H-1B Visas: 5 Big Trends In 2014 - InformationWeek

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IT Leadership // Team Building & Staffing
08:06 AM

H-1B Visas: 5 Big Trends In 2014

What should CIOs and hiring managers prepare for in the 2014 H-1B application process? Experts say beware new twists.

Planning to sponsor applications for new H-1B visas next year? You'd better start prepping now.

Experts expect the visa, which enables non-US citizens that meet certain criteria to work legally on American soil, to be in high demand in 2014. The window for new applications opens on April 1, and if 2013 is any indication, the 65,000 available visas will be snapped up in a matter of days. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reserves an additional 20,000 H-1Bs for workers with advanced degrees.

High demand isn't the only issue new H-1B applicants should be mindful of. Here's what CIOs, hiring managers, and other stakeholders need to know.

1. Be ready to submit on -- not after -- April 1
Teleborder CEO James Richards said his firm, which makes cloud software for automating the bureaucracy employers manage when hiring international workers, is advising clients to have applications completed in advance and ready to submit as soon as the application window opens on April 1. That's because USCIS keeps the window open only until it hits a federally mandated cap of 65,000 new visas, plus a separate allotment of 20,000 new visas for workers with advanced degrees. (Successful applicants receive their visas on October 1 of the same calendar year.)

[ Are you due for a raise? See IT Budgets, Salaries To Grow In 2014. ]

In 2013, that window lasted less than a week -- and USCIS still received 124,000 petitions in that span.

"We expect it to be similarly oversubscribed for 2014," Richards said in an interview. Once the application period closes, USCIS won't accept any additional new petitions until the following year.

2. Anticipate increased scrutiny
There's a heavier burden of proof on H-1B applicants and their prospective employers these days, and that's likely to continue in 2014. Five or six years ago, Richards said, just 4% of new H-1B applications received a request for evidence (RFE) from USCIS -- additional questions or documentation needed to clarify or support the candidate's visa qualifications. Richards said that one in four H-1B applications received an RFE last year. "It's gone from 4% to over 25%, and we expect a similar rate to continue this year as well."

As a result, employers hoping to hire foreign talent need to be comfortable with potentially invasive RFEs with questions -- not just about the candidate but about the company as well. For instance, Richards has seen an uptick in USCIS scrutiny of the employer's fiscal health and viability, and corresponding requests for business plans, financial statements, and the like.

"We've even seen people asked for the leases on their office space, photos of their offices, and floor plans, just to prove that they exist," Richards said. "Before, USCIS would kind of take the company at its word, and if you had a taxpayer ID number you were in the clear."

H1-B documentation requirements may be tougher. (Source: Flickr user Sebastien Wiertz.)
H1-B documentation requirements may be tougher. (Source: Flickr user Sebastien Wiertz.)

3. Prepare for a potential paperwork avalanche
With that increased scrutiny comes paper -- and lots of it. "Companies need to be prepared to submit a lot more documentation than they used to," Richards said.

If you're disorganized or downright sloppy, expect tough sledding in the application process and potentially severe compliance penalties down the road.

"There's a lot of paperwork and audits to just make sure that you are doing what you should be doing as an employer and that what you are representing in the petition is actually true and accurate," Ronald Rose, a partner with law firm Rose Carson Kaplan Choi & White, said in an interview.

Indeed, Teleborder's Richards said such checks are on the rise, noting that both USCIS and the Department of Labor are empowered to audit employers at any time and ask to see all files related to H-1B workers. "If [those files] don't exist, you're going to be hit with heavy, heavy sanctions," Richards said.

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User Rank: Apprentice
7/14/2015 | 3:31:41 PM
Re: H-1B Gripes
As a hiring manager of technical (analytics) talent, I'd love to hire qualfied United States citizens over H1B applicants, and I do when I can. Unfortunately I rarely see them applying for the jobs I post. Believe me, it would be less of a pain to hire them than deal with H1Bs. I just need them to apply for my jobs, and they don't, as a general rule. Also, any job I post has a defined salary range based on the applicant's qualifactions and experience which is exactly the same for US citizens or H1B applicants, and the job descriptions are exactly the same for everyone too. They are not written in such a way as to exclude anyone based on language, country of origin (including U.S.), etc.
User Rank: Apprentice
4/3/2014 | 3:55:28 PM
ALL foreign workers are ILLEGAL under US law as long as Americans are unemployed. Start suing the employers, folks.

