The H-1B "Scam" Exposed

Tyler Durden's picture

Via Defiant Thinking,

The federal H-1B program is intended to allow foreign workers into the US to do high-skill jobs for which employers can’t find qualified domestic workers. In reality, it’s a way for US employers to lower their labor costs, ignoring the large pool of fully qualified (but more expensive) US workers in favor of cheap foreign labor.

This isn’t a small program, either; in 2014 there were 124,326 new applications approved and 191,531 renewed. Since this is a three-year program with one possible renewal, the total number of H-1B foreign workers in the US is triple that, or close to a million lower-wage workers in positions that should otherwise go to US workers at much higher wages.

Where are those workers coming from? According to a recent report to Congress, in 2012 most – 64% – come from India, with no other country sending anywhere close to that many (China came closest at 7.6%).

Infographic: India & China Accounted For 82% Of H-1B Visas In 2016  | Statista

You will find more statistics at Statista

And which indurty are they overwhelmingly working in?

Infographic: Which U.S. Industries File Most Work Visa Applications | Statista

You will find more statistics at Statista

Given that so many come from India, and that they’re coming under the pretense that they are significantly more qualified than their American counterparts, you may be stunned to learn just how poor the Indian training system when it comes to computer programming.

According to a 2017 skills assessment of graduating Indian software engineers conducted by Aspiring Minds, an Indian skills assessment company:

  • Out of the 2 problems given per candidate, only 14% engineers are able to write compilable codes for both and only 22% write compilable code for exactly one problem.
  • Only 14.67% of engineers are employable for IT Services company, while a worryingly low percentage of 2.47% are observed to be employable in IT Product company.
  • Amazingly, just 2.21% of candidates are able to write functionally and logically correct code.

This is the labor pool from which we’re pulling the majority of overseas workers, who our US staff supposedly cannot compete with.

If you want to learn more about how we’re being played by the H1b program, see this recent 60 Minutes story, or spend some time on the Protect US Workers site. It’s an outrage, and it needs to be stopped.

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HRH Feant2's picture

India has been free from the yoke of the British for how many years?

I can't stand the poor-me, victim mentality. Based on recent documentaries and news pieces about India, it seems to have reverted to type. Meaning what? They have a caste system (which they lie about and claim not to have when they are in the US), they have segregation based on class, based on birth, based on religion. Based on anything they can make up. The one thing India seems to have learned from the British is how to screw things up with a hopeless bureacracy.

Red tape, cheating, a caste system, and rampant bribery: some of that may be due to British influence, but not all. Some of that was inherent in Indian culture and it is obvious that changing Indian culture is nearly impossible. If that were the case they would have flushing toilets and buried sewers. They do not. I don't expect India to improve in my lifetime.

Why not? The recent past predicts the near future.

SilverRhino's picture

Indian culture rose at the same time as the first Chinese dynasty and the Sumerians.   They have literally been there for THOUSANDS of years and not figured out how not to fuck shit up.   


FixItAgainTony's picture

but don't swim in the Ganges.

Nexus789's picture

Fraud is on the increase in Australia. Guess who is doing it. 

land_of_the_few's picture

I heard the tutors wander among the computers and type in anything tricky their examinees arent quite getting. And that paid exam-taker pros were pretty common.


earleflorida's picture


the donald put a universal spot-light on the sell-out...


Magnix's picture

and what are they going to do about them? ICE to pick them up and deport them back or what?

zzzz88's picture

indian liars!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

shimmy's picture

Maybe more U.S workers need to accept the idea of lower wages rather than thinking they should get paid 50k a year to do monkey work. 

earleflorida's picture

so who pays the student loans,...

certainly not the banks and corporatocracy whom benefit the mostest!

Xena fobe's picture

A race to the bottom for workers with ever greater profit to the elite.  Yep, typical liberal.

WasNotWuz66's picture

I would tend to agree if the subject was FAST FOOD................ sadly, it is not.

IT work ain't "monkey work", IMO, I've done stints at Helpdesk, Network admin, Sysadmin, Server admin,...................  at varying levels of the organizaiton, and that to me is the key - what level is your organizaiton in the "Globalization" model?

Currently, I'm a "new" employee of a recently purchased IT org; I negotiated my salary with the HR and I'll be ok.

Back to this "monkey work" thing with IT..................  I get it if the job is maybe answering phones and low level triaging USER complaints, but in my line of work, and that's SERVERS, there's no monkey work.

