Under political pressure, Infosys says it will hire 10,000 American workers
Infosys, the India-headquartered tech consulting giant, has promised to hire 10,000 American workers over the next two years. The company said today that it will accomplish this by launching four new technology hubs in the U.S., with the first set to open this August in Indiana.
The Indiana facility is supposed to create 2,000 jobs by 2021.
The company’s announcement comes two weeks after President Donald Trump ordered federal agencies to review how H-1B visas are distributed. Bills to reform the program, which grants visas to highly skilled workers, are also under consideration in Congress and have received bipartisan support. Indian IT firms like Infosys, Wipro and Tata Consultancy rely heavily on the H-1B program to bring in workers and are eager to gain favor with U.S. politicians.
While no changes have been made yet to the H-1B program under the current administration, Infosys has been treading carefully. Reuters reports that the company plans to apply for just under 1,000 H-1B visas this year, a dramatic decrease from 6,500 applications in 2016 and 9,000 applications in 2015.
Other tech companies that have promised to create more positions in the U.S. since Trump’s election include Amazon, IBM, SoftBank and Alibaba. As CNBC points out, however, some of those companies already had hiring or expansion plans in place before their announcements were made and it’s still unclear if those jobs will come to fruition.
Though Infosys’ announcement did not directly mention Trump or the H-1B programs, it took the offensive by emphasizing its long presence in the U.S. Founded in 1981 in Pune, India, Infosys opened its first international office in Boston six years later.
The planned opening of its four new technology hubs “comes as part of Infosys’ continued legacy of a three-decade long investment across the U.S… Infosys pursues its mission of inspiring children, young adults and educators to become creators of technology through its charitable foundation Infosys USA,” the company said in its release. “Since 2015, more than 134,000 students, over 2,500 teachers, and almost 2,500 schools across American have benefitted from high quality computer science training and classroom equipment funded by Infosys Foundation USA.”
Headquartered in Bangalore, Infosys has about 200,000 workers worldwide. Sikka told Reuters that Infosys has already hired 2,000 American workers as part of another initiative that started in 2014.
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