Categorized | Companies, Economy, India

Software Lobby Group Says US Desperately Needs More Foreign Workers

A technology based lobby group in US, the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) wants United States Congress to drastically raise the annual cap on H-1B visas and give permanent residency to foreign nationals who graduate from U.S. colleges.

An additional demand they had was related to backing trade policies which give companies unfettered access to the global market but I am not able to make much of it. Why will the US government restrict companies from doing business across the world? Unless of course the country in question is Iran or Cuba etc. (Thats what I thought initially but check out the analysis and answers below).

One interesting fact the lobby group quoted while making their argument was that U.S. software industry is larger than the food processing industry in terms of revenue. More bytes than bites!

The permanent residency pitch would find an immediate favor with all those aliens, including me, working in US for the past couple of years but still struggling for that elusive Green Card.

The lobby group has released a report containing variety of economic data to backup their demands. As per the lobby group, software vendors and digital content providers employed about 2.7 million people in 2006. This number is a net gain of over 400,000 jobs from the 1997 level, which is about 17% increase in the head count. You can download the report for in depth reading from here.

Considering the US economy woes – housing bubble, worst home sales in years, sliding stock market, slashing of interest rates, not to forget the depreciating value of US dollar (even the Canadians cost more!), the report and accompanying demands couldn’t have been released at the worst time period.

However the lobby group’s president is quite adamant in his demands that maintaining industry’s current level of growth will require immigration reform. I quite really don’t understand what immigration has to do with this , more workers can be called in by raising the cap. But I’ll be the last to look one to peep into the gift horse mouth. (Not that the horse has materialized yet).

Don’t get me wrong, being on a skilled worker visa here, I am all for granting them permanent residency. But for reasons which are more sound and valid.

The group additionally reports that the median salary paid in this sector during 2006 was $75,400. (If you are a tech worker, use this to measure where you stand). But what you should know is that this amount is 78% higher than the median wage in other comparative sectors. I am not going to hang my reputation on line here but thats precisely what SIIA has to say.

The numbers cited by SIIA are based on statistics from government reports and, consequently, tend to be one or two years old. But the intent of such reports from trade groups often is to add weight to their congressional policy initiatives. Quite obvious by now.

Ron Hira, an assistant professor of public policy at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York, called the SIIA’s report “a defensive document” in an e-mail response to questions about it. From what I have read of Hira, he advocates stricter controls against foreign workers in the industry

Hira makes a point when he says that a better comparison than measuring the U.S. software industry against other sectors is to look at the growth rates of the large offshore outsourcing companies vs. the growth of software jobs in the U.S. “I think everyone will be taken aback,” he wrote. “The growth of IT labor demand in the U.S. is a pittance compared to the explosive growth in India.” I can testify to this having worked in both the countries.

Trade barriers is another issue where SIIA is trying to pitch hard. According to the lobby, European Union and countries in other regions are placing what amounts to a “patchwork quilt” of restrictions that impede the flow of data — for instance, limiting the ability of companies to store information about overseas customers on systems in the U.S. The trade group would like to see some standardization of such restrictions.

Fair enough but privacy is a touchy subject. If you place American user data in some storage outside the country, lets say China, what if it gets stolen or their govt gets hold of it. Chew over it.

The original article can be read from here.

    20 Responses to “Software Lobby Group Says US Desperately Needs More Foreign Workers”

    1. Attila T. Hun says:

      To say that the SII report contains lies and is meant to deceive is probably libelous. To recognize that it is so is probably insightful.

      • Paty says:

        If you really want to boost yoluserves up, then you could always write about me, or my site .or actually, here’s an idea that’s sure to start a buzz .compare your blog to every other blog out there. That sounds like a fun way to both gain and lost readers at the same time I might do that ..thanks for the advice.[]CrazydaveNovember 2nd, 2010While I am assuming you meant lose readers, I believe that your idea is indeed an intriguing one. Although I am not sure we can really lose something that we don’t have… nonetheless thank you for the suggestion.[]

    2. Comms Engineer says:

      I wished to work in US but because of the crappy rules on employing foreign nationals will just result in more people moving to China and elsewhere. One day you Americans will wake up to a bitter reality.

