Sfgate: H-1B visas: who gets them, where they go @oracle

H-1B visas: who gets them, where they go
Before hiring a foreign worker on an H-1B visa, an employer must submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the U.S. Department of Labor, which details the position the company hopes to fill, the prevailing wage for the job and the pay being offered to the prospective worker. The intent is to ensure that overseas employees will be paid a fair wage if they receive a visa.
More than one employee can be attached to an LCA, and there’s no limit on how many a company can submit. As a result, the number of LCAs accepted by the Department of Labor often far exceeds the number of H-1B visas issued.

Over the years, the number of approved LCAs has increased. In 2008, the federal government certified about 370,000 applications for roughly 650,000 workers, according to a Chronicle review of federal Department of Labor data. Last year, more than 530,000 LCAs were approved for 1.14 million workers (applications certified then withdrawn by the company were not included).
About 10 percent of the LCAs approved last year, or 53,500, were for jobs in Silicon Valley and San Francisco. Companies in the region overwhelmingly sought high-paid computer programmers and other similar tech workers.
Which Silicon Valley and San Francisco companies pursued H-1B workers in 2015
visas requested by County
by Company
for Salary
San Mateo (6K)Samsung$50-100KSan Francisco (11K)Tata$100-150K>$150KSanta Clara (46K)UberPwCAppleFacebookIntuitWiproGoogleAmazonJuniperAdobeInfosysMphasisDeloitte<$50KCiscoMindtreeOracleSynopsysNvidia
Source: Office of Foreign Labor Certification data. All data is from FY 2015. Company data includes all subsidiaries.
By county, Santa Clara sought the most H-1B workers, not just in the Bay Area, but in the entire country. San Francisco just edged out San Jose as the region’s most popular city for H-1B applicants (it ranks third nationwide behind New York City and Houston).

A handful of major firms filled out the majority of applications in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. The tax and financial services giant Deloitte and its subsidiaries submitted LCA applications for more than 10,000 workers locally. Apple hoped to fill 8,650 positions with foreign professionals, most at its Cupertino campus. And both Facebook and Google requested at least 2,200 workers each.
Not every major Bay Area tech firm tried to recruit an abundance of foreign professionals. Salesforce, for example, sought to fill roughly 475 positions in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. Twitter submitted applications for just 350 H-1B workers locally.

It’s unclear how many positions at major companies were filled by India-based subcontracting firms. Such outfits have become major players in bringing H-1B workers into the United States, hiring pools of workers on behalf of other companies.

Tata, Wipro, Infosys and HCL America are some of the largest outsourcing companies based in India. Some have accused them of gaming the H-1B visa system by flooding the Department of Labor with LCA applications, thus increasing their odds of obtaining H-1B visas via the computerized lottery used to distribute them.

Last year, Infosys, Tata and Wipro — and any subsidiaries affiliated with the companies — filed more LCAs nationally than any other firm besides IBM.
Top companies recruiting H-1B workers nationwide in 2015
LCAs filed
Workers requested
Private companies
US-based outsourcing firm
India-based outsourcing firm
Foreign-based outsourcing firm
HCL America
Source: Office of Foreign Labor Certification data. All data is from FY 2015. Company data includes all subsidiaries.
Wipro, Tata and Infosys have been the subject of labor and discrimination lawsuits. The latter two were the subject of a Senate inquiry. All three firms tend to seek lower-paid and less-skilled workers than other major companies.

Last year, the average salary of an H-1B worker requested by Tata was about $69,700 per -year, at Wipro it was $70,200, and Infosys’ salaries were $79,100 on average, according to the Chronicle analysis.

Google, on the other hand, offered an average salary of nearly $130,000 to its H-1B workers. Apple’s H-1B positions paid between $123,600 and $154,200, on average. And Facebook offered roughly $141,000 to the average H-1B applicant.
As India-based subcontractors have expanded, so has the number of Indian H-1B workers coming into the United States.
Where H-1B recipients came from in 2004
RussiaPhil.Pak.MexicoMal.S. KoreaJapanItalyIs.IndiaU.K.GermanyFranceCol.TaiwanChinaBrazilAus.Arg.Ind.
Continent Key
North America
South America
Hover over or click on a bubble for more information.
In fiscal year 2015, about 177,750 H-1B visas were issued, according to State Department data. These included 85,000 new three-year visas, approved extensions and other positions exempt from the H-1B cap. More than 69 percent went to workers from India — the highest proportion in nearly two decades.
For more in-depth coverage, see the Chronicle's related story.

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