Home » How to List Language Skills on a Resume (The Best Ways!)

How to List Language Skills on a Resume (The Best Ways!)

Communication is one of the essential parts of one’s life. But it becomes much more important whenever you are working in any industry or even trying to find a proper job.

Sometimes communication also depends on the job role. For example, a project manager or customer care services job profile will have to contact or communicate with more people than a content writer, graphic artist, etc.

All the job roles must communicate to maintain a proper workflow in the industry. This helps them keep a record or track everything happening in the company. This is one of the most efficient and coordinated ways of doing work. It can take place in any way; for example, around 99% of companies believe that Gmail is a more formal language to communicate.

Many people are interested in speaking or learning several languages entirely different from their native language. This gives them a great opportunity in the future.  This is because it opens the door for many professional opportunities. It also helps them to make them unique from their other competitors.

We recommend inputting language skills in the resume whenever you apply for a job. It generally increases your chances of getting shortlisted and getting a call from employers or recruiters.

The HRs always look for a candidate who can communicate in different languages to increase the range of their customers or clients. You can work hard and dedicate yourself to learning new skills and adapting to challenges if you want to grab better opportunities.

In this article, we will talk more about the languages that you should list in your resume. We will also highlight how to record or mention the language skills in your resume. This will help you in getting shortlisted for a particular job.

Importance of Language Skills

Importance Of Language Skills
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As we talk about language, we must first know why it holds so much importance in one’s life.

As we know, language skills play a vital role in the resume and one’s life.

You know your native language, so you can communicate with people from the same country or have skills in the same vocabulary. But a company gets thousands of people’s applications who already know the native language. Still, they may have only a few people, or a hundred, who have a basic knowledge of any other language. For example, an American applicant that speaks Spanish or other languages will be preferred by the recruiter over some different American prospect who just speaks English.

Recruiters typically want a person (who speaks many languages) since locating them abroad is much easier and provides them with a significant profit. They always desire to get a superior candidate to join their organization. The main reason behind this is that it can be a very efficient and influential part of the organization.

Mentioning many languages will make you look like an individual who takes the challenging task. The key to integrating the language in a CV is to use the correct terminology to represent your ability level. Reading, hearing, pronunciation, and talking are all components of having a command over the languages. Still, it’s critical to differentiate your level of language skills for different companies for better understanding.

Besides this, some international or national scales can help you depict the appropriate level of the language, which we will discuss further in this article.

Examining and reading the job description to find some of the most in-demand linguistic skills among employers can always help you make a better choice of including or not including the language skills. Examining the sample resumes determining which language skills should be included that are identical to the job titles and how they can impact the recruiters.

Effective communication has always been an essential part of any organization, even if the purpose is to update colleagues on new policies, ensure safety, prepare for weather disasters, etc. If you do not have a proper command of the language, it cannot help you in several aspects. An employee who controls the other language can interact with international clients without a translator. Knowing any different language also shows that the person has cultural knowledge.  Due to this, the business of a particular organization can become globalized.

Most Requested Languages

Foreign language skills are included for inclusion by a broad range of different businesses on the online jobs portal.  Spanish, Chinese, French, Arabic, and Korean are the top five foreign languages sought by workers in the US. Fluency in Spanish is in high demand for client service positions in the banking, finance, and automotive parts industries. Meanwhile, the medical, educational, communications, or finance businesses target Korean speakers. French and Arabic are the other two languages famous among HR’s having a global goal. Chinese languages are in short supply in the leisure and high retailing sectors.

When Should You Mention Language?

As we mentioned earlier, getting fluency in a different language always helps you. What will you do if you know the primary language but don’t have any fluency like a native individual?

While applying for a job, read the job description. If it does not must any more language, or if you feel that listing your language skill will not help you, it’s better to avoid mentioning it in the resume. For example, if the job does not must any social interaction, you should avoid listing to the language.

A few of the job postings where you can include language skills are listed down below:

  • When they are relevant to the job description.
  • When the job role requires social interaction with the clients or customers.
  • When you are not experienced in the industry

In What Way You Should List The Language Level?

In What Way You Should List The Language Level
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Whenever you list a language in your resume, the employer gets an idea that you may be fluent in that language. But what if you are not fluent and have a basic knowledge of the language. This confusion can give the employer extra hype or hope, and when you go for the interview, their expectations will be shattered. So, it’s better to state a language level in which you have fluency.

