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Swedish language C1 test: How to hire the best Swedish experts


Technology has brought worldwide opportunities to businesses, and if you have a Swedish-based business or Swedish-speaking customers, it makes sense to hire a proficient Swedish speaker.

The fastest and most accurate way to do this is to use a C1 Swedish language test to screen your candidates.

When you use a Swedish language proficiency test at the start of your hiring process, it can dramatically cut hiring time. This is because you will already know who has a C1 level of Swedish before the interviews, so you don’t have to rely on an often inaccurate CV or candidates stretching the truth about their Swedish skill level.

If you don’t speak Swedish yourself, it can be difficult to know which candidates have the right skill level in the language.

That’s why our C1 Swedish language test is written by a Swedish language expert, so you can be sure the test is thorough, up-to-date, and at the correct level to evaluate Swedish-speaking candidates. 

We’ll go into more detail about how to use our Swedish language test as part of a wider skills assessment later, but first, here’s a short explanation of how language skills are graded from A1 to C2 in the CEFR framework.

How are language skills graded in CEFR?

The Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for languages is a simple-to-understand framework for language proficiency. It’s often considered a benchmark for language skills, and is frequently used by employers in job advertisements to ensure they find staff with the right level of language competence.

The CEFR framework consists of six levels from A1 (beginner) through to C2 (fluent/native speaker level), with each stage representing an improved understanding of and fluency in the language. If you want to hire someone with more than just the Swedish language basics, the C1 level is what you should be aiming for.

C1 level Swedish is considered proficient, and those with this skill level can do most jobs that require a more advanced understanding of Swedish. This may include editors, writers, content creators, customer success managers, salespeople, and other employees that need to be proficient in Swedish to perform well in their roles.

did you know swedish language facts

If you want to hire intermediate Swedish speakers for more junior or entry-level positions, you may decide to use our B1 level Swedish language test instead.

Those with C1 level Swedish skills can:

  • Understand a wide range of demanding, longer clauses, and also recognize implied meaning in Swedish

  • Express thoughts and ideas fluently without much obvious thinking about it or searching for expressions

  • Use the Swedish language effectively in social, academic, and professional settings

  • Produce clear, detailed, and well-structured Swedish text on complex subjects

The only higher CEFR level is C2, which even native Swedish speakers can find difficult to reach.

Next, we’ll look at the building blocks of language skills and how to assess them.

The basic foundations of language skills and how to assess them

The four basic skills in any language are reading, writing, speaking, and listening.

You want to hire employees with the right level of Swedish language ability, so you need to evaluate all four basic skills

1. Reading

This looks at how well candidates are able to understand text written in Swedish.

Most jobs require the reading of written material in some form, whether that’s simple instructions and emails, or more complicated reports and presentations.

You can easily evaluate reading skills and overall fluency by using a Swedish language test as part of your hiring process. TestGorilla’s C1 Swedish test uses a variety of texts written in Swedish to assess candidates’ reading skills.

2. Writing

How well can candidates express themselves in written Swedish? Those who work in entry-level roles may not need more than basic Swedish writing skills, but other jobs that involve a lot of writing or text-based communication require excellent written Swedish. Our Swedish language proficiency test puts candidates through their paces in grammar, vocabulary, and sentence composition.

Did you know you can also customize our C1 Swedish language test to suit your needs? You can ask candidates to provide a written essay or answer to a question of your choice. This can be a useful addition to the test questions to further assess their writing skills in Swedish.

3. Speaking

How well can your candidates talk with other Swedish speakers? Roles at all levels require some form of speaking with others.  Employees must be able to communicate and discuss important verbal information, either in-person, on the phone, or by video call.

How can you evaluate candidates’ verbal Swedish skills? An effective way is to create a custom video question as an addition to our Swedish language test, and ask the applicants to record their answer in Swedish.

You may also decide to conduct phone or video interviews in Swedish after you have made a first assessment of candidates’ language and role-related skills. However, if you are not a proficient Swedish speaker yourself, you will need to find an expert Swedish speaker to conduct the interviews and help evaluate the applicants.

4. Listening

Listening skills are just as important as the other three. If an employee can’t understand spoken Swedish well enough, it could lead to problems down the line. For example, if they don’t grasp the correct meaning of verbal instructions, it will lead to mistakes and misunderstandings that may be costly for your organization.

