How well does one need to be able to speak a language to use that language effectively and appropriately in the workplace? What language tasks does that individual need to accomplish successfully? How accurate must one’s language be to be acceptable in the work context? The simple answer – it depends upon the job.
In a global workplace, employers can no longer depend on the self-reporting of language skills when determining if a potential hire has sufficient communication skills in the language for success in the workplace. Continue reading
We’re operating in a global economy. As a result, competition is far reaching, and companies are increasingly finding themselves at a competitive disadvantage when employees lack the functional language skills needed to do their job. These companies should be considering the following questions; are your employees actually qualified to communicate in another language effectively? How do you assess the functional language ability of your employees? Is the means of assessment reliable and legally defensible?
The time to expand and assess the language proficiency of your employees is now. A recent opinion article in the Training Journal indicated that “language learning will become an integral part of [a] company’s corporate strategy” as a means of improving international negotiations and relationships, as well as internal business operations. This article is part of a growing body of evidence that suggests that corporations are in need of global language expansion. This goes hand in hand with recent reports that the demand for bilingual workers has doubled in the past five years (New American Economy, 2017).
In 1992, Language Testing International (LTI) was founded as a way to bring reliable proficiency testing to a wider audience, and so began our close partnership with the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). Twenty-five years and almost three million assessments later, LTI is still proud to be the official testing office of ACTFL and the sole licensee of their assessments. Our goal remains the same – deliver valid and reliable language proficiency tests to the public – and here is how we have responded to the changing needs of our customers; expanded list of languages, remote proctoring services, task analysis and customization services. These days we do it at a scale and in ways facilitated by computer adapted technology and remote proctoring when appropriate, in markets such as K-12, Higher Education, Fortune 500 companies, state and local municipalities and the federal government. We couldn’t have imagined twenty-five years ago that we would be delivering over six hundred thousand tests annually!