Recent changes to the H-1B program have created new challenges for employers and job seekers across the country. While this is a trend that traverses all sectors, financial services and tech are two industries that are being heavily impacted. With the transfer process becoming more complicated for H-1B visa holders, those looking for a new job in tech or finance need to be prepared for these new challenges as well as understand their options.
As a former H-1B visa holder himself, Vickram Tandon, a Managing Director within The Execu|Search Group’s Financial Services division, understands first-hand how daunting the process can be. “Now that the process can take several more months, having a well-thought-out plan is even more critical than it was in the past,” he says. “While the visa transfer process is certainly more complicated today, it’s important to know that you still have opportunities available to you. You don’t necessarily need to stay in a mundane job where your skills aren’t being utilized.”
As the rules for visa holders wanting to extend their stay in the United States tighten, here are four things to consider if you are looking to make a career move:
Since visas can only be extended for an additional three years before you need to file for your green card, it’s important to think big picture when it comes to your finance or tech career. “Don’t let the time sneak up on you,” warns Vickram. “You should map out your long-term career goals and come up with an actionable plan for reaching them.”
Be open to relocating
Not wanting to miss out on top tech or finance talent, many firms are creating roles for visa holders in their international locations. “Many of my clients are making very competitive offers for their London-based offices after interviewing candidates in the United States,” says Vickram. “These are very interesting, high-paying hybrid tech-finance roles. As a result, relocating is definitely something to consider if you aren’t happy in your current role.”
Even if you are not sure if you want to make a job change, taking more interviews is a great way to learn more about your options. “Many companies are willing to take on the challenge of a visa transfer for the right candidate,” says Vickram. “You’ll never know who will if you don’t interview. It can also help you keep an open mind about different career opportunities available to you.”
Connect with a recruiter
If you are not sure where to start, a recruiter can be an excellent resource to turn to. As industry specialists, they have unique insight into market trends as they relate to visa transfers. “We work with candidates based on the unique challenges they are facing,” explains Vickram. “Since we know which employers are open to H-1B visa transfers, we can help guide you through this process.”
The Execu|Search Group has made every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information provided in this article. If you have any questions about these laws, please reach out to your legal counsel.