Analysis: United States Business Immigration Survey

20 Nov, 2017

Global Trend, United States

U.S. companies competing in the global economy are increasingly reliant on international mobility and access to talent from all over the world, and their immigration programs must focus on meeting those demands while working within the strictures of U.S. immigration policies. While the labor needs of U.S. business have changed significantly, U.S. laws governing high-skilled immigration have not only not kept pace with these changes but are likely to become more restrictive. President Donald Trump has made several promises to restrict both low-skilled and high-skilled immigration, and such restrictions would significantly impact U.S. businesses.

A survey cosponsored by BAL confirms that U.S. businesses have deep concerns about their ability to hire and retain leading global talent. The survey was conducted shortly before the Trump administration took office and takes the pulse of U.S. business immigration, illustrating their concerns even before stricter measures, such as the travel ban and extreme vetting, were introduced. The survey also provides companies with insights into what their peers are doing to address limitations on immigration and how companies are planning their immigration programs to support their employees and meet new compliance obligations while balancing costs.

Companies of diverse sizes and across a wide range of industries were surveyed about their immigration programs, in particular those that employ F-1 students, H-1B specialty occupations, L-1 intracompany transferees, and green card sponsorship. Among the survey results, 59 percent of companies said that U.S. immigration policies limit their ability to attract the best and the brightest and that immigration restrictions are preventing high-skilled foreign employees from advancing within their companies. When asked what they would tell senior government officials and immigration policymakers if given the opportunity, respondents gave some pointed and candid responses.

Read what companies had to say in BAL’s US Business Immigration Survey report by completing the form below.