IT Employment

Bill Gates to discuss the need for H-1B visa increase

On April 1, requests for H-1B visas will be opened to business. Last year, all 65,000 visas available were spoken for in the first two days of availability for the current fiscal year. As Bill Gates celebrates the 50th anniversary of the U.S. House Committee on Science and Technology, it is expected that he will also address immigration and the need to increase H-1B visas.

Bill Gates will be in Washington to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of the United States House Committee on Science and Technology on March 12. It is expected that he will deliver a speech on education reform. It is also expected that he will discuss immigration -- specifically H-1B visas.

From BusinessWeek:

It's not that the committee has jurisdiction over immigration, but for Gates there's an inextricable link between U.S. technology competitiveness and the country's policies on foreign workers. Gates has consistently pressed Congress to increase the cap on so-called H-1B visas, which are issued to skilled workers from foreign countries. Easing the restrictions, say Gates and his counterparts at other leading tech companies, including Cisco Systems, would provide a bigger pool of would-be workers.

Currently, the government issues 65,000 of the visas each year, a number many companies argue is so low they can't hire enough worldwide talent. Microsoft says the cap prevented roughly 300 job candidates last year from taking posts at its Redmond (Wash.) headquarters. Opponents say lifting the cap would take jobs from U.S. workers.

It seems that everyone has an opinion on the H-1B issue. To keep the debate simple, it seems to boil down to this. Business says that there is a shortage of skilled Americans for certain jobs and that they must therefore look beyond the border to fill the gap. Americans say that H-1B visas go to people in jobs that could indeed be filled by Americans. While there have been multiple studies done on the issue, it seems that the results are based on who funded the study.

Another question to consider is where the visas are going. Last year, the number of requests far exceeded the number of visas available, closing submissions in just two days. But who were the winners?

From Computerworld:

Indian offshore outsourcing firm Infosys Technologies Ltd. received 4,559 H-1B visas in fiscal 2007, the largest number received by any company, according to the latest figures of "initial beneficiaries" from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. But this new list from USCIS also shows that H-1B use has spread far and wide. It includes more than 29,000 H-1B recipients, both private companies and institutions, such as universities, some of which are exempt from the 65,000 visa cap. Nearly 20,000 of the companies and institutions listed received only one H-1B visa in fiscal 2007. For that fiscal year, India-based offshore outsourcing companies continued to dominate the top 10 H-1B recipients, with the exception of Microsoft Corp., Intel Corp. and Cognizant Technology Solutions Corp., which runs major offshore operations.

If the goal of the H-1B visa is to provide access to permanent candidates with specific skill sets, why is a contract house leading the list of visa grants? Or is the intent that while the H-1B worker is in place, the company is intended to be growing a candidate already in house to take over the work by the end of the H-1B's time? If that is the case, why would Microsoft or Intel be on the list of grants? To put it simply, is the program intended to provide a skilled worker for a short period, or is it intended to permanently fill a role? These are questions that Senators Chuck Grassley and Richard Durbin would like answered.

From BusinessWeek:

Critics such as Grassley and Durbin charge that the outsourcers are abusing the U.S. program. The work visas, they say, are supposed to be used to bolster the U.S. economy. The idea is that companies like Microsoft, Google, or IBM can use them to hire software programmers or computer scientists with rare skills, fostering innovation and improving competitiveness. Instead, critics say, companies such as Infosys and Wipro are undermining the American economy by wiping out jobs. The companies bring low-cost workers to the U.S., train them in the offices of U.S. clients, and then rotate them back home after a year or two so they can provide tech support and other services from abroad. "Valuable high-tech jobs are on a one-way superhighway overseas," said Durbin in an e-mail.

Microsoft's answer to its need for more H-1B workers than it could secure visas for was to open an outpost in Richmond, B.C. Canada has less restrictive immigration laws, and Richmond is in the same time zone as Redmond. This arrangement allows people at the Richmond campus to work in sync with their Redmond counterparts.

This continues to be a hot topic, and it is doubtful that anything will be done to change the current status. After all, it's an election year. But look for the debate to continue in 2009.

The H-1B program and outsourcing in general has impacted people in the tech industry in one way or another. Share your experience. Does your company have H-1B workers? Are you an H-1B worker?

