More companies are trading with international markets and this has led to growth in global supply chains. Because of this, there is greater demand for workers who have modern language skills, experience of the international business environment and are prepared to work globally.
Increasingly, companies are interested in employing people who can engage and communicate with their customers and suppliers around the world. Workers with experience of the international business environment are more likely to recognise the cultural differences around the world and understand potential trade challenges and find solutions – companies look favourably upon this skillset.
A survey of UK companies found that a quarter of those surveyed said they had lost international business to their competitors, as they did not have adequate modern language skills in their organisation. It is imperative that we move away from the attitude that modern language skills is a ‘nice to have’ attribute.
Learning a modern language will help improve employment prospects. According to a 2015 QS world university rankings report, six out of ten employers said they would give extra credit for international student experience.
Paul Sheerin, Chief Executive, Scottish Engineering: “Companies need to open their minds and see exporting as a possibility. People learning languages in school is massively important in that respect. It is not important which language they learn—it is important that they learn a language.”
Do you want to engage with schools?
As a first port of call Scotland National Centre for Languages website outlines their support to engage with schools: https://www.scilt.org.uk/Business/tabid/1297/Default.aspx
Why not get involved with Developing the Young Workforce? The Scottish Government’s Youth Employment Strategy aims to engage employers with education to better prepare young people for the world of work. https://education.gov.scot/scottish-education-system/policy-for-scottish-education/policy-drivers/Developing the Young Workforce (DYW)
Do you need language support to enter a particular market?
Talk to a Scottish Development International (SDI) export adviser about your requirements. SDI may be able to support with translation and language requirements. https://www.scottish-enterprise.com/services/do-business-outside-scotland/talk-to-an-export-adviser/overview/enquiry-form
Do you want to get involved with Developing the Young Workforce and support young people in school?
There are now twenty-one DYW regional groups covering the whole of Scotland. The groups are led by industry and are the main conduit between employers and schools. They can provide practical support to develop programmes, which allow you to engage with young people.
Get in touch with your regional group using the details below:
|Argyll and Bute||Maureen McKenna||Maureen.McKenna@uhi.ac.uk|
|Dundee and Angus||Angela Vettrainofirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Dumfries and Galloway||Tricia Hunteremail@example.com|
|Edinburgh and Lothians||Michelle Fenwickfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Forth Valley||Jen Hendersonemail@example.com|
|Inverness and Central
|North Highland||Trudy Morrisfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Perth and Kinross||Fiona Reith||FReith@pkc.gov.uk|
|West Highland||Dougie Ormistonemail@example.com|
|North East||James Breamfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Outer Hebrides||Bernard Chisholmemail@example.com|
|West Lothian||Lauren Brownfirstname.lastname@example.org|
Are you a large national employer looking to develop a programme to rollout across multiple regions in Scotland? Get in touch with Steven Turnbull who can support you to develop a programme – email@example.com