One thing I've noticed, if you have a job where you actually TOUCH PHYSICAL THINGS, you are important, but if you regulraly remote desktop into systems to "fix" things, then my friend, you will be replaced, probably by a low level, non-english speaking H1B person from the cheapest labor country there is at the time.  Good luck

freedogger's picture

I'd accept lower pay if there were actually enough people around that could deliver what I can. 

Vlad the Inhaler's picture

Here's what really happens though.  The workers get laid off sure.  I have two friends in IT who were recently laid off (one major bank and one major utility) from IT, told they would only get severance if they trained their Indian replacements, now they're living off the taxpayer dime under unemployment benefits.  But for everyone that is left behind at the company or the customers who have to deal with the company for service, they have to do extra work for no extra pay and deal with all sorts of headaches making up for the fact that their replacements are total idiots.  Another friend quit his job at an architect firm because they outsourced the drafting department to India and it was driving everyone crazy trying to manage these people who had no clue.  The only winners are the execs and shareholders, and only in the short term.

land_of_the_few's picture

It's only "monkey work" because it's being done badly.

BustainMovealota's picture

"2.21% of candidates are able to write functionally and logically correct code."

Good thing developers have applications that write code for them.

WasNotWuz66's picture

and the problem with that model is that coding can be recorded/saved.   Still baffles  the mind that so many employers think that because someone wrote some great code, that this code can be implemented by some retRded N00B to do "great things" for the organization................  will they never learn??

scintillator9's picture

"They are only doing jobs that Lazy Americans© won't do."




Faeriedust's picture

Let's face it: many corporate and government HR departments couldn't care less whether the applicant who gets the job, can DO the job.  What matters is compliance with about a thousand government regulations proving that you're "non-discriminatory" (never mind that discrimination is all about telling the difference between the good, the bad, and the just plain ugly) and the final price tag.  If the paper creds say the same, then they will always insist on hiring the cheapest applicant, just like government contracts that specify the lowest bidder.  And you will NEVER get more than what you pay for.  You may get a lot less.

Unless of course you hire a wizard, whose paper credentials may say "ex-pot dealer" or "college drop-out".  Because wizards know a lot of things that can't possibly be put on paper, and even if they could, they seldom care.  Wizards may be able to do many things their credentials never mentioned.  But they are subtle, and quick to take advantage of stupid superiors.

Xena fobe's picture

For govt, all that matters is who you are related to.

yogibear's picture

With American companies showing a preference to cheaper  Indian H1Bs. Corporations have been discouraging young Americans for well over a decade.

Close down the American university technology departments. Millions of Indians want to come over and replace Americans.

Old Poor Richard's picture

Those percentages for "compilable code" sound about right for US programmers, too. I'm an engineer who can't write compilable code from the hip for a program longer than one screenfull. It's going to suffer typos, mis-remembered syntax, etc. I've got one software engineer who works for me who does seem to write perfect code much of the time, but certainly not always.

What are the percentages when graded on whether the code compiles and does what it is supposed to do after proofreading cleanup?

What are the percentages when the persons being tested are given a development environment and allowed to debug and test, which is how people actually work?

freedogger's picture

My last interview was to write a small program with coderpad while the interviewer watched as I wrote and ran it, asking questions as I went. I was one of the three that got a job out of ten that tested and a hundred that were submitted. I made mistakes, sat there at one point wondering for a whole minute why the fuck it wouldn't compile. Cracked some jokes and eventually saw my stupid mistake. In the end they really liked how I solved the problem and how I improved the approach from a crude solution into what I ended up with. 

Programming is hard, being able to talk to users and understand complex domains and use tech to solve their problems is rare. I've been doing it since I was twelve, I read shit on my own time, I care, I get excited about it. I like teaching people it too and am proud of the people I've mentored. Most of the projects I've worked on are critical to the survival of the company. I almost dare the fuckers to outsource me. I know how it will work out.

Abbie Normal's picture

I had that issue with my grad student T.A. way back in comp sci class.  The assignment was to write some code to solve a sorting problem, and mine ran fine and spit out the correct answer.  The T.A. docked points because I didn't use the concepts that he was teaching, which would have bloated the code to twice the size.  Now if the assignment instructions had said "use this specific method to solve the problem", I would have done it that way.  BTW, that T.A. is probably back in Asia now.

Sudden Debt's picture

So what?

Why don't they start their own company if they're so qualified?


When I got fired, I just did the same I used to do and attacked the company I worked for on it's weakest points.