More information:

Gates to advocate for increase in Quota for highly skilled foreign workers (CQ Politics)

Senator describes black market in H-1B visas (Computerworld)

43 comments
john
john

THE CURRENT H-1B VISA PROGRAM MUST BE ABOLISHED OR REFORMED The H-1B visa program was originally created to assist American employers who were having trouble finding American high-tech workers for their businesses. It allowed a fixed number of foreign workers come to the United States to ???temporarily??? fill those positions while the American companies and the federal government invested time and money in upgrading the training of American workers to meet the new skill levels required. Although the program was originally designed to benefit American businesses, it has now become a program that benefits foreign companies with offices in America, rather than American companies, because the majority of the H-1B visas are now going to foreign-owned companies. Data just released by the federal government shows that offshore outsourcing firms, mostly from India, dominate the list of companies awarded H-1B visas in 2007. Indian outsourcers accounted for nearly 80% of the visa petitions approved last year for the top 10 participants in the program. These statistics should set off some alarms in congress that the H-1B visa program is not working as it was intended. Aqccording to data from the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services, Infosys Technologies and Wipro, two companies based in Bangalore, top the list of visa beneficiaries in 2007, with 4,559 and 2,567 approved visa petitions, respectively. Microsoft and Intel were the only two traditional U.S. tech companies among the top 10. Microsoft received only 959 visa petition approvals, or one fifth as many as Infosys, while Intel got only 369. How is this helping American workers and American businesses? The H-1B work visa program was supposed to be used to bolster the U.S. economy by helping American-owned companies. Under the program, American companies can use the speciality visa to hire foreign software programmers or computer scientists with rare skills in order to encourage innovation and improving competitiveness. Instead, foreign companies such as Infosys and Wipro are using our own government program to undermine the American economy by wiping out American jobs. These foreign-owned companies are bringing low-cost workers into the U.S., training them in the offices of American business clients, and then rotating them back home after a year or two so they can provide low cost, out-sourced tech services that causes American IT workers to lose their jobs. How is this helping American workers and American businesses? Even though approximately 80,000 Americans lost their jobs in the first two months of 2008, incredibly some members in the House of Representatives have introduced legislation to help these big foreign-owned international corporations bring in an increasing number of foreign workers that will put even more Americans out of work. Since its inception, the H-1B Visa program has been rampant with fraud. In the first half of 2006, the Programmer???s Guild, a group representing U.S. worker interests, filed over 300 discrimination complaints against companies who posted ???H-1B visa holders only??? ads on internet job boards. It???s obvious that these foreign-owned companies are only targeting foreign workers and undermining the system by bypassing the American worker. How is this helping American workers and American businesses? While a bill to reduce illegal immigration (HR-4088) is stalled in Congress with the House leadership refusing to bring it to the floor for a vote, Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-Arizona) has introduced ???The Innovation Employment Act??? (HR-5630) that would increase the cap of H-1B visas from 65,000 a year to 130,000 a year. In addition, there would be no cap on H-1B applications for foreign graduate students attending U.S. colleges and studying science, technology and related fields. Currently, there's a 20,000 student-a-year cap on visas for graduate students in all fields. The legislation would eventually increase the H-1B cap to 180,000 and the total number of foreigners admitted under this work and graduate education proposal could reach almost 300,000 a year. To make matters worse for the American IT workers, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) has introduced the ???Strengthening United States Technology and Innovation Act??? (H.R. 5642), which would TRIPLE the current H-1B visa cap to 195,000 in 2008 and 2009 and Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif) wants to make Rep. Smith???s increase permanent. How is this helping American workers and American businesses? There is no real shortage of American information technology workers. It???s just that the large high-tech international companies want to turn these hard earned information technology skills into as cheap a labor commodity as possible at the American workers??? expense. On March 12th Bill Gates appeared before Congress calling for an increase in H-1B visas. Two days later, without soliciting comments from any representatives of American IT workers, Congress introduced two bills that would double or triple the H-1B base cap. Why weren???t the representatives of American IT workers allowed to be heard? Could the average of $25 million dollars a year that members of congress receive in bribes (I mean campaign contributions) from the Computer Equipment and Services Industry, have something to do with this? Here???s some interesting campaign contribution statistics compiled by the Center for Responsible Politics at www.opensecrets.org that shows why congress may be so eager to support the requests of the Computer Equipment and Services Industry over the American IT workers. Here???s how much the high-tech industries have contributed to federal campaigns: 2000 - $38.9 million 2002 - $26.7 million 2004 - $29.0 million 2006 - $18.4 million 2008 - $15.5 million (partial) These two bills (H.R. 4088 and H.R. 5642) will do nothing to curb the fraud in the H-1B visa program and they will have serious consequences for American citizens that are employed in the information technology field. The proposed legislation will displace even more American IT workers and outsource their good paying, high-technology jobs to foreign off-shore companies. We must learn from our mistakes. The current H-1B visa program has not served the best interests of American workers nor American companies. The current program has actually helped foreign competitors, with branch offices in the USA, hire almost no Americans and shift as many American jobs overseas as possible. How is this helping American workers and American businesses? The current H-1B Program, as designed, is detrimental and harmful to the welfare of American workers and American high-tech businesses. It should be abolished. In it???s place and only if it is needed, H-1B type legislation should be written in a way that actually benefits American companies, American workers and American students thinking of embarking on a high-tech career. Any new H-1B Visa legislation should be simple and have the following criteria to help Americans only: IT MUST BENEFIT BOTH AMERICAN WORKERS AND AMERICAN COMPANIES: The H-1B Visa Program was originally designed to help American companies. Any new H-1B Visa Program should apply ONLY to American-based business entities and the H-1B visas should only be issued to foreign employees after proof is supplied that no American worker has either applied or is otherwise qualified for the position. BENEFIT FOR AMERICAN STUDENTS: Companies that hire H-1B visa holders should pay an annual fee for each visa holder they hire to be used to fund scholarships for American citizen high school and college students interested in high-tech careers and enrolled in STEM educational programs (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics). Here is a link to the Position paper in PDF format: http://www.freedomcandidate.com/PositionPaper-H1BVisaProgram.pdf Here is a link to the Position paper in Word format: http://www.freedomcandidate.com/PositionPaper-H1BVisaProgram.doc John Wallace Candidate for Congress NY's 20th Congressional District www.FreedomCandidate.com

