05 July 2017

Top 9 Languages To Learn For A High-Paying Career In The UK

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As globalisation continues to influence the business world, and more and more companies decide to expand overseas, the demand for bilingual and often multilingual professionals is at an all-time high.

If you can speak the language of the country where an organisation is trying to expand into, you are obviously highly valuable at all career levels. As such, with this extra – and yet crucial – skill, it may become easier to secure a higher salary than others who have the same ability, experience, and talent, simply because your language fluency makes you that extra bit more valuable.

According to a study by Adzuna (the job search engine), there are nine languages in particular that are most likely to help professionals land higher-paying jobs in the UK. These were concluded from an analysis conducted in September 2016 of over one million live job postings and here are the languages that were deemed quite literally most ‘valuable’:

1. German

Despite the UK’s decision to leave the EU, high-paying job opportunities for German-speaking roles do not seem to have faltered. This could be due, in part, to the possibility of some companies relocating to European countries like Germany in the wake of the Brexit referendum.

Some start-ups have already decided to move their operations to the capital city, Berlin, according to Berlin Partner – a business and technology support firm. Adzuna’s survey shows that German was the most sought-after and highest-paying language for professionals in the UK; out of 6,800 opportunities, the average salary was £34,534.

This kind of evidence seems to prove that German language training for business has the highest return on investment and is worth having as a professional in today’s world.

2. Arabic

If you are able to speak both Arabic and English, you are likely to be very highly considered in the UK’s business landscape as companies expand their operations into the Middle East – an economy that has become rich with oil in many areas and, as such, is a lucrative market to enter into.

There may be fewer Arabic-speaking jobs available in the UK (1,113) than for other languages, but the average salary for such positions is the second highest, at £34,122. A great example of where quantity is often not the greatest measure of return when it comes to language learning. Which is why our own Arabic language courses (and, in fact, all of our language courses) are more focused on providing specific, bespoke, and individual plans to gain the highest quality learning – rather than just getting you to book into hundreds of hours of useless classes.

3. French

French is one of the most popular languages taught in schools. Indeed, last year, the Telegraph reported that French was the most popular modern language A-level subject, though the newspaper also predicted that Spanish may soon overtake it.

Add to this the fact that French financial regulators are encouraging UK businesses to relocate to Paris after Brexit, and it is no surprise that many high-paying French-speaking job opportunities have opened up – 6,149 to be exact, with an average salary of £32.646.

Might be why we are also seeing an increase in popularity in French language training for teams in the UK.

4. Dutch

As the Netherlands is the sixth-largest economy in the EU, it is to be expected that businesses are considering expansion and/or relocations to the country of the windmills.

As such, there are many job opportunities available for professionals with Dutch language skills (1,865, according to the Adzuna study). Indeed, Dutch-speaking professionals could earn an average salary of £29,423.

5. Spanish

Spain’s strong economy and demand for UK products and services mean that there are increasing numbers of UK companies who are choosing to do business there.

Professionals who have taken Spanish language courses and can speak it well could reach an average salary of £29,262 (based on 3,106 Spanish-speaking roles).

6. Japanese

Learning business Japanese in the UK may seem obscure given the distance between here and Japan, but it is becoming an increasingly lucrative language to learn.

As Japanese business etiquette is so different from that of the UK or US, cross-cultural training is also proving to be highly useful for businesses who are looking to work with or within the Japanese market.

Professionals that already have these skills could potentially earn an average salary of £28,954. Saying this, Japanese was not listed in the top nine most in-demand languages among employers.

7. Russian

The complexity of learning Russian means that business Russian courses are highly in-demand at many workplaces – and employers are often willing to pay increased salaries for those with Russian business language skills.

The average salary for Russian-speaking roles in the UK is £28,954, based on the 1,237 available jobs in the study.

8. Italian

As the second-largest manufacturer in Europe, and a long-standing trade partner of the UK, Italy is an often obvious market for UK businesses to enter into.

Indeed, there were some 2,460 job opportunities available for Italian-speaking professionals in September last year, which offered an average salary of £28,723. Italian language courses are therefore becoming increasingly popular, and are proving a good investment for many businesses into their workforce.

9. Mandarin

Again, China may seem far away, but it is a major market for a lot of companies in the UK, given that it has the second highest GDP in the world. As such, many businesses invest in Mandarin language training to help employees learn the nuances of communicating in business contexts when dealing with Chinese professionals.

A lot of businesses also choose to hire those that can already communicate in the language. In September 2016, there were 1,246 job opportunities in the UK for Mandarin-speaking professionals. The roles pay well, too: of the 1,246 positions available, there was an average salary of £28,268.

If you are hoping to increase your value as a professional – or if you are hoping to increase the value of your existing employees – then investing in language skills (especially one of these nine!) is one of the safest ways to do so. If you would like to discuss what kind of course may help you, get in touch with us at Simon & Simon today.

Check out our recent blog on The 5 Best Languages to Learn for Business.

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