Title 8, Section 1182 - INADMISSIBLE ALIENS:

(i) In general Any alien who seeks to enter the United States for the purpose of performing skilled or unskilled labor is inadmissible, unless the Secretary of Labor has determined and certified to the Secretary of State and the Attorney General that—

(I) there are not sufficient workers who are able, willing, qualified (or equally qualified in the case of an alien described in clause

(ii)) and available at the time of application for a visa and admission to the United States and at the place where the alien is to perform such skilled or unskilled labor, and (II) the employment of such alien will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of workers in the United States similarly employed.

User Rank: Apprentice
4/3/2014 | 3:53:29 PM
Job Robbers Destroy America

Companies ruined or almost ruined by imported Indian labor

Adaptec – Indian CEO Subramanian Sundaresh fired.

AIG (signed outsourcing deal in 2007 in Europe with Accenture Indian frauds, collapsed in 2009)

AirBus (Qantas plane plunged 650 feet injuring passengers when its computer system written by India disengaged the auto-pilot).

Apple – R&D CLOSED in India in 2006.

Apple – Indian national and former Goldman Sachs board member Rajat Gupta charged with leaking Intel and Apple secrets over the phone.

Australia's National Australia Bank (Outsourced jobs to India in 2007, nationwide ATM and account failure in late 2010).

Barclays Bank – UK executive management was corrupted by Shriti Vadera, the Indian-origin economist. His advice led Barclay's CEO and other execs to rig Libor interest rates.

Bell Labs (Arun Netravalli took over, closed, turned into a shopping mall)

Boeing Dreamliner ES software (written by HCL, banned by FAA)

Bristol-Myers-Squibb (Trade Secrets and documents stolen in U.S. by Indian national guest worker)

Caymas – Startup run by Indian CEO, French director of dev, Chinese tech lead. Closed after 5 years of sucking VC out of America.

Caterpillar misses earnings a mere 4 months after outsourcing to India, Inc.

Circuit City – Outsourced all IT to Indian-run IBM and went bankrupt shortly thereafter.

Cisco – destroyed by Indian labor, laid off 55,000 in 2012, going down the drain.

ComAir crew system run by 100% Indian IT workers caused the 12/25/05 U.S. airport shutdown when they used a short int instead of a long int

Computer Associates – Former CEO Sanjay Kumar, an Indian national, sentenced to 12 years in federal prison for accounting fraud.

Deloitte – 2010 – this Indian-packed consulting company is being sued under RICO fraud charges by Marin Country, California for a failed


Dell – call center (closed in India)

Delta call centers (closed in India)

Duke University – Massive scientific fraud by Indian national Dr. Anil Potti discovered in 2012.

Enron, WorldCom, Qwest, and Tyco all hired large numbers of foreign workers from India before their scandals.

Fannie Mae – Hired large numbers of Indians, had to be bailed out. Indian logic bomb creator found guilty and sent to prison.

Goldman Sachs – Kunil Shah, VP & Managing Director – GS had to be bailed out by US taxpayers for $550 BILLION.

GM – Was booming in 2006, signed $300 million outsourcing deal with Wipro that same year, went bankrupt 3 years later

HP – Got out of the PC hardware business in 2011 and can't compete with Apple's tablets. HP was taken over by Indians and Chinese in 2001.

So much for 'Asian' talent!

HSBC ATMs (software taken over by Indians, failed in 2006)

IBM bill collecting system for Austin, TX failed in 2012 written by Indians at IBM

Intel Whitefield processor project (cancelled, Indian staff canned)

Intel – Trade secret stolen by Indian national Biswamohan Pani in 2012.

JetStar Airways computer failure brings down Christchurch airport on 9/17/11. JetStar is owned by Quantas – which is know to have outsourced

to India, Inc.

JP Morgan – Outsourced subsidiary & IT integration to India in 2009 for $400 million, lost $2 billion in 2012.

Kodak: Outsourced to India in 2006, filed for bankruptcy in Jan, 2012.

Lehman (Jasjit Bhattal ruined the company. Spectramind software bought by Wipro, ruined, trashed by Indian programmers)

London Olympics 2012 Security – Botched by India's G4S

Medicare – Defrauded by Indian national doctor Arun Sharma & wife in the U.S.

Microsoft – Employs over 35,000 H-1Bs. Stock used to be $100. Today it's lucky to be over $25. Not to mention that Vista thing.

MIPS – Taken over by Indian national Sandeep Vij in 2010, being sold off in 2012.

MIT Media Lab Asia (canceled)

MyNines – A startup founded and run by Indian national Apar Kothari went belly up after throwing millions of America's VC $ down the drain.