KBall1
KBall1

I am signing up on one .... for fun ... see if the have access to jobs not posted anywhere else.

ITAppGuy
ITAppGuy

I am one of the victims of these H1B mills, even though I realized it quite late. I was also recruited by one of the top5 h1b mill. This company pays me well below the market rate. But I can not complain because my visa status is dependent on them employing me. Also, if I protest, they will send me back to India where there are hoardes of qualified engineers ready to come here. Infact, these h1b mills are so cheap that they do not prefer sending guys who are married. Their ideal candidate is some one who is bachelor so that he can share apartment, car, etc with other 4-5 guys and live cheaply. Initially, this new guy is just happy with the fact that his meagre US salary is more than salary in India. Its only after 3/4 years that he realizes that his pimp company is skimming the top. But by that time, its too late. He goes back in despair and the company bring a new guy and the cycle repeats again. This exploitative relationship works to the advantage of both the H1B mills and their clients. After spending 7 years in IT, I have come to realize that I have to get out of this situation. I am already thinking of leaving this field to setup my own business in india. I totally sympathize with American folks in IT.

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

There's nothing quite like being free.

KBall1
KBall1

I am an IT professional and American. I am skilled at both hardware and software and it is impossible (or next to) for me to land a job. I personally do not want more visa's allowed ... we are headed into a recession and that is why I am jobless now. Bill gates and others would rather "import" workers that can make 75% of an American's salary doing the same job as "top dollar". My friend works with people who are brought over, and hotel bills for 11 months are paid for along with food and they make less than she does and she makes good money outside of Boston. We need to keep the current cap and give American's jobs to help stimulate our market ... not put more Americans on unemployment as they want the market wage and don't get the job, and someone willing to work for less and work harder from another country takes a job an American is capable of doing. Nothing is going to be improved if Americans keep on losing jobs and people with Visa's keep on getting them. It is just going to send us into a downward spiral faster than the one we are currently in. Edit: I have not seen it mentioned here yet but companies also receive tax breaks for hiring some people, and I am not entirely sure but they can probably get a tax break along with the reduced salaries they offer employees that are not American. If our skill sets and educational system here in America are lacking, that is one thing. But why would persay a person from India or where ever come to America to goto school on a visa then try to get a job here if our education was lacking?

