Amazon, Twitter, Microsoft, Meta – some of the world’s biggest and most sought-after companies have laid off thousands of employees in recent days. Not only has this raised questions on job stability and job security, but it has also left hundreds of people, especially non-resident Indians (NRIs), to have migrated to other countries for the said jobs.
Mass layoffs by tech giants and others have left many NRIs jobless and with no sponsor for their work visas. Many of them have no option but to leave the US in search of new jobs.
h1b visa status
Indian techies work in the US on H1-B visas, which are employer sponsored. The recent retrenchment has put all such employees in jeopardy as they will be deported if they do not find a job within 60 days of their dismissal.
Bhawna Udernani, CEO of Adhan, a human resource services company, believes that the chances of Indian techies staying back in the US are extremely slim. She says, “We are expecting migration of many laid-off Indian tech professionals from the US and this is because the grace period for H1-B visa holders is only 60 days till they find new employment.” Finding a new company to sponsor your visa and completing the necessary paperwork on such a short notice would be extremely difficult, as there are currently 7 million green card applicants in line for their visas.
NRI techies looking for high paying jobs
Sanjay Shetty, director of occupational search and selection at international human resources services firm Randstad, noted that many of these professionals had extremely lucrative jobs and expect the same wherever they go.
“Indian professionals are among the highest paid in the US and will undoubtedly demand a higher salary for their skill set,” he added.
Udernani expects that for this reason, it is highly likely that these professionals will move to developed economies such as Canada, Europe or Singapore to maintain their standard of living, rather than coming back to India.
“Most NRIs who have lost their jobs in the US would prefer not to come back to India as they have left the country for a change in lifestyle, better pay and an overall higher standard of living. As a result, they are more likely to relocate to other developed countries like Singapore, Canada etc,” highlighted the CEO of Adan.
Are there no jobs for NRI Techies in India?
But this does not mean that there is no opportunity for NRI techies in the Indian job market. Aditya Narayan, Managing Director, CIEL HR Services, highlighted that some of these professionals may not get paid in India as much as they get in the US, but may give them a competitive advantage over their peers in India.
“For those who have no other option but to come back to India, Indian tech firms will welcome them with open arms. Having gained experience working in leading tech firms, they have a competitive advantage. The salary may not be at par with their US salary, but the cost of living in India is also not the same as it is in the US, so it is not much of a loss,” said Narayan.
It also means that the Indian job market will become a bit more competitive, Shetty highlighted. “With the influx of new professionals, the job market is definitely going to be extremely competitive, despite the growing demand for technical skills in a young and densely populated country like India,” he added.
In which areas can NRI technocrats work?
Experts believe that Big Data, Cloud and AI/ML could be some of the areas in which NRI techies may find opportunity in India.
According to Shetty, they can bridge the gap when it comes to data analytics, data visualization, data science, full stack development and cloud and DevOps.
He added, “We anticipate demand in data analytics, data visualization, data science, full stack development, cloud and DevOps. The increasing internet penetration and advent of 5G technology will ensure a boom in the Indian IT and tech sector, creating ample employment opportunities.
Consulting and freelancing also appear to be viable options for incoming NRIs. “They can also choose to freelance or become advisors to tech startups and SMEs,” Narayan said.
Udharnani said, “The skill of NRIs will help in growing Indian sectors and verticals like AI/ML, Big Data, which are still in their nascent stage.”
“Whether it was in 2001 or 2008, the slowdown of the US economy both aided India’s market expansion. In India, there will be an increase in consulting positions and new businesses,” she adds.
Read also: Infosys, Wipro, TechM onboarding delays: Former HCL Tech CEO Vineet Nair says this has happened before – Business Today
Read also: ‘No Jobs November’: Facebook, Amazon, Twitter firings lead to nearly 38,000 layoffs globally – BusinessToday