IT Employment

Our forums are currently in maintenance mode and the ability to post is disabled. We will be back up and running as soon as possible. Thanks for your patience!

General discussion


Ethnic Discrimination in Consulting Job in NYC

By Why Me Worry? ·
I was recently emailed about a contracting assignment for a bank that is looking to upgrade/migrate their existing NT network to AD and Windows 2003. One of their requirement is that the candidate be fluent in Mandarin Chinese. WTF?? If a candidate is qualified technically, why should he/she be fluent in Mandarin Chinese for a company doing business in the United States? Is this a case of ethnic discrimination in which the bank is owned and operated by Chinese and all they want to see are Chinese employees or contractrors working for them? See the last line of the job description below and tell me that it doesn't make you fume in anger.

Windows migration engineer
to migrate Windows NT desktop & apps to Windows 2000.
The initial estimated contract period of performance is 3 months with the possibility of multiple extensions.


- Develop and maintain migration plans
- Determine/migrate security requirements for applications/servers.
- Develop and communicate documentation for new platform and architecture to include functional specifications and design documents.
- Determine integration requirements and plans for disparate systems.


- One person needs to have SQL Server authentication (NT) experience.
- Must have Windows Active Directory experience
- Must have prior experience of migrating from Windows NT to Windows 2000 environment.
- Experience with design, implementation, and migration to a new production Windows 2000 domain w/ Active Directory.
- Knowledge of desktop operating systems - Windows NT/2000/XP
- Experience administering a LAN/WAN - TCP/IP environment using Windows NT, 2000 and 2003
- Experience with VPN software.
- Knowledge of DNS, internet infrastructure, and IP informational tools.
- Experience rebuilding servers and workstations.
<B>- Fluency in English and Chinese Mandarin</B>

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

Possible reasons

by faradhi In reply to Ethnic Discrimination in ...

The first and most likely is that they have their systems running in Chinese languages. Their documentation may be in chinese. They may have key personell that only speak chinese. They may have offices in China.

This is not discrimination as long as they would hire any race that can speak Mandarin.

Collapse -

I doubt you will find many non Asians who speak Mandarin

by Why Me Worry? In reply to Possible reasons

But if they are operating on US soil, I would expect their systems to be configured for US locale and English language. It's like going to France and expecting their systems to be setup for English language and locale. Call me too patriotic, but this is just plain wrong.

Collapse -

I personally know two that do speak Chinese

by faradhi In reply to I doubt you will find man ...

And if I owned a company in France, I would expect my french employees to speak english as well.

Collapse -

I personally know two too

by JamesRL In reply to I personally know two tha ...

Both are married to women who immigrated from China.

In Quebec there is a law that states that the official language of business is French. It isn't rigourously followed. Many large corporations with small branches in Quebec ignore the rule. There are a few employees who don't speak english well.

In the Toronto office, we can and do manadate certain jobs to be biligual.


Collapse -

Actually, you HAVE to speak English in France to do business

by georgeou In reply to I doubt you will find man ...

First of all, I know many Caucasians that know Mandarin (some better than me and they can even read/write).

Second, France or any European nation expects all business to be conducted in English. You probably won't get a good job in France without the ability to conduct business with your fellow European nations and English is the official language of the EU.

Third, for all you know this could be an import/export company based in China with a branch office located in NY USA. There are plenty of jobs in the restaurant business that require managers to be able to speak Spanish.

So long as they're not saying "we will only hire Chinese people" then it's NOT racism. If they're saying Mandarin is a job requirement then that's perfectly legitimate.

Personally I can't stand racism or job quotas, but this is NOT racism unless the employers refuse to hire anything other than Chinese people. I have personally been looked over for a job even when the hiring agency in a County job officially rated me as the #1 candidate but I lost out to the #2 candidate who was a female. It doesn't feel good and it isn't right.

Now as for the issue of learning English, I completely agree as someone who immigrated in to this country and learned the language. I would go as far as making English the official language and bar bilingual education in public schools. They did this in California against intense lobbying from some in the Hispanic community but even some of the worst critics of the ban on bilingual education became supporters after the miraculous improvement of English scores among the Latino students. I even believe all government business and all official election material should be conducted in English since it is an official requirement to know English before you can become a naturalized US citizen. However that should NOT exclude the use of other languages in private businesses.

Collapse -


by CuteElf In reply to I doubt you will find man ...

HSBC is one of the biggest WORLD WIDE banks. And it is also based in HongKong / China area.


If management is living in China/ Bejing, and they have a Large HQ office in NYC, how is this unreasonable for them to request a bilingual speaker?

Information about installs and updates on project will need to be sent to the top of the food chain, I really dont see how this is an issue.

We as Americans require people to speak english, as it's THE business language, and computer programming language! But for a manager to understand it, they need to learn E too...

Why shouldnt we learn C?

Personally, with the way the world is going nowadays, I think learning Chinese would be very helpful. At least to break the ice.



Collapse -

I Agree

by jstuhlmiller In reply to BUT....

I know a few non asians that speak fluent mandarin. I agree that although its a bummer if you are looking for work and see a posting like that but i believe it is a legitimate requirement especially if all the data hosted is in a mix of english and mandarin windows operating systems etc etc

Collapse -

Dude-get your head out of the sand!

by cjb996 In reply to I doubt you will find man ...

The Net is global you better get the skills to compete! I'm from the US and have lived in Asia for the past 20 years honing my skills in language & culture. The Chinese are developing their own operating systems in Chinese - they also happen to represent 1/4 of the world's population with a booming economy - big market to overlook!

Collapse -

So ???

by portable In reply to I doubt you will find man ...

You can take this several ways. This thread seems to take the negative. You could also say this may be a high profile position and they want to be sure that the contractor has no problem communicating with upper management. Secondly, I have yet to see a job description where NOTHING is negotiable. And finally, while it is unusual, would you be suprised at a French company asking for a contractor who also spoke French? I think that would be tossed off as "ok...". I used to speak Mandarin (Uncle Sam trained me back in 1970) and it is not that hard to pick up if you're trying, I found it easier than Spanish or Russian.

Collapse -

Were You trained at the Presidio?

by X-MarCap In reply to So ???

I have found the best instruction for languages is at the Presidio. I went through classes in French,Spanish,Mandarin,Wu,and Greek there.

Related Discussions

Related Forums