emboraprapasargada
emboraprapasargada

You said you are skilled at both hardware and software, Microsoft is hurting for people with your skills, they reather avoid the whole H-1B fiasco if they had local guys like you lined up. Give it a try, who knows you may land a nice job there since you won't be making the ache_uno_be_75_percent_discounted_salary

SmT2
SmT2

I am an h1 worker and while I am in the industry, I am not an IT graduate. And yes, I am Indian. That said, I just had to reply to this post because I feel that there are so many angles to this issue that a clear conclusion is hard to reach. What was not pointed out is a huge number of students who graduate with US degrees ( and pay for them no less) and are not able to obtain an h1 due to these insane number of applications. In addition to the cap above, there is a quota of 20,000 visas for US masters students and that too got filled up in about 2 weeks. What does that say? There is a huge number of talented non-american folks who WILL demand the same salary level, but are not getting the visa. And I agree with the Senators on the point that the program needs to be reexamined. As horribly as it reflects on Indian companies, those guys applied blindly just to make sure they have visas for people they MAY send in the future. This effectively blocked out a ton of people who were already in the country and were left to the mercy of a LOTTERY system to get work authorisation. That is total BS. Even though this is a tech forum, we also need to realise that IT folks are not the only ones who need the visas! What about the many other scientists, architects, management,etc ( yea even fashion designers and what have you) who lose out on a well-deserved chance to contribute to this economy due to this cap? I think that the cap and the visa rules should be revised to accomodate people who have studied here. Further, workers from a certain industry that the US is lacking in, should get higher preference than from an industry where there is enough domestic talent. Finally, outsourcing companies should only be issued short-term L1 visas which limit the stay, etc for the worker. P.S - This is probably a rant because personally I am bitter and angry about the obviously over-forecasted applications by Indian companies. Even though I paid top $ for a graduate degree here, I had to leave the country for some months and almost didn't get a visa because of their actions. I am not alone - I know dozens of US graduates who were essentially on the bench or had to go back, while incompetent (*&(** from these companies came here and worked on H1s.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

and you have echoed their sentiments. H1-B mills like Infosys, TCS, Satyam, et cetera, snap up all the applications for their low-grade code monkeys and the folks with the REAL skills, like you are stuck with either working for one of these scam-artists or hoping you are lucky enough to snap up one of the H1-Bs they missed.

seanferd
seanferd

Thanks for posting that bit of enlightenment.

Tig2
Tig2

I had hoped when writing this that we would hear from H1 holders as well. Your view of the situation is good to hear. I have a friend who was required to return to India even though his wife was not yet finished with her education, because his H1 expired. As he had already extended once, he was unable to extend again. He had a month to settle his US affairs and pack house. We hope that he will be able to return with his family soon. But there are no guarantees.

Fregeus
Fregeus

When they say that there is 65k H-1B visas per year. Are the recipient of those visas have to re-apply the year after that or is the visa good for more than one year? I ask this question to know if there is no more than 65k visa users in the US or 65k visa users that enter the US every year. I really cannot believe that this so called shortage is really truly happening. Like i read in another article, if that were true, the salaries would be going through the roof once again (like before Y2K). It smells fishy.....and I hate fish!!! TCB Edited for grammar

Tig2
Tig2

65,000 H-1B visas are granted each year. They are generally good for five or six years from date of issue. If employment ends, the visa holder must either find another sponsor or return to their country of origin. An existing visa holder does not have to reapply each year. I like fish, but can't stand that fishy smell.

