10,238 – that’s how many software engineering positions are advertised on Linkedin right now for mid to senior level software engineers. And that’s just in the San Francisco Bay Area. Shortage of technical talent has been one of the major pain points for companies, large and small. With the new restrictions and noise around immigration in the US, this pain has only aggravated.
The Economy Require Technical Foreign Talent
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that 1.4 million positions will be open in computing. With only 400,000 computer science grads being produced, an estimated 1 million technology jobs will go unfilled by 2020.
There is absolutely no doubt that the current economy is booming for engineers. The average annual salary for a Senior Software Engineer in the San Francisco Bay Area is around $140,000. Talented and qualified engineers from around the world are eager to join the Silicon Valley workforce but are often restricted by the daunting limitations of a work visa.
Well, not anymore. PassRight, also known as the “O-1 Visa Company”, a San Francisco-based startup is looking to solve this problem in a very unique way. PassRight has developed proprietary software that helps automate the visa screening, qualification, and processing for the O-1 talent visa. The O-1 is a visa for people with extraordinary ability and PassRight helps law firms and applicants manage their O-1 visa applications with ease.
In just 12 months, PassRight has helped hundreds of applicants successfully get their work visas and has also helped companies get access to great talent. What’s more is that PassRight is now financing all the legal, government and sponsorship fees for all eligible O-1 visa applications, which means this comes at no cost to talented engineers.
“The fact is that there are thousands of talented individuals who are excited to come work for tech companies in the US. They aren’t able to because the visa process is complicated and expensive. Additionally, companies always favor applicants who are already eligible to work in the US and so many potential candidates simply miss out. What we want to do is make sure the best companies in the Bay Area get access to the best tech talent from around the world, while we take care of everything else,” says Liran Rosenfeld, Co-founder and CEO of PassRight.
What is the O-1 visa criteria?
For a long time, the H-1B has been the only popular choice for employers and employees. But Rosenfeld thinks the O-1 visa is a better option, especially for talented professionals. In order to qualify for an O-1 visa, an applicant has to meet the US government’s highest criteria for extraordinary abilities including awards, industry recognition, and top leadership roles at previous organizations. The government actually wants such talented people to come into the US and help contribute to economic growth.
O-1 visa processing time
The O-1 visa, unlike the H-1B, does not rely on a lottery system. Successful applicants get a three-year visa and can start working as soon as they are approved. The O-1 visa can be processed in as little as 15 working days and can be extended for as long as required.
“I struggled a lot when I tried to move to the US. I spent a lot of time and money with lawyers and still had a tough time. I knew right then that this entire process is broken and needs fixing. That’s why I started PassRight,” adds Rosenfeld.
Juan Diego Cordón, a talented individual in the food and beverage innovation space speaks highly about his experience with PassRight, “I had the pleasure of working with PassRight during my O-1 visa application. He actually helped me twice since I needed to apply again with a new employer. First, he helped to find an awesome and very professional lawyer and later he helped with a more economic but super professional lawyer who really meets my needs. PassRight is helpful and efficient. I will recommend him to anyone looking for help regarding immigration visa applications.”
Immigration is a hot space for disruption right now and startups like PassRight are definitely being welcomed by companies as well as talented individuals looking to get a fresh start in the US.