Apple's Ability to Hire Foreign Workers May Be Impacted by Trump Overhaul of Work-Visa Programs

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Jan 30, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    United States President Donald Trump and his administration have drafted an executive order that intends to overhaul the work-visa programs that various technology companies -- including Apple -- rely on to hire tens of thousands of employees each year.

    According to a draft of the order acquired by Bloomberg, affected visa programs include L-1, E-2, and B1. Directly affecting tech companies is H-1B, which lets companies like Apple hire appropriately skilled workers for specific jobs when there is a dearth of local talent available.


    Falling in line with Trump's "America first" intentions, which previously ignited reports of Apple turning to U.S.-based iPhone manufacturing, the order explains that the country's policy on immigration should not give priority to foreign workers. Its intent aims to prioritize and protect American workers, as well as their current and future jobs.
    Although some companies use the visa programs to find high-skilled talent overseas, Bloomberg notes that allegations in recent years have claimed that the system can be abused to simply hire workers at a cheaper rate "to fill jobs that otherwise may go to Americans." Outsourced workers in India are said to be the main targets of the H-1B visa, filling in the technology departments of large corporations "with largely imported staff."

    Since the executive order is only in the drafting stages, it's not yet clear how much force or backing it would receive if made official. According to Ron Hira, an associate professor at Howard University, companies who potentially use the work-visa programs to hire cheap labor will be affected most, likely ending up having to pay more to their employees if the order is signed. Companies using the programs to legally hire skilled workers may be able to find alternative visas elsewhere, but the intent to make the process more difficult is clear.
    The current legislation caps workers who can enter the U.S. each year at 85,000, including educated workers with college degrees. According to the most recent data available, workers with H-1B visas at companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft are paid more than $100,000 per year, while outsourcing firms reportedly intent on hiring for quantity over quality are said to pay workers less than $70,000 annually.

    Trump's order aims to bring transparency to these issues, with the intent to publish reports "with basic statistics on who uses the immigration programs within one month of the end of the government's fiscal year."

    Today's news comes a few days after Apple CEO Tim Cook responded to the immigration executive order signed by Trump on Friday, which left refugees and immigrants stranded at airports around the country over the weekend. In a letter to employees, Cook said that Trump's order is "not a policy we support," and that the company has "reached out to the White House to explain the negative effect on our coworkers and our company."

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Apple's Ability to Hire Foreign Workers May Be Impacted by Trump Overhaul of Work-Visa Programs
  2. alex2792 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2009
    Hallelujah! It's about time, the H1B program is abused mercilessly by pretty much every tech company to replace American workers with cheap foreign labor. I bet those Disney employees who had to train their Indian replacements before being let go are dancing in the streets.
  3. McTaste macrumors regular


    Jan 21, 2014
    Apple paying them "over $100,000" per year is meaningless given where one must live to work at Apple.
  4. Stella macrumors G3


    Apr 21, 2003
    Canada has a policy - you cannot hire a foreign worker if you can find existing employees in Canada. Up until Harper, not sure if its been reversed but foreign workers must be paid the same as a resident. Foreign workers cannot be used to decrease the salary.

    I don't see a problem with this.

    Mind you, there were ways around this.
  5. gim, Jan 30, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2017

    gim macrumors 6502


    Jul 27, 2014
    Your Immigration system needs a complete overhaul, it's a mess.
  6. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Depends, if you use high-skilled workers (example being people educated at US colleges), then this is a hinderance. Only 85k workers per year? Quite low, more so in the STEM degrees which almost no US Citizen likes to study or drops out off.
  7. Santabean2000 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2007
    The US is just mess right now. So much confusion.
  8. alex2792 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2009
    I've worked with a lot of H1Bs before, and a pretty significant portion of them were anything, but highly-skilled. In fact, they were mostly hired for lower level roles that anyone who took a programming class could perform. Don't fall for the "there are no qualified Americans" myth, it's complete nonsense.
  9. pat500000 macrumors G3


    Jun 3, 2015
    Finally, anti h1b strategy. This shouldn't hurt much in terms of paying up. I'm sure they could find skilled employees from USA.