Fregeus
Fregeus

If there is 65k new workers every year. And they are in the US for say 5 years. Plus the 200k they apparently don't know where they are. That means that there is approximately 525k H-1B workers in the US right now. Does anyone know how many of those are for IT positions? Does anyone know how many total IT positions there are in the US? Does anyone know how many people, employed or not, that are considered to be in the IT field? Just trying to do the math. TCB

colleen_yuan
colleen_yuan

FOCUS ON MEMBERS OF THE Senate Judiciary Committee on Immigration, http://judiciary.senate.gov/subcommittees/110/immigration110.cfm Members such as??? Edward M. Kennedy, MA (Chair) (202) 224-4543, http://kennedy.senate.gov Joseph R. Biden, Jr., DE (202) 224-5042,http://biden.senate.gov Dianne Feinstein, CA (202) 224-3841,http://feinstein.senate.gov Charles E. Schumer, NY (202) 224-4124,http://schumer.senate.gov John Cornyn, TX (Ranking Member) (202) 224-2934, http://cornyn.senate.gov Jon Kyl, AZ (202) 224-4521, http://kyl.senate.gov Jeff Sessions, AL (202) 224-4124, http://sessions.senate.gov Please urge these Senators to cosponsor the legislation described in the previous message. ============================= TO CONTACT O T H E R CONGRESS MEMBERs For Senators??? http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm Most (if not all) Senator website Web-Mail interfaces accept messages from all zipcodes. For House of Representative members??? http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW_by_State.shtml Most Congressman website Web-Mail interfaces require your zip-code to be withing their district. To send message to other Congressmen, simply look for a relevant zipcode associated with their local district office locations. Hardcopies of letters may also be stuffed into envelopes and addressed to all 535+ members of Congress using Mailing Labels available here... http://clerk.house.gov/member_info/index.html MS Word... http://clerk.house.gov/member_info/wordmemberlabels_110.doc

colleen_yuan
colleen_yuan

Are you seeing a lot of Discriminatory job descriptions and websites as if "H-1B Visa" is a Bonafide Occupational Qualification, BFOQ? Report all such incidents to the DOJ-OSC... 1) Go here... http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/osc 2) Click on the "FAQ & Forms" button (top center) now you are here... http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/osc/htm/facts.htm 3) In the upper hand side, click on "Charge Form", then "English" now you are here... http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/osc/pdf/engfrm.pdf Fill out the form. In section 9, "Describe the Unfair Employment Practice (use additional sheets if necessary)" Add this... "Recruiting In Bad Faith: 20 CFR 655.805 - What violations may the Administrator investigate? http://www.dol.gov/dol/allcfr/ETA/Title_20/Part_655/20CFR655.805.htm (9) Failed to recruit in good faith, as required by ??655.739 (if applicable); 20 CFR 655.739 - What is the "recruitment of U.S. workers" http://www.dol.gov/dol/allcfr/ETA/Title_20/Part_655/20CFR655.739.htm EEOC Regulations (collection for Age, National Origin, religion... everything) http://www.eeoc.gov/policy/regs/index.html EEO: EEOC 1614 Equal Employment Opportunity http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_06/29cfr1614_06.html EEOC 1607 UGESP, Uniform Guidelines On Employee Selection Procedures http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_06/29cfr1607_06.html AGE: EEOC 1625: "Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967" http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_06/29cfr1625_06.html NATIONAL ORIGIN: EEOC 1606: Guidelines on Discrimination Because of National Origin (USA) http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_06/29cfr1606_06.html

