I have read this question Is it better to write a good cover letter in English or a mediocre one in the local language? but this is a different scenario.

Often, one of the requirements demanded on job posts in my country (previous question is in a foreign country) is advanced level of English. In these cases, should I send my resume written in English (indicating my level as well), or is it better to just send my resume written in the local language and indicate my level of English?

  • If you want your resume to show your proficiency, then be certain to have it spell-checked and proofread before sending. Commented Sep 17, 2013 at 12:37
  • Remember to use the CEFR framework to indicate your knowledge of any language if you're in the EU. "Advanced level of English" could be anywhere between B1 and C2.
    – phw
    Commented Sep 17, 2013 at 13:47
  • 1
    @phw I usually state that I hold a B2 certification
    – user8137
    Commented Sep 17, 2013 at 14:34
  • At a former company (US based), we hired people who were fluent in French. None of the hiring managers (those who would need to read the resume) were fluent, but our customers were in French-speaking Canada. So resumes needed to be in English. Your situation could be a mirror image of this scenario. Commented Sep 18, 2013 at 0:33
  • @JohnOglesby yes, it's the same I guess.
    – user8137
    Commented Sep 18, 2013 at 7:10

4 Answers 4


When you should write your CV/Resume/Cover letter in English:

  • In vacancy's text they ask you to do so.
  • Vacancy is published in English.
  • Vacancy is published in English and local language.

When you should not write your CV/Resume/Cover letter in English:

  • Vacancy is published only in local language and employer does not ask you to write them in English.

Even if English knowledge is required for your position, it does not mean that the person who should review your CV/Resume/Cover knows English.

You can also send your information in two languages. But i'd not suggest to do this if you are asked to send it in specified language.

  • This article about applying in the Netherlands confirms that you should apply in English if that's the language used in the ad: "Always adapt your letter (and CV) to the language of the ad, even if you are a Dutch speaker applying for a job offered in English."
    – Lilienthal
    Commented Oct 21, 2015 at 10:27
  • Great answer! I work for a Spanish company working on tech and academia related subjects. We often get some resumes in English (by people form Spain!) We simply don't read them
    – David
    Commented Jul 8, 2019 at 8:20

Just because the position you apply for requires an advanced level of English doesn't necessarily mean that everyone in the company requires an advanced level of English.

Providing a resume both in the local language and in English provides accessibility to HR or other employees who may need to evaluate you but aren't as knowledgeable of English.


Points F0G addressed above are good guidelines.

However, one must also consider that depending on the size of the organisation. They may have a few (if not more) members of staff who's level of english is at full professional proficiency . If that is the case, writing your resume in english would be your best option. Trying to translate your intent and purpose will always not transpire well with such matters. As the saying goes it may get 'lost in translation'.

Secondly, let us not forget that some international companies outside of english speaking countries (US,CAN,UK,AUS,NZ,etc). Also hire native speakers (in this case english) with the intention of strengthening their communication barriers abroad in conjunction with their applicants secondary or tertiary language skills as an intermediary communication base in their branches abroad. Either way, unless it is explicitly stated that a translation is needed. It isn't required to do so.

Personally having written my own CV/resume solely in english to the middle east and africa. I did not have any issues when it came to interviews nor the application processes.

Good luck!


So the fact is: You are an excellent English speaker, and at most mediocre speaker of the native language. Either that is acceptable for the position that you wish to apply for, or it isn't. If it isn't acceptable then you won't get the position, no matter what you do. How you write your CV won't make a difference. So logically, we can exclude that case.

Based on the assumption that they are happy to hire someone with excellent English but mediocre native language I'd write the CV in English. If possible I'd add a cover letter in the native language - just in case your CV arrives in the postroom of the company with someone who wouldn't have a clue what this letter is otherwise, to make sure it actually goes to someone reading English.

I'd say if there is nobody who can read your English CV, then you won't be getting the job anyway, so write it in English.

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