I now make 50% of what they make after only 4 years and I'm planning on overtaking them in the next 4.

My dream? Buying them.


or you can crawl into a corner and cry about it....

SgtShaftoe's picture

Awesome! Creative destruction can be a beautiful thing.

chiquita's picture

I really wish more people would do this, although it does take a lot of initiative, money (depending on what you're doing), and a lot of faith that you're going to succeed.  But it can be done if you start small and work your way up to wherever you can get it if you have the skill and the guts to do it.  More power to you.

freedogger's picture

Most of the time there is a solid non compete clause in play.

SilverRhino's picture

Those generally are not worth the paper they are printed on.

SgtShaftoe's picture

off-the-boat Indians are usually terrible managers and employees. As managers they become little tyrants to their employees and morale crashes. As employees everything must be explained; It's very hard to get original innovative thought out of them.

freedogger's picture

Yes, I find their caste system really hinders their ability to deliver. I had one business analyst who replaced a previous guy who really got shit done. This Indian dude thought his role was to delegate. He couldn't dirty himself with work. He was above that. He was embedded with our team and I hounded him until he had shit that was blocking us done. After that week of torture he saw that he got relocated out of our team room. 

delmar Jackson's picture

I applied for a position in another department.I had years of manufacturing experience but did not have a degree in the field. They hired a guy from india. He had a degree but no experience. Once hired he refused to work on other projects outside of his initial project and would never get his hands dirty in any task as that was beneath him. He never wanted to cooperate on anything with any other department if it impacted him and his project. On top of all this, he was slow and very mediocre in his results. We had other employees from India who were team players and assets to the company but overall none of them were in the top rank of the employees that I worked with in 17 years.

44magnum's picture

Yep and those Indian developers SUCK. You get what you pay for sub par code done over and over until they finally get something right and these people are supposed to be highly skilled. High school kids can do a better job.

freedogger's picture

The best thing is the code review. The code doesn't get merged into the product until it passes CR! We had one guy from over there struggle for six weeks and over 40 tries before his few hundred lines of code made it in. Each submission took one or two of us an hour to review and comment on why it fell short. This guy was a contractor getting good money by the hour. Management has cooled on the idea for now at least on hiring any more from over there. They perused our code reviews and couldn't deny our objections to the shit that was being thrown at us by this clown. It turned into a source of entertainment for us. 

any_mouse's picture

Lucky your management hasn't been invaded by the parasites.

When it's dot Indians all the way up to the White CEO, it's shit all the way down.

They made an unfounded pledge to switch from OpenVMS to HP-UX in an absurdly short time frame convenient for glowing year end reports and accomplishments for the dot Indian CIO.

Their big idea to speed things up was to do ONLY UNIT TESTING. No System Testing.No User Acceptance Testing. The Users were to be kept out of the loop.

I was the only developer who was trying to use the application as intended as a whole system. I could not get past a very early stage to get to where my engine was involved.

Finally in another BS meeting where people at pay grades higher than mine were avoiding speaking truth, I had had enough. Told them they needed to get the whole application tested, get System Test group involved. User Acceptance involved. Just like any other change to the app. Loud and Clear. I was praised at a subsequent Town Hall for saving the face of management. They would have brought the business down to the public until they could switch back. A massive, public, fuck up. Though not a plane crash. No, I was never publicly or privately acknowledged or thanked by TPTB.


That and their 90 day wonder Software Engineers from Chennai. At that, it was the short bus school of software development. They could not write new, innovative code, only reuse existing classes and apis. Bytes, short ints, confused them. Every time. No retention nor pattern learning.

And they all wanted to be managers at their first chance. So it was suck up, suck up, all the live long day. Even the ones who were good developers.

Always the signs over kitchen sinks to not spit into the sink. Leaving the bathroom sink with bits of their lunch left on display. Couldn't be bothered with rinsing the sink or wiping up a small coffee spill.

Borrowing equipment from cubicles with no note. Chairs, keyboards, mice, specialized equipment would disappear.

Etc. Etc.

The Corp would do these surveys of how politically correct the corp was at any time. Are we Green enough? I would ding them for diversity since our organization was dominated by a single ethnicity. Never mentioned specifics. New hires were made from other than dot Indians and more non dots were promoted to leadership positions. HR was not infected with the parasites.

freedogger's picture

I've always loved the saying "If you can't change your company, change your company"

Retiree-bust's picture

Happened to me personally.  It is a typical bean counter reaction to high paid individuals with silcon valley companies.  I had a couple hundred thousand in potential restricted stock units that went down the tube with the "layoff".

