Enhancing and Promoting International Business Communication

Enhancing and Promoting International Business Communication supports SMEs to improve their international competitiveness.

It has been found that, companies which undergo a proper (i.e. regulated) communication audit tend to operate more effectively in selling their goods and services into markets where their mother tongue is not spoken. By signing up and taking part in the audit scheme, the companies are taught intercultural skills and communication skills, which are reflected in an increased annual turnover.

The EPIC scheme helps businesses overcome language and cultural barriers in international trading.

EPIC offers the business person and entrepreneur an innovative way of trading internationally by using a business manual specifically designed for the exporting industry. It promotes a multi-cultural Europe within a common European framework by operating from a common platform and distinguishing each company’s individual recipe for success through a close up auditing process.

EPIC offers the private business sector a unique opportunity to adopt a scheme, which when implemented will help raise the individual trader’s turnover and create new possibilities for expanded cross-border trade.


Evidence of the Need for the LCA in Future Business Planning

peopleRegarding the specific question of whether and to what extent foreign languages will be needed in certain, as yet unknown markets, and which of these languages are required by the labour market, the "Languages for jobs" report concludes in a general manner that the demand for foreign languages and communication skills is steadily rising on the general European labour market - and not just for English.

More and more employers are adopting international recruitment strategies reflecting the fact that they operate in a multilingual society and/or compete on global markets. Language skills are considered by employers as one of the ten most important skills for future graduates, and according to a recent Eurobarometer study[1], 40 % of recruiters in the industry sector highlighted the importance of language skills for future higher education graduate Surveys and studies aiming at an overview of the labour market needs for (foreign) languages have been prepared in the UK[2], Austria[3], Switzerland[4] and Sweden[5] at national level. 



[1]           Eurobarometer 304, 2010 ''Employers' perception of graduate employability''.

[2]              Sean Mulkerne and Anne Marie Graham, Universities Council of Modern Languages (2011):Labour market intelligence on languages and intercultural skills in Higher Education: http://tinyurl.com/6gw91bv. The survey of National Centre for Languages showed an important level of demand for language skills in the UK.Through monitoring the language requirements in vacancy notices, more than 2000 requests for 20 different languages were found over a period of three months in 12 areas of activity.

[3]              Fremdsprachen für die Wirtshaft (Foreign languages for business), a compilation of research papers and reports published by the Austrian Institut für Bildungsforschung der Wirtschaft (2008). Report in German available on http://www.ibw.at/media/ibw/fb143.pdfIt appears from these reports that English is far from sufficient as a lingua franca for doing business in Central and Eastern Europe, where German and Russian are still frequently used for international business.

4.The Scuola universitaria professionale della Svizzera italiana prepared a survey on the linguistic needs in the canton of Ticino of Switzerland of about 300 companies. The survey, which was based on a questionnaire, also revealed that there is a significant need in the canton of Ticino primarily for the knowledge of German and French, in addition to English.

[5] Multilingual skills provide export benefits and better access to emerging markets, Ingela Bel Habib 2011 http://www.sens-public.org/spip.php?article869