colleen_yuan
colleen_yuan

Dear Senator (or Congressman): The H-1B and L-1 guest workers programs have ???RESERVED??? millions of high-value jobs for citizens of foreign countries. And, We The People have a problem with these ???Fake Job Ads??? which consistently and routinely EXCLUDE United States Citizens during the hiring process??? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_cNnK2M4OTs http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCbFEgFajGU http://www.numbersusa.com/index If you agree that United States citizens should be INCLUDED (rather than excluded) during hiring procedures, then We The People urge you to co-sponsor this legislation as follows S.2368 ???SAVE Action of 2007??? CRS Summary: http://tinyurl.com/yoy3eg (note: according to NumbersUSA, S.2366 is identical, see http://www.numbersusa.com/index ) S.1035 H-1B and L-1 Visa Fraud and Abuse Prevention Act of 2007 CRS Summary: http://tinyurl.com/yrneb9 HR 2538 Defend the American Dream Act of 2007 CRS Summary: http://tinyurl.com/2x7qb7 HR 2504 L-1 Nonimmigrant Reform Act CRS Summary: http://tinyurl.com/ytdvud HR 548 To establish a Congressional Trade Office (DeFazio) CRS Summary: http://tinyurl.com/2l39vr NOTE: To view the above legislation, go to http://thomas.loc.gov Under *Search Bill Text*, enter the Bill Number. Select the *Bill Number* button. Click the *Search Button* The truth is, there is no shortage of software engineers in this country. Nor is there a shortage of H-1B Visas nor foreign workers according to??? 1) The Urban Institute 2) The Sloan Foundation 3) The Rand Corporation 4) Harvard University 5) Duke University 1) The Urban Institute Urban Institute report disputes shortage of STEM grads. Into the Eye of the Storm: Assessing the Evidence on Science and Engineering Education, Quality, and Workforce Demand http://news.cenews.com/article.asp?id=1035&page=1 http://tinyurl.com/37omtw < - - - the report http://tinyurl.com/3yohn9 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kVA5UA38nE 2) The Sloan Foundation Annual Report ??? Education and Careers in Science and Technology http://www.sloan.org/report/2006/sciwork.shtml 3) The Rand Corporation Is the Federal Government Facing a Shortage of Scientific and Technical Personnel? http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB1505/index1.html http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/2005/RB1505.pdf 4) Harvard University How and Why Government, Universities, and Industry Create Domestic Labor Shortages of Scientists and High-Tech Workers http://www.nber.org/~peat/PapersFolder/Papers/SG/NSF.html 5) Duke University Study: There Is No Shortage of U.S. Engineers http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,2111347,00.asp Lou Dobbs No Need for Cheap Foreign Labor http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9LXvGD5HgIg Hire Americans First http://www.HireAmericansFirst.Org Norm Matloff Professor Ph.D., UC Los Angeles Immigration Forum???s March 2006 E-Newsletter on Miano???s Study http://heather.cs.ucdavis.edu/Archive/NFAP.txt Video Documentaries http://www.outsourcecongress.org/pictures/video Coalition for the Future American Workers http://www.americanworker.org American Engineering Association http://www.aea.org/pdf/AEA_POSITION_Workforce.pdf Programmers Guild http://www.programmersguild.org THANK YOU UNEMPLOYED ELECTRICAL & SOFTWARE ENGINEERS

thomas_crowe
thomas_crowe

H-1B Visas are not driven by a lack of skills in the US, it is driven by companies not willing to pay US Citizens for their skills and experience. They can bring over an Indian worker and pay them 35-45K per year to do a job that an American worker would want 90-100K per year to do. The answer lies in standard of living. The Indian worker making a fraction of what a US worker is making will still have a higher standard of living here than they had in India. They have no motivation to demand more, until they have been here for a period of time. Then they start demanding higher salaries, and the larger companies just bring in a replacement worker on a new H-1B visa and the cycle starts over again. I strongly believe in capitalisim, but you don't take jobs away from your own citizenry to sell them to overseas workers. If Indian workers skills were so much better than, and not just cheaper, why are the largest technology companies formed and based in America?

emboraprapasargada
emboraprapasargada

You probably had a lousy education in college and skipped the math class too, how is it possible for anyone, Indian, Chinese, Martian, even American to have a higher standard of leaving here making 35K a year, I?m sorry if that is all you are making. Having an H-1B does not mean selling the job overseas, it means kipping someone well educated from overseas here, they don?t need the H-1B visa if they are overseas capice? Do you think training is so cheap that we can just turn around and fire someone because they demanded a better salary? If I?m building an expensive and complex machine do you think I should fire my best engineer because he/she wants a better pay and get a ?replacement? for a fraction of the salarie? where is my product meanwhile? I lost the chance to sell my product because I? so greedy I fired the guy that was building it, oh well at least I have this very cheap guy that I just brought in, hopefully I can get him/her trained fast? What a load of c!!! And by the way the wonder of American company this days has a cofounder Сергей Михайлович Брин, that sounds kind of NOT American to me, do you think this Russian dude is robbing poor Americans of their jobs or is he creating a ton jobs and money in America? Stop winning get an education and things will be better for you, if you don?t, in about 10 years you can trade your job with a low paying job putting shoes together, or some other unskilled job since the real high paying jobs will go to people with higher education and willing to work hard to get there but well they could not stay in America, so they went back home and took their jobs, ideas and companies back to their countries, of course after they went to school here and better themselves, thanks for all the fish?