Then international standards of language skills must be followed to distinguish skills. These are listed down below:

1. Basic Level

This level indicates that you can understand the basic phrases and words but do not have any conversation level.

2. Intermediate Level

If you think you are at this level, you must be able to have a conversation in this language. This level also indicates that the person can make some grammatical errors and may be unable to read the language.

3. Conversational Level

This level means you can handle the conversation but not. Whenever a native speaker comes to talk to you, you find it challenging to find out the right words that should be used during the conversation. Besides this, the employer knows that you must not be very fluent, but you will be able to have a command over it with time. Hence a positive impact will be created.

4. Proficient Level

This level suggests that you are very comfortable speaking the language but not at the same level as the native speaker. It also states that you have an extensive vocabulary in a particular language.  It also shows that you may have the proper skills in finding out the correct words.

5. Fluent Level

This level suggests that you are excellent in communication and are at the same level as the native speaker. You can have a conversation with a native speaker and do not have any problem reading, writing, or speaking the language.

6. Native Level

 This level means that the language is your mother tongue, and you are very comfortable speaking, writing, as well as reading the language

Where to Put Language Skills On Your Resume?

Where To Put Language Skills On Your Resume
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We will always recommend you read the job description; if you don’t have any related qualifications, educational background, skills, etc., you don’t need to apply.

Generally, you can put the language-related skills in 2 places. These are listed down below:

Language Section

You can make a new language section in your resume. You must complete this section only if you have language skills. Strong communication skills are a crucial selling point when you’re seeking employment. For example, for a digital marketing or interpretation job, you should always provide a separate section for mentioning the language skill.

Skills Section

The first alternative is to include the languages as central points in your primary application-provided space. This is best for job searchers who speak a single or many two extra languages and would not want to devote far too much space in the CV to listing language.

Extra Ways to Showcase Your Language Skill Level

Extra Ways to Showcase Your Language Skill Level
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There are many ways in which you can explain the stories of your skills to the employer.


It stands for Interagency Language Roundtable. It is a grading scale; the American government generally uses that. The scale depicts the range of no skill (i.e., 0) to native or bilingual talent (i.e., 6). If anyone wants to work with the American government, they will use the ILR system to know their skill level. This test can be taken in online mode as well.


It stands for Common European Framework of reference for language. It is an international scale used to check the ability of a language. This scale is used in Europe. It is a 6-point scale and ranges from beginner (A1) to native level (C2). The formal certification generally depends on the language and can be awarded based on online and via in-person exams.


This stands for the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. This aims to increase teaching skills at all levels. The four primary levels are superior, advanced, intermediate, and novice. These basic levels have been subdivided into low, mid, and high.

Skill Exams

Various languages have their own government-issued standardized skill tests. This can be listed in the resume and will have a more significant impact. For example, TOCFL and HSK scores can be recorded if someone is a Mandarin Chinese learner.

Language on CV and LinkedIn

Language on CV and LinkedIn
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The most crucial factor to consider when selecting whether to use linguistic skills on your CV is relevancy. Language abilities impact the chances of getting recruiter calls. But this isn’t true when the language skill/knowledge isn’t relevant to the job.

Don’t start in the most frequent languages. Rank your skills according to the level of competency. If you have a language degree, employers will also want to understand the level of competency in the languages you list.

If you mention your language ability on your CV, include this data in the LinkedIn profile. Another advantage of maintaining your language competence on LinkedIn is that co-workers can provide comments or references for your language skills. You have the option of adding a certification, which can raise the chances of getting shortlisted.


A vital skill in a different tongue is among the essential abilities that job seekers can offer prospective employers. The desire for prospective employees with specialized language skills is determined by several factors, including the business and also the business’s geographical area. If a local language skill is listed as one of the “recommended” or “necessary” skills on a job posting, you must include it in the resume.

Linguistic abilities are always exceptional, and in some instances, they are a need for certain positions. You must always present your talents in the correct sequence, use the proper structure, and provide certifications to prove your linguistic competence. It may appear that displaying the language skills of your CV is simple, but there are several factors to consider.

It is also essential to examine the role you’re looking for, include it, and emphasize it. If it isn’t fit, then you must not have it.

Don’t forget to list all the country languages you are fluent in! It’s easy to overlook your native language since you think it is so evident. If you do not have linguistic skills, do not even put them on your resume. Although English is a crucial part of the work, it will not make sure to stand apart. Thus it will be of little use to you, as it’s a very common language.