With about a quarter of all U.S. homes primarily speaking languages other than English, and at least 350 languages spoken in homes nationwide, companies today are looking to increase their bilingual resources. Razumjeti? Ymmartaa? Comprende?
In fact, the California Department of Insurance just launched an online search tool to help clients find bilingual insurance agents, brokers, adjusters, and analysts. It offers matches for nearly 40 different languages with a handy geographic locater for a myriad of insurance types. Finding an agent to break it down to you in Russian, ASL, or Vietnamese just got a little easier. You can check it out here.
Companies looking to hire bilingual employees mirrors decades of population growth in the U.S., which has expanded with 59 million immigrants in the past 50 years, according to the Pew Research Center. Having bilingual employees on staff helps a company reach a greater client niche, and builds trust with existing and new clients. Reliable employees who are fluent in both English and another language can help the company expand globally and make partnerships with greater ease.
Some companies offer incentives to employees who are actively engaged in learning a second (or third!) language. Covering the cost of tuition, awarding pay raises or bonuses, or offering time off or recognition awards are ways a company can support its staff in multi-language pursuits.