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

It has nothing to do with this guys background. Let's say the market rate for a given skillset is $80K. All of a sudden the marketplace is flooded with people with the same skillset who are happy and willing to work for, say $40K. Do you think that employers will continue to pay $80K for that skillset? Of course not. The pool of people who previously were working for $80K will either have to accept working for a lower wage, or find something else to do. And people who were in school working towards an engineering degree expecting to make >$40K are going to be very dissapointed. The net effect is that they will change majors, thus making the alledged "shortage" worse.

VikingCoder
VikingCoder

I think the whole program needs to be examined, but it needs to be closely related to US educational policy. The real question is, why are we not producing enough skilled workers of our own? Especially as we're heading into possible recession, with unemployment rates rising?

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

...why should kids seek a difficult degree that requires 5 or 6 years of school when they face the fact that Microsoft and others want to import people to do that same job for only $40k or so? There are plenty of degrees that can get you better money with far less time, money and work.

thomas_crowe
thomas_crowe

The forgein workers are simply willing to do the work for less, becuase they have such a poor standard of living in the home country that they can have a better standard of living here for about half what an American worker would need to maintain their standard of living.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

There is pleanty of unskilled and disinterested locals but the skilled locals who find the job below them because they can't support there next $10k entertainment centre upgrade is also part of it. Sadly, I'm on the realist side of your point; my current job uses only a small part of my skill set and does not result in enough budget for my own computer upgrades, let alone family entertainment centre, after monthly bills are paid. Boo.. damn reality of living on a budget but any employment beats being out of work. I do hope your country get's it's government and polocies like this "program" straitened out. I'd probably be an obama backer where I a citizen based on running a clean campain and displaying intelligence above the others. That's politics which is always only personal opinion though. Best of luck in the comeing vote.

KBall1
KBall1

If that is the case, and I know it is becoming more and more to get people with the same or more skills for less, to replace people that may have been there for years and have experience and deserve what they earn. I do not want to undercut my value as if you lock your self into a job at say the 10th percentile, then you are stuck at that rate ... no room for raises or pay increases no matter what the skill set is. It is times like these I wish I became a health care professional ... they have 100s of job postings and opportunities and those jobs are rarely if ever cut.

KBall1
KBall1

I go by salary.com and use the appropriate figures based on the variations per job I apply for. I tend to put negotiable there as well as salary.com is only a ballpark figure and does not take everything into account. I usually aim for the 25th percentile and another one all depending. I only ask market price and that is too high most of the time it seems. Companies are not willing to invest in anyone anymore. I just want to survive and save, won't get into social security, as it prollie won't exist by the time I need it. I don't want a big 10 room house with a 56" wide screen, none of that. Enough to survive and save and be comfortable.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I don't think anyone goes into an industry to be poor. There are many cases of people have higher financial needs beyond toys. Luckily, medical coverage is not an issue for me yet but I could sure use a salary increase to counteract basic expenses for home and raising a child. Unfortunately it seems the local workers have a higher majority of people pricing themselves out of the market. Sadly, the corporate drive to ever decrees expenses for the benefit of shareholders is surely no without blame. I also understand the frustration of the job market. With 30 years experience with computer systems; I can't even get an interview it seems. In my case, I'm collecting the certs to reflect the undocumented experience I already have. Each one seems to send my resume a layer further through HR before hitting a dead end. In your case, medical needs are no fun at all but I don't know the job market or your background enough to really comment.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

Both my wife and I have medical issues. I would love to take that $10K you'd spend on the entertainment center and buy some really good hearing aids (which are not covered by medical insurance) I also have family who are undergoing financial hardships, so I would like to help them too. Then, after paying for the corrective surgery my daughter may need, I'd like to have some money left over. I didn't go into this field to be poor.

