Monday, November 4, 2013

How tech companies abuse visas to hire cheap foreign labor, offshore jobs

The H-1B visa program lets high-tech companies like Microsoft bring foreign workers to America and pay them less than they'd pay qualified U.S. citizens.

Defenders of the program say it recruits the best and brightest from overseas, allowing U.S. firms to develop innovative technology.

That's baloney.

Foreign students in computer science now working in the U.S. are on average less talented than Americans, according to a study released in February by the Economic Policy Insttitute. But they are cheaper.

The EPI study concluded:
...employers prefer to hire foreign workers over similarly qualified U.S. workers, because legal loopholes in how the “prevailing wage” is calculated let them save on labor costs. The H-1B visa also ties workers to their employer, effectively rendering them captive for the duration of their visa. 
What's worse, U.S. employers don't even have to try to hire qualified Americans for high-tech jobs before hiring someone from overseas.

And there's something even more sinister at work:  the H-1B worker learns the job and then rotates back to the home country and takes the work with him, another EPI report found. The top 10 companies using H-1B visas ALL have major operations overseas.

Last week, Indian technology company Infosys paid a $34 million settlement to the U.S. Department of Justice for alleged H-1B visa fraud, according to ABC News. Prosecutors say Infosys,
...unlawfully used H-1B visa holders to fill skilled labor jobs that the Justice Department says would "otherwise be performed by U.S. citizens or require legitimate H-1B visa holders."  
Here are the top 10 recipients of H-1B visas in the US:
  1. Cognizant. H1-B Visas Received: 17,964
  2. Tata Consultancy. H1-B Visas Received: 9,083
  3. Wipro. H1-B Visas Received: 8,726
  4. Infosys. H1-B Visas Received: 6,550
  5. Accenture. H1-B Visas Received: 5,799
  6. Microsoft. H1-B Visas Received: 4,766
  7. IBM. H1-B Visas Received: 3,770
  8. Larsen & Toubro. H1-B Visas Received: 3,286
  9. HCL. H1-B Visas Received: 3,074
  10. Deloitte. H1-B Visas Received: 2,850

Only three of them -- Microsoft, IBM and Deloitte -- are headquartered in the U.S.

Yeah, we're pretty steamed about it too.