The best part is about a week later they call and want to contract me back, told them for $1000 bucks an hour I would do it with a minimum of 100 hrs in the contract. Seems they had a system that I maintained that the new guys screwed up royally. They took a pass and hired IBM for I suspect $250 or $300 and hour. :)

SgtShaftoe's picture

Probably, but they'll spend more with IBM than your offer. IBM is a terminal, bloated trainwreck with upper management filled with overpaid intellectual idiots.

Luc X. Ifer's picture

IBM is an Indian corporation, isn't American anymore.

SgtShaftoe's picture

Ginni seems like a stiff shirt, but it's not entirely her fault. Her senior management team is full of arrogant out-of-touch dumbfucks. They have gutted the company of most of the competent talent, leaving only the ineffective executives. Watching IBM is like reading "Atlas Shrugged" with all the execs pointing fingers at one another demanding the janitor fix it.

Fuck IBM.

Sokhmate's picture

Indian Biryani Machine (TM)

konadog's picture

Not just IBM. Most tech companies now. The Indians have f*cked up the company where I work beyond recognition. They're like cockroaches. Let one in and very soon that's all you see. Suddenly you wake up one day and find that absolutely nothing gets accomplished anymore.

pitz's picture

Top grads can't even get job interviews these days in the Silicon Valley.  While the red carpet is rolled out for foreigners, first on OPT visas as "interns" (often after graduation, might I add), and then with the H-1B visa.  Meanwhile American applicants have their applications thrown in the garbage.  On those rare occasions where they pester HR enough to get an interview, its usually with some anti-social senior software engineer type who quizzes them innappropriately on very specific domain skills, rather than what is normally and customarily expected of an entry level CS grad. 

Aubiekong's picture

And our elected officials know this so what is the deal? Simple, They (both republican and democrat elected officials are being bribed by the very same companies who benefit from the cheaper workers.  There is no current solution since voting is a fraud...

Xena fobe's picture

The Eb5 visa is just as bad.  The investments are supposed to create jobs for Americans.  But these Eb5 developments are only ever built in Chinese colonies for other Chinese. Of course, govt loves the property taxes.

lucyvp's picture

For those of you in the right age bracket this article is a NSS article.

I am in the industry and one of the best, due to hard work, and a generalist background that lets me shift gears quickly.  I have many friends who grew tired of riding this carosel of switching jobs every 2-5 years.  How can one build a community or family like that?  They are all highly qualified, much more so than an H1B visa flunky.  But they have decided to go into much more "noble" professions in finance and real estate.

My wages have nearly stood still since 2000.  (That was 17 years ago).  That is because I have to compete with these H1B folk.  I lost my last job because of them when our entire IT deparment was out-sourced.  

In my humble opinion there are good and bad in the H1B visa crowd just like domestic workers.  I would say the h1b bell curve is slightly shifted to the left of the domestic curve.  Maybe it's not the H1B visa effect but the young vs. old.  Most of these H1B visa people are only a few years out of school.  Think of the crappy web pages, cell phone software etc. that you have to deal with.

Another factor is that there is no knowlege tranfer between contract staff and permanent staff, stuff gets coded, often wrong, and the person who did it is let go. I did get an extra 5 years of employment, cleaning up the crap that was left behind.

And for my final rant, although I am one of the best at what I do, I don't have a pimp smoozing upper management with crack and whores, telling them how they should get rid of all of his permanent staff, and replace them with cheap contractors who of course are supremely qualified and work cheap.  They have a wall full of M.S. certs but not two brain cells to rub togehter.

P.S. ---

Go ahead young one, get a STEM job.  Spend 100K on your education and have your job sent away  ...   It wouldn't upset me as much if it wasnt' the polito's soap boxing the STEM crap everyday on the evening news.

SgtShaftoe's picture

Are you a coder or a systems person? I may have some freelance work if you're interested. I need some advanced python coding.

lucyvp's picture

Thanks for the offer.  I have an excellent new job (On a contract now with no bennies) but super high quality work and lots of it.  Big data mining on a mpp computer, if that floats your boat.

We will see how long it lasts ...

I have played with pyton, but am not an ace at it.  I have done C, C++, C#, and a few other small stints with other languages.


Hyjinx's picture

J1 VISA is bad too, same shit and usually they are exempt from federal income tax.