    We are probably gonna see lot of sad faces from that Apple group picture.
  10. Kaibelf macrumors 68020


    Apr 29, 2009
    Silicon Valley, CA
    "Must" live, or want to live? I have to commute 45 minutes each day to my job. Would I like to live closer? Sure. Do I think I should have some kind of right to ride a bike to the office? No. I chose the job, and I chose where I live.
  11. Chew Toy McCoy macrumors regular

    Chew Toy McCoy

    May 13, 2016
    Why can’t these employees just do the same job in their own country? If Apple hired 1,000 Indians then just get a building for 1,000 Indians in India. Pay them a comparable Indian salary and just as importantly relieve some of the Silicon Valley housing crisis. These tech companies are all about globalization except oddly for their own employees, and you can’t tell me it’s essential for all these foreign hires to be in the same location. They just want to share the relative greatness of the US soil while paying no attention to what the economic impact is on the natives.
  12. Rogifan macrumors Core


    Nov 14, 2011
    It's all ok because #maga and media bias, right?
  13. macs4nw macrumors 601


    It'll take a lot more than a 45 min commute to find reasonably priced accommodation in silicon valley.
  14. IPPlanMan macrumors 6502

    Dec 25, 2009
    Hey Apple!

    Stop acting so entitled to things and stop treating the visa program as an affirmative action program.

    There are plenty of qualified US Citizens who are ready to work. You just choose not to hire them.
  15. dan110 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 13, 2013
    Sorry Fear Mongers, securing the borders won't affect the hiring process for new hires. Keep telling that lie and I'm sure people will start to believe it.
  16. MentalFloss macrumors 65816


    Mar 14, 2012
    For me as a German, that is great news, because it means that companies like Apple will open or expand sites in other countries instead of trying to bring the people to the US. I currently work for an American tech company in Germany, and I know how difficult it is for managers in the US to find the right skill set there. In our "sister team" in the US, there are two Americans out of about 20 people.

    And when I worked in the US myself (on H-1) about a decade ago, it was the same. I don't think any Americans ever applied when we had job openings. And by the way, I never felt exploited. On the contrary. My salary was really great. STEM simply isn't popular in the US anymore.

    Of course, the downside is that sites in India will also continue to grow (though that's obviously not a downside for Indians).
  17. Kaibelf macrumors 68020


    Apr 29, 2009
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Time zones? Internet accessibility? Perhaps people like to actually physically be around the people they work with? Also, feel free to inform us about the "impact on the natives" when you tell us what Native American tribe you hail from. Let's not lie and pretend like the US is just greatness incarnate.
  18. PracticalMac macrumors 68030


    Jan 22, 2009
    Houston, TX
    It will be harder for Apple to be competitive, especially in foreign markets.
  19. FelixDerKater Contributor


    Apr 12, 2002
    Nirgendwo in Amerika
    I rememeber when companies would pay for a bright child to get a college education in return for a period of service.
  20. ineedamac macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2008
    I agree. I work with many H1Bs and they are not a highly skilled employee. Their best skill is their willingness to work unlimited hours. They are not skilled and often know very little that cannot be found with a simple search.
  21. napabar macrumors 6502


    Jun 12, 2008
    There are no Native Americans, since the Pre-European settlers came from Asia. When someone speaks of natives now, in the 21st Century, they means the people currently living here. Get off your soapbox.
  22. ineedamac macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2008
    I agree. I work with many H1Bs and they are not a highly skilled employee. Their best skill is their willingness to work unlimited hours. They are not skilled and often know very little that cannot be found with a simple search.
  23. EightyTwenty macrumors 6502a

    Mar 11, 2015
    Oh, I'm sure Trudeau is working hard to reverse that rule.
  24. coolfactor macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2002
    Vancouver, BC CANADA
    The same thing happens here in Canada — large employers are hiring foreign workers because it's more cost-effective (not cheaper, though). The foreign workers just work harder, and appreciate the job.

    Don't be so quick to cheer, though. The real problem is "a dearth of local talent", which is directly related largely to the state of the population's education and attitude. Not something to be proud of.
  25. t76turbo macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2012
    I have worked in IT for over 20 years. I have always felt it was ridiculous watching the rampant use of foreign contractors. One big reason is the loss of intellectual property/working knowledge when those workers go home. Even worse is when American citizens train their h1b replacements which happens all the time. All companies are trying to cut admin costs and inevitably contractors and outsourcing come into play.

    I can already predict the anti Trump responses in this thread. But I bet most of them have never lost their job to a foreign contractor and to rub salt in the wound had to train that contractor as you left. Especially when you know multiple Americans that have skills and are looking for the same kind of work but can't get in.

    I don't agree with everything that is being changed but I do think portions are long overdue for changes.

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