TheGooch1
TheGooch1

That and the fact that about 200,000 expired Visa's are unaccounted for...the Gov just plain doesn't know if they left the country or not. Since we already cannot manage the program, it doesn't make sense to consider increasing the size of the problem. There are many other reasons to shrink the program, but I will not go into them here as that is off-topic.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

One of the primary businesses where I grew up is farming. Not living on a farm or even an apple farm specifically put one in the minority around those parts. Every year when the apples ripened, in came the migrant workers to help harvest the fruit. This did not damange the economy or lead to the end of civilization as we know it; contrary to what volunteer "home watch" members may think. It was really very simple, the apples had to come down. Some people did not think that honest work out doors was bellow them but for the most part, none of the locals wanted the employment. How does this relate? Education, as you point out. If the competitive skills where available locally there would be less reason to be importing skills. Education is very quickly becoming day care for ages 5 to 21. No child left behind?.. yeah.. because we're all blind enough to miss how that's working out. How is the increasing numbers of students going into maths, sciences and engineering? This forum is pretty much garanteed to explode with H1B arguments from both sides. It would be nice to see some focus on the reasons that H1B exists in the first place. I honestly don't know enough about the government program to be on either side of the topic. Last, to those who would like to see this degenerate into a "illigal aliens are destroying our country" debate; there's an awful lot of unused land in the States and a whole lot of jobs that none of the locals are willing to do. Take a moment to remember the ideals your country was founded on and that you are an imigrant too. "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

zlitocook
zlitocook

To ask a question. Who did this work before the H1B stuff? It was the poor, the uneducated and the people who could not do any thing else. Before that it was slaves and the people who were over run like the American Indian. Why is this done and who keeps it going? Well let me see... the people who make the most money from cheap labor. The government, the people who give the most to the government and those that profit from both. So we give the million illegal aliens citizenship and then they can make minimum wage. They will make too much then to give a profit to their employers so they need to import more illegal?s. Sorry Rant.

g.salakirov
g.salakirov

I'd like to make point, as I'm actually on the other side. I'm a Bulgarian developer, and I've been in the web business for a while now. Though I'm not exactly thrilled by the U.S., and I'm not considering moving there at all, there are a few things that can make me consider applying for a H1B or even H2B ( I'm still eligible for the later). As I'm getting a formidable salary here, money is not an object. It's more like the ability to participate in bigger projects, or give in to a company that's trying to take the best from the latest and greatest of new tech. So what I can state is that I'll do it for the personal experience. It's like "Join the army, see the world" :) If that helps you any better, we have heaps of trouble with India developers here too...

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

They're not the problem, it's the corporations.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I found this to be a good high level overview of the immigration issue. The best way to describe it is; "What if Michael Moore actually interviewed both sides of the issue." These two admit there bias openly but try provide both sides of the issue too blow apart the BS while not condeming the value in either side's opinion. (if there is any) penn teller immigration 1/1 penn teller immigration 1/2 penn teller immigration 1/3 (Disclamer): The information is worth seeing once and considering honestly even if you still don't agree with the point of view in the end. I have no idea of the legality other than it's on Youtube and hasn't been removed. It is relevant to the topic though.

Tig2
Tig2

On March 12, Bill Gates will be in Washington to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of the US house Committee on Science and Technology. Among the topics he will discuss is the need to increase the number of H-1B visas granted each fiscal year. As an IT professional, you have likely been impacted by H-1B and offshoring in your career. Do you think that the number of H-1B visas made available (65,000 each fiscal year) is sufficient? Should it be increased? Should it be decreased? Or does the program over all, as suggested by Senators Chuck Grassley and Richard Durbin, need to be re-examined?

rmacleod
rmacleod

If there is a shortage of skilled labor at Microsoft then gets gradating students tracked into Microsoft programs. That is easy. Check Microsoft support from India. It is cheap and many Americans who have purchased Bill's product, Vista, now have to learn another language to get support. Even those who pay for support can have a hard time understanding the dialect. Americans can do these jobs but not cheaply enough. This is all about lowering costs period.

mfrafique
mfrafique

As majority of the top companies are in USA and to be a IT professional for more exposure you need to work on these companies.

computertech1226
computertech1226

Spelling and grammatical errors are one of the reasons Americans are opposed to allowing more H-1B Visas.

rpb
rpb

the reason that poster wants an increase is because he's from PAKISTAN, do you? Nah... he's just looking out for our American companies and economy.

raycamara
raycamara

Bill Gates doesn't speak for me, or several thousand IT professionals, and he has it wrong. we should be educating our youth, and educating those professionals from within. "The enemy of my enemy is my enemy." Way too many gates (pun intend) have been left open. Close them already. We have the smarts to do the job ourselves, and the whole system nedds rethinking. For Bill, "Shut the___ll up.

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