To evaluate listening skills, our Swedish language test includes having the candidates listen to a recording in Swedish and answer the associated question. You could also conduct brief interviews in Swedish to assess their listening skills.

How to use the C1 Swedish language test to hire Swedish experts

There’s nothing more frustrating for a recruiter or hiring manager than finding out at interview that a promising candidate just doesn’t have the right level of language skills

key areas in the swedish c1 test

This discovery leads to not being able to proceed with the application. It’s back to square one and starting the search all over again, with the wasted time and extra stress that this entails.

When you use our Swedish language test at the start of your recruitment process, you avoid all this. Instead, you get accurate, data-driven results that you can use to evaluate which candidates have the right Swedish language skill level, and which just don’t cut it.

You can then draw up your interview shortlist secure in the knowledge that you won’t get any candidates in the next stage who don’t already have C1 level Swedish language skills.

Those who score well on our C1 level Swedish language test are able to express themselves spontaneously, and without hesitating or searching for expressions

They can understand demanding, longer texts and recognize implicit meaning in both written and verbal communications. Successful candidates can also use the Swedish language flexibly and effectively for social, academic, and professional purposes. 

They are able to produce detailed texts on complex subjects, showing a controlled use of organizational patterns, connectors, and cohesive devices.

Below are a couple of sample questions from the C1 Swedish language test:

swedish sample test question c1

The sample question above tests the candidate’s ability to read and understand the text so they can pick the correct statement as their answer. The question below requires candidates to listen to an audio recording of spoken Swedish, and decide whether the statement is true or false:

example swedish c1 question

You may choose to use the Swedish language test as a standalone test, or for existing employees, but we do recommend using it as part of a pre-employment skills assessment for the best results.

Why not build an assessment around the C1 Swedish language test?

An employee’s ability to speak and understand Swedish is only part of their role.

While our Swedish language test will certainly show you who has the strongest Swedish skills, it won’t tell you if the candidates possess the other skills necessary for the workplace. 

These could be soft skills, personality traits, or any other technical skills required to succeed in the role.

That’s why TestGorilla enables you to create a pre-employment assessment to gain an in-depth understanding of the candidates’ strengths and weaknesses in a variety of areas, and not just their Swedish competency

TestGorilla assessments consist of up to five separate tests chosen by you, which the candidates take in one sitting

For example, if you chose to use the C1 Swedish language test as part of your assessment, you could add up to four other tests related to the job role you are hiring for.

These could be any combination of our tests, including:

You can also see how well candidates align with your organization’s culture and values by using our Culture Add test if this is important to you.

How do skills assessments work?

Pre-employment assessments at TestGorilla combine three key factors to give an extensive insight into your candidates and their skills:

  1. Premade tests: Choose up to five tests to build an assessment that will give you a well-rounded review of your candidates. As mentioned above, these tests can be from any of the listed categories. We have over 200 tests (and counting), so to get a bigger idea of the range of tests we provide, take a look at our test library.

  2. Custom questions: We touched briefly on these earlier. Custom questions are optional – you canadd up to 10 personalized questions to your assessment (multiple-choice, open-ended, or media-led). Tailoring your tests this way gives you the opportunity to ask questions specific to the job you’re hiring for.

  3. Candidate performance score: Evaluate which candidates performed better than others based on their answers to the questions provided.

The results from the assessment can then be used to decide which candidates you want to take forward to the interview stage.

We have a lot of information about using our assessments (far more than we could add here), so you might find it helpful to read our comprehensive guide to creating and editing an assessment, which will hopefully answer any questions you may have.

Find your next Swedish language experts with TestGorilla

We hope you found our guide to hiring Swedish language experts helpful, and that it’s given you inspiration to consider using skills testing instead of relying on more traditional hiring methods like the CV/resume.

There are many C1 level Swedish speakers looking for employment. By combining our Swedish language test with a wider skills assessment, you are taking the right steps to hire skilled employees faster.

Sign up for your free plan to get started on building your first assessment

If you want more information or to see how our products work first-hand, book a free 30-minute live demo with our sales team, who will be pleased to answer any questions you may have. If you’re ready to dive right in, head over to our pricing page and check out our range of plans to suit all businesses.


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