Tuesday, August 12, 2008

DoJ cracking down on H1-B only job ads

I found this article on the Register very interesting. We have watched for the past few years as these consultancy firms have eaten up all the H1-B visa allotment every year. Now, it appears that the DoJ is finally on the ball.

The problem is that these consulting firms receive a large number of the allotment each year, which in turn puts companies that truly are in need of such visas at a disadvantage. The consulting firms request these visas even if they do not have an adequate amount of work for the individuals. But, they are willing to put them "on the bench" until the necessary work becomes available, since the wages that they are paying them are probably at least 20% below market.

Ultimately, it would be nice if the system worked the way it was suppose to. Essentially, a company has a position, and they fill it with an individual that is in need of a work visa after exhausting all other avenues.

Where the Guild is dead wrong in this article is on two points. One, from our vantage point, we do suffer from a shortage of technology professionals. In the open source space, there continues to be a rather large supply/demand discrepancy. Secondly, the individuals that we work with that are on an H1-B visa are doing senior level engineering work as opposed to entry level. I realize that there are a number of them that are probably doing entry level work, but just as with everything, you can not just lump all of these individuals together.

All in all, it will be very interesting to see how this plays out. It appears that the DoJ has finally started to pay attention to something that has been going on for a few years now.

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