Nomura Securities – (In 2011 "struggling to compete on the world stage"). No wonder because Jasjit Bhattal formerly of failed Lehman ran it.

See Lehman above.

PeopleSoft (Taken over by Indians in 2000, collapsed).

PepsiCo – Slides from #1 to #3 during Indian CEO Indra Nooyi' watch.

Polycom – Former senior executive Sunil Bhalla charged with insider trading.

Qantas – See AirBus above

Quark (Alukah Kamar CEO, fired, lost 60% of its customers to Adobe because Indian-written QuarkExpress 6 was a failure)

Reebok – Massive fraud and theft in India second in size only to Satyam fraud

Rolls Royce (Sent aircraft engine work to India in 2006, engines delayed for Boeing 787, and failed on at least 2 Quantas planes in 2010, cost

Rolls $500m).

SAP – Same as Deloitte above in 2010.

Singapore airlines (IT functions taken over in 2009 by TCS, website trashed in August, 2011)

Skype (Madhu Yarlagadda fired)

State of Indiana $867 million FAILED IBM project, IBM being sued

State of New York – Hired Indian-infested CSC in 1998 to build a new system, was 33 months late and $166 million over budget, a cost

overrun of 47 percent. And then the system failed. So much for "they can do it better, cheaper, faster". CSC also holds the sole contract for

NC's Medicaid system redesign. That project is hundreds of millions over budget and years late. India, Inc. is taking its time to maximize the

amount it can grift out of America.

State of Texas failed IBM project.

Sun Micro (Taken over by Indian and Chinese workers in 2001, collapsed, had to be sold off to Oracle).

UK's NHS outsourced numerous jobs including health records to India in mid-2000 resulting in $26 billion over budget.

Union Bank of California – Cancelled Finacle project run by India's InfoSys in 2011.

United – call center (closed in India)

US Navy F-18 jet crashes into Virginia apartment building on 4/6/12 after outsourcing F-18 work to India's Tata.

Victorian Order of Nurses, Canada (Payroll system screwed up by SAP/IBM in mid-2011)

Virgin Atlantic (software written in India caused cloud IT failure)

World Bank (Indian fraudsters BANNED for 3 years because they stole data).

User Rank: Apprentice
11/27/2013 | 10:19:30 AM
Re: H-1B Gripes
Frankly, none of this is causing an IT manager much pain.  The outsourcing industry is still gettign 99.999% of it's H-1b outsourcing visa requests approved.  The H-1b is used to ship jobs overseas, displace U.S. workers, and lower wages.  It is still doing all of those things ten fold.  Over 90% of all H-1bs are used by the outsourcing industry to displace U.S. workers.
User Rank: Apprentice
11/24/2013 | 6:58:13 PM
Moral Decay
This article is  morally bankrupt. Next week should we expect an article on how to manufacture blue crystal meth.
User Rank: Ninja
11/24/2013 | 1:46:58 PM
Re: H-1B Gripes
Students are starting to wise-up. Invest 4 or 5 years of your life, get into over $100,000 of debt, and then if you graduate in a bad year, no job offer. Then, 2 years later when things improve, you're dirt in the eyes of the personnel bosses because you didn't work for nothing as a volunteer somewhere.

One of these day, when they'll need technically educated, loyal Americans, there won't be any because they opted out of this brutally exploitative system by studying something other than technology and engineering.
User Rank: Strategist
11/23/2013 | 4:49:13 PM
Hey CIOs...
Make sure you put unreasonable requirements into your job descriptions so that US candidates don't qualify...things like "must speak Hindi, must not expect benefits, looking for diversity", etc.  Make sure you're subtle about it. Better yet, get the resume of the foreigner you want to hire, then just paste that into the job description.  When they apply, you can say "Hey - look at how closely his resume meets our requirements!" If you don't do this, you might accidentally get applications from US citizens.  This is bad for your company because you'd have to pay them a bit more than you would a foreigner.  Plus we all know how lazy and stupid technical people from the US are...
User Rank: Apprentice
11/23/2013 | 11:02:46 AM
Re: H-1B Gripes
These companies hiring foreigners can manipulate salary and benefits, so if one is holding a work visa, they are aware the hired foreigner will not complain for their inadequacy. 
User Rank: Apprentice
11/22/2013 | 9:03:37 PM
Re: H-1B Gripes
Why bother hiring an h1-b when there are so many more qualified American IT workers?
User Rank: Author
11/22/2013 | 8:52:00 AM
H-1B Gripes
Which of these H-1B trends is causing you the most pain, hiring IT managers?
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