To listen to a Silicon Valley tech company, not a single one of them could survive without a dozen or more H-1B visa holders in their midst. The visa considered a godsend by every single tech company in the Bay Area (and surely beyond that), has been the prime reason why tech executives rallied against President Trump’s early travel bans against seven Muslim nations. It looked very kumbaya, but it wasn’t. It was the tech powerhouses sending Washington a warning: mess with immigration — any immigration — and we will make noise. The immigration they care about most, and rely on most, is the all-important H-1B skilled labor visa.
A surprising survey by Envoy Global suggests that while San Francisco is not giving up on the H-1B, companies there need it less than they have professed to need it. Call it an adjustment to the immigration policies of the new president. But despite a historical reliance on highly skilled foreign-born talent, most San Francisco employers say they do not consider sourcing foreign national workers as a top talent acquisition priority.