into CV. Actually, I
have
a problem with evaluating properly my knowledge of languages. I'm a perfectionist, so
it's never satisfactory. Anybody got an idea, suggestion how to evaluate your language
properly?

Edited by Sumthae on 13 January 2013 at 8:49am

1 person has voted this message useful





emk
Diglot
Moderator
United States
Joined 3764 days ago

2615 posts - 8805 votes 
Speaks: English*, FrenchB2
Studies: Spanish, Ancient Egyptian
Personal Language Map

 
 Message 61 of 86
09 January 2013 at 5:26pm | IP Logged 
Here's how I might list my French on a US résumé, though I would adjust the level of detail appropriately for each employer. Keep in mind that I'm a programmer.

Quote:
Languages

French, Diplôme d'études en langue française, level B2, from Centre international d'études pédagogiques on behalf of France's Ministry of Education. Can comfortably deal with bug reports and documentation in French, as well as polite social interaction, but cannot give professional sales presentations or translate customer-facing websites into French.


Basically, I'm putting myself into my future client's/employer's shoes, and asking, "What good would my French skills be to them? How can I help them make more money or serve their customer's better?" That's usually what businesses care about.

When I'm on the other side of the desk, I take résumés seriously. I ask myself two questions, "Is this candidate smart and hardworking?" and "Is this candidate a lying scumbag?" To answer the second question, I pick two or three things the candidate bragged about on their résumé and ask detailed questions.

For example, if the résumé claimed the candidate spoke "highly fluent French", I might first (1) check with Human Resources that I'm allowed to verify this claim, and then (2) ask several basic interview questions in French. If the candidate turns out to struggle horribly with beginner French, then I'm going to assume that everything else on their résumé is equally a lie, or at least the product of fantastic self-delusion.

Now, in reality, I probably wouldn't verify language skills unless they were relevant for the job. But if the résumé says, "Expert in Linux system administration", then I'm going to ask a whole bunch of basic Linux admin questions. If the candidate has no clue, then my email to the hiring team will be "No hire. Claimed X, Y and Z on his/her résumé, but couldn't answer basic questions such as A, B or C. I don't think we can trust any of this candidate's claims without a rigorous effort to verify them."

Now, if the candidate is only slightly deluded about their skill, that's OK, because self-assessment is hard, and maybe they're just stressed out by the interview, or their skills aren't active right now. But if you claim to have C1-level skills and you can't respond to a slow Comment appelez-vous?, then the interview is going to be excruciatingly embarrassing for everybody. I am so tired of dishonest résumés—they're unfair to candidates who tell the truth, and they're insulting, because they assume that the employer is a gullible idiot and that it's OK to trick people just because they're gullible.
4 persons have voted this message useful



hrhenry
Octoglot
Senior Member
United States
languagehopper.blogs
Joined 3362 days ago

1871 posts - 3641 votes 
Speaks: English*, SpanishC2, ItalianC2, Norwegian, Catalan, Galician, Turkish, Portuguese
Studies: Polish, Indonesian, Ojibwe

 
 Message 62 of 86
09 January 2013 at 5:46pm | IP Logged 
emk wrote:
I am so tired of dishonest résumés—they're unfair to candidates who tell
the truth, and they're insulting, because they assume that the employer is a gullible
idiot and that it's OK to trick people just because they're gullible.

I think this can also be a vicious circle from both sides, though. Before getting into
translation full time, I worked in IT as a systems administrator. In 1999 I regularly
saw job postings for sys admin positions requiring 10+ years Linux experience -
something not even Linus Torvalds himself would have had. As a result, I rarely take a
position description at face value.

I generally think it's not worthwhile to even list languages on a resume unless it's
relevant to the job, but any decent interview is going to go beyond job specifics, and
there is where I think mentioning languages can be beneficial. But my perspective is
as an American worker, where English is expected above all others. If English weren't
my native language, I'd probably include it somewhere in the resume and application.

R.
==


Edited by hrhenry on 09 January 2013 at 5:47pm

3 persons have voted this message useful



geoffw
Triglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2920 days ago

1134 posts - 1865 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Yiddish
Studies: Modern Hebrew, French, Dutch, Italian, Russian

 
 Message 63 of 86
09 January 2013 at 6:24pm | IP Logged 
emk wrote:

French, Diplôme d'études en langue française, level B2, from Centre international d'études pédagogiques
on behalf of France's Ministry of Education. Can comfortably deal with bug reports and documentation in French, as
well as polite social interaction, but cannot give professional sales presentations or translate customer-facing
websites into French.


Yes, that's honest and accurate...but isn't it generally a really bad idea to spend a lot of space on your resume
saying what you CAN'T do?

If the spatial optics of the resume are otherwise appropriate, I wouldn't see any problem with everything prior to
the "but," or alternatively just the first sentence without giving examples, depending on the circumstances?
2 persons have voted this message useful



geoffw
Triglot
Senior Member
United States
Joined 2920 days ago

1134 posts - 1865 votes 
Speaks: English*, German, Yiddish
Studies: Modern Hebrew, French, Dutch, Italian, Russian

 
 Message 64 of 86
09 January 2013 at 6:35pm | IP Logged 
hrhenry wrote:
Before getting into
translation full time, I worked in IT as a systems administrator. In 1999 I regularly
saw job postings for sys admin positions requiring 10+ years Linux experience -
something not even Linus Torvalds himself would have had. As a result, I rarely take a
position description at face value.
...
But my perspective is
as an American worker, where English is expected above all others.


Back when I was looking for a job, I saw a lot of this, where recruiters, whose jobs it is to know quite well what
candidates are likely to get serious consideration for certain openings (as their income is based on their ability to
deliver desirable candidates to employers), would pretty much only suggest applying for openings where the
"required" experience was a year or several more than what you have, or if you were at the bottom end of the
requested range.

And yes, since in many professional positions in the US it's taken for granted that ALL positions must be capable of
being performed well by a monolingual English speaker, language skills are often more of something that makes a
candidate interesting as a person, rather than an additional job qualification.


1 person has voted this message useful



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