December 7, 2022

Visa h1b: Licensed from Twitter, meta-workers are a source of talent for American IT companies


IT services and staffing firms in the United States may have a pipeline of potential employees following mass layoffs by tech companies such as Twitter and Meta Inc.

Many of those affected by the layoffs are workers with H-1B work permits.

They will not be able to stay and work legally in the United States after 60 days following the end of their employment contract.

Recruitment firm Quess Corp, which recently launched its professional recruitment business in the United States, said it was a good opportunity for companies to hire people who had been laid off.

“We are mapping this…there are layoffs in many pockets, in startups and in mature environments. For someone who already has a visa and can migrate…this is a good opportunity,” said Guruprasad Srinivasan, Managing Director of Quess Corp.

Most IT service providers have increased their hiring in the United States in an effort to be closer to customers, especially after two years of working remotely due to travel restrictions following the Covid-19 pandemic.

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“…employers in the United States need H-1B workers, especially in the IT sector. However, these employers cannot advertise that they have jobs for, say, H-1B visa holders, as this would constitute a discriminatory recruitment initiative and could expose the employer to legal action from American workers and/or other legal action or regulatory penalties,” said Poorvi Chothani, managing partner at immigration law firm LawQuest.

However, companies are likely to tap into their existing employee networks to informally reach out to these workers and recruit them.

Recruitment companies, which place workers in IT companies for short-term projects, could also become potential employers, as many companies turn to recruitment companies to meet their demand for highly skilled tech talent.

Deepali Khadakban, CEO of US IT services company Precision Technologies, said his company would continue to hire technical skills, including those affected by the layoffs.

“A challenge for these employees might be getting used to the standard market salary packages given that some of the tech companies had hired talent at quite premium packages to attract them,” Khadakban said.

Most IT companies have increased their reliance on contractors or short-term workers in the United States to fill the supply gap.

Several people have started posting on the microblogging platform Twitter, offering to connect those affected by the layoffs with startups that are hiring and want to sponsor work permits. But it may not be easy for everyone.

“Hiring lateral talent is largely a zero-sum game where talent is traded within the same company cohort. With all Big Tech metrics currently in the doldrums due to layoffs and hiring freezes or slowdowns, opportunities shouldn’t arise,” said Kamal Karanth, CEO of employee recruiting firm Xpheno.

Due to record low hiring volumes in recent months, employees affected by the layoffs are expected to encounter “an unwelcoming hiring climate”, he added.

H-1B employees typically operate on a slippery slope depending on their H-1B employer, and the technology sector is particularly vulnerable, said Neil A Weinrib, founder of Neil A. Weinrib & Associates, a law firm specializing in immigration.

“It largely depends on how long the foreign national has held H-1B status in terms of the ability to transfer to a new sponsor, as H-1Bs are generally valid for up to 6 years unless a PERM certification /work has been filed. on behalf of the foreign national before the end of their 5th year,” he said.

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