One language no longer enough

Businesses want to invest in more bilingual staff, with 79 per cent of companies regarding language learning as a main focus in their workplace development plans.

The findings come from a study by online training company Speexx that surveyed more than 100 senior learning and development managers, human resource managers and business education staff across Europe.

President of Speexx, Armin Hopp, comments, ‘One language is no longer enough to satisfy every communication need. Therefore companies who want to gain competitive advantage will need to resourcefully upskill staff and in doing so will be far better placed to reach out to new target markets and to build lasting, strategic relationships.’

Almost three quarters (74 per cent) of participants cite English and Chinese as the most important languages to learn followed by German, French and then Spanish.

Hugh Williams, managing director of UK-based company Hughenden Consulting remarks, ‘Staff who wish to learn additional languages are undoubtedly valuable to us and fit with our expansion plans and we would actively encourage and support any decision to learn new languages.’

He adds, ‘Although English is the main international language in our industry sector, being able to offer our services in these additional languages has definitely given us the edge in expanding internationally.’

Related Topics

Language skills