The company is planning to hire a larger percentage of foreign workers as it says it cannot find qualified Americans to fill in open positions.
The company recently asked the US government to implement a new visa program, specifically for high-tech Information Technology workers, where the collected funds would then be used for other training programs.
The company believed that this way the US government could collect up to $500 million every year by charging anywhere around $10,000 to $15,000 for each visa to companies requesting additional work permits.
Experts, however, believe this is only a cost-cutting strategy from the company.
Foreign workers are cheaper than hiring US employees. Bringing them in from the other countries could obviously help Microsoft save a whole truckload of money. Peter Cappelli, an economist at the University of Pennsylvania talked to The Seattle Times.
“What companies like Microsoft seem to want is employees with quite specific skills who don’t need any training and ramp-up time. If you scour the world, you can find enough without having to train here and paying higher wages”.
Microsoft for its part is stresses that this is not the case. The company had around 6,000 job openings at the start of October in the United States — out of which 3,400 were for IT professionals like software engineers and developers.
But the shortage of qualified workers for these positions has forced it to look overseas. In fact, finding workers specializing in newly dynamic fields like cloud computing and mobile development is even harder, as the number of applications further decreases.
“The biggest myth people have is that a company like Microsoft somehow looks to foreign workers as an easy supply to displace American workers. We simply cannot find qualified Americans to fill these jobs,”
said Microsoft’s deputy general counsel for human resources, Karen Jones.