H-1B visas are the standard when employers seek to hire workers from other countries. However, the process of obtaining these visas can be very restrictive. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, only 85,000 H-1B visas are approved on a yearly basis in the U.S. Compare this to the 2.5 million jobs open within industries like technology and engineering, which could possibly be filled by talented foreign workers.
That’s why it’s important for businesses to know about the full range of immigration options available to their potential employees. For example, permanent residence immigration allows businesses to file green card applications that are linked to a person’s employment. To be approved for an EB-2 green card, the candidate must possess an advanced degree, have abilities that would serve a national interest, or have an exceptional skill. There are also EB-3 green cards, which are suitable for less-skilled workers.
Businesses sometimes find great candidates within American colleges, and many of these people happen to be foreign nationals. In this case, an F-1 visa can be used by recent college graduates to be employed by a U.S. company for a period of 12 months. Certain workplaces, such as those within the science, technology, engineering and math industries, are also eligible for an additional 24-month extension.
Some U.S. workplaces can even transfer employees working for a subsidiary or affiliate in another country. There are two types of L-1 visas in this case, including L-1As and L-1Bs. L-1As can be valid for up to seven years depending on how many extensions are used, while L-1Bs have a maximum of up to five years.