Multilingual hiring can be hard! But we are noticing more and more companies having to do it, especially throughout Europe. Companies are setting up hubs for development/sales/customer support and need to hire for different cultures and languages.
As a European based company ourselves we always had a focus on this. Although the business language in many European countries is in fact English, many companies will still post jobs and hire in the countries native language. This also helps companies reach a wider talent pool. They do this by utilising language specific job boards and appearing in language specific searches.
For this reason we always understood that to work with our European customers especially, we had to ensure an easy to use multilingual feature. This allows companies to set their job language and the given fields and buttons are automatically translated by HireHive.
There are of course many things to consider when hiring in a different language but here are some of the ones that we think are most important.
Top Tips for multilingual hiring
Language specific job boards
The world is awash with job boards. There are general job boards, job boards for almost every industry and also job boards that are location specific. For example Stepstone operates in Germany and in 24 countries around the world but is found under IrishJobs in Ireland. Do your research on what is used in the location/language you are hiring for. You might be surprised that the go-to job boards that you are used to for other markets might in fact be different.
Job title and description
It is important to note that a direct translation of a role or posting the title in English may not be the best idea here. Keyword searches will be hugely important and to reach the right audience you will need to ensure that your job is appearing for the right reasons. Have a look at the job boards used in the location and look at how jobs are described here.
Utilise social media
Some platforms are universal (Linkedin, Facebook) however there are also platforms that are more popular in certain countries than others. This is work looking into further. For example Xing is a widely used platform in German speaking countries with 15 million members while Viadeo is a popular platform in France with 6 million users. If you are promoting a job it is also useful to use the right platform to ensure you are getting a return on your investment.
Creating content in the language you are hiring in is a good way to reach a wider candidate audience. If you do not have the resources to do this internally there may be a content creation service that you can use. For example many content creators are on Upwork. With this you can give the topic, key points etc. and have content created externally. Be sure to check out the freelancers reviews and it is of course important to review the content to ensure that is meets company policies.
If you already have an employee base that is from a certain location in which you are hiring, referrals can be hugely helpful in reaching more candidates. Simply set up a referral campaign (HireHive can help automate this) and ask your employees to share your job with their networks. This will give you a reach into candidate networks that you may not otherwise get to. One of our clients set up an entire off shore team of 12 developers in Spain using this method. Data shows that referred candidates are 55% faster to hire and 88% of employers said that referrals are the #1 best source for above-average applicants*. Take a look at our guide to setting up effective Referral Campaigns here.
When hiring for another language it can be difficult to test the candidates proficiency in that language if you don’t have it yourself. A great tool for determining someone’s language skills is to use Assessment providers. Once such example is Indeed Assessments who have a wide range of language tests pre-created on their platform ready for you to use or you can set up your own.
Finally candidate management from the start of the hiring process to the end is really important. Having an application form for the job you are hiring for in the required language is a really great start. This allows the candidate to apply through their native language. Following on from this, it is really important to be clear with the candidate how the process will continue. Will the communication language change? Many companies will hire in English for a specific location but the language requirement is actually different. It is always helpful to outline this clearly in the job description. If your application form is in one language you should also ensure that at least the first communication sent to the candidate is also in that language. HireHive can help here with customised email response options that are automatically sent to the candidate on application.
HireHive is the leading European recruitment software for companies that are hiring multilingual talent. If you are looking for a system to help you manage your hiring take a look and get started today with our easy set up and free trial.
*Source HR Technologist, 2018