How to hire Mandarin speakers with an online Mandarin test

How to hire Mandarin speakers with an online Mandarin test
ShareShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedIn

With 1.1 billion speakers worldwide, Mandarin is the second-most widely spoken language.[1] Many companies are aiming to build partnerships and make deals with Mandarin-speaking organizations and customers. 

One of the best ways to achieve these goals is to employ Mandarin speakers.

Employees who can easily understand and communicate in the language will help you build strong relationships with clients and partners and seize opportunities that would otherwise be out of reach. 

There are a few ways to test applicants’ Mandarin language skills during hiring, but one of the most efficient methods is to use a Mandarin Chinese proficiency test.

This test enables you to instantly see who has the skills needed to communicate with Mandarin speakers and help you achieve your business goals. 

In this article, we’ll look into the different ways to assess Mandarin proficiency during recruitment and give you a step-by-step guide to hiring Mandarin speakers. 

Let’s dive in.

How can you assess Mandarin proficiency during recruitment?

There are different ways to assess Mandarin fluency during the hiring process, but some are faster, more efficient, and more objective than others. Let’s look at the different options: 

assess mandarin proficiency recruitment

1. Rely on candidates’ self-evaluation

This is the least reliable method of all because candidates often embellish details in their CVs and overestimate their own skills.

Not everyone does this, of course, but if you simply look at CVs, you have no way of knowing for sure whether applicants really possess the abilities they claim to have.

2. Ask applicants for a language certification or diploma

Another approach is to ask candidates for a language certification or diploma, such as the Hanyu Shuiping Kaoshi certificate for non-native Chinese speakers. This is a better option than CV screening because it requires proof that candidates have completed an objective assessment.

But depending on when the candidate took the exam (a year or five years ago, for example), it might not be an accurate evaluation of their current language skills.

Additionally, some applicants might not have a diploma to prove their language skills, but this doesn’t mean they don’t have the language expertise required for the job. Screening out potentially skilled candidates isn’t a great strategy, especially if you’re already struggling to find good talent. 

3. Create your own assessment procedure or exam

You can also administer a mini-exam that you create yourself. For example, you could speak Mandarin with candidates and evaluate their writing skills by having them write a short essay on a given topic.

This option could help you gain an accurate understanding of applicants’ current Mandarin skills, but it is resource-intensive and requires a Mandarin speaker from your team to be present for all interviews.

4. Use a ready-made Mandarin Chinese proficiency test

The best alternative to the above methods is to use an online Mandarin test to evaluate your candidates’ language skills quickly and efficiently.

With a B1 Chinese Mandarin test like TestGorilla, you can identify candidates with intermediate Mandarin language skills, which are sufficient for conveying important information and discussing simple topics with clients, peers, and partners. 

Why use a Mandarin B1 test during hiring?

Using an online Mandarin B1 test during recruitment helps you evaluate candidates’ language skills objectively, accurately, and efficiently. 

You should use the Mandarin B1 test in the early stages of your hiring process before you interview candidates.

If you use TestGorilla, you can combine this test with other skills tests as part of an assessment, enabling you to evaluate applicants’ cognitive abilities, role-specific skills, or proficiency in other languages

This enables you to:

  • Identify applicants who have the language skills and other skills necessary for the job

  • Filter unqualified candidates to speed up hiring

  • Get rid of the lengthy and inaccurate CV-screening process 

  • Eliminate hiring bias and make your hiring process more objective

A Mandarin B1 test will help you see who has the right intermediate-level language skills to communicate in Mandarin about simple topics encountered in a professional or social setting.

You can use this test to hire customer service representatives, sales reps, or any other employees who need basic Mandarin proficiency to perform well on the job. 

How can you hire Mandarin speakers? A step-by-step guide

Hiring Mandarin speakers isn’t difficult if you use the right approach. If you need a ready-made blueprint, you can simply use our step-by-step guide below.

