Half of job applicants admit to using words they don’t understand.

Words worth.

A survey by CV writing professionals, Purple CV, found that many employees don’t fully understand the business jargon used in their workplace. Research among 3,000 Brits which tested them on The Oxford English Dictionary’s updated words resulted in an average score of just 56 per cent with people in the North West of England scoring the lowest on average at 50 per cent. Scots, on the other hand, are more clued up scoring 69 per cent on average.

Purple CV asked job applicants some follow-up questions about their understanding and use of words when applying for potential jobs. One-fifth said they consciously use industry-appropriate jargon in their CVs in order to catch the eye of a potential employer. Knowledge is power, it appears, as 43 per cent of applicants feel it is important to learn the industry jargon before beginning your first job.

Purple CV also found that 53 per cent of Brits have admitted to using a word in a sentence without knowing its true meaning. On a more uplifting note, however, 47 per cent of respondents are constantly trying to improve and expand their vocabulary, showing a keen willingness to keep up with the times.

The survey also asked British employees about how well they understand industry talk in their workplace. A third admitted to using business jargon in an interview without fully understanding its meaning and half of respondents said they have sat through a work meeting without understanding the business jargon being used.

First impressions are everything, especially when it comes to job interviews. The study found that 77 per cent of managers would be more likely to hire a candidate who uses a wide and varied vocabulary, and 81 per cent of employers say that a job candidate using a word in the wrong sense is unforgivable. Interestingly, 55 per cent of managers say they dislike slang or abbreviations being used in the workplace.

“It’s important to know how to communicate effectively and appropriately in your field of work,” says Andrew Arkley from Purple CV. “Learning the language will help improve your application and interview skills and hopefully, get you hired.”

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