re: Foreigners Don't Take IT Jobs, They Create Them
The analysis in this article appears to be flawed. As others have pointed out, this seems to be mixing a discussion on immigrants with H-1B workers. Obviously, the two are completely different, if for no other reason, one is more permanent while the other is temporary.
On the subject of H-1B and offshore outsourcing, one of the biggest flaws with this type of outsourcing is that it is a decision made on spreadsheet. A bean counter sees a lower price per hour and assumes they will save money on the false assumption that IT professionals are plug and play.
What the said bean counter fails to take into account is the cost multipliers of taking more hours to get the job done, lower quality of work, rework, missed business opportunities by not being able to get what you need when you need it(that is, a lack of agility), and the cost of doing the wrong thing because lower cost labor doesn't know the business and has no loyalty to the business; they either don't notice that what is being requested might not be the right thing to do, or they just don't care.
When you are billed 6 hours for what should have taken 1 hour of labor, and it takes 3 months to get the work done, after it has to be fixed, are you really saving any money? Or how about when they suggest that they spend 20 days of effort to redesign a process that takes about 2 hours to execute, and is only used once ever couple of years; really, that did happen(and I stopped it because it was a huge waste of time and money, and the proposed process would have failed).
While education and training are important, they are no replacement for experience, talent, skill, intuition, innovation, commitment, personally initiative, or passion; which, ironically, are traits that the immigrants(or children of immigrants) alluded to in the 'article' posses. Though, a lot of other people in the US who are multiple generations removed from their immigrant ancestors also posses those traits.
Now, I will say, not all H-1Bs are bad or lack the traits mentioned above. I have worked with some that put in the effort to understand the systems they worked on and the business that those systems supported. They make a commitment and then they stick to it; and if they can't, they communicate that to you instead of telling you everything is fine until it too late.
But, my experience has been these few individuals have been exception.
Of course, when we have been fortunate enough to have one of these exceptions working for us and they become truly productive, they end up getting reassigned. Then, we go back to the beginning training someone else, which cost time and money, while hoping we will win the lottery again.
And, in all fairness, I do see some these H-1Bs treated like indentured servants, working long hours supporting too many systems, while their firms reap the benefits. Some are even bused around by the firms they serve, between home and work, and I don't envy them one bit. When you think about it, they are not left with a lot of options.
But, I do think H-1B and overseas outsourcing do create some jobs, and some well paying ones, as the messes left behind have to fixed by someone, and fixed a lot quicker than the time it took to make them. And, as salaries for H-1Bs increase, along with the increasing costs of infrastructure, oversight, and related processes, companies may find themselves in a situation similar to the pre-2000 era.