So, how can you hire Mandarin speakers quickly and easily? Here are the steps you should follow:

how hire mandarin speakers

1. Define the skills you need to assess during recruitment

What else are you looking for in your candidates besides Mandarin proficiency?

Write down the skills that are necessary for the role in a job description. Make sure you differentiate between must-have skills and skills that are nice to have.

2. Post a job ad and collect applications

Next, write a compelling job ad, post it on job boards and social media, and start collecting applications.

To source Mandarin speakers, you can also post your ad in language exchange or expat groups on social media (but remember to ask for moderators’ approval first because not all groups allow you to post job ads). 

3. Create a skills assessment featuring a Mandarin test

You can now build your skills assessment based on the job description you created in step 1.

With TestGorilla, you can add up to five tests to an assessment. Make sure you include a Mandarin B1 or C1 test to objectively assess applicants’ Mandarin proficiency at the desired level. 

4. Invite applicants to take the skills assessment

You don’t need to screen CVs first: You can replace the lengthy and tedious resume-screening process with skills tests entirely.

This will enable you to build a faster and more objective recruitment process in which you can assess candidates’ skills – including Mandarin proficiency – accurately without any guesswork or bias.

5. Analyze results

Tests are graded automatically, which makes the process simple. You simply need to look at the test results and compare applicants to see who meets your criteria for the job before inviting them to an in-person or online interview.

6. Invite the best applicants to an interview

Next comes the interview stage. During interviews, you can further assess candidates’ Mandarin-speaking skills if needed. Of course, interviews are an excellent opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of your applicants’ skills and qualities.

We recommend using structured interviews, which are more objective and less prone to bias than unstructured interviews. 

7. Make a hiring decision

By this point, you’ll have plenty of information about each applicant, enabling you to make the right hiring decision.

Negotiate conditions and a starting date with the person you’ve selected, and don’t forget to inform the rest of the candidates that you haven’t retained their applications.

Ask the best applicants whether you can contact them about future positions that might be a good fit for them – this is an effortless way to widen your talent pool. 

Hire the best talent with an online Mandarin test

Hiring Mandarin speakers isn’t complicated if you use the right tools in your recruitment process, such as the B1 Mandarin test by TestGorilla.

With this test, you can quickly and efficiently identify candidates with the right language skills and interview only those who meet your hiring criteria. 

TestGorilla’s skills assessments enable you to easily find and hire the right talent who can communicate easily with your partners and clients in numerous languages – including Mandarin Chinese. Sign up for a TestGorilla free plan.


1. “The most spoken languages in the world”. Berlitz. Retrieved August 27, 2022.

Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare

Hire the best candidates with TestGorilla.

Create pre-employment assessments in minutes to screen candidates, save time, and hire the best talent.

The best advice in pre-employment testing, in your inbox.

No spam. Unsubscribe at any time.

TestGorilla Logo

Hire the best. No bias. No stress.

Our screening tests identify the best candidates and make your hiring decisions faster, easier, and bias-free.

Free resources

Anti-cheating checklist

This checklist covers key features you should look for when choosing a skills testing platform


Onboarding checklist

This resource will help you develop an onboarding checklist for new hires.


How to find candidates with strong attention to detail

How to assess your candidates' attention to detail.


How to get HR certified

Learn how to get human resources certified through HRCI or SHRM.


Improve quality of hire

Learn how you can improve the level of talent at your company.


Case study: How CapitalT reduces hiring bias

Learn how CapitalT reduced hiring bias with online skills assessments.

Case study

Resume screening guide

Learn how to make the resume process more efficient and more effective.


Important recruitment metrics

Improve your hiring strategy with these 7 critical recruitment metrics.


Case study: How Sukhi reduces shortlisting time

Learn how Sukhi decreased time spent reviewing resumes by 83%!

Case study

12 pre-employment testing hacks

Hire more efficiently with these hacks that 99% of recruiters aren't using.


The benefits of diversity

Make a business case for diversity and inclusion initiatives with this data.