      May God bless the other fair nations who give equal opportunities.

      • Christos says:

        Sacred Seven, Baka Test Ni, Kami-sama no Memo-chou and Dantalian no Shoka. Watch out for these! Cyrano +2Was this answer hefpull?

      • Dee says:

        The zealots on both sides are raehtr stupid, though I get the most laughs out of the ones on the support US manga/anime companies’ side since they tend to get up on high horses more often. I think it’s hilarious seeing them side with the US companies as if it’s some badge of pride to buy something released oftentimes FAR after it’s original Japanese release, and that may be overpriced to boot. Manga is a bit more fairly priced than DVDs/BDs are, but it’s still two to three times the cost of a manga volume in Japan. They also seem to identify with the US companies as if they were part of some community instead of just a company out to make money. At least scanslators can argue the community involvement aspect and have a leg to stand on.Ah, but it is good fun to watch when you’re not invested in it. I buy manga for the same reason as your first one: I don’t like reading it off of a screen. It does suck that Onemanga got shut down since it’s hard to blame people for translating series that haven’t been and likely never will be licensed though. But it’s not like there aren’t other sites and bittorrent to distribute scanslations, even of licensed stuff.

    3. Comms Engineer says:

      What a bunch of American hypocrites.

      • Kevin says:

        Craig Posted on I don’t know if 8 hours of utility there’s much or not. But I woldun’t buy a HP mini laptop, because first of all it’s more expensive than a normal dimensioned laptop.Not running modern games on high detail settings is a bad point also.

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    4. Elin Liesman says:

      I like that I don’t have to pay for a subscription like wow

    5. Together with everything which appears to be developing within this particular subject material, a significant percentage of points of view tend to be somewhat radical. In any case I did enjoy looking at it.

    6. forums girls says:

      Hands down, Apple’s app store wins by a mile. It’s a huge selection of all sorts of apps vs a rather sad selection of a handful for Zune. Microsoft has plans, especially in the realm of games, but I’m not sure I’d want to bet on the future if this aspect is important to you. The iPod is a much better choice in that case.

    7. forums girls says:

      I’ll gear this review to 2 types of people: current Zune owners who are considering an upgrade, and people trying to decide between a Zune and an iPod. (There are other players worth considering out there, like the Sony Walkman X, but I hope this gives you enough info to make an informed decision of the Zune vs players other than the iPod line as well.)

    8. Sonu says:

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    9. Hey please do the morally right thing and use your site to spread the truth about 9/11

    10. Josie Ryback says:

      The Bank of Japan wrapped up a two-day policy meeting by increasing its asset-purchasing fund to 55 trillion yen

    11. Pablo says:

      Yay for surprises! Thanks a bunch you guys. I think No. 6 is staedily becoming a favorite of mine. I also love Shion’s new look (mostly because well, he looks almost exactly like Allen now. <3)VA:F [1.9.10_1130](from 1 vote)

    12. Dolly says:

      SheliiBoo KizZii : umm i would just like to say i love all your videos but i would love to see a litlte more of the manga drawing with the really big eyes if thats ok……….lol and you are the person who is teaching me how to draw so i appreciate it all thanks

    13. Auth says:

      Yen Press always gets the best stuff I have the most Yen Press manga in my manga cotloclien. My love 4 4Komas may be one of the reasons, but their non-4Koma licenses are great too.FYI I live in Singapore, and I have to say that the amount of American manga I purchase is equal or more than locally licensed manga even though the price of American manga is about twice that of locally licensed manga. There is a significant quality difference between them which I admit, do not really justify the preference. But the local licenses are still being picked up at a rather slow pace, and the variety is lacking as well. Thus the American manga purchases.

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